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June 18, 2015


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Dear simon
I noticed you write in task 1 simple tenses in overview paragraph.
However , the ielts official material sample answers love had been and have been
For example
Does it correct to write like that
The sale 's figure had inreased over this 20 year period or
The sale's figure increased over this 20 years period .
I hope both sentences correct
Thank you alot

Hi Ahmed,

I can't say whether those sentences would be correct. Whether we need to use past simple or past perfect would depend on the context.

My general advice is this:

First, it's much more likely that you'll need to use the past simple in writing task 1. If something happened in a past year, we tend to use the past simple.

Second, using a perfect tense isn't going to impress the examiner more, or help you to get a higher score, especially if you use it in the wrong situation.

Dear simon
Thanks a lot for your valuable suggestions
which helped me to get a good band.

writing -6.5
speaking -6.5
reading - 8
overall -7

Dear Ahmed ,
I'm sachin , I have gone through the website u have suggested but I'm unable to log in it!! It is showing me as an unknown user so what to do plzz reply me !!

After about an hour challenging with different websites and their contents, I was able to write no more than this two paragraphs. I hope it won't be such task in exam.

"According to the charts about 50% of Indian population was below the age of 20, while this figure for France is only about 20%. This difference indicates that the population growth in India was significantly higher than that of France. This group of people known as dependent group are those who needed more care and education in schools.

By contrast, the shape of population pyramids in both countries specifies that over 55% of the French population was in age 40 and over in which about 20% of them were older than 65 years old. The proportion of this figure for Indian population was around 30% with only 10% at this age group. Both countries had an almost symmetrical sex distribution in majority of their age groups.

1. larger proportion of male and female i.e. 7% & around 7% people are under aged 5 in India which show less than 4% in France.
2. Higher % of people are under aged group 34-40 in France, which reflects 4% for both categories.
3. In India, only 1% of male & female population are categorized in aged 35-70, it shows the smallest portion of overall %.
4. In France, less than 1% male population as grouped as greater than 85 aged whereas more than 1% was for female population.
5. There was a vice-versa relationship between age group and % of male and female in India except more than 70 aged group.
6. Proportion of female are greater than male in France.

Simon please suggest me for better writing.

Looking at the information in more detail, we can see that around 14% of the population in India was children under 5 years old for both males and females in equal proportion, while in France proportion of its population for both genders that less than 5 years was below 8%. The percentages of population that aged from 5-10 years to 30-35years years in France were relatively flat around 8 % for both man and woman in each 5 years. On the other hand, that figures for India were reduced by half from around 12% to 6%.
While elderly people in India in group age 65-70 % reached the lowest percentage at just under 2% compared to young people aged 35-40 year old at approximately 7%, elderly population aged 65-70% still stood at around 5% with a slightly lower 2% than population aged 35-40 year old. India's senior citizens that aged above 70 years were nearly just 2% of its population. By contrast France had higher percentage of elderly population than those in India, at roughly 8%.

Hi can Simon or anyone can please help me with this grammar point.

I read one of Simon old bar chart and he wrote "sales figures". i thought if two nouns are combined the first one is in singular. I google and it seems that "sales figures" is correct. I am little confused. Can anyone please help to explain why it is not "sale figures".

Thank you

Dear Tran Nguyen,
You can look up "sale" in OALD8
In this case, sales is plural noun, meaning that the number of items sold
Hence, sales figures is correct, and not use "sale figures". Also, I realised the fact being always sales + noun such as sales drive, sales department, sales force and so on.
I hope my answer may partly support you, Tran Nguyen.

hey, thank you for the clarification :)

Dear Simon, can you comment on this answer please?
The two charts give information about the number of males and females with different age groups in two countries, namely, France and India in 1984.
As shown in both charts, it is clear that the number of males and females were obviously decreasing with aging in India. Meanwhile, the distribution was different in France.
Looking into the details, the male to female ratio in India was almost the same in all age groups, with 0-5 age group constituted the majority of the population accounting for almost 14%. This figure decreases significantly as people get older reaching only 2% in the 65-70 age group and slightly increased to less than 4% for those older than 70 years.
In contrast, the 0-5 age group in France accounted for 7% of the whole population and fluctuated around this figure until the age of 40, after which the number of males and females started to decrease slightly with age. Interesting thing is that the number of females living in France exceeded the number of males from the age of 50 and above.
One considerable difference between India and France is that in France people who lived more than 70 years were much more than Indian counterparts, accounting around 13% and 4% respectively.

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