IELTS Map: Model Answer

Below is an IELTS map model answer which is estimated at band score 9. This is a comparison of three maps in different time periods for the academic writing task 1. If you wish to do practice exercises for grammar for the maps below, before you read this model, please follow the link: IELTS Map Comparison Exercise.

map comparison 3 maps

Source: Map above not produced by IELTS Liz.

Model Writing Task 1: Map Comparison

The maps illustrate how Meadowside village and Fonton, which is a neighbouring town, have developed over three different time periods (1962, 1985 and the present).

Overall, Meadowside village increased in size and has become Meadowside Suburb as it merged together with Fonton. Furthermore, there have been significant changes in infrastructure, housing and facilities over the period given.

In 1962, both Meadowside and Fonton were completely separate with no roads or rail connecting them. While Fonton had a railway line running through it to the north, Meadowside, located to the west of Fonton, only had a small road from the west.

By 1985, there was a considerable growth in the size of Meadowside village and Fonton. The small road in Meadowside village had been converted into a main road and was also extended to the east to connect with Fonton. Meadowside, moreover, had also developed a housing estate in the west, a leisure complex and a supermarket in the south.

Currently, both Meadowside, which is now a suburb, and Fonton are joined. The railway line, which runs through Fonton, has been extended to the west where a train station has been built. To the north of the station, a hotel has been constructed and opposite the station, to the south, there is now a business park.

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Comments

  1. Vidmante says

    Is it a must to write a conclusion in Task 1? Many people say, that you lose marks if there is no conclusion paragraph

    • You are immediately penalised if you do not write a conclusion in task 2. You are also immediately penalised if you do not write an overview in task 1.

  2. Liz is considered by me to be perfect teacher for all type of information regarding ielts.
    Thanks for giving ur precious time to us.🙏🙏

  3. mehrdad says

    Hi Liz,I just wanna know if it is a band 9 sample ?!

    And as i realize from this sample , each paragraph explains about only the related map.I want to know whether we need to compare all the three maps with each other or not.

    • In writing task 1, you compare when necessary – it is not necessary to compare all things at all times. You task is to write a report which is about reporting features – comparison often only comes in the overview. For a diagram, it sometimes doesn’t come at all. For some bar charts (not all) it is the main feature of the report. Each task type is different.

  4. Hello Mam…some IELTS coaching institutes say that we should write overall in task 1 academci at last instead of after introduction because it also also like a conclusion and we write conclusion always at last…is it okay with this?

    • There are no fixed rules about this in IELTS. You can choose the position of the overview. However, remember that this is not an essay – it is a report.

  5. This task contain much more words than 150
    …i think we are suppose to write upto Maximum 180 word…
    .

    • Your task is to write over 150 words. A high band score task 1 will usually have between 170 and 190 words. On the whole, it is best to avoid 200 words plus in order to reduce the density of errors and show the ability to select information.

  6. Dear Liz
    can we write “Meadowside village has been increased in size” But you have written “Meadowside village increased i size” we can still see that the village has increased.But why didn’t you write it in present perfect passive.Please clarify

    • Meadowside village increased in size” is correct. You would not choose a passive voice for that statement.

  7. Abubakar Wahlan says

    I just watched your Map video Liz, in that you told that we should use the key ( Housing area), (town center) to change into small letters but in this model band 9 sample response it isn’t changed into small letters (meadows and fonton). Pls kindly clarify my doubt. Thanks to YOU

    • You need to listen much more carefully to my video lessons. I did not say you remove ALL CAPITAL LETTERS. I said you must adapt the headings or labels to make them grammatically correct when you write them in a sentence. The word “Tennis” is usually given with a capital letter in a bar chart, but we do not use a capital letter with that word in an English sentence. The word “Food” might have a capital letter in a graph, but we don’t use it with a capital letter in an English sentence. You need to look at your map or chart and decide which headings must have the capital letter changed to make it grammatically correct in a sentence. Do you understand now?

