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IELTS Writing Task 1: don't describe lines separately

I've given this advice before, but I think it will be useful to look at an example of what happens when you describe lines separately.

In the first comment below last week's lesson, a student called Beyonce tried describing the three lines on this graph separately. Here are Beyonce's main paragraphs:

..........

In 1997, the top spending category (at $260) was business visitors. It rose by about a third to peak in 2002/3, and then dropped by nearly half. In the decade to 2015, it fluctuated wildly but the trend remained flat.

Spending by those visiting friends or relatives began much lower and also peaked in the early 2000s and then, after falling back to around its original figure, recovered slowly but comparatively steadily, to end the period as the highest spending category at $250 per day, significantly more than its original value, and $40 above the final business figure.

The last cohort, people visiting friends or relatives, remained in third place throughout, and, apart from doubling early on, showed much less variability in general, trailing away in from its peak to a $140 endpoint.

..........

Analysis:

In a later comment below last week's lesson, Beyonce agreed that her description seemed "mechanical": most of her sentences seem to follow an "It did this, then it did this" format. And of course, the main problem is that there aren't any true comparisons between the three categories in her paragraphs.

Looking at Beyonce's writing, I can see that her level of English is very good. But if she experiments like this in her test, she's likely to get a lower score than she deserves. There's no need to experiment; just follow my advice and try to write like this.

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