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April 20, 2017


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Thanks a lot for your overview, Teacher Simon! I realise that my mistake was splitting into 2 periods and describing the trend of each ( too detailed) in my overview, while you taught that we should describe the overall trend thoughout the whole period. I also learnt that if there are two lines which similiar to each other, I can write: "the trends for both ... are very similar". But I wonder why we use "are" here instead of "were".

Hi Anh,

My use of "are" implies that I'm describing what the graph shows "now", rather than what the figures "did" in the past.

However, it would be equally acceptable to use "were" in this case because the trends happened in the past.

Keep working hard towards your goal :)

Thank you, Teacher Simon! :) <3

Dear Simon,

Can I write :" the trend "OF (or TO)" both commodities instead of the trend "FOR" both commodities? If that is not acceptable, could you please tell me what are the differences among them?

Hi dear Simon

Please introduce me test book for listening and reading except from cambridge tests and official guide book. for reading and listening I need at least 6.My score is:

list arond 6 or 6.5
reading 5.5

Best regards

the line graph gives information about the average food prices and the cost of a barell of oil from 2000 to 2011 .

overall, it can be clearly seen that, while the price of both items increased significantly over the period given,they showed a similar pattern of growth .

Resp Sir,

Thank you very much for clarifying this topic area for Task 2...
IELTS Writing Task 2: 'agree or disagree' essay structures |

I have explored all relevant sites mentioned there and have read essays to clarify my doubts.I still want to clarify. I would be very grateful if you could pl guide.

Thank you

Task 2 :

Nuclear power is necessary evil. Despite the potential human and environmental consequences of radioactive fallout, nuclear energy is a genuine alternative to non-renewable energy sources like oil and coal, which are quickly running out.
In short, the benefits of nuclear power far outweigh the risk of using it.
To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Can I write…..
on one hand, disadvantages…… … are still manageable with proper management of nuclear waste and plant management……. Arguing that disadvantages are less than benefits….

Nonetheless, there are far more benefits, like….. explaining why its more beneficial.


Dear simon,
Your website is really helpful and I should thank you.
I have a question about some words, every time I read your writings I get confused. I don't understand their differences:

spending and expenditure

sales and turnover

revenue and turnover

and the other question is, when they are plural and when singular?


"It is clear that overall trends of both global food and oil price were upward between year 2000 and 2011. It is also noticeable that the food price and oil price are highly correlated." How is this answer? thanks.

What chart depict is how much food and oil worth worldwide from 2000 to 2011.
In 2000, oil price was slightly higher than food price, which was around $30. Both food and oil prices saw a token dent between 2001 and 2003. However, it could be seen that the trend for two lines has gone up from nearly $30 in 2003 to approximately $60 in 2007. In 2004, food price went over oil prices. Then, two lines met each other at about $50 in 2005.While there was a sharp rise in oil price up to over $60 between 2005 and 2007, food price has gradually increased to $60.
Between 2007 and 2008, a sharp rise has been illustrated from $60 to over 80.Trends have seen a peak at around $130 in the middle of 2008. After that, a sudden decline has occurred for both lines until 2009. Whereas food price has experienced a decrease down to $60, further fall can be observed in oil price to just over $40. A continuous growth again has happened from 2009 to 2011 for both lines. Although both prices have risen, food price was obviously more than oil price this time. Food price has grown to $140 while oil price has reached at $100 in 2011.
Overall, line graph indicates the prices for food and oil within eleven years between 2000 and 2011 around the world. Despite seeing nearly the same growth, food price has met a considerable growth compared to oil price at the end.

"detail paragraphs"

From 2000 to 2011, food price index rose nearly 2.5 times (90 to 240) and average oil price also rose nearly 3 times ($30 to $100).

The food price index and average oil price were increasing suddenly in 2008 and descreasing quickly in the next year.

Hi, Simon can you please comment on my overview.

overall, what stand out of this chart is that both food and oil were relatively following a similar pattern, having both peaked in 2008, their trend dropped in 2009. however, the food ended at a bit higher than oil in 2011.

please find out my task one answer and can you give a comment on.

overall, what stand out of this chart is that both food and oil were relatively following a similar pattern, having both peaked in 2008, their trend dropped in 2009. however, food ended a bit higher than oil in 2011.

please can you comment on my answer

the chart compares information that summarises worldwide alteration in the prices of food and oil in a time period from 2000 to 2011.
overall, what stand out of this chart is that both food and oil were relatively following a similar pattern, having both peaked in 2008, their trend dropped in 2009. however, the food ended a bit higher than oil in 2011.
to begin with, in 2000, the prices of food as well as oil started at around 20 dollars, the trend has remained steadily up to 2003. Followingly, from 2004 to 2007, there was a steady rise in the figures to stood roughly at 60 dollars.
correspondingly, a period from 2007 to 2009, the figures changed dramatically, having risen to the peak, slightly over 120 dollars, the oil price then plunged far more than the food, about 40, and 60 dollars respectively, in 2009.
However, afterwards, the figures levelled off to at just 100 dollars for the oil and approximately 140 dollars for the food, by the end of the period in question.

In the beginning of the period in 2000 both indicators were at the similar level: about 90 points for the Food Price Index and just slightl higher for the Average Oil Price Index. With many permanently occuring fluctuations, both figures reached 140 points during the first half of 2008.
Afterwards, both indicators rised dramatically with the Oil Index reaching its peaj between 2008 and 2009 on approximately 230 points, while the Food Index also struck significant height, passing 220 points mark. Then, both figures fell sharply, but then rised again to high levels, especially during 2010 and 2011. In 2011 the Food Index even exceeded its previously highest 2008 mark, almost reaching 240 points.

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