Types of Essays in IELTS
IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Writing Task 2 requires students to answer an essay question in a minimum of 250 words, for which they are allocated 40 minutes. You will be assigned a topic and will be subsequently tested on your abilities to respond by justification of an opinion, discussion of the topic, summary of the details, offering an outline of the problems, identification of probable solutions, and providing support for what you write in the form of arguments, reasons, and relevant examples from your experience or knowledge. There are various types of essays in IELTS, which are mentioned below.
Discussion and Opinion-based Essay
When it comes to types of essays IELTS writing task 2, this is one of the most common essay questions. In such types of essays, you must provide a discussion of two opinions that are given as part of the question statement. In addition, you are required to offer your personal opinion. For example:
- Some individuals feel that there should be a complete ban on the usage of animals for food and transportation. Conversely, other individuals think that it is quite fair to use animals for food and experiments. Discuss both views and offer your opinion.
- Some individuals are of the opinion that environmental issues should be tackled on a global scale whereas others feel that it is much better to deal with them on a national level. Discuss both views and state your opinion.
- Each parent wants the most optimum opportunities for their kids. There are some parents who think that schools should include children skills in the curriculum, but others opine that having a range of subjects is more suitable for a child’s future. Discuss both views and state your opinion.
- Crime rate has increased with each passing year. Some people are in favor of the death penalty, thinking that it is the best deterrent to crime. However, other people have suggested that other measures need to be employed. Discuss both views and offer your opinion.
- Some individuals believe that obtaining a degree from a university is an optimum way to land yourself a good job. Conversely, others feel that it would be ideal if students go straight into work and obtain vital experience. Discuss both views and state your opinion.
When it comes to types of essays in IELTS writing task 2, another type of essay is the agree/disagree essay. Here, you are provided a statement and you are required to provide an explanation whether you agree with it or disagree with it. In addition, you may partially agree or partially disagree with that given statement. That being said, it is best to provide a clear, strong opinion. For example:
- Crime rate has substantially increased with advancements in technology. To what extent do you disagree or agree with this statement?
- With the manifold increase in global demand for gas and oil, unchartered areas of the globe must be opened up to get access to additional resources. To what extent do you disagree or agree?
- We live in a digital age, where many have access to the Internet. While the Internet has its share of advantages, the problems related to security and control of info outweigh these advantages. Do you agree or disagree?
- Scientists and technology geniuses seem to have a greater value in today’s society in comparison with artists and musicians. To what extent do you disagree or agree?
- Some individuals have opined that success is the most appropriate measure for intelligence, whereas others opine that intelligence be adequately measured in other diverse ways. Do you agree or disagree?
Two Parts Essay
When it comes to this IELTS writing task 2 essay type, the question is asked in two parts. There are two exclusive parts of the question for which you must provide answers. For example:
- A significant number of children have developed a habit of using mobile applications during the day and night. What could be the reasons for this phenomenon? What actions must parents undertake to avoid further deterioration of the situation?
- In these modern times, there is a growing trend for fathers to stay at home and care for their children, while mothers are the breadwinners. What are the primary reasons for this? Do you think it is a negative or positive sign?
- Present-day media affects people’s lives tremendously. What is this phenomenon’s impact on society? Is it a positive or negative development?
- It is becoming highly popular for individuals to travel to tourist locations on public holidays. What are the resultant problems? What are feasible solutions to this problem?
- People have demonstrated a preference of watching foreign films instead of those that are locally produced. What are the causes for this? Should the government offer financial support to local film makers?
In this type of essay, you are required to make suitable comparisons between two different objects by enlisting the similarities and differences that exist between the two. For example:
- Some individuals have a preference for living in houses in comparison with others who are of the opinion that apartments are far better than traditional houses. Compare and contrast the disadvantages and advantages of living in apartments and traditional houses.
- It is often said that not everything that can be learned is contained in books. Compare and contrast knowledge gained from books with knowledge gained from experience.
- Students studying at universities have ample choices of places to reside. They may opt for a university dormitory or choose to live in a rented accommodation. Compare and contrast the pros and cons of residing in a university housing and rented accommodation.
- Some individuals enjoy change, and they seek new experiences. Others wish that their lives would remain the same, and they refuse to change they day-to-day habits. Compare and contrast these two approaches to life.
- Some choose friends who are totally distinct from themselves. Conversely, others forge friendships with those who are similar to them. Compare and contrast the advantages of having friends who are similar to you with those advantages of having friends who are totally different from you.
Problems and Solutions Essay
In this type of essay in IELTS, you must enlist the problems that are associated with a certain topic, and then you need to offer solutions to those problems. For example:
- Traffic congestion has turned out to be a major problem in cities. What are the problems that people encounter due to heavy traffic? Discuss feasible solutions for overcoming it.
- Overpopulation in urban cities has caused immense problems. Identify two to three serious problems and effectively suggest ways that individuals and governments can successfully tackle such problems.
- In today’s digital age, where most people have access to computers, a significant number of children spend their time playing computer games. What are the negative effects of such a phenomenon and what actions can be taken to minimize the harmful effects?
- In developed countries, average life expectancy has increased. What are the potential problems for society and its members as a result of this phenomenon? Suggest certain measures that could be put into effect to minimize the impact of aging populations.
- Internet has radically transformed the manner in which information is effectively shared and consumed. However, it has also lead to never-seen-before problems. What are the damaging effects caused by the Internet, and what are their feasible solutions?
Causes and Solutions Essay
Another type of essay that is similar to problems and solutions essay is causes and solutions essay, which may be explained in two parts (causes and solutions) or three parts (causes, reasons, and solutions). For example:
- Pollution has increased manifold with an increasing number of people opting for personal vehicles. What are the major causes when it comes to pollution? Discuss feasible solutions to tackle the menace of pollution.
- A significant number of offenders commit additional crimes after serving their first punishment. What are the reasons for this phenomenon, and what measures can be effectively taken to solve this problem?
- Human beings have negatively impacted the ecosystem, leading to loss of biodiversity and extinction of species. What the primary causes for this? What feasible solutions can you offer?
- In some developed countries, the average weight of its citizens is increasing with a respective decrease in their fitness and health levels. What are the causes for this problem? Suggest suitable measures to solve the problem.
- Nowadays, a significant percentage of individuals in developed countries smoke cigarettes despite knowing the adverse health problems associated with it. What are the potential causes for this? Suggest some solutions for smokers to get rid of this habit.
Advantages and Disadvantages Essay
In this type of essay, you will be elaborating on the advantages and disadvantages of a certain thing. You need to answer both to meet the task requirement. For example:
- Online payment methods are becoming more popular in comparison with cash or other methods of payment. What are the general advantages of making payments through online mediums? What are the potential disadvantages?
- It is becoming extremely popular to have a year off between completing school and attending university. What are the disadvantages and advantages of this?
- Some individuals have opined that it would be extremely good for big companies and industries to move outside urban centers and into regional areas? Are you of the opinion that the advantages and benefits outweigh the disadvantages?
- The increasing popularity of e-books have spelt doom for paper books. Some see this as a step in the right direction; however, others do not think so. What are the advantages and disadvantages of this growing trend?
- The rise of convenience and comfort foods has helped individuals stay on track with modern lifestyle. What are the advantages of such a trend? Do the pros outweigh the cons?
These were the different types of essay questions in IELTS.