IELTS Model Essay Score 9 for Direct Questions

This is an estimated band score 9 model for an IELTS writing task 2 direct questions essay. This model essay shows you how to answer each question directly and how to organise the answers into paragraphs.

Some people think that money is one of the most essential factors in promoting happiness.

Do you think people can be happy without much money?

What other factors contribute towards happiness?

Money is considered by many people to be one of the most important contributing factors towards happiness. In my opinion, it is possible for people to be happy even if they have little money and other aspects of life can play a more vital role in creating happiness.

Although having money brings happiness to a lot of people, it does not necessarily follow that people without money are, therefore, unhappy. Take for example the comparison between developing and developed countries, most Westerners would agree that people in developing countries are happier, enjoy stronger family connections and take more pleasure in the simplicities of life to a greater extent than those in developed countries.

One way that people can gain happiness is through their work. For instance, a doctor doing volunteer work in underdeveloped countries may have very little money but the reward of helping people and doing the job they are good at, brings happiness in itself. In other words, happiness can be found by using skills that people are trained for and through job satisfaction.

Finally, another factor influencing happiness is having supportive and loving people in one’s life.  While money may bring the opportunities to enjoy pleasures, few people would enjoy them on their own. Being surrounded by a loving and caring family is considered by most people to be more valuable than any amount of money.

In conclusion, money is not essential for happiness, which can be found through job satisfaction as well as family. If more people strived in life towards true happiness rather than money, the world would be a better place.

Comments: Your task is to give an answer to both questions and no more. Each question may have one or two main points to answer it. Your essay should never have more than 3 body paragraphs. You can see that in this IELTS model essay, the first body paragraph is answering the first question and the second question is answered with two main points in two different body paragraphs. Words = 275 (an appropriate length for writing task 2)

Recommended Lessons

Model Opinion Essay: click here
IELTS Writing Task 2 Practice Essay Questions: click here

Comments

  1. Hey Liz,
    Thank you very much for your articles, would you mind to check about this one? Does finance can replace the word money?

    This is considered by some people that one of the most main elements of achieving happiness is finance, however, in my opinion, I believe that individuals can get totally happy regardless of being rich.

    People can be happy without being rich, in other words, the happy feeling comes from different reasons which are not related with having money, for instance, I am a junior graphic designer, who earn a basic salary, and there is almost no money in my bank account, sometimes I got struggle financially because I can not afford my travel fees, but I still enjoy my life, I love my work and the other goals I have achieved, even when I making food or hold a cup of hot chocolate can totally make me happy and satisfy. People can be happy not only because of financial satisfy, but there are also always other elements for people to gain happiness

    Individuals also achieve happiness through achievements, job satisfaction, doing sports, or even breath fresh air. A Havard report says that the people who enjoy doing exercise by sports or join into gym are feeling happier than the people who never do any physical exercise, however, doing exercise by playing sports or join in a gym has no relationship with having money, a middle school student can totally achieve this happiness without spending a dollar. A newspaper also mentions that job satisfaction is one of the main factors which contributes towards happiness, indeed, people who gain achievements through overcome job tasks can also achieve happiness.

    In conclusion, for some people, money is truly one of the keys that makes people happy, however, happy people like me who is poor but still enjoy life through other things. Excepted having money, there are vast elements that can let people feel happy which are job satisfaction, fine family environment, doing a different kind of sports, cooking, and many other factors.

  2. Hello Liz,
    Is it compulsory that in Direct Question also known as 2 question essay to have minimum 2 questions asked?
    OR
    is it possible to only have one? I searched on net and get this question as a Direct Question
    Parents put a lot of pressure on children to succeed.
    Do you think this is a good or bad thing?
    I personally feel that its an opinion essay but got confused now?
    Please reply as soon as possible I really really need your help as my IELTS is on 27 April

    • Direct questions essay could be one, two or even three questions. That question you have stated above will require an opinion as a response.

  3. Sudan Bhattarai says

    Government promises continuous economic growth, but its actually an illusion. Some people think that governments should abandon this. please talk about the validity and the implications.

    Could you please help me with some ideas with this topic of essay.

    • Is this an authentic IELTS essay? Did you get it from one of the IELTS Cambridge test books which contain real IELTS essay questions?