  8. Hotel has been constructed or hotel has constructed . What is duffernce between both sentences. Is it same meaning? Plz help me 🙏

  9. Writing task 1 I do not feel like writing properl.So learn me

    • This website is for people learning IELTS skills for a high score. It is not for people struggling with English. If your English level is not strong, you will need to improve your English before you think about IELTS.

  10. redisha jakibanjar says

    Hlw, in this task there are more than 4 paragraphs but in your video you told that there will be 4 paragraphs .. is it fine to write more paragraphs?? I am so confused now

    • The most common is 4. There is no fixed rule about the number of paragraphs for IELTS writing – only advice. It also depends on the task you are given and the information in the map or graph.

  11. Hello
    Can you give a smaill idea to where to use capital letters on ielts writing task

    • You use capital letters where it is grammatically necessary to do so. There are no special IELTS rules. IT is about English grammar. If you do not know when to use capital letters in English grammar, you should not be considering IELTS. If your English level is so low, you should improve it before taking the test.

  12. Amelia Kurti says

    Hi Liz, Im having my IELTS this Saturday and I haven’t had time enough to work with Writing task 1 and I haven’t even touched a thing about task 2. A need your advice, should I spend a lot of time working with Maps? what should I do and don’t to save time?
    I feel insecure tbh because I had my speaking task yesterday and among all the topics listed on your website, the one I hadn’t prepared it, was the one I had to deal with.

    • You can’t predict what you will be given in writing task 1. You should prepare for everything. I know your time is short, but this is your choice to do your test at this time. My advice will always be to prepare fully.

  13. Venkat Palaparthy says

    I have practiced a lot of Cambridge reading academic materials close to 15 mocks but couldn’t able to improve the score. Am not able to achieve band 7 or more feeling tensed since my exam is on 17th of Jan. Any suggestions?

    • Did you write a list of keywords used in each and every question after you finished the reading test? Do you have a list of paraphrases used in each and every question? Do you have a list of reasons why you got one answer right and the other wrong? If you don’t have those lists, you have not been training properly. You do not improve by doing one test after another. You improve by analysing the reasons and language for your errors.

  14. Robinpreet Singh says

    Hi Liz,
    I just want to ask at what position overall should be written ( at last or at second ).
    Please notify me as soon as possible.

    • Click on “writing task 1” on the RED BAR at the top of the page to find your answer about paragraphs and structure.

  15. Hi Liz,

    I have a question about describing maps. If there are no cardinal directions given, can I still talk about north, south etc. even though this could be considered making up the information? (I have the test tomorrow, wish me luck :P)

    Thank you,
    M

    • Yes it’s fine to do that. But take a look at the information given – it isn’t always necessary to use north/south. There are many ways that locations can be described. Good luck tomorrow!

  16. Do we need to write conclusion for writing task if we have already provided and overview in the second paragraph?

  17. Mam for task 1 in today test ” Describe plans made for a small park in 1980 and at present ” ..what to write.? Is that similar to comparing maps?

  18. Asaf-uddowla Golap says

    Your materials are very good. 🙂

  19. Hi. How to get the approximate length of a place using the 100 meter scale provided in a writing task that illustrates the comparison before and after the construction of tourist facilities in an island?

  20. Hello Liz,
    I am wondering, should I express my opinion on a Map proposal question of IELTS task one, even though it is not specifically asked for?
    I am a bit confused as I have met different approaches on the Web, where some recommended doing so.
    For example:
    A task where given on a map two possible locations for a school and the instructions to “summarize the information and make a comparison where relevant”.
    There are some recommendations on the Web to indicate the benefits and drawbacks of each location and provide a personal preference. (The benefits and drawbacks are not indicated in the given information and have to be subjectively interpreted).
    Should the overview be at the end or second to the introduction?
    Appreciate your advice,
    Shiri

    • Absolutely NO writing task 1 for the academic paper will contain an opinion. Task 1 is a factual report of what is presented in the map, chart, graph table etc. NO OPINIONS!!! If you learn from websites, I hope you check who is writing the information???? I have completed the IELTS examiner training course – did you check who you are learning from? Be very careful who you choose as your teacher.

