Archive Lessons Series

IELTS Lessons, written by Sam Morgan and Tom Speed

For upgraded material, please go to our new, more complete Introduction Paragraph Guide.

For the old lesson, continue reading.

​Today let’s have a look at how to write an introduction for IELTS writing Task 2. Follow this simple guide and become an introduction writing pro. If you have any comments or suggestions, please leave them below.


​It doesn’t matter if it’s an essay for General Training, Academic Training or for school or university, you have to start with an introduction. 
So, what should an introduction do?

  1. introduce the general topic
  2. specify the topic precisely
  3. state the writer’s position

How to write your introduction


Decide how many parts there are in the question.                    
​                   Do you have to give your opinion?  
                   Do you have to give arguments for and against?
                   Do you have to give solutions?
                   Do you have to think about cause and effect?

​​In the following question, what do you have to do.

​That’s right. You just have to give your opinion about whether the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.


Decide on your position. What is your opinion about the question above? There are 3 possible positions: 

  1. The advantages are greater than the disadvantages
  2. The disadvantages are greater than the advantages
  3. There are both advantages and disadvantages and neither is greater


Next, think about the main points to support your opinion. Your main points will become the body paragraphs of your essay. Make some notes as you do this. It will help you to organize your ideas. 
Think about the question above. Make a note of some ideas to support your position.


Now, we are ready to start writing. Combine the information from the three questions into two or three sentences to create your introduction.
You may use a few pieces of vocabulary from the question if you wish, but don’t use too much or the examiner will delete it.

Think about the questions below, then click on them to compare you answer to ours.

What is the general topic of the question?

​Children learning foreign languages.

What is the specific topic?

It’s better for children to start learning a second language at primary school.

What is your position?

IELTSTutors believe that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

​This is my paragraph, giving my opinion. Yours may be similar or different depending on what you think.


Let’s look at those questions again and find the sentences which answer them in the example paragraph. Try this yourself before you click to see the answers.

What is the general topic of the question?

​Most young people around the world have to learn a second language.

What is the specific topic?

​Some specialists believe it is better to start at primary school while others suggest it is better to start later.

What is your position?

​I believe the advantages of starting to learn a second. language at primary school outweigh the disadvantages.


To improve coherence, you can indicate how many main ideas and therefore body paragraphs you will include in your essay. In my essay there will be 3 body paragraphs. How do you know? Because I say there are 3 main reasons

For tips and an example of how to write a body paragraph and conclusion, click the buttons below.

There we have it, a simple and easy way to write your introduction and plan your essay. Following this will help to improve your Task Achievement and Coherence and Cohesion. Why don’t you try it for yourself?

For a more detailed look at different introduction paragraphs, join this class.