Beat the IELTS Task 1 Writing: Application

In the previous post I provided tips on dealing with the IELTS Task 1 writing prompt. This post will provide an application of the various suggestions made. Below is the prompt

The graph below shows how married men and women spend their unpaid work hours. Describe the information shown below in your own words. You should write at least 150 words. Allow yourself 20 minutes for this task.

Table: Unpaid Work Hours per Week
Without Kids               With 1-2 Kids               With 3 or More Kids
Gender
Male                20                                     20                                  18
Female            30                                     50                                  58

Remember there are four approaches to writing the prompt

  1. A simple fact from the graph/table
  2. Compare information in the graph/table
  3. Contrast information in the graph/table
  4. Summarize information from the graph/table

In addition, it is wise to work from left to right when deciding what data to write about.

Always start with an outline. It does not have to be this formal. However, you need to know where you are going when you write and just a little bit of scribble can help in writing clearly especially when English is not your first language

Outline

  1. Fact
    1. Women without kids spend 30 hours a week in unpaid work.
    2. Women with 1-2 kids spend 50 hours a week in unpaid work
  2. Comparison
    1. Men without kids and men with 1-2 kids both spend about 20 hours a week in unpaid work.
    2. Men with 3 or more kids spend almost the same amount of time in unpaid work as men with no kids and men with 1-2 kids
  3. Contrast
    1. Female with 3 or more kids spend 58 hours a week in unpaid work but men with 3 or more kids only spend about 18 hours a week in unpaid work.
  4. Summary
    1. Women spend more time in unpaid work then men

Example Essay

The table shows data on the amount of time men and women spend in unpaid work depending on the number of children they have. Women without kids spend 30 hours a week in unpaid work. Men without kids and men with 1-2 kids both spend about 20 hours a week in unpaid work. Female with 3 or more kids spend 58 hours a week in unpaid work but men with 3 or more kids only spend about 18 hours a week in unpaid work. In conclusion, it can be said that women spend more time in unpaid work then men.

IMPORTANT

If you count number of words in the example above it is only a 100. The directions asked for at least 150. This means that I would receive a lower score because of the brevity of my paragraph. My writing is too concise and I need more than one fact, comparison, and contrast. How many do I need? It depends. You need to be familiar with your writing style. Do you tend to be brief? Then you will need to pull more data from the graph/table. Do you tend to have a lot to say? Then you need to pull less data from the table. You need to know your style before the test not after because then it will be too late. Practice, practice, practice is the only way to discover how you write. Below is a modified outline and essay example

Modified Outline

  1. Fact
    1. Women without kids spend 30 hours a week in unpaid work.
    2. Women with 1-2 kids spend 50 hours a week in unpaid work
  2.  Comparison
    1. Men without kids and men with 1-2 kids both spend about 20 hours a week in unpaid work.
    2. Men with 3 or more kids spend almost the same amount of time in unpaid work as men with no kids and men with 1-2 kids, 18 hours versus 20 hours
  3. Contrast
    1. Female with 3 or more kids spend 58 hours a week in unpaid work but men with 3 or more kids only spend about 18 hours a week in unpaid work.
    2. Women with 3 or more kids spend more time in unpaid house work than women with fewer or no children.
  4. Summary
    1. Women spend more time in unpaid work then men

Modified Example Essay

The table shows data on the amount of time men and women spend in unpaid work depending on the number of children they have. Women without kids spend 30 hours a week in unpaid work. In addition, women with 1-2 kids spend 50 hours a week in unpaid work. Men without kids and men with 1-2 kids both spend about 20 hours a week in unpaid work. Men with 3 or more kids spend almost the same amount of time in unpaid work as men with no kids and men with 1-2 kids, 18 hours versus 20 hours. Females with 3 or more kids spend 58 hours a week in unpaid work but men with 3 or more kids only spend about 18 hours a week in unpaid work. Women with 3 or more kids spend more time in unpaid house work than women with 1-2 or no children. In conclusion, it can be said that women spend more time in unpaid work then men.

In this example I have 165 words. For me I need more data from the table to have success. For you, you have to figure out what works.

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