A High Score Bar Chart Exercise

Fill in the gaps to complete the high score bar chart for  IELTS writing task 1. Use the completed bar chart report to model your own writing as it gives the right structure to use and a good range of sentence structures and language.

Below are useful sentence structures which are commonly used for bar charts for each paragraph (the introduction, overview and body paragraphs) to make up a complete task 1 writing model.

You will see a full report for the bar chart below and you must fill in the gaps to complete it by using the correct verb in their appropriate form.

The bar chart below shows the number of research students studying different subject in 2005.

IELTS bar chart

Source: The above chart was not created by IELTS Liz.

Model IELTS Bar Chart Report

Fill in the report below using the following verbs. You must put the verbs in the correct form and tense. Each verb can be used more than once.

to be   /   to see  / to study   /  to  illustrate  /  to show  /  to choose  / to learn  /  to prefer

The bar chart (1).  ………………… how many male and female research students (2). ……………….. six different subjects (linguistics, psychology, natural sciences, engineering, programming and mathematics) in 2005.

Overall, there (3). …………. more male research students than females in 2005. Although the most popular subject for both genders 4. …………..natural sciences, men least (5). …………….. linguistics and women (6). …………. little interest in mathematics. Linguistics was the only subject that 7. ………… favoured by women more than men.

There was a similar number of men and women in three subjects. There were equal numbers in research students (200) (8). ……………….. natural sciences. There was a difference between the genders of about 25 in both psychology and linguistic with more women (9). …………….. linguistics (around 110) and more men taking psychology (200).

A difference of about half (10)………… evident in engineering and programming where 150 men chose both subjects. By contrast, 200 men selected mathematics which was approximately five fold that of women (about 40).

  1. illustrates
  2. studied
  3. were
  4. was
  5. preferred
  6. showed
  7. was
  8. studying / learning
  9. studying / learning / choosing
  10. was


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  1. TASK: 1
    *The chart below shows the global sales of different kind of digital games from 2000 to 2006.
    The chart signifies the worldwide trades of various kind of computerize games in the years 2000 to 2006.

    Overall, it can be seen that the four type of digital games (Mobile phone games, Online games, Console games, Handheld games) were being sold between the years 2000 to 2006.The chart crearly illustrates that the popularity of handheld game has contineously increased over the specified period of time.

    According to the bar chart, handheld games were the most sold in 2000 compared to console games. Sales of console games started at exactly 6 billion dollars, but fell to around 4 billion dollars in next two year. This level remain consistment for two years , 2003 and 2004 , before deopped to around 2 billilon dollars by the final years. On the other hand , handheld sales of handheld games started from slightly under 12 billion dollars and increased to 18 billion dollars by the final year.

    Inirially, there were no other digital games in the first year.However, in 2001 online games appeared and started selling at almost 1 billion dollars , eventually rising to around 8 billion dollars by 2007.Mobile phone games were introduced in 2002 and srarting with sales of exactly 1 billion dollars and reaching a peak of just over 6 billion dollars by the final years.
    *There is no option to send you this answer through question section thats why i am sending in here. I hope you will understand my consequences. I find this question in writing task 1 ( IELTS TASK 1 PRACTICE : ACADEMY TEST )………………..

  2. afaf salman says

    The bar chart illustrates six subjects namely linguistics, psychology, natural sciences, engineering, programming, and mathematics that were taken up by male and female research students in 2005.
    Overall, a higher number of male students participated in research as compared to female students. Natural sciences was the most popular subject between both genders, and an equal number of males participated in psychology and mathematics. Linguistics was the least favored subject by males and females showed a similar trend for mathematics.
    The majority of males (200) participated in natural sciences, psychology, and mathematics and the number dropped slightly to 150 for subjects such as programming and engineering with less than 100 males interested in linguistics.

    Females, on the other hand, showed equal participation (200) in natural sciences and the figure slightly dropped for psychology. A constant downward trend can be seen for subjects such as linguistics, engineering, programming, and mathematics from just above 100 to less than 50 females participating.

