IELTS academic writing Combinations Question Type
In task 1 of the academic writing test, combinations are frequently seen. Writing a report based on these combinations is quite important to practice before attempting the main test. In this short article, we shall understand what are combinations and how to write a report if you see one such combination in the real test.
What are the combinations questions types?
Combinations questions are those illustrations that combine two different categories of representations. There are two types of combinations in the IELTS academic writing task 1.
1. Similar combinations – you can see that a similar type of illustration may be given.
A. Bar chart + bar chart
B. Pie chart + pie chart
C. Table + table
D. Life cycle + life cycle
E. Line graph + line graph
F. Map + map
2. Dissimilar combinations – Dissimilar combinations, on the other hand, illustrate two different types of representations of data.
a. Bar chart + pie chart
b. Bar chart + line graph
c. Bar chart + tabled. Pie chart + line graph
e. Pie chart + table
How to analyze the ielts academic writing combinations question type?
In order to write a good report based on combinations, it is very important to first analyze them and understand what they actually mean and what is the necessity to combine both this illustration while writing the report.
Firstly, before starting to write the report, it is important to use at least one or two minutes to group and organize all the data by highlighting and selecting the main features that you see in both the combinations whether it is similar or dissimilar.
Only after you select the main features should you start writing.
For instance, if we consider a combination which is similar, then both the body paragraphs would have nearly the same language but different ways of expression.
In that case, you can start writing the body paragraphs one after the other in which you can compare and contrast the two illustrations that are given.
In contrast to this, if you get a combination with two different types of illustrations are seen, then the language of description should vary slightly. The vocabulary used to describe a pie chart, for example, is quite different from that used to describe a bar chart. You should show this variation while writing a report.
Step 2: Grouping the data based on similarities and differences
The next thing to ensure while writing a report is to group the data based on similarities and differences. This is a very essential step in writing a report if you see a combination. The main purpose of giving a combinational illustration is to check whether a candidate is able to make some comparisons represent those comparisons in a way that is understandable in a logical and sequential way.
Step 3: Writing a report based on a combination
You should follow a proper structure to represent the data that you see in a combination. Maintaining this structure is commonly called Cohesion. You will get credit for Cohesion. In fact, 25% of the overall score for academic writing task 1 in the IELTS test is for coherence and Cohesion.
A report should usually begin with an introduction, and in this paragraph, you should paraphrase the title of the given question by rewriting the given title in your own words without modifying the meaning. If you change the meaning, the whole report might get a low score. One or two sentences, briefly let the reader know what exactly the combination is about. This should usually be followed by any units of measurement that you see.
In most cases, a combination would include a bar chart, a pie chart or a line graph. For this type of illustrations, usually, you will see some units of measurement such as percentages, centimeters, grams, meters, etc. Failure to represent these units of measurement often leads to lowering the band score.
After the introductory paragraph, start writing the overview. Begin this paragraph with the linking word ‘overall’. By this term overall, you are clearly explaining to the other person that you have started describing the overall picture that you see in a brief and concise manner.
In the overview paragraph, you will start by highlighting the significant changes such as increasing and decreasing trends, any significant variations of fluctuations, and any steady patterns over a long period of time. Remember not to include any statistics or figures in this paragraph.
Followed by the overview is the body paragraph. You can write any number of body paragraphs from 1 to 4 depending on the amount of data and the interpretation that you make from it. Usually, you can write one to two body paragraphs to make the explanation clear.
Always remember that while writing the body paragraphs, you have to use the proper linking words to suggest that you are linking are connecting the ideas that you see. If you do not include any linking words, usually the paragraphs would not make a proper sense and this lacs overall progression.
After writing the body paragraph, finish the report with a small conclusion. This should essentially be a paraphrased version of the overview. Do not include any new points in the conclusion. Also, avoid writing everything every single point that you see in the illustration. It is very important to select and report the main features. This is true even for a combination.
Step 4: This is the final yet the most important step in writing a report based on a combination. This is known as editing. Always leave one or two minutes of time, in the end, to check for any possible errors in spelling or grammar. This definitely is a positive point for those of you who are earning for a score of 8 or above in the writing test.
What are the possible errors?
There could be several errors like
1. Lack of proper paragraphing.
2. Lack of legible handwriting.
3. Deviation from the central idea of the combination.
4. Describing too many things that you see.
5. Overuse or underuse of cohesive devices
6. Generation of irrelevant ideas or repetition of the ideas.
7. Memorized reports
8. Errors in spelling and punctuation
9. Writing too many Simple sentences.