Writing Skills: Spotting Mistakes 3

Mistakes in grammar or vocabulary can affect your score in IELTS writing. Learning to proof read your essay will help reduce the errors and improve your score. There are links to more practice lessons below.

Spot the Mistakes

The following sentences contain mistakes (one or more). Can you spot them?

  1. Research into space explorations can lead to new cutting edge technology.
  2. Handwriting skills is still essential even in todays modern world.
  3. The best way to tackle problem of littering is to have more bins available.
  4. Working long hours is a problem which can lead to increase levels of stress.
  5. Government should spend more money on the arts for order to protect cultural identity.

If you are aiming for band score 7, you should be able to spot 6 out of 7 mistakes.


Click below to reveal the answers:

  1. space exploration = uncountable
    1. Research into space exploration can lead to new cutting edge technology.
  2. noun verb agreement = are  /  today = today’s
    1. Handwriting skills are still essential even in today’s modern world.
  3. problem = it needs an article
    1. The best way to tackle the problem of littering is to have more bins available.
  4. working long hours = this is a noun phrase starting with a gerund = singular verb is correct  /  increase = increased
    1. Working long hours is a problem which can lead to increased levels of stress.
    2. Working long hours is a problem which can lead to an increase in the levels of stress.
  5. government = article needed  /  for order to = in order to
    1. The government should spend more money on the arts in order to protect cultural identity.


More IELTS Essay Writing Lessons 

If you would like more lessons, tips and see some model essays, please see this page: IELTS Writing Task 2 Main Page

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  1. HI LIZ,
    can the topics that came in 2017 be repeated in the same year??

  2. Hi Liz, I need each band 7 but I am not being able to get 7 in writing. Please suggest me whether I can get band 7 with this level or not. Please suggest me, where should I improve

    For some people, consumer goods have become
    the most important thing in life. Do the advantages of this development outweigh its disadvantages?

    Consumer goods have become the most significant aspect of the majority of modern people’s life. I think this trend has both positive and negative consequences.

    To begin with, this trend would make people work harder. Today’s people choose to work longer hours as they need more money to fulfil their needs, including material goods. For example, most of the individuals, especially from developed
    countries normally employed in two different jobs and earn relatively higher money than previous generations. This type of trend would play a key role in increasing tax revenue, which would lead any nation towards economic progression. Furthermore, this will also make our life more comfortable and
    easier, and this would undoubtedly create comfort and satisfaction among individuals.

    Some people argue that, due to this tradition, people may give more priority on material possessions rather than other
    invaluable aspects, such as family, friends and their health. They argue that this trend can make people workaholic and it may destroy their other relationships, including family life. For example, modern parents usually cannot give an enough time to their children because of their busy schedule, which has believed to be the key reason for increasing antisocial activities
    among teenagers. However, these issues can be solved by a proper time management skill. Working parents can utilise their days off for their families and friends, which will reduce this issue largely.

    In conclusion, I think, advantages of this development outweigh the disadvantages, because it will develop an active workforce for a nation, who can not only balance their professional and personal life wisely but also can offer a
    comfortable life to their families by purchasing latest material goods.

    (Word count: 276)

    • I don’t usually comment on writing but I will offer you one point.
      In your introduction, you offer no clear opinion but in your conclusion you say “the advs outweigh the disadvs” – this will lower your score. Make your position clear in the introduction and explain it in the body paragraphs. Your conclusion should not contain new ideas or a different position. So, put your conclusion statement into your introduction and then review your essay.

  3. Hi Liz!

    Thank you so much for useful website.

    I have a question:
    Which Ielts should I take for working as an English teacher?


    • You should ask some language centers what their job requirements are. It will probably be academic IELTS but you should check.