      • Hello Liz,
        Thank you so much for your prompt and clear reply. I feel much relieved now. I have seen about adding an opinion by someone who provides many IELTS lessons on Youtube so, as weird as it looked to me, I got insecure and confused.

        I definitely will take your gold advice and start trusting only on myself and on YOU 🙂

        Is there any way I can get from you paid lessons or writing corrections?

        Thanks a lot,
        Shiri

        • It is really important to understand the requirements of task 1 and task 2. Task 1 is 100% factual and you can add nothing extra – you must only present and summarise what you see. Task 2 is an essay which also has specific requirements. I do have Advanced Writing Task 2 Lessons which you can purchase on this page: http://subscriptions.viddler.com/IELTSLizStore. Each lesson is a 1 hour lecture explaining techniques in great depth. Sorry I don’t offer marking at the moment.

  21. Uzukjemal Toylyyeva says

    Thanks Liz! It’s great! Wish to be ur student☺

  22. Hi Liz! I noticed this is very long task 1, if im not mistaken it was over 200 words. However, you said in your other post that task 1 should be between 150-180 words. What exactly is the maximum number of words allowed in task 1? As well as in task 2? I need enlightenment. Thank u

    • There is no maximum number of words. There is no upper word count. The majority of writing task 1 will be between 160 and 180 words. However, some might hit about 190 or almost 200. It is not common to go over 200 and I wouldn’t recommend it. This sample answer is just over 200 words, but I am also a native speaker with no errors to lower my score. So, for students aiming for about band 7 or 8, aim for between 160 and 190 – depending on the task given. Do not get lost in too much detail.

  23. Sanjana Medipally says

    Hi Liz,

    Firstly, I should thank you for offering such great tips and information on IELTS.
    I’ll be giving my IELTS Acadmeic test in a week. I had a query regarding IELTS Map in writing task 1.
    The maps illustrate an island, before and after the construction of some toursit facilities. Under both maps, there is a scale reading ‘100 meteres’ . Could you clarify on how to use and read that scale in regards to the island?

    Thank You.

    • It shows the length and width of the island. You can estimate lengths. An estimate means a rough guess. For example, “The island is approximately …. long.”. You need to use the words for approximation.

  24. I want to know the criteria of marking for reading and listening part.I mean out 0f 40 questions how many answers should be right to get 8 or 9 band.Please help.Thanks.

  25. Hello liz mam
    If 2 map are given 1998 and present
    What will be structure then ;
    Can I include some main points of 1998 and present map in body para 1
    Or i have to decribe 1998 map in body para 1
    And present map in BP2 ?
    Plz tell me

    Hoping for your relply soon thanks

    • You can choose how to organise your information. You might organise it by one year in one body paragraph and the other year in the other BP. Or you might decide to put everything that has changed in one body paragraph and everything that is the same in another. There are a number of choices available and you keep these in your mind during the test. You look at the map you have been given and spend at least 3 mins planning how to organise things and deciding key features for the overview.

  26. Hello liz mam
    If 2 map are given 1998 and present
    What will be structure then ;
    Can I include some main points of 1998 and present map in body para 1
    Or i have to decribe 1998 map in body para 1
    And present map in BP2 ?
    Plz tell me
    Hoping for your relply soon

    • You can choose how to oganise your information. You might organise it by one year in one body paragraph and the other year in the other BP. Or you might decide to put everything that has changed in one body paragraph and everything that is the same in another. There are a number of choices available and you keep these in your mind during the test. You look at the map you have been given and spend at least 3 mins planning how to organise things and deciding key features for the overview.

      • Hi Liz. What if the map doesnt have any time frame. It only shows that the first map is a coal mine then the second map is the redevelopment of that coal mine into an attraction site. What tense should we use?

        • If it is a redevelopment then one is in the past and one is in the present. It depends if it is a planned redevelopment or not. If it is a planned redevelopment, then the development is in the future. Look more closely at the description given.

