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This is an IELTS Writing Task 1 Sample Answer based on a bar chart showing the consumption and production of Electricity from the Cambridge IELTS 13 book real past tests.

This isn’t really a tough graph but, to be honest, it’s annoying.

There is a ton of data and it is really repetitive to just list all of it. This graph makes you question why this task exists at all because the visual chart is so much easier to understand compared to what you have to write about it.

But complaining about your lot in life only distracts you from the task at hand!

You can read below to see how I dealt with this annoying graph.

You can find my task 2 sample answers here.

If you need more help with task 1, try some of my posts here.

Good luck (to me and you)!

 

IELTS Writing Task 1 Sample Answer: Bar Chart Production and Consumption of Electricity (IELTS Cambridge 13)

The bar chart below shows the top ten countries for the production and consumption of electricity in 2014.

Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.

IELTS Writing Task 1: Electricity Bar Chart (Cambridge 13)

IELTS Writing Task 1: Electricity Bar Chart (Cambridge 13) by Dave (former IELTS examiner)

The chart illustrates electricity consumption and production in the top ten highest countries in 2014. It is clear from the chart that all countries, with the exception of Germany, produce marginally more than they consume. The two top countries, the United States and particularly China, were strong outliers while the remaining countries had similar numbers and lagged far behind in both production and consumption.

China produced and consumed the most, at 5,398 billion and 5,322 kWh, respectively. The next nearest country in terms of both statistics was the US, where residents consumed 3,866 kilowats an hour and produced slightly more at 4,099.

Russian lead the rest of the nations with 1,057 (in production) and 1,038 kWh (consumption) followed by Japan (936.2 for production and 856.7 kWh for consumption). India and Canada ranked 5th and 6th with India producing 871 kWh and consuming 698.8 while Canada was slightly lower in both (618.9 and 499.9 kWh). In the 7th and 8th spots were France (producing 561.2 kWh and consuming 462.9) and Brazil recorded numbers at 530.7 and 455.8 for production and consumption, respectively. In the final two positions were Germany and the Republic of Korea with Germany having higher production that Korea (526.6 to 485.1 kWh) as well as consumption (582.5 kWh compared with 449.5).

 

Sample Answer Analysis

1. The chart illustrates electricity consumption and production in the top ten highest countries in 2014. 2. It is clear from the chart that all countries, with the exception of Germany, produce marginally more than they consume. 3. The two top countries, the United States and particularly China, were strong outliers while the remaining countries had similar numbers and lagged far behind in both production and consumption.

1. This first sentence simply paraphrases the topic – don’t waste a lot of time on this, it’s not really all that important.

2. This is the most important sentence in your whole IELTS test – the overview. Here I include the most general takeaway – which is that most countries produce more electricity than they consume.

3. My third sentence continues the overview by including the ranking for the countries – be sure to include this and aim for around 2 sentences for your overview to make sure you include enough detail

1. China produced and consumed the most, at 5,398 billion and 5,322 kWh, respectively. 2. The next nearest country in terms of both statistics was the US, where residents consumed 3,866 kilowats an hour and produced slightly more at 4,099.

1. The first sentence begins with China, the country at the top of the chart.

2. I then compare with the United States and conclude the paragraph. You should group together and compare the data logically and use paragraphs to build the structure of your essay.

1. Russian lead the rest of the nations with 1,057 (in production) and 1,038 kWh (consumption) followed by Japan (936.2 for production and 856.7 kWh for consumption). 2. India and Canada ranked 5th and 6th with India producing 871 kWh and consuming 698.8 while Canada was slightly lower in both (618.9 and 499.9 kWh). 3. In the 7th and 8th spots were France (producing 561.2 kWh and consuming 462.9) and Brazil recorded numbers at 530.7 and 455.8 for production and consumption, respectively. 4. In the final two positions were Germany and the Republic of Korea with Germany having higher production that Korea (526.6 to 485.1 kWh) as well as consumption (582.5 kWh compared with 449.5).

1. My second paragraph contains all the other information so it is much longer. I start with Russia and Japan.

2. Then move on to the next countries and compare them – India and Canada. All these countries have similar statistics so I just list them. If there were more distinct groups I would compare groups, rather than single countries.

3. Next are France and Brazil. Notice that I use different ways to include the data (sometimes parenthesis, sometimes just listing it). Don’t worry too much about varying it every time but you also shouldn’t use the exact same grammar and vocabulary for each sentence or it will be clear that you are reliant on a few simple structures and that will limit you to around band 6 for vocabulary and grammar.

4. My final sentence details the last two countries and compares them: Germany and Korea. You should always be comparing – every single sentence is some kind of comparision for IELTS Writing Task 1.

 

Vocabulary Practice

Can you think of a paraphrase or a synonym for each of the words in bold below?

The chart illustrates electricity consumption and production in the top ten highest countries in 2014. It is clear from the chart that all countries, with the exception of Germany, produce marginally more than they consume. The two top countries, the United States and particularly China, were strong outliers while the remaining countries had similar numbers and lagged far behind in both production and consumption.

