IELTS Essay General Training: Cooking at Home

IELTS Essay General Training: Cooking at Home

This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay from the real IELTS general training exam on the topic of cooking at home.

Don’t miss out on my exlusive PDFs – sign up here: Patreon.com/howtodoielts

And check out my online courses here.

Dave

IELTS Essay General Training: Cooking at Home

Cooking at home is a waste of time because there are so many convenient fast food options that make life less stressful.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Many people today feel that cooking food at home has become inessential due to the ubiquity of fast food restaurants. In my opinion, the understandable appeal of fast food does little to undermine the health benefits of preparing your own meals.

Fast food is convenient. This is evidenced through its popularity and is based on how quickly it can be purchased, its price, the fact you do not have to prepare it yourself and how easy it is to clean up afterwards. These incentives combine to entice the average worker, coming home tired after a long day, that some burgers from McDonald’s or a pizza from Domino’s will not only make their lives easier and reduce their stress levels but also help them cope with any personal problems. Given all these motivating factors, it is no surprise that many today have convinced themselves that cooking at home is a waste of time.

Regardless, the above listed reasons do not outweigh the health risks of fast food or the health benefits of home-cooked meals. Fast food has been shown, in numerous replicated studies over decades of research, to be one of the leading contributors to the risk factors for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. The alternative to fast food is cooking at home. This is not always healthy; it is perfectly possible to prepare an unhealthy meal by oneself. However, home cooks have complete control over the ingredients and are not adding the preservatives or chemicals that are typically found in fast food. They are instead more likely to serve fresh fruits and vegetables and be generally conscious of what goes into their body, thereby improving short and long-term health.

In conclusion, fast food is a naturally attractive time and stress saver that does not imply people should stop cooking at home. The health benefits of home-cooking are crucial and this is unlikely to change in the near future.

Analysis

1. Many people today feel that cooking food at home has become inessential due to the ubiquity of fast food restaurants. 2. In my opinion, the understandable appeal of fast food does little to undermine the health benefits of preparing your own meals.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Fast food is convenient. 2. This is evidenced through its popularity and is based on how quickly it can be purchased, its price, the fact you do not have to prepare it yourself and how easy it is to clean up afterwards. 3. These incentives combine to entice the average worker, coming home tired after a long day, that some burgers from McDonald’s or a pizza from Domino’s will not only make their lives easier and reduce their stress levels but also help them cope with any personal problems. 4. Given all these motivating factors, it is no surprise that many today have convinced themselves that cooking at home is a waste of time.

  1. Write a clear topic sentence with your main idea at the end. This sentence can be short.
  2. Explain your main idea in detail.
  3. Develop it fully – vary long and short sentences.
  4. Conclude the paragraph.

1. Regardless, the above listed reasons do not outweigh the health risks of fast food or the health benefits of home-cooked meals. 2. Fast food has been shown, in numerous replicated studies over decades of research, to be one of the leading contributors to the risk factors for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. 3. The alternative to fast food is cooking at home. 4. This is not always healthy; it is perfectly possible to prepare an unhealthy meal by oneself. 5. However, home cooks have complete control over the ingredients and are not adding the preservatives or chemicals that are typically found in fast food. 6. They are instead more likely to serve fresh fruits and vegetables and be generally conscious of what goes into their body, thereby improving short and long-term health.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a new main idea.
  2. Explain your main idea – you can use research to support your ideas.
  3. Write short and long sentences.
  4. Include any caveats or exceptions.
  5. Keep developing your main idea.
  6. Finish developing your main idea fully and don’t switch to a new one.

1. In conclusion, fast food is a naturally attractive time and stress saver that does not imply people should stop cooking at home. 2. The health benefits of home-cooking are crucial and this is unlikely to change in the near future.

  1. Summarise your ideas and repeat your opinion.
  2. Add a final thought/detail. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

Many people today feel that cooking food at home has become inessential due to the ubiquity of fast food restaurants. In my opinion, the understandable appeal of fast food does little to undermine the health benefits of preparing your own meals.

Fast food is convenient. This is evidenced through its popularity and is based on how quickly it can be purchased, its price, the fact you do not have to prepare it yourself and how easy it is to clean up afterwards. These incentives combine to entice the average worker, coming home tired after a long day, that some burgers from McDonald’s or a pizza from Domino’s will not only make their lives easier and reduce their stress levels but also help them cope with any personal problems. Given all these motivating factors, it is no surprise that many today have convinced themselves that cooking at home is a waste of time.

Regardless, the above listed reasons do not outweigh the health risks of fast food or the health benefits of home-cooked meals. Fast food has been shown, in numerous replicated studies over decades of research, to be one of the leading contributors to the risk factors for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. The alternative to fast food is cooking at home. This is not always healthy; it is perfectly possible to prepare an unhealthy meal by oneself. However, home cooks have complete control over the ingredients and are not adding the preservatives or chemicals that are typically found in fast food. They are instead more likely to serve fresh fruits and vegetables and be generally conscious of what goes into their body, thereby improving short and long-term health.

