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How to Generate Ideas for IELTS Writing Task 2
Imagine this - you're taking an exam, and suddenly you see a question that you have absolutely no clue about. You know that you can't just skip it or leave it blank, you have to come up with something. But, how do you do that? It's a daunting feeling, right?
Don't worry, we've got your back. We've got some foolproof techniques that will help you answer the question confidently, even if you have no idea about the topic.
We've curated some special strategies that will help you generate ideas for a band 9 essay. So, don't just skim through the discussion, make sure you read this entire article carefully because it will definitely pay off.
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How to Generate Ideas for IELTS Essays
There are 4 popular techniques for generating ideas for a Task 2 IELTS essay:
You can apply one or more than one of these strategies for generating ideas in IELTS Writing. We are going to discuss the strategies in detail. Let's move:
In IELTS essay writing, brainstorming can be a useful technique for generating ideas related to the topic of the essay. The process involves quickly jotting down any idea that comes to mind related to the topic, without worrying about its relevance or organization. This can help to generate a large number of ideas and can be a useful starting point for organizing and refining your thoughts.
For example, if the topic is "The effects of technology on society," you can brainstorm a list of ideas such as,
the impact of technology on communication,
the impact of technology on jobs,
the impact of technology on education,
the impact of technology on privacy etc.
It is important to note that brainstorming should be done quickly and without much filtering or evaluating of ideas. The goal is to generate as many ideas as possible in a short period of time. Once you have a list of ideas, you can then evaluate them and select the ones that are most relevant and interesting to use in your essay. This can help you to come up with a clear thesis statement and organize your thoughts in a logical manner.
You need to practice enough before the test day to get a better understanding of the brainstorming process and to be able to generate ideas quickly during the exam.
When it comes to generating ideas for a Task 2 IELTS essay, mind-mapping is another technique that can come in handy. This method involves creating a visual representation of your ideas by drawing a central concept or idea and connecting related ideas to it through branches or lines.
For instance, let's consider the topic of "The effects of technology on society." You can start with the central concept of "technology" and connect different branches to it, such as "positive effects" and "negative effects." Under the "positive effects" branch, you can add sub-branches such as "improvements in communication," "increase in productivity," "enhancement of education," and so on. Similarly, under the "negative effects" branch, you can add sub-branches such as "decrease in face-to-face communication," "job displacement," "privacy concerns," etc.
Mind-mapping can be a useful technique for organizing your thoughts and ideas in a visual way. It can help you to see the connections between different ideas and to identify patterns or themes that can be used in your essay. Moreover, it can also be helpful for identifying examples, evidence, and arguments that can be used to support your thesis statement.
It's worth noting that mind-mapping should be done after brainstorming and should be used as a tool to organize your ideas and thoughts. As with brainstorming, it's recommended to practice mind-mapping before the test day to get a better understanding of the process and to be able to organize your thoughts quickly during the exam.
To sum up, mind-mapping is an effective technique to visually organize your ideas and develop a strong foundation for your essay. It can help you to think creatively and identify various aspects of the topic that can be incorporated into your essay. So, give it a try and see how it can improve your IELTS Writing performance.
The Friends Technique is another method that can be used to generate ideas for a Task 2 IELTS essay. This technique involves imagining a conversation with a friend over a cup of coffee, where they ask you the question that the essay prompt relates to. The first thoughts that come to mind should serve as the basis for your essay. This approach helps to generate ideas in a natural, everyday language rather than forcing complex and sophisticated language.
For example, if the topic is "The effects of technology on society," you can think about different types of people who may have different perspectives on the topic such as:
An older person who may not be as familiar with technology and may view it as overwhelming or confusing.
A young person who may be very comfortable with technology and may view it as an essential part of daily life.
A business owner who may view technology as a tool for increasing productivity and competitiveness.
A teacher who may view technology as a tool for enhancing education.
A parent who may view technology as a way to connect with their child but also as a potential source of distraction.
By considering different perspectives, you can gain a more well-rounded understanding of the topic and come up with more examples and evidence to support your arguments.
This technique can be useful for developing a more nuanced understanding of the topic and for identifying examples and evidence that can be used to support your thesis statement. Additionally, it can also help you to anticipate and address counterarguments in your essay.
It's important to note that the "friends" mentioned here are not actual friends, but characters or personas you can create in your mind, representing different groups of people with different perspectives on the topic.
Using the example method is another technique that can be used to generate ideas for an IELTS Task 2 essay. It involves thinking of specific examples related to the question that can be used to support the main points in your essay. Examiners often give high marks for relevant examples, as they demonstrate that the writer has a good understanding of the topic.
You can use examples from your own experience or something you've read or heard about. For instance, if the topic is "fear of crime," you can think of specific examples such as an article in a newspaper or magazine about crime in your local area or a study on the impact of crime on people's daily lives, or an experience you or someone you know had with local crime.
It's important to keep reading newspapers, magazines and topical websites as part of your general exam preparation as it would help you to come up with examples that are relevant and current. Additionally, you can also make up examples or tweak real examples to better fit the question as long as they are plausible.
The example method can help you to come up with ideas that are more specific and relevant to the question, which can make your essay stronger and more convincing. It also helps to make your writing more interesting by giving examples and making it more engaging.
It is worth noting that you should use examples that are relevant and appropriate to the topic, and that you should integrate them into your essay in a way that supports your main argument.
Which Idea Generation Technique to Choose
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question as the best idea generation technique for an IELTS essay can vary based on the individual's writing style, the topic of the essay, and personal preferences. However, many writers find that a combination of brainstorming mind mapping can be effective for generating and organizing ideas for an IELTS essay. It's important to experiment with different techniques and find the ones that work best for you.
I suggest you find a technique or method that works well for you and that you feel comfortable using. Also, you should experiment with different techniques and methods to see which ones work best for different question types. In fact, it is important to have at least two methods that you can use confidently, so you will be prepared for whatever type of question you get.
Know The Common Topics for IELTS
To excel in your IELTS Writing exam, it's important to have a good grasp of the common topics that frequently appear on the test. Our team has meticulously compiled a list of these topics based on the actual test questions from the past decade. Surprisingly, more than 90% of the questions in the IELTS exam come from these common topics.
It's important to keep in mind that the questions will revolve around basic areas, making them accessible to everyone. The exam is a language test, not a knowledge test, so the examiners don't expect you to be an expert in all fields. Therefore, all you need to do is familiarize yourself with the basic concepts in the topics listed above. This will help you generate ideas with ease when the topics appear in the IELTS essay section.
We are fortunate to live in the age of the internet, where knowledge is just a click away. You don't need to attend school or visit a library to gain knowledge on the common topics. There are plenty of online resources available for free that you can use to your advantage.
So, don't hesitate to equip yourself with the basic knowledge of the common topics. It's a small investment of time that can go a long way in achieving your desired band score. Use the plethora of resources available online and give yourself a competitive edge in the IELTS Writing exam.
To excel in IELTS Writing, you need to have a good grasp of the common topics that frequently appear on the test. Brainstorming, mind-mapping, and knowing basic information about the common topics can help generate ideas for a Task 2 IELTS essay. Practicing these techniques and being familiar with the common topics can give you an edge in achieving your desired band score.
Well, don't forget that our downloadable eBooks on IELTS Writing and Essay Correction Service can be incredibly helpful in improving your writing skills and achieving your target band score. The eBooks provide expert strategies for idea generation, essay planning-writing, and unearthing the secret of achieving a band 9 in IELTS Writing, while our Essay Correction Service offers personalized feedback from our team of experienced IELTS examiners. Invest in your preparation and increase your chances of success by taking advantage of these invaluable resources.