China produced and consumed the most, at 5,398 billion and 5,322 kWh, respectively. The next nearest country in terms of both statistics was the US, where residents consumed 3,866 kilowats an hour and produced slightly more at 4,099.

Russian lead the rest of the nations with 1,057 (in production) and 1,038 kWh (consumption) followed by Japan (936.2 for production and 856.7 kWh for consumption). India and Canada ranked 5th and 6th with India producing 871 kWh and consuming 698.8 while Canada was slightly lower in both (618.9 and 499.9 kWh). In the 7th and 8th spots were France (producing 561.2 kWh and consuming 462.9) and Brazil recorded numbers at 530.7 and 455.8 for production and consumption, respectively. In the final two positions were Germany and the Republic of Korea with Germany having higher production that Korea (526.6 to 485.1 kWh) as well as consumption (582.5 kWh compared with 449.5).

Answers 

consumption: usage

top ten highest: among the ten largest producers and consumers

It is clear from the chart: it is readily apparent that

exception: except for, with only ____ bucking this trend, showing a different trend

marginally: slightly, barely

particularly: especially

outliers: standing out, well beyond, leading/far behind

lagged far behind: by far the lowest/least

respectively: in turn

statistics: numbers, figures, production, consumption

residents: people living there, population

the rest of: the remaining nations

followed by: next, after that, trailing, leading

slightly lower: just below/under

recorded: noted, shown in the graph

as well as: and, also, in addition to

 

Pronunciation: 

kənˈsʌm(p)ʃən   

tɒp tɛn ˈhaɪɪst 

ɪt ɪz klɪə frɒm ðə ʧɑːt 

ɪkˈsɛpʃən 

ˈmɑːʤɪnəli 

pəˈtɪkjʊləli 

ˈaʊtˌlaɪəz 

lægd fɑː bɪˈhaɪnd 

rɪsˈpɛktɪvli 

stəˈtɪstɪks 

ˈrɛzɪdənts 

ðə rɛst ɒv 

ˈfɒləʊd baɪ 

ˈslaɪtli ˈləʊə 

rɪˈkɔːdɪd 

æz wɛl æz

 

Grammar Practice

I put some simple grammar mistakes with articles and tense in it this time – can you find and correct the grammar mistakes? 

The chart illustrated (illustrates) electricity consumption and production in top ten highest countries in 2014. It is clear from a chart that all countries, with the exception of Germany, are producing marginally more than they consume. The two top countries, United States and particularly China, were strong outliers while the remaining countries had had similar numbers and lagged far behind in both production and consumption.

China produced and consumed the most, at 5,398 billion and 5,322 kWh, respectively. The next nearest country in terms of both statistics was the US, where residents have consumed 3,866 kilowats an hour and produced slightly more at the 4,099.

Russian lead the rest of nations with 1,057 (in production) and 1,038 kWh (consumption) followed by Japan (936.2 for production and 856.7 kWh for consumption). India and Canada rank 5th and 6th with India producing 871 kWh and consuming 698.8 while Canada was slightly lower in both (618.9 and 499.9 kWh). In a 7th and 8th spots were France (producing 561.2 kWh and consuming 462.9) and Brazil recorded numbers at 530.7 and 455.8 for production and consumption, respectively. In the final two positions was were Germany and Republic of Korea with Germany having higher production that Korea (526.6 to 485.1 kWh) as well as consumption (582.5 kWh compared with 449.5).

 

 

Answers

The chart illustrates electricity consumption and production in the top ten highest countries in 2014. It is clear from the chart that all countries, with the exception of Germany, produce marginally more than they consume. The two top countries, the United States and particularly China, were strong outliers while the remaining countries had similar numbers and lagged far behind in both production and consumption.

China produced and consumed the most, at 5,398 billion and 5,322 kWh, respectively. The next nearest country in terms of both statistics was the US, where residents consumed 3,866 kilowats an hour and produced slightly more at 4,099.

Russian lead the rest of the nations with 1,057 (in production) and 1,038 kWh (consumption) followed by Japan (936.2 for production and 856.7 kWh for consumption). India and Canada ranked 5th and 6th with India producing 871 kWh and consuming 698.8 while Canada was slightly lower in both (618.9 and 499.9 kWh). In the 7th and 8th spots were France (producing 561.2 kWh and consuming 462.9) and Brazil recorded numbers at 530.7 and 455.8 for production and consumption, respectively. In the final two positions were Germany and the Republic of Korea with Germany having higher production that Korea (526.6 to 485.1 kWh) as well as consumption (582.5 kWh compared with 449.5).

Links

Here is my live lesson on task 1 writing overviews from my YouTube channel.

Here is a very long BBC documentary about the Story of Electricity.

If you’re interested in Static Electricity for some reason then look no further.

Watch about Benjamin Franklin to learn his relationship to electricity and maybe use him as an important example on the test at some point.

You can find some useful images for task 1 writing here on HowtodoIELTS’ Instagram.

Comment Below:

Do you leave the lights on in your house when you go out?

How much is your monthly electricity bill?

Which devices in your house consume the most energy?

Where does energy come from primarily in your country? Solar panels? Coal? Nuclear? Oil?

 


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