In conclusion, fast food is a naturally attractive time and stress saver that does not imply people should stop cooking at home. The health benefits of home-cooking are crucial and this is unlikely to change in the near future.

Answers

inessential not important

ubiquity very common

understandable appeal easy to understand why people want it

undermine doubt

preparing your own meals cooking at home

convenient easy and simple

evidenced supported by

clean up afterwards do the dishes, etc.

incentives combine reasons together

entice attract

average worker normal person

not onlybut also including both

reduce their stress levels make life less stressful

cope deal with

given all these motivating factors considering these enticements

no surprise naturally

convinced themselves make themselves think

waste of time not a good use of time

regardless nonetheless

outweigh stronger than

numerous replicated studies repeated in different research over and over

leading contributors main causes

risk factors what can lead to you getting a condition/disease

alternative different option

perfectly possible likely to happen

home cooks people who cook at home

complete control total oversight

ingredients what you put into a dish

adding the preservatives or chemicals putting in artificial substances

found in fast food that is in fast food

instead on the other hand

serve fresh fruits and vegetables recently bought foods

generally conscious more or less aware of

improving short and long-term health feeling better now and in the future

naturally attractive obviously something people want

saver keeps

imply necessarily

crucial really important

unlikely to change in the near future probably not going to be different later

Pronunciation

ˌɪnɪˈsɛnʃəl 
ju(ː)ˈbɪkwɪti 
ˌʌndəˈstændəbl əˈpiːl 
ˌʌndəˈmaɪn 
prɪˈpeərɪŋ jɔːr əʊn miːlz
kənˈviːniənt
ˈɛvɪdənst 
kliːn ʌp ˈɑːftəwədz
ɪnˈsɛntɪvz ˈkɒmbaɪn 
ɪnˈtaɪs 
ˈævərɪʤ ˈwɜːkə
nɒt ˈəʊnli … bʌt ˈɔːlsəʊ
rɪˈdjuːs ðeə strɛs ˈlɛvlz 
kəʊp 
ˈgɪvn ɔːl ðiːz ˈməʊtɪveɪtɪŋ ˈfæktəz
nəʊ səˈpraɪz 
kənˈvɪnst ðəmˈsɛlvz 
weɪst ɒv taɪm.
rɪˈgɑːdlɪs
aʊtˈweɪ 
ˈnjuːmərəs ˈrɛplɪkeɪtɪd ˈstʌdiz 
ˈliːdɪŋ kənˈtrɪbjʊtəz 
rɪsk ˈfæktəz 
ɔːlˈtɜːnətɪv 
ˈpɜːfɪktli ˈpɒsəbl 
həʊm kʊks 
kəmˈpliːt kənˈtrəʊl 
ɪnˈgriːdiənts 
ˈædɪŋ ðə prɪˈzɜːvətɪvz ɔː ˈkɛmɪkəlz 
faʊnd ɪn fɑːst fuːd
ɪnˈstɛd 
sɜːv frɛʃ fruːts ænd ˈvɛʤtəb(ə)lz 
ˈʤɛnərəli ˈkɒnʃəs 
ɪmˈpruːvɪŋ ʃɔːt ænd ˈlɒŋtɜːm hɛlθ
ˈnæʧrəli əˈtræktɪv 
ˈseɪvə 
ɪmˈplaɪ 
ˈkruːʃəl 
ʌnˈlaɪkli tuː ʧeɪnʤ ɪn ðə nɪə ˈfjuːʧə

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Many people today feel that cooking food at home has become i________________l due to the u_______________y of fast food restaurants. In my opinion, the u_____________________l of fast food does little to u______________e the health benefits of p_______________________s.

Fast food is c______________t. This is e____________d through its popularity and is based on how quickly it can be purchased, its price, the fact you do not have to prepare it yourself and how easy it is to c______________________s. These i____________________e to e_________e the a________________r, coming home tired after a long day, that some burgers from McDonald’s or a pizza from Domino’s will n___________y make their lives easier and r______________________s b__________o help them c_____e with any personal problems. G___________________________________s, it is n_____________e that many today have c_______________________________s that cooking at home is a w_____________e.

R________________s, the above listed reasons do not o______________h the health risks of fast food or the health benefits of home-cooked meals. Fast food has been shown, in n_________________________________s over decades of research, to be one of the l________________________s to the r________________s for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. The a________________e to fast food is cooking at home. This is not always healthy; it is p_________________e to prepare an unhealthy meal by oneself. However, h_____________s have c______________________l over the i__________________s and are not a___________________________________s that are typically f__________________d. They are i___________d more likely to s________________________________s and be g_______________________s of what goes into their body, thereby i_________________________________________h.

In conclusion, fast food is a n___________________________e time and stress s___________r that does not i_________y people should stop cooking at home. The health benefits of home-cooking are c___________l and this is u____________________________________e.

