Writing Task 2 | Linking Ideas Series

IELTS Lessons, written by Sam Morgan and Tom Speed

In this lesson we give you more practice using linking words and phrases to make your IELTS essay flow smoothly and provide a band 9 model. For previous lessons on the topic, have a look at this linking words and phrases class.

Key Language

Linking words often have one of the following functions:
Addition – used to connect two pieces of related information.
Contrast – used to connect two pieces of information that disagree with each other.
Summary – used to introduce a conclusion or overview of information.
Time – used to relate the sequence of events, i.e. what happens first, second and so on.
​Result – used to connect the result of an action.

Exercise 1

Categorise the following linking words and phrases.
1. and
2. but
3. overall
4. in comparison
5. before
6. however
7. consequently

Exercise 2

First, read the IELTS task 2 question below.
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Attitude is as important as knowledge in a test situation.

To what extent do you agree?
Write at least 250 words.

Spend 5 minutes brainstorming arguments and supporting ideas for your essay, then complete the task below.
Below is a band 9 example essay. You must choose the correct word from the box to complete the gapped sentences.
and   ·  however   ·  but  
Click or touch a word above
1. Students react in different ways to different pressures, , for many people examinations and tests are a time of nervousness panic. It is here that it could be argued that these kinds of assessments are not a true test of a subject of the candidate’s character, a point of view I will now consider.
in comparison   ·  without   ·  what  
Click or touch a word above
2. Candidates taking a test with no understanding of the subject are unlikely to do very well. understanding they are being asked to respond to, they are forced to rely only on common sense, presenting an answer that may be correct. with studious and prepared candidates, it is obvious that the latter would perform better.
who   ·  and   ·  however   ·  before  
Click or touch a word above
3. , a counterargument can be made by considering nervous candidates who have little confidence. Such people could find themselves sitting in the test but unable to organise any of their thoughts, finding that the time allotted for the test has gone having time to write more than a few lines. Now compare the candidates have written fluently and at length with candidates who have managed only a few lines, it becomes considerably more difficult to assess whether attitude is as important as knowledge.
overall   ·  which   ·  consequently  
Click or touch a word above
4. Candidates with a confident attitude and others with knowledge of the subject being tested have the possibility of attaining a similar grade. , therefore, what is needed in a test situation is a balance between the two, in the information gleaned from studying is balanced with a positive and organised approach to the test itself.

​​Are your arguments from the previous exercise similar to the arguments in this essay? Would you use the arguments expressed here in your own essays in the future?

Remember that if you come across (find) new words, write them down and find them in a dictionary. Afterward, practice using them often to keep them in your memory.

​Do you agree with the opinions expressed in this essay? Leave your ideas in the comments section below.

Now let’s head to the next Linking Words and Phrases Exercise.

Share This