  4. Hello Liz,
    Thanks for the wonderful website,all the information is very helpful.I just have a question on the first line of the model essay. The first line of model essay has word many people where as the question has some people. Can some people be paraphrased as many people ? Can it be paraphrased as few people ?
    Thanks
    Kamal

  5. Hi liz,
    thank you so much for this. It has really put things in perspective
    Would it be okay to start with something like-
    “It is a commonly held opinion that money is crucial for happiness. In my opinion, a poorer person can be happier than a wealthy one. There are also various other factors that can bring happiness to people”
    also is it okay to include sayings like “money is the root of all evil” to stress on how money would not bring happiness to some??

    • Do not learn phrases. Each sentence should be created uniquely by yourself.

      • why do you always deter others from learning the sentences other than yours? Learning to use sentences from your model answers is acceptable while from other sources are not and so-called “memorizing”. For a foreigner who wanna make their english more native, coping and imitating is the first step because they don’t have any own languages that are shining enough to get a decent score.

        • IT is fine to use ideas and learn vocabulary, but everything you write must be your own way. This is a language test and you are being scored on your ability to create sentences of your own. You should not memorise my sentences or anyone else’s sentences.

  6. Hi Liz,
    Is it okay to provide examples for both BP1 and BP2?I am a little bit confused because I had attended an IELTS Writing class. The trainer said we can only give one example for the whole writing 2 essay. Is she correct or is it possible to have an example for both BP! and BP2?Please enlighten me on this.
    Thank you,
    Rose

    • There is no such rule in IELTS. Absolutely no such rule at all. I would limit examples to one per body paragraph – not because it is a rule, but because that is sensible. You can have a maximum of three body paragraphs – again, not as a rule, but as a sensible way to meet the requirements of the higher band scores.

      • nidhi gupta says

        Hi Liz,

        thank you for helping us. i have query is 3 body paragraph necessary to obtain high band score and do we need to incorporate in all the essay type to score high band.

        • It is possible to have two or three body paragraphs. Your paragraph structure is just one part of the marking criterion of Coherence and Cohesion. Read the HOME page to learn how to access all my free lessons and tips.

  7. Thank You Liz for your wonderful teachings here. They are very resourceful. I have been trying to develop ideas on why government should continue to fund arts. I don’t have strong points here. Please can you be of help?

    • Art is part of cultural identity. It is how a country expresses itself and can also reflect the history of the country as well. Art from World War I is often analysed because it shows the painters experience of the war. Art is also a skill that should be respected and supported. Art galleries attract tourists and add to the tourist trade which in turn boosts economy. Just take a look online – google the pros and cons of supporting the arts. Please note the different between art and the arts.

  8. money is not important factor of life. it donot give happiness to masses. i thing that individuals can live a better life by job satisfaction and helping people in society.

    Firstly, there are two type of countries developing and developed countries. People in developing nations have more happier life than masses in developed terrotries . they live a happier life as they has time to spend with families and their children.

    Secondly, take a example of a doctor in a developing country, even he earn less money but he is happy because he is fully satisfy with his job and helping other people in amount of money. Means money has nothing in making one fully happy and satisfy . Having a satisfaction with jab one should happy with a small amount of money.

    Finally, in thinking of some people money is everything but having a lovely surrounding one is fully happy in life. Like if one is surrounded with love of family and friends, he will get all the happiness of world.

    In conclusion, money is not a important part of life. Satisfaction with job and a small earning makes one happy and a good standard life without any luxury products.

  9. Harmeet👍🏻Harman says

    dear liz,
    m juz confused to take a difference from both ‘opinion essay & direct question essay’,,, as u hv given both of them here under the heading of Direct question type,
    could u plz elaborate?, thnx!

    • You need to understand that it is teachers who divide the essays into different types. It is a way of teaching. Some direct questions require opinions, some do not. All you need to do is answer the direct question(s) given. For example: Why is happiness different for different people? What factors contribute toward happiness? This is a direct question essay with two questions to answer. An opinion essay is an essay that only asks “Do you agree or disagree” / “To what extent do you agree or disagree”. But always remember, your aim is just to follow instructions. Each teacher teaches the essays differently and divides the essay types differently.