Listening Practice

Watch and listen to Gordon Ramsay cooking at home below:

Reading Practice

Learn some copycat recipes below so that you don’t have to go get fast food later:

https://www.tasteofhome.com/collection/fast-food-copycat-recipes/

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Cooking

  1. Do you like to cook?
  2. Why do some people like cooking?
  3. Do you usually eat at home or eat out?
  4. What do people in your country usually cook?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic and then check with my sample answer:

In many countries, traditional foods are being replaced by fast food. This has a negative impact on families, individuals and society.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

IELTS Essay: Plastic Containers

IELTS Essay: Plastic Containers

This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of plastic containers.

For my exclusive IELTS PDFs released weekly, sign up for my Patreon here.

And check out my online courses here and writing corrections here.

Dave

IELTS Essay: Plastic Containers

In many countries, plastic containers have become more common than ever and are used by many food and drink companies.

Do you think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages?

Using plastic containers for various food products has become ubiquitous in recent decades. Though this has potential drawbacks for the environment, I believe it does not outweigh the benefits to businesses and individuals.

The environmental cost of disposable plastic containers is massive. Before plastics, foods and drinks were typically put into biodegradable, eco-friendly paper or cardboard. The arrival of plastics has impacted the environment on two major fronts. Firstly, plastic itself is a fossil fuel byproduct that requires crude oil for its production and later transportation. The emissions from fossil fuels are often cited as the chief contributor to the hastening of climate change. Moreover, the containers themselves either find their ways to landfills, polluting previously pristine land, or end up in the ocean, forming ‘land masses’ that are injurious to marine life.

Nonetheless, the concomitant problems of plastic containers listed above do not override their usefulness. For companies, using plastic containers is cheap and allows for uniform consistency. This is the reason why they have been adopted by companies ranging from fast food giants like McDonald’s to local grocery chains. This savings is then passed on to the consumer who enjoys cheaper prices and the many conveniences of plastic containers. They are less likely to rip open and spill compared with paper and most families make use of them afterwards for leftover food. If plastic containers for food items were banned not only would people lose these conveniences but many companies would have to radically alter their packaging, and potentially, products themselves.

In conclusion, the environmental impact of plastic containers does little to undermine their value for both corporations and the average customer. It is instead important to explore innovations to make plastics more environmentally friendly.

Analysis

1. Using plastic containers for various food products has become ubiquitous in recent decades. 2. Though this has potential drawbacks for the environment, I believe it does not outweigh the benefits to businesses and individuals.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Give your opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. The environmental cost of disposable plastic containers is massive. 2. Before plastics, foods and drinks were typically put into biodegradable, eco-friendly paper or cardboard. 3. The arrival of plastics has impacted the environment on two major fronts. 4. Firstly, plastic itself is a fossil fuel byproduct that requires crude oil for its production and later transportation. 5. The emissions from fossil fuels are often cited as the chief contributor to the hastening of climate change. 6. Moreover, the containers themselves either find their ways to landfills, polluting previously pristine land, or end up in the ocean, forming ‘land masses’ that are injurious to marine life.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Use short and long sentences.
  4. Use specific details.
  5. The more specific and the more results explained, the better!
  6. Fully explain any ideas you mention.

1. Nonetheless, the concomitant problems of plastic containers listed above do not override their usefulness. 2. For companies, using plastic containers is cheap and allows for uniform consistency. 3. This is the reason why they have been adopted by companies ranging from fast food giants like McDonald’s to local grocery chains. 4. This savings is then passed on to the consumer who enjoys cheaper prices and the many conveniences of plastic containers. 5. They are less likely to rip open and spill compared with paper and most families make use of them afterwards for leftover food. 6. If plastic containers for food items were banned not only would people lose these conveniences but many companies would have to radically alter their packaging, and potentially, products themselves.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea (the one that you agree with).
  2. Begin to explain your idea.
  3. Develop it fully.
  4. Keep stating further results.
  5. Add as much detail as you can.
  6. Don’t switch to a new main idea – just develop one fully.

1. In conclusion, the environmental impact of plastic containers does little to undermine their value for both corporations and the average customer. 2. It is instead important to explore innovations to make plastics more environmentally friendly.

  1. Summarise your main ideas and repeat your opinion.
  2. Include a final thought/detail. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold mean?

Using plastic containers for various food products has become ubiquitous in recent decades. Though this has potential drawbacks for the environment, I believe it does not outweigh the benefits to businesses and individuals.

The environmental cost of disposable plastic containers is massive. Before plastics, foods and drinks were typically put into biodegradable, eco-friendly paper or cardboard. The arrival of plastics has impacted the environment on two major fronts. Firstly, plastic itself is a fossil fuel byproduct that requires crude oil for its production and later transportation. The emissions from fossil fuels are often cited as the chief contributor to the hastening of climate change. Moreover, the containers themselves either find their ways to landfills, polluting previously pristine land, or end up in the ocean, forming ‘land masses’ that are injurious to marine life.

