In this lesson you will learn some important vocabulary to describe industrial processes and you will learn how to sequence the stages in an IELTS writing task 1 process essay.
Choose the correct definition for each vocabulary item below based on the example sentence.
To consume (verb) means to a) eat or b) use until it is gone.
The task that you will study next shows the process of oil distillation (noun). Distillation is when a liquid is made very hot, in order to turn some parts of it into a gas. Many things are distilled (passive verb), such as oil, alcohol and sometimes even water.
The writer fully and accurately describes the process in the diagram. The writer uses a good range of grammar and lots of specific vocabulary. The text is divided into logical paragraphs, including an introduction containing an overview, and two body paragraphs. Sequencing words and phrases make the text more cohesive and show the relationship between the different stages of the process. This essay would receive a perfect band score.
It is heated to 600 degrees Celsius. Consequently, it becomes a gas.
Study note: When you see a word that you don't understand in a text, try to guess the word type and meaning before you look in a dictionary. This will improve your ability to learn words from their context, and will help you understand texts when a dictionary is not available (as in the real test).
The Model Answer and Notes
The diagram below shows how oil is refined and supplied for use as fuel for cars, planes and ships.
Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.
You should write 150 words.
In the first stage, oil is extracted from beneath the ocean by workers on an oil rig. Subsequently, the oil is kept in storage tanks. When enough oil has been collected, it is transported on a tanker to a refinery.
At the refinery, the crude oil is processed in order to make it suitable as fuel for transport. First, crude oil is passed through a furnace, where it is heated to around 600 degrees Celsius. Consequently, it becomes a gas and then is passed into the distillation tower. Following the heating process, the gas rises and cools. At different temperatures different types of fuel condense and become liquid. At 450, 200 and 60 degrees, boat, plane and car fuel respectively condense. After the process is complete, the fuel can be transported by truck or pipeline to the place of sale.
Note that you can use ordinals such as first, second and third to organise the stages of the process. However, if you use many ordinals your writing might seem quite simple.
Notice that you can use an ordinal in a phrase to add some variety. For example, ‘In the first stage’.
Following is another good word to use to say the second action happens after the first. You can use it in phrases such as ‘following this’ or ‘following the heating process’.
Time clauses are also good for sequencing. They also help you to improve your grammatical range score since they are classed as complex sentences. For example, ‘When enough oil has been collected, it is transported on a tanker to a refinery’ – notice that the time clause needs to have a subject and verb and be followed by a comma.
Respectively is used to link two lists of data. For example, ‘At 450, 200 and 60 degrees, boat, plane and car fuel respectively condense’. Therefore, boat fuel condenses at 450 degrees, plane fuel condenses at 200, and car fuel at 60.