Types of IELTS Writing Task 2 Essays

In IELTS writing task 2, you are given an essay question that must be written in at least 250 words and you are allowed 40 minutes to complete it. The IELTS writing assignment 2 includes a variety of essay styles. Let us go through the various types of IELTS essays in detail:

Opinion Essay

The most prevalent sort of IELTS Task 2 question is an opinion essay. The question will be provided with a specific view in this case. The candidates must either agree with or disagree with the view. Applicants must also express their own point of view, based on relevant knowledge, thoughts, and experience. This is also an argumentative essay in which viewpoints are addressed and opposing statements are made. There should be appropriate grounds for agreeing or disagreeing with the specific position in the inquiry. It is critical to discuss both points of view, from both agreeing and dissenting perspectives, and then conclude the essay with your own conclusion.

Example: Researching and treating diseases is too costly so it would be better to invest in preventative measures. To what extent do you agree. With the increased global demand for oil and gas, undiscovered areas of the world should be opened up to access more resources. To what extent do you agree?

Discussion Essay

You must discuss all sides of an issue in discussion essays. You must talk about both the good and bad elements of the issue. When you are provided with a topic, you must offer points that agree with the assertion as well as general statements that back the disagreement portion. Typically, you will be asked for your thoughts as well.

Example: Nowadays many families move overseas for job opportunities. Some people think this is beneficial for the children of the families, while others think children will find it difficult. Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Problem and Solution Essay

The issue and solution essay is one in which you must enumerate difficulties linked with a certain topic and then propose solutions to those problems. The themes will be quite common and of wide interest, allowing candidates to provide a strong write-up with important facts and original thoughts.

Example: An increasing number of professionals such as doctors and teachers are leaving their own poorer countries to work in developed countries. What problems does this cause? What can be done to deal with this situation?

Advantage and Disadvantage Essay

This essay type is also a 2-part essay in which you must state all of the benefits and drawbacks of a specific product, event, or scenario. It is critical to comprehend the issue; only then will you be able to list all of the benefits and downsides of a certain statement. After you’ve grasped the statement, write out the advantages and disadvantages of having a gap year before starting university.

The applicants are not permitted to comment in support of or against the statement. It is an informative essay in which the candidates describe the benefits and drawbacks of a certain event or subject. Check if the points are valid on both sides.

Example: A lot of places in the world rely on tourism as a main source of income. Unfortunately, tourism can also be a source of problems if it is not well-managed.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of tourism in the modern world? Do you think that the benefits of tourism outweigh its drawbacks?


Also Read: IELTS Writing Task 2 Essay Topic Internet Replace Books: Sample Answer of Essay Question

Direct Question Essay

There may be one or more questions to respond in a direct question essay. If there are more than 2 or 3 questions, candidates must prepare their 250-word essay in such a way that all of them are addressed. You may neither skip any questions nor may you exceed the word limit, as you only have 40 minutes to finish the writing job 2.

Example: News plays a very important role in the lives of most people. Why is news so important to many people? Why is a lot of news dedicated to the bad news sections? Should news channels give more news and focus on the good news instead?

Two-part Essay

This essay type consists of two questions. There are two extremely relevant questions in favour of one phrase. Make certain that you address both questions in your essay.

Even if you have written a 250-word essay, the exam will be incomplete if you miss one question. This is a scoring question, so you’ll receive a lot of points for writing it. You may make your essay stand out by including a variety of facts, views, ideas, and descriptions.

Example: Increasingly, people eat food from other parts of the world, rather than local food. What do you think is driving this trend? Is this a good or bad development? Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Compare and Contrast Essay

In a comparison and contrast essay, you must establish contrasts between two objects by describing their similarities and differences. There will be two objects, which may be anything, an occurrence, an element, or a circumstance – that you must compare and contrast.

You must be able to analyze and comprehend in order to complete this essay. A comparison and contrast essay is the greatest type of essay since it requires you to utilize your vocabulary and defining abilities to eloquently accentuate and describe all the similarities and differences between two topics in the question. Some individuals prefer to live in houses, while others believe flats are superior than houses.

Example: iOS or android

Cause and Solution Essay

A cause and solution essay must outline the causes of a certain circumstance or incident, as well as the solutions or safeguards to avoid such situations. When you receive a statement, you must carefully study and understand it to determine the causes and then come up with unique and competitive solutions to stop or avoid the problems.

Applicants may also offer solutions as well as precautions. It may be a three-part question in which you must write all 3 elements, causes, and solutions of a specific event or entity.

Example: Many countries are experiencing serious problems with their environment, with pollution of their land, water and air. What are these problems and how might they be reduced?

How to Identify Which Type of IELTS Writing Task 2 Essay is Being Asked?

Follow these points to identify the type of essay in IELTS writing task 2:

Read the Question and Mark Keywords

Firstly, the IELTS writing task 2 essay question would be a very lengthy statement but actually, the real question is sandwiched between instructions and is written in bold. So, the statements written in bold are what you need to read carefully to identify the essay type. Also, before you identify the essay type, you can mark down some keywords that would help you to know the topic. For example,

Poverty is still one of the major problems in developing countries.

What are the problems faced by poor nations?

What can be done to eradicate poverty?

In the above essay question, you can underline keywords as below:

Poverty is still one of the major problems in developing countries.

What are the problems faced by poor nations?

What can be done to eradicate poverty?

From the keywords underlined in the statement, it can be determined that the topic of this essay question is poverty in developing nations.

Also Read: IELTS Writing Task 2 Topic House or Apartment: Tactics to Score above Band 5

Identify the Sentences after Essay Statement

After you know the topic, it is time now to identify the type of IELTS writing task 2 question it is. The sentences following the essay statement would actually help you to determine what you have to do in the essay or in other words, you will come to know which essay it is.

For instance, in the above essay question, “what are the problems faced by poor nations” and “what can be done to eradicate poverty” are the two questions written after the topic statement which let you know that you have to write problems that poor countries face and the solutions that can reduce poverty. So, this is a “problems and solutions” type of IELTS writing task 2 essay question.

Keywords to Identify Opinion Based Essay

In the questions written after the essay topic statement, you can identify whether you have to give your opinion in the essay or not. “you” or “your” is the common keyword that would ensure you need to give an opinion.

For example, “Do you agree?”, “Do you agree or disagree on this statement?”, “What is your opinion?”, “To what extent do you agree on this?”, “What do you think about this opinion?”, “Discuss both views and give your own opinion?”etc. are some of the common questions written after the topic statements. Such IELTS writing task 2 questions are actually opinion-based. Thus, whenever you find these questions in your essay, make sure you are giving your clear opinion on the topic otherwise you would lose marks.


To tackle these types of essays in the IELTS Writing Task 2, you need a lot of practice. It is important to learn about the approach for each kind of essay. This will help you come up with the blueprint of the topic as soon as you see it. You can read and practise all the types of essays in IELTS Ninja.

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