Nonetheless, the concomitant problems of plastic containers listed above do not override their usefulness. For companies, using plastic containers is cheap and allows for uniform consistency. This is the reason why they have been adopted by companies ranging from fast food giants like McDonald’s to local grocery chains. This savings is then passed on to the consumer who enjoys cheaper prices and the many conveniences of plastic containers. They are less likely to rip open and spill compared with paper and most families make use of them afterwards for leftover food. If plastic containers for food items were banned not only would people lose these conveniences but many companies would have to radically alter their packaging, and potentially, products themselves.

In conclusion, the environmental impact of plastic containers does little to undermine their value for both corporations and the average customer. It is instead important to explore innovations to make plastics more environmentally friendly.

Answers

plastic containers bags, bottles, boxes, etc.

ubiquitous common

recent decades last 30 or so years

potential drawbacks possible disadvantages

outweigh stronger than

environmental cost hurts the environment

disposable plastic containers single-use plastics

massive huge

put into added to

biodegradable break down over time in nature

eco-friendly paper paper that is biodegradable

cardboard stronger paper

arrival onset

on two major fronts in two main areas

fossil fuel byproduct comes from fossil fuels

requires crude oil needs oil in its raw form

production making of it

emissions gases produced

often cited as commonly regarded as

chief contributor main cause

hastening of climate change speeding up of global warming

moreover also

landfills trash put in the ground

polluting previously pristine land contaminating nature

end up finally

forming ‘land masses’ making big collections

injurious harmful

marine life sea animals

nonetheless regardless

concomitant problems related issues

listed above mentioned before

override be stronger than

usefulness convenience

uniform consistency all the same

adopted by used by

fast food giants fast food restaurants

local grocery chains supermarkets

savings not wasting money

passed on to the consumer customers also save money

enjoys receives

less likely to rip open won’t tear

spill fall out of

make use of them afterwards use them again

banned not allowed

lose these conveniences not have the benefits

radically alter .change a lot

undermine their value hurt their importance

average customer a consumer

explore innovations find new ways

environmentally friendly good for nature

Pronunciation

ˈplæstɪk kənˈteɪnəz 
ju(ː)ˈbɪkwɪtəs 
ˈriːsnt ˈdɛkeɪdz
pəʊˈtɛnʃəl ˈdrɔːbæks 
aʊtˈweɪ 
ɪnˌvaɪərənˈmɛntl kɒst 
dɪsˈpəʊzəbl ˈplæstɪk kənˈteɪnəz 
ˈmæsɪv
pʊt ˈɪntuː 
ˌbaɪəʊdɪˈgreɪdəb(ə)l
ˈiːkəʊ-ˈfrɛndli ˈpeɪpə 
ˈkɑːdbɔːd
əˈraɪvəl 
ɒn tuː ˈmeɪʤə frʌnts
ˈfɒsl fjʊəl ˈbaɪˌprɒdʌkt 
rɪˈkwaɪəz kruːd ɔɪl 
prəˈdʌkʃən 
ɪˈmɪʃənz 
ˈɒf(ə)n ˈsaɪtɪd æz 
ʧiːf kənˈtrɪbjʊtə 
ˈheɪsnɪŋ ɒv ˈklaɪmɪt ʧeɪnʤ
mɔːˈrəʊvə
ˈlændfɪlz
pəˈluːtɪŋ ˈpriːviəsli ˈprɪstaɪn lænd
ɛnd ʌp 
ˈfɔːmɪŋ lænd ˈmæsɪz 
ɪnˈʤʊərɪəs 
məˈriːn laɪf
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
kənˈkɒmɪtənt ˈprɒbləmz 
ˈlɪstɪd əˈbʌv 
ˌəʊvəˈraɪd 
ˈjuːsfʊlnəs
ˈjuːnɪfɔːm kənˈsɪstənsi
əˈdɒptɪd baɪ 
fɑːst fuːd ˈʤaɪənts 
ˈləʊkəl ˈgrəʊsəri ʧeɪnz
ˈseɪvɪŋz
pɑːst ɒn tuː ðə kənˈsjuːmə 
ɪnˈʤɔɪz 
lɛs ˈlaɪkli tuː rɪp ˈəʊpən 
spɪl 
meɪk juːz ɒv ðɛm ˈɑːftəwədz 
bænd 
luːz ðiːz kənˈviːniənsɪz
ˈrædɪkəli ˈɔːltə .
ˌʌndəˈmaɪn ðeə ˈvæljuː 
ˈævərɪʤ ˈkʌstəmə
ɪksˈplɔːr ˌɪnəʊˈveɪʃənz 
ɪnˌvaɪərənˈmɛntli ˈfrɛndli

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Using p_____________________s for various food products has become u______________s in r________________s. Though this has p_________________s for the environment, I believe it does not o_____________h the benefits to businesses and individuals.