  3. mmudream says

    The bar chart illustrates how many students, divided by gender, study 6 kinds of subjects (…) in 2005.

    Overall, the number of males studying accurate sciences exceeded that of girls in the given period, and the subject with the most significant difference between genders was mathematics.

    There were 4 studies that males preferred more than girls. While 200 boys were researching psychology, the number of girls in this sphere was a bit lower (around 170). With regard to engineering, there is a big difference between male and female students (around 150 and 80 respectively). Similarly, more boys (about 150) studied programming than girls (approximately 75). And in terms of mathematics, there is a huge difference between the numbers of males and females – around 200 and 40 respectively.

    What relates to the predominance of girls over boys, in the linguistics part, there are about 120 girls preferring that subject and 80 boys.

    There are also studies in the sphere of what numbers of male and female students are leveled off – natural sciences – around 200 boys and 200 girls.

  4. The bar chart gives information on the number of male and female research students engaged in a number of subjects in 2005.

    Overall, it can be seen that there were more male than female students in the year. With regards to the subjects, natural sciences recorded the highest number of students for both men and women whereas the lowest count of male and female researchers was captured in linguistics and mathematics respectively.

    In the natural sciences, there were exactly 200 students for both male and female categories. Furthermore, the number of male researchers in mathematics class was approximately four times more than female students.

    On the other hand, the women out-number the males in linguistics alone with the number of females going over 100 compared to men which were not up to 100. The highest count for women were recorded in linguistics, psychology and natural sciences as the total count for each subject was over 100 students as opposed engineering, programming and mathematics which account for the least numbers.

  5. Eidan Khan says

    The bar chart below illustrates the number of male and female research students studying 6 subjects (Linguistics, Psychology, Natural Sciences, Engineering, Programming, and Mathematics) in 2005.

    Overall, most of the male students researched on Psychology, Natural Sciences, and Mathematics subjects. Moreover, the same number of female students also chose the Natural Sciences subject for their research. The least number of research female students showed their interest in Mathematics, Programming, and Engineering subjects.

    Psychology, Natural Sciences, and Mathematics subjects were studied by 200 male students for their research, on the other hand, almost the same number of female research students worked on Natural Sciences subject. Also, 150 male students selected Engineering and Programming subjects for their research.

    The least studied subjects by female research students were Mathematics, Programming, and Engineering (less than 50, more than 70, and well under 100 respectively) as opposed to under 100 male students in Linguistics subject.

  6. Margarita says

    The bar chart illustrates how many research students study six different subjects in 2005 divided by gender.

    Overall, there were more male research students than females in 2005. Natural sciences was the most popular subject for both genders while linguistics and mathematics were the least preferred subjects for men and women respectively. Linguistics was the only subject that was favoured by women more than men.

    There was a similar number of men and women in three subjects. Research students studying natural sciences were equal in numbers. There was a small difference between the genders of about 25 in both psychology and linguistics with more women studying linguistics and more men taking psychology.

    150 men were studying both engineering and programming which was about twice the amount of female students interested in those subjects. By contrast, mathematics was a popular subject being selected by 200 men while female students didn’t show much interest, being a minority of below 50.

  7. Hasan says

    Hi Liz, thanks for this amazing website

    the bar chart illustrates how many male and female research students studied in six different disciplines (linguistics, psychology, natural science, engineering, programming and mathematics) in the year 2005.

    Overall, in 2005, the number of male research students was higher than that of females. Although the most popular major for both genders was natural sciences, linguistics was least preferred by men, while women showed little interest in mathematics

    predominant of males was obvious in four disciplines, as the overwhelming majority of research students who chose mathematics were men (200), which is five times as many as women (40), similarly, the numbers of gentlemen who studied engineering and programming were almost twice what were in ladies, while the major of psychology witnessed 200 men against 175 women.

    natural sciences was the only major that had equal numbers of men and women, which are 200 for each gender. otherwise, linguistics was the only subject favored by women more than men.

