IELTS & TOEFL Writing Task 2 - The Introduction

The IELTS and TOEFL essay's success is determined by its introduction. In this writing lesson we will look at how to construct an introduction paragraph that will not only make reading easier for the grader, but will also keep you focused on what you need to say. It really is as simple as 1, 2, 3, 4. Test yourself with the quiz here: TRANSCRIPT Hi. Welcome back to www.engvid.com. I'm Adam. Nice to see you again. Today's lesson is for IELTS and TOEFL students, and so because these students need a little extra practice in listening to more natural speed English, I will speak a little bit faster. If you're a beginner English learner, watch anyway. It's still good practice, but don't worry if I'm speaking a little bit too fast. So more specifically, I'm going to be looking at the Writing -- Task 2, the essay of the IELTS and/or TOEFL. They're very similar. That's why I'm doing them together. There're not big differences, but I will point them out. And what I'm doing is I'm concentrating on the introduction today, the introduction paragraph. I'm not showing you the whole essay; I'm just showing you the introduction. Now, you're wondering, "Why? It's just the introduction. It's a short one, right?" No. This is probably the most important paragraph in your whole essay. This is where you, basically, make or break your score, okay? Why? Because here is where the reader understands what you're about to do. This is where the grader -- the person who's giving you your score -- understands if you understood the question; understands if you know what you're talking about; and understands if you knew how to plan well, okay? Very, very important the first paragraph, the introduction. So what are you going to do? Of course you're going to plan first. You're not going to start writing. Do not write one word of your essay until you have your plan ready. Once you have your plan ready, your essay is done. You just have to, basically, translate this plan into sentences. You're basically going for three to five sentences. Less than three, you missed something; you didn't do enough. More than five, you're going for words. You don't have time; don't worry about it. Three to five -- get down what you need to get down. Get into your bodies where you're going to be writing the most, okay? There are four questions you want to answer in the introduction. You will already have these answers once you've planned properly, okay? What do you want to answer? "What is the topic?" "What is the question?" "What is your opinion?" And "What are your reasons?" These are the four things that must be included in the introduction. Now, a lot of you think, "Well, 'topic' and 'question' is the same thing, right?" But no; they're not. This is where a lot of people lose points because they don't realize that these are two different things. The "topic" is the general idea of what the question is about. The "question" is, specifically, what are you asked to do. Now, the most common type of question you will see on both the IELTS and the TOEFL is a question that asks you to choose between two things. They want you to choose one and argue why that one is better than the other one, or why that one is so good. Now, what I'm going to show you today will mostly apply to these types of questions. But if you have a question that asks you to compare and contrast two things, keep in mind even if they ask you to compare two things, they're still going to ask you to lean towards one of them, to choose one as better than the other, in which case you're still going to need to give your opinion, okay? "What is the topic?" You're going to keep this very, very general. All you're doing is giving the idea of what the essay is about. So I know all of you have probably practiced this question: "Is it better to live in the countryside or in the city? Explain your reasons, giving examples, etc." Your first sentence, very, very general: What is the topic of this question? City life? Country life? No. The topic is "where to live". So your first sentence introduces the idea of living -- choosing a place to live. The question is then more specific, so your sentence narrows a little bit, becomes a little bit more focused. The question is: "Is it better in the country or the city?" Okay? Then, you have to give your opinion. You must say, "I believe", "I think", "in my opinion". You don't have to use these words. There're other ways to say your opinion, but if you're not sure of those, put one of those; make it very, very clear what you're saying. This is your thesis. This is a very specific sentence. After reading this sentence, I, the grader, must understand which side you've chosen and what you're going to argue. And then you see the last sentence gets a little bit more general. Why? Because you're giving your reasons. You're not giving me details.

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How many paragraphs are supposed to be there in an essay?