  10. Hi Liz,
    I noticed you’ve used “having” a few times in this essay. There are certain words that I use involuntarily in my sentences. Like, “kind of, involves, constant”. Would multiple use of such words affect my score?
    I have my IELTS LRW tomorrow 🙂
    Thank you Liz.

    • Paraphrasing does not mean changing words all the time. Paraphrasing means deciding when to keep words the same and when to change them. Not all words need to be changed.

  11. Dear Liz,

    Can you let me know what type of essay question is this.

    There is a problem today that copyright materials such as music, films and books are available on the internet with the result the owners of the works lose money.Do you feel that this is a good or bad thing?

    • It is a direct question essay that requires you to present your opinion. Your whole essay will explain if you think it is good or bad.

  12. Hi liz,
    I’m so glad that I’ve found your website.How many kinds of essays are in the academic IELTS? Please reply<3<3<3

  13. Powerpuff girl says

    Hello Liz!
    I have given IELTS thrice . I have been able to score 8 in speaking , reading and listening. But, my score in writing has been 6.5 consistently. I have tried my best to give examples and improve vocabulary. I have analysed myself, could it be because of writing task 1 ? Because I did not make comparisons.
    Please advice as it has become frustrating for me.

    • Giving examples will not increase your score in writing task 2 – examples are optional. I suggest you get my advanced lessons to learn more about the right techniques to use for task 2: http://subscriptions.viddler.com/IELTSLizStore. Task 1 is only worth 33%. So, certainly you should review it and avoid problems, but the biggest issue will be your task 2.

  14. Hi Liz
    Thanks for your kind efforts. First of all, I have to say this essay is awesome due to the rich ideas you presented.
    I have a question. In Thesis statement we always mention three points which are connecting to question, using for example I my opinion and more importantly our opinion. why did not say your opinion in the thesis statement? you just implied that there are other aspects.

    • Don’t make your thesis too long. Your thesis contains the answer and the body paragraphs contain the details. However, there is no right and wrong. If you do add a bit of detail to your thesis it is ok.

  15. Hello Liz,
    Sometimes the IELTS task 2 questions consist of about 3 questions. In this case, I donnot know which one to start first, structure, places of them in bodies and so on. Could please make it easy for me?
    Thanks in advance.

    • You follow a logical order and answer each question in one body paragraph. Keep organisation simple and language complex.

  16. Jose Bohorquez Romani says

    Dear liz,

    My name is Jose and I took the IELTS test examination 3 times. My results in writing were as follow 6,6.5, and 6. I was quite shock when I got my last result, as for my third attempt I studied harder and I knew more vocabulary. As result, I checked the IELTS criteria and I found out for the first time that I was not using complex and compound sentences in my essays! I believe other students are making the same mistakes as well. Many people on the internet advice to check old essays in order to imitate them. However, if you do not know the theory behind each sentence construction, it is very hard to imbibe the knowledge. It would be very beneficial for the community if you emphasize this point in one of your videos.

    Regards,

    Jose

  17. Hi Liz,
    On the above essay, if the question happend to be like “to what extent do you agree or disagree”. Will it be fine to partly agree or to have a partly disagree answer? Or should we only focus our answer to either agree or disagree.
    Thanks,
    EJ

  18. HI Liz,

    I need your help.

    I have done IELTS for the 3rd time, after attending to an instructor for 3 months period. Unfortunately this time I got the worst result which is 6 in Writing.

    Last 2 times I got 6.5 in writing. This time even I felt confidence on my writing I couldn’t believe how it went further down.

    It was about buying second hand products, what are the reasons and whether it has negative or positive impact.

    I wrote 2 paragraphs explaining 2 reasons and 3rd explaining the impact. What I argued is it has negative impact. What I could think which affected my score is about a phrase I used in conclusion “To put in a nutshell, I pen down saying that”. I saw this clause in a model essay published in a website.

    I could not think what went wrong, was it my ideas or was it my inappropriate word choice.

    Appreciate your comments. Please advice.

    Thanks,

  19. hi Mam
    I’m Ajim. I’m confused
    Are both direct answer essay and argumentative essay same??
    question like……
    Why study history?
    Is free speech necessary in a free society??
    Please,help with that.

