The IELTS Writing Task 1 is an important aspect of the overall IELTS Writing test. It’s recommended to spend not more than 20 minutes on this task out of the one-hour that you are allotted for IELTS Writing task. As its worth only about 33% of your total marks in the Writing test.

TIPS to improve Letter Writing for Task 1 General in IELTS

  1. You get instructions about the points to be included in your letter. You must include all the points in your letter, otherwise you will get a low Band Score.
  2. Before writing the letter, you must decide which type of letter you have to write. There are three types of letters in the IELTS General Writing Task 1 and all have a different beginning and a different way of ending. 
  3. Personal letter is written to someone you know very well, such as your friend or relative.
  4. Semi-formal letter is written to someone you don’t know well personally, such as your landlord or professor.
  5. Formal letter is written to someone you don’t know, such as a company or a college.
  6. Follow the structure of a letter.You structure your letter as follows:
Salutation

Paragraph 1 – opening statement(reason for writing)

Paragraph 2 – first point with detail

Paragraph 3 – second point with detail

Paragraph 4 – final point with detail

Paragraph 5 – closing statement( your expectation)

Signing off

Spend 4-5 minutes on collecting all your points.

  1. Plan and structure your letter.
  2. Finish writing your letter in the next 12-13 minutes.
  3. Spend 2-3 minutes on reviewing your response. Make corrections wherever necessary.
  4. You can use a pen or a pencil to write your response, but if you write with a pencil, you will be able to rectify your mistakes easily.
  5. The spellings matter. Ensure that your spellings are correct.
  6. Use linkers – transition words, such as moreover, however, conversely, to link your points.
  7. Use the correct language – formal or informal – according to the type of letter you have to write.
  8. Take care of grammar. Match the verb/ verbs with the subject/ subjects.
  9. Tense matters. So, use the correct tense.
  10. Take intermediate and advanced level grammar quizzes to overcome your grammatical errors. 
  11. You get 20 minutes for task 1 and you should not take more than 20 minutes for it.
  12. Get your response corrected by an instructor.
  13. Practise writing different types of letters based on different situations.

EXAMPLES: 

Formal Letter

You have done a bakery course and are looking for a temporary job for a few months as you wish to join a degree course starting after six months. Write a job application to the owner of a famous bakery in your area. Invent all the necessary details. In your letter:

  • Introduce yourself
  • Give reasons for taking up a part- time job
  • Your qualification and experience

Write at least 150 words.

Here’s a sample of high band letter:

Dear Sir or Madam

I have recently  finished my high school and I am writing this letter in response to your  advertisement that appeared in the local newspaper “The Post” dated 22nd January, 2019 as I  would like to apply for the vacancy of a trainee at your esteemed bakery, “The Bakers”.

After finishing my school I have taken a year off before pursuing my higher studies, and  I will get admitted to a degree course in culinary arts in the next session that begins in six months’ time.

I aspire to become a chef professionally in the near future, and working with your firm will add extra credentials to my CV. Moreover, since experience and not remuneration is my priority, I would like to work for the pioneers in the baker’s world such as you. 

I have done a three-month course in bakery from University of Swissberg, France. In addition, I also have a  little work experience with my campus kitchen and summer camp bakers.

I look forward to having an opportunity to work at ‘The Bakers’.

Yours faithfully

Dave Chester

Semi – formal Letter

You work for a company. You need to take some time off your work and want to ask your manager about this. Write a letter to your manager. In your letter:

  • Explain why you want to take time off work
  • Give details of the amount of time you need
  • Suggest how your work could be covered while you are away

Write at least 150 words.

Here’s a sample of high band letter:

Dear Sam,

I need a few days’ leave to attend a family function. I request you to approve of it as my parents need my support for some days.

I need to go to my hometown to arrange and attend a house-warming party as my parents are moving to a new house. Also, I need to help them pack and move to the new house which is about 10 kms from the current house. 

Therefore, I will need a leave of 7 business days from Oct, 22-30 to help my parents move and arrange a house-warming party for our family. I will be travelling to my hometown on the weekend that starts Oct 20 and will be returning early the consecutive week on Oct 30. 

While I am on leave, my team will ensure that project deliverables are finished and reports are submitted on time. My team-mate, Akash, will be the point of contact for every client email addressed to me. I will conduct a knowledge transfer session with Akash on Oct 18-19 to acquaint him with the open items in the project. 

I look forward to your approval of my leave request. 

Yours sincerely,

Leen

Informal Letter

You have moved to a new apartment. Next month, you have a family function. Write a letter to your friend, who lives abroad. In your letter:

  • Explain why you have shifted 
  • Describe the family function
  • Invite your friend to attend the function

Write at least 150 words.

Dear Sheriden,

I hope this letter finds you in good health. I haven’t heard from you in the last three months. I have now shifted to the university quarters inside the campus and I would love to have you here for a grand family celebration next month.

The last two months have been pretty stressful for me where I had to juggle between my job and studies. Finally, to save travelling time, I shifted to a rented accommodation inside the university campus. This allows me time to relax or dedicate some extra hours to laboratory experiments.

Additionally, this bigger residence will help me to accommodate all my family members on the occasion of my brother’s marriage. The wedding is scheduled in the local church on Downtown Street followed by a grand reception on 25th December at the hotel “The Imperial”.

I’d love to see you join us with your family.Please write back and confirm your presence although I have pre booked lodging for your stay. It would be nice to catch up with you. Moreover, it will be a get together with all our college batchmates.

Yours lovingly,

Akra

If you follow these instructions and this style of writing, you will certainly get a high band in the IELTS Writing Task 1, which would eventually mean a high band in overall IELTS score. You can find more questions to practice from our question bank: https://www.yunolearning.com/ielts/practice-tests/. Also if you are looking for a professional course to prepare for the IELTS exam, we launch a new course every week.