  8. Gabriel says

    Hi Liz! Would it be appropriate if I split the body paragraph by first describing the figures for males and then the ones for females? I would not be comparing men vs women here, but rather the distribution of each gender among the different subjects. Or do I need to compare them to get a better score?

    • Your first thought really needs to be – why is the data presented as a bar chart? What is the purchase of those bars being next to each other? When you look closely, you can see if there is specific information to compare and your task will then be to compare it.

  9. Mam
    You have given exact statistics of numbers without mentioning like “AROUND,ALMOST “words.

  10. Sarah says

    Hey Liz, I’m learning alot from your blog but I have a query. Is it okay to draw a conclusion from the given chart like you have done here. Can we write ” The most popular subject” , “the least favoured mode of transportation” and so on? I have read somewhere not to do this. What do you suggest?
    Thanks in advance. 😁

    • It depends on what the chart shows. “The most popular” means that the main proportion of people liked it – you only use it if the chart is about liking something. If it is about, for example, participating in sport, that would not show liking. Choose your words carefully and make sure you are using words that relate to the information shown.

  11. thanks.

  12. Srinivas Karra says

    Hi Liz,

    I extend My deepest regards for you. I have learned only through your lessons and I got 7.0 in IELTS Thanks a ton.Your trainings us for free, that’s really great. Keep rocking.


  13. Cheickh says

    Hello Liz!
    I have a question for writing task 1. Let us say we have a list of countries displayed in a graph or chart to comment. Would You encourage using a nicknames to name some of those countries? For example the United States could be called ” the Country of Uncle Sam”; France could be ”The Hexagone”; Canada could be the Great White North; China = The red dragon etc.
    By the way, thank You for all your efforts on helping people like that.

  14. I am a new kid on the block would like to read more comments regarding Writing Task 2.
    Thank you!

  15. Hassan Qayyum says

    Hi liz.
    How about this introduction “The bar chart illustrates the comparison between male and female research students in six subjects (name of all subjects) in 2005.

  16. fateh bousbia says

    Hi liz , here in this bar chart can I write ” units are measured in research students ” or ” units are measured in ” deferent subject ” in finally of introduction if I can 🙂

    • You don’t always need to write that sentence. In the opening line, it is clearly about the number of students so you don’t need to be repetitive – the units of measurement have already been established.

  17. Hello, Maam Liz…I am having a difficulty on clustering my data in Task 1 , can you help me or give me some tips on how can i improve it . Thank You .

  18. gossipchix says

    Hi Liz! i think there was only one subject which is natural sciences showing equal number of male and female research students.

    • When you select and group information together, you aren’t looking for groups that are exactly the same. Instead you look for similarities – things which is similar but not completely the same. This also means you need to be careful with language and use the word “similar” instead of “the same”.
      All the best

  19. Great example Liz! question, is it alright in IELTS Writing to include those parenthesis? to show the numbers

  20. Thank you so much Liz for your great effort.

    Actually I can’t understand the difference between ” studying” and ” studied” in the second gap!!
    Could you please explain the difference between them?

  21. Hello Liz,a

    I did love your cognitive lessons. I really wanted to buy your in-depth lessons to learn better strategies. However, I am in a bit of quandary regarding if it only one tutorial for $19 or does sum cover the whole tutorial section including all types of questions and is it one-time transaction?
    Looking forward for your response.