Well, I'm going to take my test today and its a sad thing that I came across your video just hours before exam. My preparation is a neat 12 hour lol , lets see whats gonna happen. Wish me luck :)
Are there S.O to help me to review my essays here plz? I gonna take the test soon but I don't know whether I am good enough to get 20 scores in writing. Thanks a lot . Here they are: TOPIC : People work because they need money to live. What are some other reasons that people work? Discuss one or more of these reasons. Use specific examples and details to support your answer. "There is no shortage of debate about main reasons which make people work. In my opinion, besides of money, some people also work for their passion and for their social connection. I feel this way for two main reasons, which I will explore in what follows. First, the passion is a key direction for many people to spend more than eight hours per day for working. As I learnt from inspirating talks of famous speakers who are founder or CEO of Microsoft, Apple and Alibaba; all of them started their business from their talent and their belief. They believe in what they really want to dedicate to, so they seriously work more than 12 hours per day without any complain. If they work for the money, they should stop working when they achieved the top of the richest people in the world. But they never stop improve themselves in working, because their goal in job is not based on money. It is passion, and strong passion. Working brings the happiness to them. Second, some people think that working is a way to bring them meaningful life with joyful social connection. Some people in my network are example of this. My friend’s grandparents, who are over 70 years old already, still keep working in Culture Center as volunteers because they think they can talk and have fun with co-workers and visitors daily. Other woman in a fitness center, the wife of a very rich man, spends 4 hours per day to work as an assistant yoga trainer not for the money. Her husband told her just to stay at home and he has satisfied any material demands she wants. But she loves sharing her knowledge and skills of yoga to people because it makes her fully energetic. In conclusion, each person - an important part of economic system - spends her/his time to work in different role/task in the society for the money, the passion and the joy in life, or many reasons else. They bring a variety of “picture of life”. TOPIC :Some people prefer to live in a small town. Others prefer to live in a big city. Which place would you prefer to live in? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer. There is no shortage of debate about whether it is better to live in a small town or a big city. In my opinion, it is more advantageous to live in the small town after living in a big city to study and improve life skills for a couple of years. I feel this way for two main reasons, which I will explore in what follows. To begin with, I am always healthy when I live in the small town. There are some factors which are very important to improve my health in the small town. First, the air is very clean and fresh without pollution by factories, vehicles. Second, it is not noisy because of low population, less transportation. Third, there are not many crimes which make me feel stressed and worried. Last, in the small town, people are more friendly and warm to connect with. I used to live in the big city for 10 years with bad experiences because of the pollution, the noise and the stress; which made me feel weak and exhausted all the time. However, my health in the small town is better and better day after day. Furthermore, I have a good chance to enjoy nature in the small town. When I lived in the big city, I had to travel far away out of city to visit a national park or a forest. Otherwise; I just had a walk in some small parks in the center of the city to enjoy nature, but it was still too noisy because of the vehicles’ sound around. In the other hand; in the small town, I can spend 2 hours per week at least to bike around the suburban to see many beautiful landscapes with nice mountains, big trees, grass fields, subtle flowers and wild animals such as deer, rabbits, squirrels. I love discovering the nature very much and adventures have become my interest since I was a child. My life is obviously fulfilled when I live in the small town. In conclusion, I prefer to live in the small town more than the big city because I am obviously satisfied with my good health and my interest
Thanks Adam
Can we use hook sentence in task 2 of IELTS??
Your videos helped me alot for preparing my ielts exam. Thanks for uploading such informative videos. Hoping to get good score
Adam you are cool =)
Are you Scottish?
General or Academic?
Thank you for tips and examples
My Toefl Exam is tomorrow , I hope this video will help me during exam
Best vedios for writing section and his teaching is perfect and I scored 22/30 by only his classes. Thank you sir!
It's really beneficial for me .thanks sir
Awesome! Would you send me some pdf lessons on writing integrated and independent essays so I can read them even when I do not have Internet connection?