The e____________________t of d______________________________s is m____________e. Before plastics, foods and drinks were typically p_____________o b_______________e, e_____________________r or c_________________d. The a_____________l of plastics has impacted the environment o_________________________s. Firstly, plastic itself is a f_____________________________t that r________________________l for its p_________________n and later transportation. The e_______________s from fossil fuels are o__________________s the c____________________r to the h___________________________e. M_____________r, the containers themselves either find their ways to l________________s, p______________________________d, or e________p in the ocean, f________________________s’ that are i______________s to m_____________e.

N________________s, the c_______________________s of plastic containers l________________e do not o_____________e their u_____________s. For companies, using plastic containers is cheap and allows for u_____________________y. This is the reason why they have been a_______________y companies ranging from f_________________s like McDonald’s to l_________________________s. This s____________s is then p_________________________r who e__________s cheaper prices and the many conveniences of plastic containers. They are l________________________n and s______l compared with paper and most families m__________________________________s for leftover food. If plastic containers for food items were b____________d not only would people l____________________________s but many companies would have to r________________________r their packaging, and potentially, products themselves.

In conclusion, the environmental impact of plastic containers does little to u___________________________e for both corporations and the a____________________________r. It is instead important to e________________________s to make plastics more e____________________________y.

Listening Practice

Learn more and improve your listening below:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic too in case if it comes up on your IELTS exam:

https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-51040155

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Environment

  1. Why do people throw rubbish the streets?
  2. How can people be encouraged to not litter?
  3. What are the results of littering?
  4. What steps has your government taken to make people pick up after themselves?
  5. Do the efforts of a single person have an impact on the world as a whole?

Writing Practice

Write about the related topic below and check with my sample answer:

Plastic shopping bags are used widely and cause many environmental problems. Some people say they should be banned.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

IELTS Essay Task 1: Households with Cars

IELTS Essay Task 1: Households with Cars

This is an IELTS writing task 1 sample answer essay on the topic of households with cars in a European country.

For my full, exclusive IELTS PDFs, learn more about my Patreon here.

And also check out my online courses here and my writing corrections here.

Dave

IELTS Essay Task 1: Households with Cars

The bar chart compares the percentages for car ownership in a European country at 10 year intervals from 1971 to 2001. Looking from an overall perspective, it is readily apparent that proportions for households with no car and 1 car showed inverse patterns, with the latter rising to become most common by the end of the period. More than 2 cars increased as well, also overtaking no cars.

The number of homes in this European country with no car stood at just under 50% in 1971, before a steady decline by more than 5% each decade to finish at under 30% in 2001. In contrast, those houses with 1 car rose at less steady intervals from 35% to over 40% in 1981, followed by a dip to under 40% in 1991, and finally a surge to 50%.

More than 2 cars began the time surveyed with the lowest ratio (25%) then grew, mirroring the trajectory of 1 car and finishing at 35%, nearly 10% higher than no car households.

Analysis

1. The bar chart compares the percentages for car ownership in a European country at 10 year intervals from 1971 to 2001. 2. Looking from an overall perspective, it is readily apparent that proportions for households with no car and 1 car showed inverse patterns, with the latter rising to become most common by the end of the period. 3. More than 2 cars increased as well, also overtaking no cars.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Begin your overview by describing the trends.
  3. Make sure all categories are covered. Learn more about overviews here.

1. The number of homes in this European country with no car stood at just under 50% in 1971, before a steady decline by more than 5% each decade to finish at under 30% in 2001. 2. In contrast, those houses with 1 car rose at less steady intervals from 35% to over 40% in 1981, followed by a dip to under 40% in 1991, and finally a surge to 50%.

  1. Start with one of the categories and include all the data.
  2. Always compare the categories.

1. More than 2 cars began the time surveyed with the lowest ratio (25%) then grew, mirroring the trajectory of 1 car and finishing at 35%, nearly 10% higher than no car households.

  1. Make sure that all areas and all data has been described fully and accurately.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

The bar chart compares the percentages for car ownership in a European country at 10 year intervals from 1971 to 2001. Looking from an overall perspective, it is readily apparent that proportions for households with no car and 1 car showed inverse patterns, with the latter rising to become most common by the end of the period. More than 2 cars increased as well, also overtaking no cars.

The number of homes in this European country with no car stood at just under 50% in 1971, before a steady decline by more than 5% each decade to finish at under 30% in 2001. In contrast, those houses with 1 car rose at less steady intervals from 35% to over 40% in 1981, followed by a dip to under 40% in 1991, and finally a surge to 50%.

More than 2 cars began the time surveyed with the lowest ratio (25%) then grew, mirroring the trajectory of 1 car and finishing at 35%, nearly 10% higher than no car households.

