IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample Answer Band 9

The IELTS writing task 2 sample answer below has examiner comments and is band score 9. The topic of social media is common and this IELTS essay question was reported in the IELTS test. Check the model essay and then read the comments.

Many people believe that social networking sites (such as Facebook) have had a huge negative impact on both individuals and society.

To what extent do you agree?

Social networking sites, for instance Facebook, are thought by some to have had a detrimental effect on individual people as well as society and local communities. However, in my opinion, while I believe that such sites are mainly beneficial to the individual, I agree that they have had a damaging effect on local communities.

With regards to individuals, the impact that online social media has had on each individual person has clear advantages. Firstly, people from different countries are brought together through such sites as Facebook whereas before the development of technology and social networking sites, people rarely had the chance to meet or communicate with anyone outside of their immediate circle or community. Secondly, Facebook also has social groups which offer individuals a chance to meet and participate in discussions with people who share common interests.

On the other hand, the effect that Facebook and other social networking sites have had on societies and local communities can only be seen as negative. Rather than individual people taking part in their local community, they are instead choosing to take more interest in people online. Consequently, the people within local communities are no longer forming close or supportive relationships. Furthermore, society as a whole is becoming increasingly disjointed and fragmented as people spend more time online with people they have never met face to face and who they are unlikely to ever meet in the future.

To conclude, although social networking sites have brought individuals closer together, they have not had the same effect on society or local communities. Local communities should do more to try and involve local people in local activities  in order to promote the future of community life.

Comments: This essay shows you the organisation of ideas into paragraphs and also how a clear answer is given in the thesis statement in the introduction and then supported and explained in full throughout the essay. You will also see paraphrasing for advantage / disadvantage language which can be useful for you in other essays. Furthermore, the word length of this essay is typical for anyone aiming for band score 6, 7 or above. Words 280

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  1. Dear liz,

    Please reply to my silly query:
    To what extend do you agree or disagree? and to what extend do u agree?
    Are both same type?

    Please please reply.

  2. saroj raya says:

    please send me ilets writing 1 ans 2 all types samples …. i have subscribe u …

    • Click on the RED BAR at the top of the website to access writing task 2 pages and writing task 1 pages. You will find model answers, tips etc.

  3. Jakub Karpinski says:

    Where in this essay is stated extent? Couldn’t receive 7 for task response…

    • You do not need to use the word “extent”, you need to express a clear opinion – this essay fulfils the TR based on the IELTs criteria and examiner marking requirements.

  4. mam i think you were got confussed .I had told you about essay means writing task 2 .I didn’t mention writing task 1 or report and the paragraph after introductoin is called bp 1 and please give appropriate answer to my question. Thanks

    • Why did you ask about the word “Overall”? You asked me why I start my BP1 with “Overall” – I explained I start my second paragraph in writing task 1 with this word. The word “overall” is used with task 1, not a task 2 essay.

  5. kaur gill says:

    hey liz often you used word overall in starting of bp1 while it is used in the conclusion of essay???

    • 1. It is not a BP1, it is an overview in writing task 1.
      2. The overview is the most important part of writing task 1.
      3. Writing task 1 is not an essay, it is a report. Writing task 2 is an essay and does NOT contain an overview.

      • Hi Liz

        I wanted to say thanks for your resources. I used them to prepare for my 2nd test which I had today. Fingers crossed & prayers it will be my last…find out Jun 20th

        I gave it my best shot & think I did fine but you just never know with these things

        Previously I had an overall score of 8 but 6.5 in writing , which let me down

        I’ll let you know how I get on …thank you

  6. Jacob Joy says:

    Really worth reading your post.
    Thank you’

  7. Hey liz
    You are doing a really good job. I just wanted to ask, is it safe to write both sides in the opinion essay just as you did? Should I??

    • You can’t sit on the fence. However, you can present a specific view point that does not fully agree with either side. You need training in how to do this. If you don’t know how to do it, just agree with one side instead.

  8. bsrwawat says:

    Hello Liz,
    I recently came across your blog and hope you are doing well!
    I wonder, if a “General statement” is required/mandatory in IELTS GT Task-2

    • See the video lesson on this page: and then review all tips on this page:

      • Hi, Liz,

        Thank you for your website and lessons. They are very helpful.

        After watching your lesson on opinion essays I wrote a one-sided essay about this topic. The approach you taught is easy to use and the Facebook data scandal even makes it easier. However, when I saw this model essay I was a bit confused for the reasons below:
        – First of all, in the essay question, the key word of the topic is social networking sites and Facebook is put in brackets. I noticed that on one occasion you only used Facebook to connect to the topic while in the next paragraph you tried to emphasize Facebook by saying ‘Facebook and other social networking sites’. Do you intent to write like this? The examiner may notice that. Will they be OK with that?
        – As mentioned in the comments, the approach of paraphrasing for advantage/disadvantage language is used in this essay. However, the topic sentence of the first body paragraph reminded me of advantage/disadvantage language, which is what the examiner will focus on and supposed to be written carefully. Although the following main points are not written in advantage/disadvantage language, I am a bit concerned with that.
        – In the second body paragraph there is no obvious linking device for the first main point although you used ‘the effect’ in the topic sentence. My concern is that whether this is enough to make it clear.