  20. Hi,

    I would like to ask you a question in connection with Task 2 from a Sample Test.
    The task is:”Concern for the environment is growing rapidly and more and more people are choosing to be ‘eco-tourists’-travelling in responsible,environmentally-friendly ways.As a result,the eco-tourism industry is expanding.

    To what extent do you think this is a positive trend?”

    Is it an opinion essay or a combination essay (opinion and direct question essay) ?

    Thank you in advance!

    • It is a direct question essay which requires your opinion. You must state if you think it is positive or not and explain your point of view.

      • How to diffrenciate between direct question and opinion question while both of them are asking ( why do you think ? )

        • An opinion essay is categorised by the fact that the only question is “do you agree or disagree?”. The direct question essay contains two or more questions to answer. However, both require an opinion. The catgorises are mainly used by teachers in order to teach – so don’t worry so much. Just follow the instructions.

  21. Thanks for help

  22. Ahmed Mustafa says

    Hi Liz,

    Thank you for this great website with many useful tips and tricks.

    I have been struggling with my essays for a while, and I was wondering if you can give me a hand by pointing mistakes or odd writing style.

    While money comes as number one priority for some people, other think that it is not of that importance. Money can but many materialistic assets , but it falls behind when it comes to intangible relations. Personally, I do not think what wealth can buy happiness.

    Firstly, Money has taken over our lives significantly. For example, some are convinced that it is better to cry in a luxurious car such as BMW rather than on your foot, trying to exaggerate the importance of money, but they are oblivious to the truth if being sad and maybe devastated in both cases. For sure money is important but not such an extent. It can buy a breathtaking house with stunning views, but with neither a family nor children.

    Secondly, family ties play an important role in drawing a smile on the one’s face. For instance, whenever I feel down, I check old photos with my family, and a torrent of rekindled memories come across my mind. while many families work their fingers to the bone, trying to achieve a satisfactory amount of money monthly, they forget to give their children an adequate amount of care and love. A justification for this social transformation can be related to the capitalist greedy world that we live in.

    Thirdly, religion can be a source of stability during the journey of life. when people face a bitter hardship, religion is this thing that bring them back on their feet. This spiritual relation works as the guardian guide, bringing peace which in turn brings happiness.

    In conclusion, it always feels great to have a six digit bank account, but this will bring neither satisfaction nor joy to the life. In my opinion, we need to be more focused on being humans rather than our banks.

  23. Hello Liz,
    First of all, many thanks for this amazing website. I find it the best in aiding me with my IELTS test.
    Secondly, I don’t think I understand the difference between Direct Essays and Cause-Solution ones. I mean, isn’t every Cause-Solution essay fundamentally a Direct one? ( and not vice versa of course)

    • Sure. It is still a direct question. However, the label of “Direct Question Essay” refers to essays which don’t fall into the other categories and generally just ask questions such as “What is happiness?” “Why is it difficult to define?”.

  24. Hello Liz,
    Thanks for the help, much appreciated.

    how would you write an introduction for essays that cannot be easily paraphrased. for example

    GOVERNMENTS SHOULD NOT INVEST IN ARTS SUCH AS MUSIC AND THEATER.
    GOVERNMENTS MUST INVEST MORE IN PUBLIC SERVICES.

    TO WHAT EXTENT DO YOU AGREE?

    • Tomorrow I will put this question up on facebook for all students to try and then on Thursday I’ll write a model background statement and post it on this blog. Thanks for sharing this question.

      • parjinder says

        Lending money more on public services instead of spending any music and theatre would not be ever fruitful, and I believe authorities must invest in them.

        Would this introduction be OK?

        please reply. m

  25. Dear Liz,

    Hello, I’m your big fan in Tokyo. I’d like to show my sincere gratidude to you for creating such a useful website for those who want to get better scores in IELTS. I have one question in terms of subjectiveness in writing essay. Some people told me that it is better to avoid using such subjective phrases as “In my opinion” or “I believe”. Is that the case for IELTS writing?

