You only have 40 minutes to plan and write a fully developed 250-word essay. The “meat” (most important/substantial part) of your essay is in your main body paragraphs, so you don’t want to spend too much time thinking of a creative way to introduce your topic and opinion. Remember, you want to get straight to the issue and be as clear as possible. Here is your strategy in writing a good introduction to any Task 2 question:
- Read the question very carefully – a few times if you have to, to make sure you completely understand the question.
- Underline key words that you will use and paraphrase in your introduction. See How to Analyze the Essay Questions.
- Highlight the specific question(s) you must answer.
- Think of your answer (personal opinion) to the question.
- Now write your introduction:
- 1st sentence: Write about the general topic – paraphrase the sentence that introduces the question of the Task. You should write 1 – 2 sentences only.
- Next sentence: Answer the question(s) asked in the Task. Try to write it in 1 sentence. This is your opinion and heart of your essay. A great way to write this is to follow this format:
- “Although [insert claim made in task question]…, I think …”
- “While [insert claim made in task question] …, I believe/ agree/ disagree/ feel … “
Here are some examples:
Some people feel that competitive sports, both team and individual, have no place in the school curriculum. How far do you agree or disagree?
Competitive sports, such as basketball, soccer and track have become a regular part of daily life for school children. While some people feel that it should not be included in the school curriculum, I strongly feel that competitive team and individual sports should definitely be a part of the school curriculum.
- First sentence introduced competitive sports in school – I referred to team (basketball, soccer) & individual (track) sports
- I used the “While…, I think…” construction. I clearly state my position and answer the question ” How far do you agree or disagree?”
The number of elderly people in the world is increasing. What do you think are the positive and negative effects of this trend?
My introduction: (Note, I actually read a news article about our population a few weeks before writing this! So, bonus lesson learned here – keep reading!)
This year we are going to reach a total global population of 7 billion people. In about 14 years the population will increase to 8 billion. This growth, especially of elderly people, is becoming more of a concern as there will undoubtedly not only be positive effects but negative effects as well.
- I wrote 2 sentences to introduce the topic of growing population.
- I specified elderly people and referred to both positive and negative effects, which is answering the question. It is only a discussion question of examining both sides.
Now you try:
- Write your 1st sentence about the topic.
- Your second sentence answering the question.