Academic IELTS Task 1 Reports

On this page there is a report of each of the different kinds of questions that you could get in Task 1 of the academic IELTS module (they are not all here yet but more are coming soon). There are some questions after each model for you to think about. They are meant to make you think about important aspects of report writing so that you can copy these in your writing. Try to answer the questions yourself BEFORE you look at the answers.

1. The graph compares car thefts in Great Britian, Sweden, France and Canada between 1990 and 1999. Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.
Write at least 150 words.
The graph illustrates the number of cars stolen per 1000 vehicles in four countries, Great Britain, Sweden, France and Canada over a 10-year period from 1990 to 1999. It can be seen that overall car thefts fell very slightly in three of these countries, namely Great Britain, France and Canada, but rose in Sweden.

By far the highest number of thefts occurred in Great Britain. In 1990 there were about 17 thefts per 1000 vehicles, and this number fluctuated very slightly over the period before ending slightly lower than it started at about 14.

The numbers for Canada and France followed similar paths over the time. In 1990, there were approximately 7 cars per 1000 stolen in Canada while France had 6. The number for Canada fell to a low of 5 by 1993 before rising more gradually over the next 6 years finishing at about 6 cars per 1000 stolen. In France the number fluctuated slightly between 6 and 8 per 1000 before ending at the same number as Canada, namely 6 thefts per thousand vehicles.

Sweden, in contrast, showed a dramatic increase in the number of cars thefts despite starting with a similar number to France and Canada. Apart from a stable period between 1996 and 1998, there was a steady rise in the number of cars stolen from 9 per 1000 to roughly 14 per 1000 by over the 10 years.

While Britain had the greatest number of stolen vehicles during this time, the greatest rise in thefts was seen in Sweden.

Questions.

  1. ​What is the function of the introduction?
  2. How is the information organised in the report? What part of the graph does each paragraph deal with?
  3. ​What words are used to avoid repeating the words in the question too many times?
  4. How is the time described in different ways?

Answers:

  1. The purpose of the introduction is to introduce the ​graph by rephrasing the question. Notice that I do not use the same words from the question; instead I paraphrase it. Also the introduction contains an overview sentence. This gives a general picture of the main trends in the graph. You can leave this overview of trends until the conclusion if you like.
  2. If you have read my article on what to include in IELTS Task 1 Reports, then you will already know that you are looking for patterns and differences. Paragraph 2 deals with the most obvious difference in the graph - Great Britain. Paragraph 3 talks about the similarities between France and Canada, and paragraph 4 about the difference between them and Sweden.
  3. We have 'cars' and 'thefts' in the question. There are not many other words we can use but 'vehicles' and 'stolen' can be found in the text. Notice the 'stolen' is used passively ('were stolen') and as an adjective ('stolen vehicles').
  4. Over a 10-yesr period from 1990 to 1999.     In 1990...    by 1993...    over the next 6 years...    between 1996 and 1998...    during this time...     over the 10 years

Here is a slightly easier graph but the problem here is how to write at least 150 words from very little information. Can you see how I did this?

2. The graph below shows the number of books read by men and women at Burnaby Public Library from 2011 to 2014. Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.

Write at least 150 words.

The graph gives information about Burnaby Public Library between 2011 and 2014. It shows how many library books people read over this four-year period.
As can be seen from the graph, there were different trends for men and women. The number of books read by men increased steadily between 2011 and 2012, from about 3000 to 4000. After that, the number rose dramatically to 14000 books by 2014, overtaking the number read by women in 2013. This figure (14000) was the highest in the period.
Women started off in 2011 reading more books than men, but their numbers followed a different pattern. Between 2011 and 2013, the number of books that women read doubled from 5000 to 10000. At this point the numbers read by men and women were equal. However, by 2014, there was a sharp fall in the number read by women from 10000 to 8000, while that for men had continued to rise.
Overall, there was a strong upward trend in the number of books read by men. Although women read more books than men in 2011, their reading fell to below the level of men by 2014.
(192 words)

Another question.

As well as thinking about how I made this report long enough, find as many complex sentences as you can.

Answers.

Here we need to mention nearly every part of each line in order to write at least 150 words. Notice that I give a 'topic sentence' to start each paragraph - introducing the paragraph. I also point out where the lines cross and compare what happens after that. Remember ​you need to make comparisons, not just describe.

Complex grammar:

You should have found sentences with 'although', 'however', 'while', 'as', a gerund ('overtaking')