  27. Thank you so much Liz for your all advices and this great website.

    Throughout my study for the IELTS exam i have practiced all types of writing 1 questions, howeever i have always delayed studying for the map question type. One day before the IELTS Exam i had watched your video about the map question type and i had tried to rewrite this sample question. The only study for the this type of question was that. And in the writing task 1 , i was asked a very similar map question together with a line graph and thanks to you i could manage the writing task 1 in the way that i wanted:) Thank you so muchhh Lizzzz <3 :)))

    • Brilliant !!! I’m so happy that you learned about maps! So many students believe maps are not worth learning about, but they do appear in IELTS and you need to be prepared. Well done to you 🙂

  28. Really helpful in doing my assignment

  29. Really helpful

  30. Hey Liz, I had my exam a few days back. My listening task went very well. I expected it to achieve 8.5 or a minimum of 8 but unfortunately I scored 7.5 I couldn’t figure out why? Do they consider grammatical errors like using upper or lower case, punctuation marks? 13 June Vs June the 13th, or June 13 and other confusing things like that? I’m gonna sit again in this exam and your reply will be of great help to improve my score

  31. Susan Magar says

    hello mam.. Do i lose whole 25% task achievement marks if i forgot to put some information(data) on body paragraph??

  32. Nasib Al Habib says

    Hi Liz
    Sorry to be a bother. I made a query regarding a listening issue I am facing and now I cannot find the link I commented on. So I am asking again. In every listening practice problem, I find 2 or 3 words that make me confused i.e clean-up, timetable, car-park, bookshop, high-quality etc. I donot realize sometimes whether to use a dash or write seperately or write such 2 part words as one. Can you please enlighten me in this regard?

  33. Hello Liz,

    I just wanted to say huge thanks for your work and advice in here; I’m passing my IELTS next Saturday and with you I was able to correct some skills which made me feel insecure in the situation. Everything has been so useful and clear, you also seem such a kind person, I’m really glad I landed in here! At the end, I would like to express big respect for your professionalism. You really do your best and that is visible and in my opinion rare nowadays. Keep going!!!

  34. ahmed sidhan says

    hi mam,
    i had subscribed your about a month ago. But,till now, i dont get any information.

  35. Hanan Morsy says

    Hi Liz , i enjoy your teaching lessons,
    you are splendid.
    can i ask you for some tips or a lesson for a life cycle description for writing task 1
    Thanks.

  36. Hi Liz. Your lessons are helpful.
    I have a doubt. Can we use directions even if they aren’t mentioned?
    Thanks in advance

  37. Hi, Liz.
    I am preparing for my first IELTS exams next month and your recommendations and tips found in your site have boosted my initial skills and expectations. I am wondering if I could use the word “distinctive” in the place of “different” in the first paragraph of Writing Task 1, because I believe “different” is an overused word.
    For example: The maps illustrate how Meadowside village and Fonton, which is a neighbouring town, have developed over three distinctive time periods (1962, 1985 and the present).

  38. Guriqbal singh Ahluwalia says

    Hi liz.
    Thank you for the help in ielts preparation. U are too good in explaining each module. Excellent

  39. Hi Liz,

    Thanks a lot for the amazing work you have done here for us.

    My question is:
    Is there another word suitable for starting the overview?

    Thank.

  40. Hi Liz

    May I know what’s the meaning of Meadowside Suburb? Thank you!

  41. Biborno Projapoti says

    I have a question. If I get a map of an island or a city illustrating the changes between two time periods; for instance between 1995 and 2005 , should I write the task taking the year 2005 as present?

  42. Hi Liz,
    First of all let me express my bunch of thanks for your help:)
    My speaking was on Jan19 & module:academic
    Test center : India
    > Do you work or study
    >why do u choose this profession
    > favorite color
    >has your colour preferences changed over time & why
    >what are the colour choices of your friends
    >Has their preferences over colour changed
    >what is your idea about robots
    >Have u seen them & how do u feel
    Cue card on an equipment used
    Following questions were based on how machine influenced human lives.

