A common mistake that most IELTS Academic training candidates make is that they do not write an overview for writing task 1.

If you read the IELTS Band Descriptors for Writing Task 1, you can see clearly that if you do not write an overview for academic writing task 1 you cannot score above Band 5. So a quick way to boost your IELTS academic writing band score is to always write an overview for academic task 1.

How to write an overview?

Overviews are actually quite simple. The purpose of the overview is to state what the main trend or trends in the graph are.

  • Don’t repeat whole sentences from the body of your Task 1 report.
  • Don’t give any new details about the data here – you are just looking for something that describes what is happening overall.
  • Don't use "In Conclusion..." to start the overview, rather use "To sum up..." or "Overall ..."
  • Your overview need not be long. It should be ideally 1 or 2 sentences and should be about 25 words or less.

Here is an example. Don't worry about the actual graph, this is just to show you the structure and language of the overview:


To sum up, the cinema attendance of 24-34 year olds declined over the period, whereas the cinema attendance of all other age groups increased.


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