« IELTS courses in the UK this weekend | Main | IELTS Writing Task 1: silkworm life cycle »

September 20, 2017


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Thanks for this lesson simon.
Some useful words/ phrases
Invade our privacy
Constantly being watched
Find this intrusive
Recording of their movements
State control
Curtails their individual freedom
Proliferation of cctv cameras
Alternative to police officers
Patrolling the street
Indeed happening
Members of the public

I have a question ?
If I omitt being and might from the sentences in the above paragraph, would they still be correct ? Are they used to give cear picture/ sense of the sentence .sorry for the absurd question.


if you omit those words, you cannot achieve exact meaning.

I would like to write here some good collocations and their paraphrases that I've just learnt from Simon's paragraph.
1. disapprove of...
2. the first objection is that...
3. invade our privacy.
4. in the sense that...
5. private security firms.
6. 'constantly' instead of 'always'
7. feel that...
8. a form of state control.
9. intrusive
10. curtail their individual freedom. ( a paraphrase of 'limit' and 'restrict')
11. the proliferation of...( a paraphrase of " being increased)
12. an alternative to...( a paraphrase of "replace" and" instead of")
13. patrol
14. if this is indeed happening, then it is unlikely that.... will...
Also, I have a question about the phrase " in the sense that..."
I was wondering if this means " a feeling that" or " meaning that"?
Hopefully, Teacher Simon and other learners could share your ideas.
Thanks to all.

"in the sense that" often introduces the particular criterion that is being used to justify the preceding assertion.


Thank you for recommending a useful site. However, I still want to be explained more by teacher Simon because he himself wrote this sentence.
Thank you very much.
Besides, in my view, " in the sense that" will equal " meaning that" in this context.

Dear Simon,
Please take a look at the following posts on your blog, it seems they give contradictory information with regard to answering "Do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages" questions.

In the first link, you have written that "this type of question can be called discussion + opinion questions and stated that"discuss both sides and make your opinion clear too."

However, in the second link, you have said that this type of question "can be answered by giving both sides or by supporting only one side, depending on the view that you express in your introduction."

I think the suggestion in the first link makes more sense, but could you clarify which one is correct?



2. http://ielts-simon.com/ielts-help-and-english-pr/2012/05/ielts-writing-task-2-both-sides-or-one-side.html

Good work Sobirif and Phong.


Yes, you could omit those words - it would change the meaning slightly, but it would be grammatically correct to do so.


You can use "in the sense that" to explain exactly what you meant in the first part of the sentence. Try searching online for more examples to get a better idea of how native speakers use this phrase.



To clarify, "Do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages" is really asking for your opinion. So, technically, you could argue that there are no disadvantages (a very strong view). However, in reality, it's easier to explain both the advantages and disadvantages, and to give your opinion about which side you favour.

So, while the second link is not giving incorrect information, the first link shows you what I would really do.

Hi dear coach, can Latin words be used in IELTS writing, like exempli gratia, Per contra, Post hoc?

@ Suren

There are everyday Latin words in use in English:



There are some Latin phrases that are often used in the right context:


And there are rare Latin phrases for which there are more natural and commoner equivalents:


Simon made the comment:

"Have a look through my essays, and hopefully you won't find many cliches or phrases in Latin!"


Dear Simon
Thank you for your study tips and exercises. I have achieved my goal of 7 in writing after I initially got 6.5.

hi, Simon,
I have learnt your writing skills on the website for a long time and I am quite confused about the question like discuss both views and give your own opinion and the question to what extent do you agree or not agree cause i think we can use the same pattern in writing.

Dear Simon,

I have written an essay and someone mentioned there are two main problems, I wanna seek for your advice as well.

1. I used four paragraphs and someone said the second paragraph is too long and needa split each point into two paragraphs, is that true ?

2. Someone said my essay is 'out of the topic' but actually I try to change the expression ( i rephrase the wording of ' negative impact' to ' back draws'), is that really off topic?

Attached with question and my essay for reference , thanks Simon!

Marriages are bigger and more expensive nowadays than in the past. Why is this the case? Is it a positive or negative development?

It is undeniable that new couples spend a huge amount on marriage recently. There are various causes for this and I think that drawbacks outweigh benefits.

There are two main reasons for this trend. Firstly, new couples nowadays are willing to spend more to make the marriages perfect. They do not want to leave any regret as wedding is one of the most crucial moment in their life time. People pay attention to all the wedding details, from the design of wedding card, souvenirs for the guests to wedding photos , however all these cost a lot and make the marriages become expensive. Secondly, thanks for the development of social media, people upload their photos to Facebook or Instagram to show off, this becomes one of the tensions from the couples. Marriage is a sort of 'presentation ' to their friends and relatives.

In my opinion, I do believe this is a drawback. First of all, people will only focus on the ceremony instead of the true meaning of marriage. What make a marriage important is how you treat and care about your partner instead of how fabulous the wedding ceremony is. The other reason is new couples always need to borrow money from parents or even banks for paying the expenditure of marriages, this is a huge burden for them and hinder their marriage afterwards, for example, they have used up all the savings and cannot afford a flat to live.

In conclusion, grand and expensive marriages become more and more common in recently years, however I would argue this brings a negative impact on the development of a society.


Oddly enough "drawbacks outweigh benefits" is not the normal phrase:

"positive trend" could be a useful phrase here.

IELTS band 7 descriptor says: "presents a clear central topic within each paragraph". There is no set length.

Google "run-on sentence" and "comma splice". "However" often begins a new sentence.


The comments to this entry are closed.