Answers

compares shows the differences between

10 year intervals every 10 years

Looking from an overall perspective, it is readily apparent that overall

proportions ratios

showed inverse patterns had the opposite trend

latter mentioned second

by the end of the period at the end of the graph

overtaking becoming higher than

stood was at

just under a little below

before preceding

steady decline regular decrease

more than above

decade 10 years

finish end

in contrast however

less steady intervals fluctuated more

followed by then

dip decrease

surge big increase

surveyed recorded

lowest ratio smallest numbers

mirroring reflecting

trajectory pattern

finishing at ending at

higher than above

Pronunciation

kəmˈpeəz 
tɛn jɪər ˈɪntəvəlz 
ˈlʊkɪŋ frɒm ən ˈəʊvərɔːl pəˈspɛktɪvɪt ɪz ˈrɛdɪli əˈpærənt ðæt 
prəˈpɔːʃənz 
ʃəʊd ɪnˈvɜːs ˈpætənz
ˈlætə 
baɪ ði ɛnd ɒv ðə ˈpɪərɪəd
ˌəʊvəˈteɪkɪŋ 
stʊd 
ʤʌst ˈʌndə 
bɪˈfɔː 
ˈstɛdi dɪˈklaɪn 
mɔː ðæn 
ˈdɛkeɪd 
ˈfɪnɪʃ 
ɪn ˈkɒntrɑːst
lɛs ˈstɛdi ˈɪntəvəlz 
ˈfɒləʊd baɪ 
dɪp 
sɜːʤ 
sɜːˈveɪd 
ˈləʊɪst ˈreɪʃɪəʊ 
ˈmɪrərɪŋ 
ˈtræʤɪktəri 
ˈfɪnɪʃɪŋ æt 
ˈhaɪə ðæn 

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

The bar chart c______________s the percentages for car ownership in a European country at 1_______________s from 1971 to 2001. L___________________________________________t p____________s for households with no car and 1 car s___________________________s, with the l___________r rising to become most common b____________________________d. More than 2 cars increased as well, also o_______________g no cars.

The number of homes in this European country with no car s_______d at j____________r 50% in 1971, b________e a s______________e by m___________n 5% each d___________e to f___________h at under 30% in 2001. I____________t, those houses with 1 car rose at l_________________s from 35% to over 40% in 1981, f____________________y a d___p to under 40% in 1991, and finally a s__________e to 50%.

More than 2 cars began the time s________________d with the l___________________o (25%) then grew, m______________g the t________________y of 1 car and f___________________t 35%, nearly 10% h_______________________n no car households.

Listening Practice

Watch the video below about car ownership in the future:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic on The New York Times below:

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following related topics from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Walking

  1. Do you go places on foot a lot?
  2. Did you walk more when you were younger?
  3. Why do some people prefer walking to driving a car?
  4. Do people in your country walk a lot?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related chart and then check with my sample answer:

IELTS Task 1 Essay: Bar Chart (Education)
IELTS Essay General Training: Cities vs Rural Areas

IELTS Essay General Training: Cities vs Rural Areas

This is an IELTS writing task 1 sample answer essay from the general training exam on whether it is better to live in cities or rural areas.

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IELTS Essay General Training: Cities vs Rural Areas

Some people think that cities are the best places to live. Others prefer to live in rural areas.

Discuss both views and give your own opinion.

There are fundamentally different reasons that dictate whether one lives in the countryside or an urban area. In my opinion, the health benefits of living in the countryside do not outweigh the range of opportunities available in cities.

The chief advantages of the countryside relate to health. City-dwelling lends itself to a more sedentary lifestyle and the threat of air pollution is ever-growing. In contrast, individuals living in the country are much more likely to walk or ride bikes as part of their daily routine. Over time this equates to healthier living habits and can reduce the risk of obesity and concomitant conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Moreover, recent studies have found that worsening air quality in cities and the absorption of microparticles into the lungs is driving up rates of cancer and asthma. The countryside presents an alternative environment where cleaner air can result in both short and long-term health benefits.

Nonetheless, cities offer a wide array of options rural areas lack. This begins with the employment on offer. The vast majority of well-paid jobs are located in cities ranging from doctors to lawyers to managers in companies. Living in the countryside limits one to careers primarily centred around agriculture. Cities also contain a richer variety of educational and cultural opportunities. The best schools are usually found in cities and museums and concerts are rare in the countryside. Take New York City for example, where some of the most famous museums in the world are located next to beautiful concert venues and renowned five star restaurants. This broadens an individual’s horizons and makes cities ideal for both single people and families.

In conclusion, despite the healthier overall lifestyle enjoyed in the countryside, city life allows too many modern conveniences to be ignored. Each individual must decide what they value highest but most should opt for city life.

Analysis

1. There are fundamentally different reasons that dictate whether one lives in the countryside or an urban area. 2. In my opinion, the health benefits of living in the countryside do not outweigh the range of opportunities available in cities.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about writing introductions here.

