How long should your IELTS writing task 1 & task 2 be? Learn how the examiner counts your words and the recommended length of your IELTS essay. This page contains information about:
- IELTS Writing Word Count Rules
- Recommended Essay Length
- Word Count Warning
- How Words are Counted in IELTS writing
IELTS Writing: Word Count Rules
- IELTS have set a task of writing over 150 words for IELTS writing task 1 and 250 for writing task 2.
- However, there is no upper word limit.
- You will receive a penalty for writing under the word count.
Recommended Length of an IELTS Essay
- Always write over the word count.
- The examiner will check and count all your words.
- Aim for around 170 – 190 for writing task 1 and about 270 – 290 for writing task 2. This will mean you are safely over the word limit but without adding too much irrelevant information.
- Don’t write too much. Aim for quality rather than quantity. This means focus on writing excellent English and organising your information rather than writing a long essay.
Watch this video to learn more about how long your IELTS essay should be:
Will you get a higher score for a longer essay in IELTS?
The answer is very simple = no. IELTS is look for a highly relevant, focused essay. If you try to add information that is not 100% relevant to your task, you will get a lower score.
Don’t try to add a hook to your introduction to make it interesting. You don’t get more points for interest. You get more points for being focused and concise.
You do not get a higher score for a longer essay.
Warning for IELTS Writing Word Count
- If you copy the information given by IELTS for your introduction, the examiner will not count those words. This means you might be under the word count. So, always paraphrase your introductions. This lesson shows you how to write an introduction for IELTS writing task 2 by paraphrasing.
- How to check how many words you have written – you don’t have time to count each word you have written, so you should count the lines instead. Knowing the length of your handwriting on the official writing answer sheet will help. Watch this video lesson to learn about practicing with the official writing answer sheet.
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