  43. Samina Begum says

    Hi Liz
    My speaking test was on Jan 17
    Location Pakistan
    Module Academic
    Are you students or working
    What you do after you finished with your office
    what sort of game you played in your childhood
    Did you pay indoor games in your childhood
    What type of outdoor games your children play
    Two minutes talk on place you will prefer to visit in near future
    excursion places in Pakistan
    Tourism
    what do you think about future of tourism
    advantages and disadvantages of tourism

  44. in the 4th paragraph can we write The small road in Meadowside village was converted into a main road…instead of had been

  45. hello Liz
    i have a doubt regarding tense usage in writing task 1.At what time do i need to use present perfect.
    Eg.The price of oil rose gradually
    The price of oil has risen dramatically
    in this which one is best for vocabulary range.at what time can i write them.

  46. hi mame,
    really this blog is awesome and helpful,
    so, thanks a lot for this,

  47. Aasim Khan says

    Hello teacher,
    I like your work very much!
    Will you help me about my so far prediction about IELTS writing task #1, the question type.
    Here what I’ve observed ….
    1. Bar graph or bar chart
    2. Line graph
    3. Pie chart
    4. Combination of either 1, 2 or 3
    5. Flow chart
    6. Table
    7. Diagram
    8. Maps

    Is there anything, I had left …

    Thankyou so much for your kind regard

    And keep it up, and God bless you

  48. First of all, I’d like to thank you for this useful blog it helps me to get all the practice I need 👍🏽 How can I improve my writing specially in task 2?

  49. Hello. Maám Liz, I have been watching many of your IELTS videos and I found them really informative and strategically presented. I’ve learned a lot.

    But I am looking for the video for describing flow chart in writing task 1.
    If you do have maám, could you please lead me to it to watch it.
    More power and God bless you more.
    Have a nice day.

  50. hello mam, in writing task 1, how many words we can write ?

  51. thank you for your tips it is for useful
    when i use has or have + been+ converted

  52. I love the teachings and comments thanks alot. Liz please help me with the link to download the official answer sheet of ielts

  53. thank you. The tips are very important.

  54. Hi liz,

    I want to ask question in writing section, Task-1.
    You said in video session about in this task , format of writing is Introduction, Overview , Description.

    But I check writing format in IELTS official Cambridge. they say that conclusion is also important in task-1.

    So I am confuse…

    • Just google the band score descriptors that IELTS have published. It clearly shows that task 1 has an overview and task 2 has a conclusion. The overview is a paragraph which contains the key features and some people call it a conclusion. But it can come after the introduction or at the end. At no time do you repeat information in a report so you can’t re-state information in a conclusion.
      All the best
      Liz

  55. Dear liz
    please where can i practice more and more writing with model answers?
    and thanks much you are the best 🙂

  56. Dear Liz,
    Thanks a lot for all your hard work and effort , its an amazing website to prepare for IELTS test.
    In the model above I’m confused in the overview first sentence ” overall ,Meadoside village increased in size …” shouldn’t be ( Meadoside has increased in size …)
    As I have read your notice that you’ll be back in March .. so hope you will have a good break and looking forward for your reply and for other posts and lessons…

  57. “Fonton were completely separate”. Just wondering, is this correct. Wouldn’t it be “were completely separated?

  58. Hi, Dear Liz

    I took my exam 21 of December, unfortunately, I found your website one day before my exam. I run out of the time for writing but I could write intro, 2 paragraphs with explanation and examples and conclusion which contained 3 sentences. But I think it is about only 200 words. Will they penalise for being under word account. Task 1 was map and I wrote full overview and conclusion.
    Thank you. Your website is the best.

  59. Hi Liz! My name is Islom from Uzbekistan. Liz I have a question not related to the topic. In writing task one other types of essays also exist right? So do you have information about them?

  60. Hi Liz,

    Is this model answer written by you or a real exam taker?

  61. Hi Liz,
    Greetings from Canada!
    I just have a question, 3rd paragraph last sentence. How did you know that the railway line was going to the north, and the Meadowside’s small road was from the west? I mean, there’s no signs like arrows that would say where it came from and where to go. I would really appreciate to know the answer. I hope my question makes sense. Thanks a lot.