  26. Hi Liz,
    Is this essay a Direct Question type? I mean, even if it asks about “causes” and asks our “opinion”.

    (“The continued rise in the world’s population is the greatest problem faced by the humanity at the present time.”
    What are the causes of this continued rise?
    Do you agree that it is the greatest problem faced by humanity?)

    • It is a direct questions essay which uses one question from the cause type essay and one question from the opinion type essay. So, it’s a combination essay requiring you to answer each question directly.

  27. Hi Liz,

    Bunch of thanks for your so much useful blog.
    the 2nd paragraph of body paragraphs you wrote: for instance, a doctor (SINGLE) doing volunteer work in underdeveloped countries may have ( HAS) ……..and doing the job they are (HE IS) good at,

    • “may have” we never change the second verb and “may” never changes. We often refer to individual people as “they” in academic writing rather than he/she.

      • Veselina says

        Hi Liz, your lessons are amazing! Thank you so much for all that information and useful advices. Regarding the latter conversation I’m always in doubt about plural and singular when referring to individual people in academic writing so could you please tell me in this sentence ”For instance, an accountant will never know that singing bring/s them/him? more happiness, if they/he do/does? not decide to make a change” should I replace all singular with plural?
        Your help will be highly appreciated. Thank you once again.

  28. hi liz
    I still can not understand the difference , would you post the link for this essayS
    MANY THANK

  29. Hi Liz,

    I found your lessons and comment so useful. By the way, if I am not mistaken there is a typo in this essay. The last sentence of the third paragraph of body body paragraphs should be modified to: “being surrounded by a loving and caring family is considered to ‘be’ more valuable than any amount of money”. Indeed, in the original sentence “be” has been missed.

    Best

    Sara

  30. Qasim Azam says

    hi Liz
    please mention all the styles of asking opinion in the question. Yet, I have problem to understand the question about asking for opinion.

  31. if i divided this essay into
    Intro:includes paraphrasing ,and thesis that includes my opinion
    BP1: Admittedly,there r some benefits 4 money,,,,
    BP2:Nevertheless,despite ,,,,,,
    Conclusion:conclude my opinion
    is it ok?

  32. Dear Liz,

    If the question starts as “can people be happy without much money” instead of starting “Do you think people can be happy without much money”, still do we need to give my opinion???

  33. Is it correct to write therefore in the middle of the sentence. For example you have written “it does not necessarily follow that people without money are, therefore, unhappy.

    • Yes. It is flexible and good for a high score. Using it always at the start of a sentence is mechanical which is a characteristic of band score 6.
      Liz

  34. Hi Liz ,, I just want to give my gratitude to your selfless intention of helping all ones in need.
    I was having three things to ask regarding grammar.
    1 ) Can we use second conditional sentence of imagination in past tense i.e. referring to yesterday incident of discussion She told “If you weren’t married , I would purpose you”
    2 ) Can we use the sentence of compulsion “Have to” in continuous tone i.e. I am having to do this.
    3 ) Can we say the repent in opposite way which has not happened ” If you had not gone , you would have not got the chance to speak” while actually one has gone means the work has been attended still can we imagine in “Not” with 3rd conditional sentence

    Lots of love sis !!

  35. So in this task all that we need to do is simply answering the question ? It would be no need for a paragraph with our opinion ( like in the opinion essays) ?

    Thank you

  36. Radhakrishnan Rajendran says

    Hi Liz,

    You have mentioned in the above comment, not to mention about oneself. To clarify, do you mean to say we should not use the real life examples while writing the IELTS essays.
    I thought this was a better idea to correlate oneself’s real life experience when we are providing an example.

    Thanks
    R. Radhakrishnan

    • You use examples from your own experience about the world, not your own experience about your personal life. You should present examples in a way suitable for essay writing which doesn’t include stories about yourself or people you know. It should be your experience of the world.
      All the best
      Liz

  37. Hi, Liz!
    I am confused about the usage of “take for example”. I learned “take sth for example” but it seems that you use “take for example sth”(take for example the comparison …). Are both usages the same?
    Besides, in concluding paragraph, I guess the word “though”( happiness can be found though job satisfaction …) should be “through”.
    Thanks.

    • Yes, both are fine to use but make sure you only use what you understand fully and know how to use. Mistakes will lower your score. The second point was indeed a typo.
      All the best
      Liz

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