My test is tomorrow and the only thing I did to prepare for it is watching this video. lol
Could you please tell me that ,is it a good introduction or not ? most leaders and directors generally belong to an older age group but some people believe that young leaders are better .To what extent do you agree or disagree. Give your opinion. Quite often,the political leaders, the CEOs in multinationals and even the policy makers are the elderly people . keeping in this views, many newspapers are splashed with heated debates.Whether to permit the elderly to continue or these must be succeeded by the young and energetic .Hence ,this issue needs closer interpretation before reaching any final verdict.
Halo sir, I am Divya from India, I really admire your teaching style and it had helped me alot for my general IELTS exam but in another two weeks,am having academic ielts.Can you please help me in understanding the question given, as I am failing to allocate the matter if they ask two questions saying WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE PROBLEM?WHAT CAN BE DONE TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM? Should I have to choose to write why I think the problem has risen in first place in one paragragh?
Thanks for this great work !!!
Could you please tell me that ,is it a good introduction or not ? most leaders and directors generally belong to an older age group but some people believe that young leaders are better .To what extent do you agree or disagree. Give your opinion. quite often,the political leaders, the CEOs in multinationals and even the policy makers are the elderly people . keeping in this views, many newspapers are splashed with heated debates.Whether to permit the elderly to continue or these must be succeeded by the young and energetic .Hence ,this issue needs closer interpretation before reaching any final verdict.
In writing task we shouldn't use we, he, she, I , us , myselfor mine right ?
Very good class with an easy topic to initiants
Thanks, this is very helpful
I have a question..... ?What the basic things i need to learn to improve my English.
Thanks for that. it was intresting 👍👌by the way. for any one see this comment. Please can you show me a good channel for learning french . Please reply soon if any one have something for me . And thanks again.
Thankyou so much for giving your valuable time inorder to make this video and for helping us. O:)
For those who are grammatically incompetent, it's difficult to talk about all these. Agree?
Thanks alot.That has been very helpful for me
Ah! I I have a question for you. Is possible to get personal information, so like a book and CD.Many thanks
Can I be provided with some paper to use as a draft to write my essay and then transfer my writings to the exam paper?
Very good job man, honestly the best out of all the videos I've watched about TOEFL...I wish you had made more videos about it and not just general English lessons. Anyways, I would like to point something out and ask your opinion...When we are referring to the word "person", isn't the best way to do it with the pronoun "They" instead of "he" or "she"? Thank you in advance for the answer and thank you for the video as well.
Wow.
Thanks Adam! You are the best! Your lessons are really helpful.
Thanks adam. You lessons were helpful
Thank you!
Hello Adam, good night and God bless you for your excellent work about de toefl on internet. Thanks for your help and again God bless you.
In the real IELTS, do we use pencil o pen or any we want? and wich part of the exam comes first writting, reading..etc. is there any order? Or its ramdon?
Thank you so much God bless you
Brilliant.
Hi any body what practice England my Skype name is omidlila
Thanks adam. You lessons were helpful
Adam you are soo good and you have an capabilities to understand people mind thank you so much helping and pls.  keep continue for more English learning skills.
Dear Adam. I would ask You one question. Should I pronounce both sounds IS in phrase "my name IS ... " or usualy native speakers say "My name'S ..." with only one sound S in real speach?
Can I use this strategies in the GED essay?
So helpful can u make video on same writing task2 but in disagree /Agree disadvantages/Disadvantages open And discuss both views
I'll take the TOEFL examination tomorrow after 4 years andwatching your videos as an emergency helped me a lot for the strategy. Thank you!
Hi. Thank you for your help and time. Could you please help me with the difference between nonetheless, nevertheless and however. Thank you
SO COOL!!!! Mr Adam. MANY THANKS.
Thanks for your sharing. You became a teacher to many scholars around the world. God bless you teacher.
The best English teacher on YouTube. Thank you
I joined the Your Channel you subscribe to my name gegey612 channel. Thank you !!!!!!
Would I get extra points if I use complicated punctuation like the semi-colon? For example, would it look better on the essay if I wrote: "Some people write with a word processor; others prefer writing with a pen or pencil." rather than "Some people write with a word processor. Other people prefer writing with a pen or pencil."