1. The chief advantages of the countryside relate to health. 2. City-dwelling lends itself to a more sedentary lifestyle and the threat of air pollution is ever-growing. 3. In contrast, individuals living in the country are much more likely to walk or ride bikes as part of their daily routine. 4. Over time this equates to healthier living habits and can reduce the risk of obesity and concomitant conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. 5. Moreover, recent studies have found that worsening air quality in cities and the absorption of microparticles into the lungs is driving up rates of cancer and asthma. 6. The countryside presents an alternative environment where cleaner air can result in both short and long-term health benefits.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Use specific examples to support your idea.
  4. State the results to develop your idea.
  5. Don’t write about a new idea but you can write about multiple ideas within a topic (healthy).
  6. Conclude with a summary sentence.

1. Nonetheless, cities offer a wide array of options rural areas lack. This begins with the employment on offer. 2. The vast majority of well-paid jobs are located in cities ranging from doctors to lawyers to managers in companies. 3. Living in the countryside limits one to careers primarily centred around agriculture. 4. Cities also contain a richer variety of educational and cultural opportunities. 5. The best schools are usually found in cities and museums and concerts are rare in the countryside. 6. Take New York City for example, where some of the most famous museums in the world are located next to beautiful concert venues and renowned five star restaurants. 7. This broadens an individual’s horizons and makes cities ideal for both single people and families.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Use counter-examples for more support.
  4. Start with more general sentences.
  5. Then get more specific.
  6. Use a specific city as an example.
  7. Conclude with a strong statement relating it back to your opinion.

1. In conclusion, despite the healthier overall lifestyle enjoyed in the countryside, city life allows too many modern conveniences to be ignored. 2. Each individual must decide what they value highest but most should opt for city life.

  1. Summarise your ideas and repeat your opinion.
  2. Add a final thought/detail. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

There are fundamentally different reasons that dictate whether one lives in the countryside or an urban area. In my opinion, the health benefits of living in the countryside do not outweigh the range of opportunities available in cities.

The chief advantages of the countryside relate to health. City-dwelling lends itself to a more sedentary lifestyle and the threat of air pollution is ever-growing. In contrast, individuals living in the country are much more likely to walk or ride bikes as part of their daily routine. Over time this equates to healthier living habits and can reduce the risk of obesity and concomitant conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Moreover, recent studies have found that worsening air quality in cities and the absorption of microparticles into the lungs is driving up rates of cancer and asthma. The countryside presents an alternative environment where cleaner air can result in both short and long-term health benefits.

Nonetheless, cities offer a wide array of options rural areas lack. This begins with the employment on offer. The vast majority of well-paid jobs are located in cities ranging from doctors to lawyers to managers in companies. Living in the countryside limits one to careers primarily centred around agriculture. Cities also contain a richer variety of educational and cultural opportunities. The best schools are usually found in cities and museums and concerts are rare in the countryside. Take New York City for example, where some of the most famous museums in the world are located next to beautiful concert venues and renowned five star restaurants. This broadens an individual’s horizons and makes cities ideal for both single people and families.

In conclusion, despite the healthier overall lifestyle enjoyed in the countryside, city life allows too many modern conveniences to be ignored. Each individual must decide what they value highest but most should opt for city life.

Answers

fundamentally different reasons basically differing justifications

dictate decide

urban area city

health benefits good for you

outweigh stronger than

range of opportunities many chances

chief advantages main benefits

relate to regarding

city-dwelling lends itself living in a city makes you more likely to

more sedentary lifestyle less active living

threat of air pollution risk of poor air quality

ever-growing always increasing

in contrast however

part of their daily routine something you do everyday

equates means

healthier living habits doing something healthy everday

reduce the risk less chance of

obesity getting fat

concomitant conditions related problems

cardiovascular disease heart disease

diabetes a disease from eating too much sugar

recent studies have found research has shown

worsening air quality more air pollution

absorption becoming part of

microparticles small bits of stuff

driving up rates of cancer increasing the odds of getting cancer

asthma a breathing condition

presents allows for

alternative environment different place

cleaner air less air pollution

result in so

short and long-term health benefits in the near and distant future

nonetheless regardless

wide array of options many chances

lack don’t have

employment on offer jobs available

vast majority most of

well-paid jobs good employment

ranging from including

limits restricts

primarily centred around agriculture mostly to do with farming

contain a richer variety have a lot more

educational related to education

cultural opportunities museums, theatre, music, etc.