    Regards,
    Joharra

    • Roads run two ways – so either it’s from the west or east, or running west to east. Look at where it appears on the map and how it relates to the location you are currently describing. See my map video lesson.
      Liz

  62. Hello Liz,
    In your earlier writing task 1 model answers regarding bar charts,pie charts,etc. you had given a structure with 4 paragraphs (introduction,overview, body paragraph A and body paragraph B). But here you have used 5 paragraphs. Is this alright and acceptable for a band score of 8 and above?
    Lahari

  63. i have writing problem , how con improved my writing task .please helps me..

    • Review all my lessons and start making a note of what your weaknesses are. You can also purchase lessons on writing task 2 from my online course – the link is given in the right hand column on this blog.
      All the best
      Liz

  64. Hi Liz,

    What if the map shows a future development, will the tense be simple future or future perfect?

    Thanks for your help!

    • You can use future forms. Usually maps with future dates show planned development. So, you can write about “there are plans to build …” etc.
      All the best
      Liz

  65. Hi can i ask where is the best part to write the overview in task 1 academic.? Ive read some model answer which the overview is at the end.thank you

  66. Hi Liz,
    Here can we paraphrase the words as below
    housing Estate= residential property
    super store= supermarket/ shopping center
    leisure complex= Sports complex
    business park= corporate offices

    In general, is it good to paraphrase the given information whenever and wherever possible? though,in some cases it’s impossible (or not benificial) to do so…

    Thanks a lot,
    Have a nice day.

    • It is good to paraphrase when the paraphrase is correct. In your examples, they are all fine. But some people try to paraphrase “town center” with “city center” which is completely different and not acceptable. If you can’t find a strong paraphrase, don’t try. It is fine to use the words they give you.
      All the best
      Liz

  67. Elizabeth kasamn says

    Hello mam,
    Is there any specific words for this type of question ?
    if there is , can you please give me the link ..?
    Thanks!!
    Regards,

  68. Hello ,
    I want to ask you a question if a diagram had some molecules such as CO2 should we write it carbon dioxide? I’m asking because one of my relative is taking some classes for ielts exam and her teacher told her it’s wrong to write it CO2 , and I saw some website wrote it CO2 ,so what do you think ?
    thanks always for your helpful information
    regards
    Fatima

  69. Hi ma’am Liz. Your site is very reliable that I am depending on it as part of my self-review. I failed once in UKVI test. I am very poor in Reading. I have been answering around 50 practice reading tests using different techniques but I rarely get scores of more than 30. Please help me learn more about reading techniques.

    • You should be practicing each type of question in turn, not just doing full tests. Spend 2 hours only working on sentence completion, then spend two hours working on short answer questions, and so on. Be focused and develop strategies and understanding for each question type. Also make notes of ALL paraphrasing you find in questions and answers – make a list.
      All the best
      Liz

  70. swati mehra says

    hello mam,

    please help me for my exam which held on 19 september and i am weak in english.

    • This blog is to learn IELTS exam skills. If you wish to improve your English, you will need to google and find an English language site.
      All the best
      Liz

  71. Hi Liz! Sorry for bothering you but I am really in need of critics. I will be taking the exam this 27 and I need insights to improve my writing, which I am really working hard at. Would you mind taking a look?

    The maps illustrate the development of two nearby villages, Meadowside and Fonton, in three different periods (1962, 1965 and the present.)

    Overall, there is a huge change in the said villages in terms of area, railroad and infrastructure. Importantly, Meadowside village, now a suburb, and Fonton had been a single community.

    By 1962, Meadowside is a lone village in the west with a single path for transportation. Similarly, Fonton was a separate place in the east with a railway running through the middle.

    In 1985, Meadowside village more than doubled its land area compared to Fonton which added-up about a third. In addition, Meadowside village widened its road, extending to reach Fonton in the right. Also, leisure complex, housing estate and superstore were built at Meadowside.

    At present, Meadowside village became a suburb with a large increase in its perimeter making the suburb and Fonton as one. In between these are hotel in the north, business park in the south and a train station in the center.

    Thanks Liz! What score will you give on this?

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