Great video!!! This video is very helpful, thank you!!!
Thanks for this study!
Do i understand it right? Adam only mentions one argument and one paragraph. Does the real toefl ibt test only requires to write an interdocution on one paragraph within 8 minutes or 3-5 are needed durgin the writing task? Thanks a lot in advance.
Thank u very much! 3 DAYS later Imma gonna take toefl
Thank you so much sir Adam! More power!
Could you please make a video for ielts Essay conclusion??? It's humble request to you.🙏
It was a very beneficial to watch this video. Now I think I have a good grasp of how to write an intro paragraph. Thank you.
Thank you very much for the tips. Would you please make a video about reading in TOEFL.
Thank you!
Dude your'e smart
Thanks Adam!!
I will do toefl on this friday!!
<3
I adore all your lessons you are the best
Tnx for help
One week until my IELTS test, and I just started preparing for Writing section. Hopefully, it's not too late.
You are the best teacher out there, you are awaresom!! Thank you for helping us, may god reward you in return.
Thankssss!! You're the best!
I do like your way of teaching English. many thanks
My test is in two days and now i'm cramming. hopefully adam's voice will linger in my head. thanks adam.
Helpful and Awsome teaching, thanks
You are the best!
Adam, thank you very much for your video lessons! With your help I have scored 98 at TOEFL, I'm really glad~
Thank you very much, writing is the most difficult topic in my case. Great video by the way. I will take the IELTS exam in a couple of months.
Thank you
I really want to your Facebook 's name
THANK YOU
Thank you very much from Slovakia. I am really grateful ;) God Bless you Adam! :)
Great channel!
Man, you are amazing!!! Thank you so much
Sir from bottom of my heart I truly love your lessons.you are the best teacher I have ever seen in my entire life.
Helo sir ,i'm sajid j,naing,from the philippines.I need to improve my writing skill.thanx to engvid.
13:25 what if I didn't say he nor she and used they or we for more general speech?
Hi Adam like your ways how to deliver leacture.first I gave IELTS test 1 year ago I got 6 band .now I want to sit in ielts test again .my target is 6.5 band .but I think my writing is not up to that level please upload more and more video on task 2 .Again I am really thankful all endvid team
I write so many essays ... there is no one to check this out what should i do ?? :(
Wanna know y Facebook's name
Hi Adam, just wanna know, is it ok to mention invalid facts (basically lying ) in IELTS essay?
*cough* "excuse me" is the keyword to remember it all.
I will take ielts test this coming february.. i hope all these viewing will pay off.. fingers crossed.. thanks sir adam. .
Thank you :) Very helpful Video!
Dude i want to thank you for bringing the topic of he/she. it fries my brain all the time. now i can use he or she. thank you.
Sir I want to know that ,is hook is important inintroduction or background and thesis statement is enough.PLEASE try to answer quickly becausei amconfused.
6:25 should not it be one of the most difficult choices in life? I do not think "more difficult" without "than" is a correct grammar.
Thank u for dis /// it was effective and beneficial
Hey Adam, i'm wondering do you have books ? i'm fond of real books because i cannot focus while using computers .
I still could not determine the difference between topic and question. Like in your example, Isn't "Where to live" a question itself, and country or city a contrast on them ? I will be very thankful if you make this clear dear sir.
Am watching this Video on my phone, but my phone is burning because Adam is too hot! :)
Thanks for the amazing explanation. I have a question: I saw some introductions examples for essays, they use like : "This essay will explain ..." . For example: "It is argued that ..... This essay will firstly, discuss .... and secondly, ......". Is it ok to use it? or It is better to give my opinion directly using "In my opinion" ?
First of all, Im very thankful for your writing lessons. But I have a problem because Im taking the toefl the next january 7th, and i cant afford a native teacher, so i was wondering if you, sir Adam could check out my writings. Thanks beforehand tutor!!

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IELTS & TOEFL Writing Task 2 - The Introduction