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Academic IELTS grammar for writing task 2

I put this advanced student sample answer to the IELTS writing task 2 through our English Grammar Profiler looking for stand out features.  Here are the highest grammar constructions, that we have listed as C1: It is argued that volunteering should be made a part of the school curriculum. (This is the topic sentence) What you have done outside the classroom is often …

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Academic IELTS grammar for task 1

I’m often asked by my students just before they take an IELTS test for some quick tips on what to study before a particular task.  Therefore, in this post, I will summarise the salient grammar and vocabulary features I found in very good introductions and overviews in the Academic IELTS  Task 1 tests using our …

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‘would rather’ | ‘it’s time’ + PAST TENSE CLAUSE

Here we look at examples of using ‘the past tense’ in a way that is not referring to past time.  In these EXPERT EXAMPLES: It’s time we started to think about the environment and a little bit less about money. Isle of Man Newspapers As an environmentalist, we would rather that didn’t happen. TED ‘the past tense’ expresses a wish that is distanced from the real situation. In reality, they are not thinking …

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WHAT IS IT YOU WANT? (relative clause question)

Let’s analyse questions that have relative clauses to give emphasis.  So usually, we would say something like: What do we want to ask?  What are we trying to find out here? You can see the normal auxiliary verbs ‘be’ and ‘do’ get removed and relative clauses are added in the EXPERT EXAMPLES: What is it that we want …

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(SUBJECT) CLEFT CONSTRUCTION WITH ‘it’

Point 116 in PRONOUNS is defined as: a cleft construction beginning with ‘it’ to emphasise the subject of the main clause. FOR EXAMPLE: After all, it’s individuals who are to blame here, right? *Seems like religious contexts use this structure. An iWeb search for: It _V _N who _V 1 IT IS GOD WHO IS 218 2 IT IS GOD WHO …

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‘It should be noted that’ (passives to summarise)

Point 36 in PASSIVES is defined as: ‘it’ as a dummy subject, to summarise or evaluate in discussions, usually in formal or academic writing. *This might clash with B2. A search of the formal patterns found in the EGP for the iWeb: it_P _V _VB _VVN that 1 IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT 38271 2 …

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‘It is god who gives life.’ (It CLEFT CLAUSE)

The English Grammar Profile C2 point 15 in the category of FOCUS is defined as: ‘IT’ CLEFT + ‘be’ + noun + ‘that’ clause for focus. Pearson lists this at GSE 59 B2: clauses with ‘It’ + ‘be’ … to emphasise the topic or main point. It’s the money that keeps me in this job. It was his accent that made him hard to understand. If we follow the …

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WERE IT NOT FOR

Point 132 in CLAUSES/conditional is defined as: ‘Were it not for’ + noun phrase to introduce conditions in formal contexts. *The big corpora do not allow for much detail to be discovered about this string.   Phys.Org Were it not for humans, woolly mammoths would have lived for 4,000 more years.

At the end of the day (FOCUS EXPRESSIONS)

English Grammar Profile C1 Point 8 in the category of FOCUS is defined as: fixed expressions in the front position for focus. Within the EGP examples,  + we have added the COCA frequency. . At the end of the day , 1092 . All in all , 1058 . All things considered , 130 . …

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‘It is said that …’ (IT + passive)

Let’s take a look at an IELTS writing task 2 example with this grammar: It is argued that volunteering should be made a part of the school curriculum. In the above example, ‘is argued‘ forms the passive part.  The active form of this is probably: ‘People argue that…” In our example, ‘people’ is not important or maybe we don’t know who …

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It’s + adjective + ‘that’ clause (focus)

When we look at the most common examples with this grammar structure: It is clear that the report is well written. It is possible that the police won’t find him. It is likely that the man will get away. We see they all appear to show a form of modality in addition to FOCUS.  Two of those examples point to other grammar points that we have listed …

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If it hadn’t been for / had it not been for + modal

Point 91 in the PAST category of the English Grammar Profile, we can give reasons with this structure which collocates with: If it hadn’t been for + up to 9 spaces to the right in the COCA corpus (I changed to this corpus because iWeb and NOW corpora were not allowing or providing much information): …

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