Prepare Yourself Better For The Test : Calculating Your IELTS Writing Band Score

Why Score Prediction Is Important?

We have discussed a way of calculating band score of IELTS Speaking. It may not be highly accurate, but that certainly gives you and idea of what has been good and what needs to be improved. Doing all exercise is yet to be enough if you still have no idea how good is your English. Monitoring your progress is quite important when you take IELTS, especially if this is your first attempt.

IELTS Is A Process, Enjoy The Process

For any section in IELTS, Listening, Reading, Speaking or Writing, you may start small by doing some easy-to-do exercise as well as reading the material book. This is good, it is better than never start studying at all, right? As you are becoming more familiar with the test and your initial learning program is showing a good progress and a good progress and a good progress, you may feel it necessary to take a more challenging exercise. You are moving on from beginner-intermediate level C1 to advanced level C2. You got a feeling that it's going to be something good and believe me, it's true.

"The most important aspect that we often overlook when preparing ourselves is progress. Remember, sometimes what you need the most is progress, not perfection"

After you have done dealing with all levels, you may feel like trying the most difficult, bad-ass exercise in IELTS books. Let's say, if you have done Reading Cambridge IELTS book 1 until 9, you may end up doing book number 10,11, and 12 also, despite the fact that they are a way way tougher than the last. You may not reach the desired score, but do not lose your motivation yet. Every time you need motivation, just remember that learning IELTS (well, basicall learning everything) is a process. In this process, try focus more on the progress and not the perfection.

However, you may not have any problems doing the book number 10, 11 and 12, but that's simply because you start from Exercise 1 of those books, and first exercise is usually easier than the last. As you move ahead, you will find it more and more difficult. You have to always remember that IELTS (the material book, exercise, and even the test itself), always keeps the best for the last. So the further you move ahead, the more challenges you will face.

"It is better to start small than to never start at all"

We never say enough for learning, try to find exercise with higher level of difficulty every time you are getting done with an exercise. This is to prepare yourself for the worst case scenario. In IELTS test, the questions are completely random. I mean, some people take the test and find out that it is quite easy, while some other people who are not lucky enough and get an extremely difficult questions. Luck also plays an important role. But it is not a variable that we can control and thus we cannot fully rely on it. Taking precautions is the best move so far.

Let's say, when you do the Listening Section, the first ten numbers are usually the easiest ones so you have to give your best shot and try to have 10 correct numbers when doing the first ten numbers of the test (Remember that each question weighs the same). As you move along, the questions are getting tougher and tougher, and thus perseverance is a key.

"In the process of learning IELTS and doing the test, perseverance is a key concept"

IELTS Reading :  How It Is Scored?

Okay, so that was just a brief introduction about learning and taking IELTS as a process. The first reason why I gave that brief explanation is because the process is closely related to progress, and progress is the reason why we need to keep monitoring our score. The second reason is that I want to motivate you. There are so many people are getting frustrated with the test. If you are being one of them, I can assure you that you are not the only one. In developing countries like mine, English still becomes a challenge. Tragically, it sometimes becomes a barrier and a reason why people give up their dream. I made this blog in the first place is to tackle this problem by facilitating an IELTS self-study.

But don't worry guys, keep learning and stay tuned and everything will just be fine. For those who do not have any problems with IELTS learning, keep it up. Do not forget to study and practice, just in case you have a test with an extremely high level of difficulty. Remember that intelligence never replaces hard work. The two of them are necessary especially when you aim a very high score.

"Intelligence never replaces hard work, no matter how smart and cool you are, give your best effort and do it 100%"

Writing Task 1 And Task 2 Are Graded Separately

The first thing that you need to know about the scoring of IELTS Writing is the fact that you will be doing two types of writing in the test, namely Writing Task 1 (describing data like chart, graph, etc.) and Writing Task 2 (something like argumentative writing). These test are completely different and they will be graded individually. Writing Task 2 has higher score than Writing Task 1, so make sure you do the best in the second writing without compromising the first one.

Criteria Of IELTS Writing

General Criteria
There are 4 criteria that will determine your writing score. Each criteria contributes 25% of your overall score. There are three criteria that are similar in Writing Task 1 and Writing Task 2 which are:
  • Coherence and Cohesion: covering the use of paragraphs, linking words (cohesive device), and referencing
  • Lexical Resource: covering the range and accuracy of your vocabulary, collocations, and spelling (as well as error such as misspelling, typo, the use of incorrect collocations,etc)
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy: covering sentence structures, tenses, punctuation (as well as any grammatical error that will reduce the score)
Besides these three criteria, there are also several criteria that are specific to certain task which are:

Task-specific Criteria
  • Task achievement for Writing Task 1, including overview, key features, and information (this is only for Writing Task 1)
  • Task response, including the way you address the task, ideas and the way you develop the ideas, and conclusion (this is only for Writing Task 2)

How Task 1 and Task 2 Worth The Point

As I already told you, Writing Task 2 contributes higher score than Writing Task 1. In Writing Task two, the score is doubled while in the Writing Task 1, it is not. We can simply put it this way: Your Writing Task 1 represents 30% of the overall score and your Writing Task 2 represents 60% of the overall score.

"Writing Task 2 contributes higher score, put more effort on it and try to maintain the quality of your Writing Task 1"

How Writing Score Is Calculated

To calculate the score, take a look at this example:

Say you got
8.0 in Writing Task 1 and

7.0 in Writing Task 2

Then the score will be:
1x Writing Task 1 score = 8.0  2x Writing Task 2 score=14

equals 22, divided by 3

equals 7.33333, round it up to .5

your final score is 7.5

Some Other Considerations

Besides all criteria and task achievements, there are some other things that we often overlook but actually need our attention. This includes several technical details such as:

a. You need to have a good handwriting. Make it eligible, use correct punctuation and capitalization

b. At the lower part of your answer sheet, there is a space for assessor and it is always stated there that you are not supposed to write down anything in any way (not even scratch it). Give one or two blank-space, just to avoid any penalty and keep everything safe

c. Do not write something in an extremely close range. If you make any mistake and the mistake is in the middle of your writing (or, when you simply need to add some more information), you will not be able to do it since you have to erase some of the writing and re-write it. This is ugly since it ruins your timing. Better provide some space between words so that you have spare space for any revision. Anyway, it is okay to ask for extra sheet if you need some more (usually due the length of the writing and the use of bigger font)

d. We need to avoid ambiguity since some people write (for example) letter u and o almost similarly, and this is potentially seen as a misspelling

e. Focus and do not be carried away by your writing. Some test takers write 300 words in Writing Task 2 since they make it their first priority, but 300 word writing is too much (even for Writing Task 2) that they eventually run out of time and cannot do Writing Task 1 as expected. Be wise and use your time wisely

That's all for today's advice (was it an advice? 😪) and explanation on Writing Section scoring. If I miss anything about the Writing Section scoring, feel free to add some additional explanation. If you think this post is helpful, please share it because sharing is caring

Cheerio ~

For material on Writing Task 1 and Writing Task 2, please go to this link

Writing Task 1 Material

Writing Task 2 Material

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