Writing Task 2 | Essay Language Series

IELTS Lessons, written by Sam Morgan and Tom Speed

​Today’s post is focused on improving how you present your opinions in the task 2 essay. To get a band 7 you need to present logical opinions with supporting evidence. We have 5 activities to get you confident with this language.

Activity 1 – Warm up

We’re going to be thinking about technology in this post. What positives and negatives, if any, does technology bring to:
  • Socializing
  • Business
  • Studying
  • Entertainment
Write down your answers or post them in the comments section.

Activity 2 – Yes / No

Read the task 2 question below.
An increasing number of people now use the internet to meet new people and socialize. Some people think this has brought people closer together while others think people are becoming increasingly isolated.

Discus both sides and give your opinion.

​Read the statements below. Which ones are relevant to this question (i.e. should be included in the essay) and which are not.  
If a sentence is relevant, answer yes. If it is irrelevant then answer no.
​ARE THESE SENTENCES RELEVANT?
1. Undoubtedly, mobile technology allows people to keep in contact with old friends and new acquaintances much more easily than in days gone by.
2. Obviously, some companies have made a great deal out of marketing on the social media phenomenon of sites such as Facebook and Instagram.

3. Inevitably, many people are increasingly reliant on technology to organize their lives.

4. Naturally, bullying has also moved online, serving to further isolate the bullied.
5. Shockingly, many people at social gatherings these days spend more time on their devices than speaking to people around them.
6. Sadly, technology reinforces financial inequality within society as people who are unable to afford it miss out on its many benefits.
7. Interestingly, some restaurants ban people from using their phones at the table in order to encourage more ‘normal’ social interaction.
8. Realistically, a technological society results in a society in which people are less, not more, connected to each other.

Students find this activity difficult because they often see sentences that are loosely connected to the task and believe they should be included. With all IELTS questions, the most important thing is to keep your answer as relevant as possible to the question.

If you made some mistakes in this activity, go back to each sentence and ask yourself ‘Is this sentence directly connected to the task?‘.

Thinking like this will stop you wasting time writing unrelated responses that do not help your band score.


Activity 3 – Multiple Choice

​Each sentence in the previous activity starts with an adverb that shows the writers opinion. Introducing your opinion this way will help the reader identify your position and boost your score for Task Achievement, Coherence and Cohesion, and Lexical Resource.

Look at the four groups of adverbs and adverbial phrases that can be used to introduce the writer’s opinion. What attitude does each group of adverbs show the writer has towards an opinion?
WHAT ATTITUDES DO THE ADVERBS SHOW?
1. Generally speaking/typically/by and large
The writer thinks it is bad
The writer is making an assumption
The writer thinks it is general knowledge
The writer thinks it is important
2. Unfortunately/disturbingly/worryingly
The writer thinks it is bad
The writer is making an assumption
The writer thinks it is general knowledge
The writer thinks it is important
3. Importantly/significantly/notably
The writer thinks it is bad
The writer is making an assumption
The writer thinks it is general knowledge
The writer thinks it is important
4. Probably/as might be expected/apparently
The writer thinks it is bad
The writer is making an assumption
The writer thinks it is general knowledge
The writer thinks it is important


Activity 4 – Gap fill

​Click on a word from the box and then click again on a gap to complete the sentence.
Click or touch a word above
1. , many children today seem to be more at ease using gadgets than interacting with others of the same age.
2. Due to the frequent reporting of such crimes in the media, that cyber crime is an increasingly serious threat.
3. , people are maintaining friendships for longer than before because of the ease of communication facilitated by online social media.
4. , people can search social media sites for groups of like-minded people in their local area which allows people to connect with others in a way never seen before.


Activity 5 – Writing

Read the following question.
To what extent has the internet made modern life more convenient?

​Write 250 words.

Write a response to this question. Remember to use the adverbs and adverbial phrases that we studied above to introduce your opinions.

If you would like some free IELTSTutors.org feedback, then please copy and paste your essay into the comments section at the bottom of this page and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

For more writing advice, check out our guide to writing a body paragraph.