        Look forward to your reply. Cheers!

        • 1) yes, it’s fine
          2) it’s a normal overlap of language
          3) Linking devices used in the second body paragraph: On the other hand, consequently, furthermore
          A body paragraph contains a topic sentence which is the main point. All other sentences explain the main point.

  9. Hi Liz

    Thanks for the explanation. I have a query regarding this type of opinion question. I got a similar question:

    Organized tours are choosing more and more to go remote place and communities. Do you think this is positive or negative development for the local people and the environment?

    Although this is an opinion question, can I write positive development (impact) for the local people AND negative development for the environment?

    OR Do we need to write either of positive or negative side for both (local people and environment)? In other words, do we need to take the single stand on both or can we take two stands?


  10. Piyali Das says:

    Hi Liz,

    I have a query regarding Task 2. In case of opinion essay, is it mandatory to support one particular and give reasons or is it okay to take a neutral stand stating advantages and disadvantages of both?

    • You must have a clear position – you can’t sit on the fence for an opinion essay.

      • In some countries people of all ages place extra emphasis on sports and exerccising. Do you think it is positive development? Give your opinionand relevant examples from your own experience.
        hello Liz… can you please evaluate the intro of essay(kindly give band scores). And tell me how can i improve it.
        People of all groups seems generous towards playing games and other physical activities. however few daceds back , when technology was roaring at its highest people were worried about the health of their coming generation due to sedentary lifestyle. to overcome the consequences of this sedentary lifestyle, people have come forward to arrange some sports events and preach the benefits of exercising. from my point of view it is a positive development.

  11. Jawad Abo-Tabik says:

    Hello Liz,
    I noticed that in the task they said “Many people”, while in the introduction part of the answer, the writer used “thought by SOME” as a paraphrase. Well, I think that you got my point, and the question if it is correct to put “some” as a paraphrase for “many people” or not?

    Thank you so much for everything.
    Best regards,

  12. Mohammed Rushdhaan says:

    Hello everyone,can someone evaluate my essay. Thanks in advance.

    (Q) The gap between rich and poor is growing.What problem does this create? What can be done to tackle them?

    The space between the fortunate and the unfortunate is being increasing day by day.There are numerous factors which plays a major role in this area and creates a dreadful community where peace and harmony is lost.

    Firstly,this gap which is created by wealth leads to some serious problems in the country.For instance,when the wealth keeps on accumulating on one side,this creates a criminal mindset on the people who live in the opposite side.This in turn,leads to increased number of crime rates and thefts which is driven by the jealousy created in the poor minds.When there is an imbalance in distribution of money,the country suffers in maintaining an economical stability and goes into recession.This would result in brawls between people and the bureaucracy.

    This foreseeable problem can be tackled by implementing certain laws.These legislation should be put in practice from the grass root level by educating people in their respective fields.Education wakens and liberates ones mind.In addition,the country should focus on reducing the rate of unemployment, where people would restrain from engaging in lawbreaking activities.Last but not least,the government should make every effort on shattering the black money market,so the corrupted supremacy would fear to loot the public money.

    To conclude,the wealth of a country should be divided to everyone according to their participation on developing the countries economy.If these measures are taken into consideration,I hope the gap between the rich and poor will start to shrink and create a sustainable environment for people to live in.

    (Words 264)

    • Janki Akinola says:

      I think your essay is really cool. It just needs some brushing.
      See below
      If these methods are taken into consideration, I believe…. or I think….
      You should rather personalize it. It is your essay!

  13. I just want to say thank you so much Liz. I appeared for IELTS test on 6th January and your website helped me alot, got L 8, R 9, S 8, W 7. Overall 8. Thank you so much for helping us.

  14. University students must pay all tution fees, because it benefits mostly them individually, rather than the society as a whole.
    Do you agree or disagree?
    Can i please know what is the meaning of this topic and what kind of things i am supposed to write?