  4. “You need to spend more time planning so that you know exactly what you want to write and how you will write it. If you don’t do this, you will make mistakes and waste time fixing your errors. Also you need to get used to writing task 1 in under 20 mins. This can be done through training and practising.”
    Really this is the exact answer for my question I was looking for since a week ago.What I was doing is focusing only on writing more than 150 words,but main point I ignored… Heartily thanks for missing tips.

    • I’m glad you’ve understood. Writing over 150 words in task 1 is essential but that will be easier if you spend more time planning what to write about. Good luck!

  5. Imam Hossain says

    Hi ,Liz please calculated my writing essay….

    This matter has generated a lot of controversy lately.While many people speak strongly for it,the opponents are also firm in their opinion.

    So,What drives people towards it? Undoubtedly animals are used as a source of food and nutrition is extremely vital.If we look around,for example,it is clearly seen that why it is such a key element in this.Besides,we used animals for cultivation purpose especially in the developing and poor countries cannot be ignored as well.It is widely accepted that it helps to make a better society.Apart from this,the whole leather industry depends on animals skin is another viable case.So,we should lend a hand to develop it both individually and holistically.

    There are, on the contrary,several factors that show it has drawbacks too.To begin with,the whole ecosystem is under grave threat due to reckless use of animals is very much critical in this case.It is already recognize that it creates many hazards in society or otherwise.In addition,many species are now already extinct or on the verge of extinction is another by product of this phenomenon.For instance,it leads to some breakdowns in the regular harmonious way of our life.Lastly,many animals right activists believe that animals should enjoy the fundamental right,they have the right to live and their natural habitats should be left unharmed seem another outcome of this practice.people all around the globe are experiencing,more often than not,an increase in this which can no doubt result in even bigger problem for the world

    In sum,it is clearly visible that like everything else in this world,it has both pros and cons.However,in my perspective,since the bright sides.we must go for it.

  6. Dear liz, First of all thankyou for helping us. Writing for me is really difficult. I want to know how to get the grammer in my writing corrected. Need lessons for grammer desperately. Thanks

    • That is a language issue. You will need to find a local English teacher to help you or google some free grammar websites.

  7. Hello Liz!
    I just wanted to thank you for keeping up on updating this amazing website. It is really helpful. I hope you have an amazing week.
    Greetings from Argentina

  8. Hi Liz I’m studying for IELTS test (probably going to do it in June) . My problem is ,for example in writing part 2 (the essay) I can’t write more than 250 words because I don’t have enough ideas ,in my last writing part 1 I wrote 162 words and it’s okay. The problem is that I don’t write enough in the essay. How can I solve this problem?
    Thank you x

  9. Dear Liz….
    Thanks for your help. I need some more help for General IELTS. Please help me…….

    Thank You….

  10. Anjana Thapa says

    Hi Liz,
    You are such a great teacher.
    Heartily wants to thank you for the guidance.

    Much love

  11. sujit kumar biswas says

    Dear liz
    Thank you for all you do. writing really a great promblem as we have no private teacher.

    • You’re welcome. Make sure you visit the main writing pages for task 1 and task 2 to find all my tips, lessons and videos.

  12. if we write irrelevant thing instead if cause i write effects how much they give me bands?

  13. Dear Liz..

    if i write words in bracket like
    most expenditure(cars,books) then cars and books are also count words in writing test.???

  14. Hello Mam,
    I am Kashfia Mahin from Bangladesh. I can’t get a sense for no. 4 mistake.

  15. Thanks for sharing.

  16. Hi Elizbeth,

    I am trying to improve my writing and speaking tasks.

    How can I improve my speaking with a native speaker for few days. Could you help me for most common topics with standard answers, not only tips?

  17. Hi liz
    I have a problem with handling the time in writing
    I can not finish on time, and I always don’t have time to correct my answers .

    • You need to spend more time planning so that you know exactly what you want to write and how you will write it. If you don’t do this, you will makes mistakes and waste time fixing your errors. Also you need to get used to writing task 1 in under 20 mins. This can be done through training and practising.

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