    • Each lesson covers one type of essay as shown in the title. Once you buy the lesson, you can watch it as many times as you want.
      All the best

  22. Hi teacher , thank you for your wonderful lessons …
    actually I write my first report about the research students and I will be glad if you check my work …
    The chart illustrates the number of research students from the two genders studying six subjects (linguistic, psychology, natural sciences, engineering, programming and mathematics) in 2005.
    Overview, number of male students is more than the females in the most of the subjects. Both gender have high number of students in natural sciences, whereas the less number of pupils was linguistics for men compered to mathematics for women. there is significant different between the two genders in most of the study fields.
    In term of the males, most of them study mathematics, natural science and psychology, which there is 200 student in each field. There is also, equality in the numbers of students in both of the engineering and programming (just about 150 student). Moreover, there was less than 100 student in the linguistics studies.
    On the other hand, females were concentrate in the natural science and psychology (about 200 students and less than 200 students respectively). Then, there are more than 100 students in both of the engineering and programming studies. furthermore, the less number of female students is in the mathematics (less than 50 student).

    can I ask one more thing …
    can you please put more exercises of writing task 1 and 2 in your website
    and how can we connect with you always ??
    again thanks a lot

    • Sorry I don’t give feedback on writing. You can connect with me any time on my blog or youtube channel.
      All the best

  23. Hi Liz,

    Thank you so much for every single great work you have done.
    Could you please check Anita’s question again regarding the second blank because I have also the same query. ( Is it better to use studying than studied? )

    Thank you

    • You can write “the number of people studying” or you can write “the number of people who studied”.

      • Thank you Liz.

        I Asked you because the answer for the second blank is (studied) and I think that the right answer is (studying).

  24. Salma says

    Hi Liz,
    What tense should I use in describing a bar chart if IELTS did not mention the year?

    • Usually you use present tense is not date is given. However, as long as you use the same tense throughout, you will be fine.

  25. Anita says

    Thank you very much for your lessons. I have a question regarding the answer no.2, why don’t you use studying instead of studied?

    • Because to use “studied” you would need a clause “students who studied…”

  26. Arya Raveendran says

    In the above mentioned chart,I got a doubt about the body para A First sentence,can u pls explain me in which 3 subjects both genders showed similarity.I couldn’t make out that.please reply me

    • It shows that the first three are more similar than the last three which show either a half or more difference.

  27. jasmine says

    Hi Liz,
    I am a little confused about the last sentence in the essay. You used relative clause ” which” that as I know ” which” should be put right after the thing It will replace. in my opinion, that sentence should be like this ” By contrast, the number of men (200) which was approximately five fold that of women selected mathematics”
    what do you think about it?

  28. sherin says

    Hi mam,
    Thank you for your great lessons and feedback. Its very helpful for students who do self study like me.
    I would like to ask one doubt regarding the above chart. In 8th and 9th filling the blanks you answered with “ing” form (learning or studying). Can we use “learned” instead of “learning” even though, you have used simple past in the starting of the sentence ( there were equal number in research students……..) because the data is in year 2005.
    Thank you.

    • No, you can’t use “learned” in that sentence. You could write “there were equal numbers of students who learned…” you need the clause “who”.
      All the best

  29. Wykay says

    Hi, Liz!
    Thank for your help. But I’m quite confused about the last paragraph.
    Is the linking word ‘by contrast’ appropriate? Because I think there was no relativity between the former sentence and the latter sentence. Can I replace ‘by contrast’ with ‘what’s more’?
    Additionally, for ‘which was five fold that of women’ in the last sentence, I don’t understand what ‘that’ represents for. Is ‘that’ refer to means ‘number’? But there was not any word meaning ‘number’ in the sentence. I am always not good at contrast by times.
    Thank you!

    • The linking device “by contrast” was used because those sentences focus on the differences. While one difference was only half, the other was much much more (one in five). The linker “what’s more” is not academic and should never be used. It also does not highlight any difference. Your second question about the use of “that” refers to the number of women. It’s a useful phrase to learn but only if you feel, you can use it accurately. If you want to use simple contrasts, you can write “five times more than the number of women”. It’s is still considered complex language but it is easier to use.
      All the best

      • Wykay says

        I see!
        Thank you for pointing out that “what’s more” is not academic because I actually used the phrase quite frequently before. I will give up using it!
        Thanks a lot!

  30. Bita says

    Big Like all your lessons:)

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