  15. In many cities today,most people live in large apartments blocks.Does this kind of accomodation have more advantages or more disadvantages.
    Give reasons for your answer and include relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
    Write atleast 250 words

    Hi liz…can u evalutate this…n tell meis it a band 7 to 7.5 essay thanxxx

    Recent years have seen rapid urbanization around the globe which in turn has resulted in large companies building sky scrapers rather than individual houses. Housing statistics issued by European Commission in 2016 revealed that 70% people dwell in apartments in Spain rather than in houses.
    One of the key advantages of an apartment is security. Having been raised in an apartment myself, I can vouch for the fact that my father used to travel in comfort knowing that our neighbours were there to help us in case of an unfortunate event. Moreover, uninterrupted power and water supply has pushed more people to opt for apartments as the hectic schedule of most professionals leave them little time to worry about scarcity of resources which are of utmost importance.
    In addition to the above, club facilities for example access to gym, swimming pool etc. helps individuals to maintain a healthy life style without travelling long distances. Availability of convenience stores within the apartment complex is also a factor which contributes to people preferring apartments over houses. However, every benefit comes with strings attached and apartments are no exception. Sound seepage between the walls of the adjoining apartments has been a deciding factor for certain individuals who prefer to live in houses. Also, ability to design the house as per one’s taste and be able to modify the exteriors in the future is an aspect missing in apartments. Growing and larger families prefer house as this give them space by building a conservatory or loft in future.
    In conclusion, the type of space one selects for living is down to one’s interests in life, profession and the size of the family. However, personally I find apartment living a much wiser and economical option than living in a house.
    (293 Words)

    • Tanvir Khan says:

      I loved your essay ! Your writing skills are commendable I think it is a band 8 task !

    • To me, it was an outstanding effort but I think the thesis statement in the introduction is missing. And you should sort out the advantages n disadvantages in two separate paragraphs.

  16. Hey Liz,

    Is “……thought by some”, referring to the first line of your band 9 model answer, the correct paraphrasing for “believed by many” in the question statement?

    Thank you in advance for the amazing job you are doing.

  17. Task 2 06/01/2018

    in major cities, large number of people live in large apartment blocks. do you think it has more advantages or more disadvantages?

    I took it as a opinion essay and wrote 287 words consisting of introduction, first positive its safer. second positive point it creates sense of community and gives people opportunity to socialize as they get a chance to meet often at places like gym, swimming pool or parks which most compounds/apartment blocks provide.
    Last paragraph was conclusion where i reiterated my opinion.

    • Thanks for sharing 🙂 I don’t really understand your point about it being safer – large apartment blocks can have serious fire risks as was shown in the UK in 2017 when 17 people died in a fire. But you are 100% that this is essay requires your opinion. It is also good to explain why the disadvantages are not so important.

      • in India/Saudi Arabia usually apartments are equipped with CCTV cameras and gates, hence providing better security as compared to individual houses were there is a greater risk of theft as there are no security systems for the whole area. So wrote the essay from this point of view.

  18. Hello Liz,
    Thank you so much for all the articles and videos here on your blog.
    I gave my belts exam today i.e 06/01/2018
    and wanted to share my topics for the writing task 1 and 2
    task 1
    Your company has organized a foreign language training and now you and your colleagues think there should be more language training sessions.
    write a letter to your officer and include the following
    1. How did you and your colleagues felt about the foreign language course
    2. Why do you want more language training sessions
    3. suggest a place and time for the course

  19. Hello Liz,
    I believe there is a problem in the introduction.
    “However, in my opinion, while I believe” here “in my opinion” is seemed redundant because it is followed by “while I believe” which has almost the same meaning.

  20. Hi liz,what is unisex school; unisex means capable for both sex but when I googled this word then it came single sex school

  21. Can I use all upper case letters in listening and reading answer sheet?

  22. Can I write opinion in conclusion? Or separate.
    What is the right way?

  23. Hi Liz,
    First of all i have to say thanks for a lot of information that i have found on your Website.

  24. hello liz mam
    can i use pharse “Before putting my pen down i would like to deduce that”……
    and for mention disadvantage
    first line of body paragraph 2
    :every coin has two faces so similarly this easy also has some negative impact”……
    plz tell me
    my exam is very close to me

  25. hi Liz,
    to conclude / to sum up , which one will be better for task 2 conclusion ?

  26. Fenny Taylor says:

    Can I buy your advanced lesson for a friend using my paypal?

  27. Vimal Kamothi says:

    Hi Liz,

    In opinion essay, do we have to discuss both the sides even if the instruction doesn’t mention about the same (generally instruction will be like – discuss both the sides).
    Considering the above example, in which the instruction is mentioned as “To what extent do you agree ?”, the model answer discussed both the sides.

    Can you please clarify my doubt?


  28. Hi, Liz

    I am from Bangladesh. I watched your video, specially writing sample video before my ielts exam but did not get optimum score, only 6.0 in writing. I want to improve it 7 or above. Earlier I tried to buy the advanced video for task 2, but faced problem. I did not find name Bangladesh when I tried to bought by Credit card. How can I buy your advanced video? So far I know Pay Pal is not available in Bangladesh.

    • Judging by your message, your English is a problem. There are so many mistakes that band 7 will not be easy to get. If your country is not listed by paypal, you will need to ask someone else to buy the lessons for you.

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