usually found often located

rare not common

are located are situated

concert venues places for music

renowned five star restaurants famous restaurants

broadens expands

individual’s horizons what you know about

ideal perfect

enjoyed in that they have

modern conveniences that people expect these days

ignored not paying attention to

value highest consider most important

opt choose

Pronunciation

ˌfʌndəˈmɛntli ˈdɪfrənt ˈriːznz 
ˈdɪkteɪt 
ˈɜːbən ˈeərɪə
hɛlθ ˈbɛnɪfɪts 
aʊtˈweɪ 
reɪnʤ ɒv ˌɒpəˈtjuːnɪtiz 
ʧiːf ədˈvɑːntɪʤɪz 
rɪˈleɪt tuː 
ˈsɪti-ˈdwɛlɪŋ lɛndz ɪtˈsɛlf 
mɔː ˈsɛdntəri ˈlaɪfˌstaɪl 
θrɛt ɒv eə pəˈluːʃən 
ˈɛvə-ˈgrəʊɪŋ
ɪn ˈkɒntrɑːst
pɑːt ɒv ðeə ˈdeɪli ruːˈtiːn
ɪˈkweɪts 
ˈhɛlθɪə ˈlɪvɪŋ ˈhæbɪts 
rɪˈdjuːs ðə rɪsk 
əʊˈbiːsɪti 
kənˈkɒmɪtənt kənˈdɪʃənz 
ˌkɑːdɪəʊˈvæskjʊlə dɪˈziːz 
ˌdaɪəˈbiːtiːz
ˈriːsnt ˈstʌdiz hæv faʊnd 
ˈwɜːsnɪŋ eə ˈkwɒlɪti 
əbˈsɔːpʃ(ə)n 
microparticles 
ˈdraɪvɪŋ ʌp reɪts ɒv ˈkænsə 
ˈæsmə
ˈprɛznts 
ɔːlˈtɜːnətɪv ɪnˈvaɪərənmənt 
ˈkliːnər eə 
rɪˈzʌlt ɪn 
ʃɔːt ænd ˈlɒŋtɜːm hɛlθ ˈbɛnɪfɪts
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
waɪd əˈreɪ ɒv ˈɒpʃənz 
læk
ɪmˈplɔɪmənt ɒn ˈɒfə
vɑːst məˈʤɒrɪti 
wɛl-peɪd ʤɒbz 
ˈreɪnʤɪŋ frɒm 
ˈlɪmɪts 
ˈpraɪmərɪli ˈsɛntəd əˈraʊnd ˈægrɪkʌlʧə
kənˈteɪn ə ˈrɪʧə vəˈraɪəti 
ˌɛdju(ː)ˈkeɪʃənl 
ˈkʌlʧərəl ˌɒpəˈtjuːnɪtiz
ˈjuːʒʊəli faʊnd 
reə 
ɑː ləʊˈkeɪtɪd
ˈkɒnsə(ː)t ˈvɛnjuːz 
rɪˈnaʊnd faɪv stɑː ˈrɛstrɒnts
ˈbrɔːdnz 
ˌɪndɪˈvɪdjʊəlz həˈraɪznz 
aɪˈdɪəl 
ɪnˈʤɔɪd ɪn 
ˈmɒdən kənˈviːniənsɪz 
ɪgˈnɔːd
ˈvæljuː ˈhaɪɪst 
ɒpt 

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

There are f______________________________s that d__________e whether one lives in the countryside or an u_____________a. In my opinion, the h______________s of living in the countryside do not o_____________h the r__________________________s available in cities.

The c___________________s of the countryside r____________o health. C_______________________________f to a m____________________e and the t_________________________n is e_______________g. I_______________t, individuals living in the country are much more likely to walk or ride bikes as p___________________________e. Over time this e______________s to h_____________________________s and can r___________________k of o__________y and c_____________________s such as c_______________________e and d____________s. Moreover, r______________________d that w_______________________y in cities and the a________________n of m____________________s into the lungs is d______________________r and a___________a. The countryside p_____________s an a____________________t where c_________________r can r______________n both s________________________s.

N_______________s, cities offer a w____________________s rural areas l_____k. This begins with the e_____________________r. The v_________________y of w_____________________s are located in cities r________________m doctors to lawyers to managers in companies. Living in the countryside l___________s one to careers p_________________________________e. Cities also c________________________y of e_________________l and c______________________s. The best schools are u___________________d in cities and museums and concerts are r_____e in the countryside. Take New York City for example, where some of the most famous museums in the world a_____________d next to beautiful c________________s and r______________________________s. This b_______________s an i__________________________s and makes cities i______l for both single people and families.

In conclusion, despite the healthier overall lifestyle e_______________n the countryside, city life allows too many m___________________s to be i_______________d. Each individual must decide what they v_______________t but most should o_____t for city life.

Listening Practice

Learn more about living in New York City below:

Reading Practice

Read a counterpoint below:

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2020/06/pandemic-cities-moving-remote-work/613069/

Speaking Practice

Practice speaking with the following questions from the real IELTS exam:

Countryside

  1. Do you like going to the countryside?
  2. What do you like to do there?
  3. Have you ever lived in the countryside?
  4. Would you like to live in the countryside in the future?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic then check with my sample answer below:

Some people believe that children should grow up in the city while others believe the countryside is a better choice.

Discuss both sides and give your opinion.

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-Dave