Guide to Writing IELTS Essays: Finding and Organizing the Ideas

Before you start writing IELTS essays, of course you need to find any topic or idea you’d like to write in the essay. In any type of writing, this is always the first step before you can finally get started. Once you find the ideas, organize them so your ideas will connect to the choice of words composing your essay. And since it’s the IELTS essays we’re talking about, you’ll also need reasons, examples, and explanations.

Find the Ideas

So, how to find the ideas you’ll write into the essay? The most practical and simplest way to find ideas is by asking yourself questions. Simply take the basic question words or 5W + 1H to ask yourself questions. The answers to those questions are the ideas about what you’d like to explain in your IELTS essays. Go try it and ask yourself various types of questions. For instance, the ‘where’ and ‘when’ questions, although they aren’t obvious, can actually give you more essay ideas to write. You’d like to add ‘anything else’ which covers points you find fit in the topic and can be used later.

Alternatively, you can start with words instead to get the ideas for your essay. Think of it as a brainstorm exercise; you may want to work quickly without thinking too hard, so your brain can run free. Don’t worry about the words that may seem nonsense—you can delete them layer. If you opt for this method, it’s best to not organize the brainstorm too thoroughly since it may end up slowing you down and giving you only fewer ideas and words.

Organize the Ideas

Note that your essay should have only 3 body paragraphs at most, with a paragraph explaining one idea. That means you’ll need to stick to only 2-3 main ideas. How to choose the main ideas? Be sure that it relates to the question exactly, can be explained with examples and reasons, and is clear and simple.

The next step is to decide which ones are main ideas and which are supporting details. This way, you can avoid explaining too many main ideas in your IELTS essay. So, how to set them apart? You can discuss, give reasons, and add examples to figure out which ones are actually your main ideas and what are the ones you should be using as supporting details.

Lastly, we hope those simple tips will help you to finally start your IELTS essay and finish it really well!