Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

Today we discuss why it’s important to memorize prepositions for Writing Task 1.

We do not like to spend a lot of time on grammar, usually, but today’s grammar you definitely need to perfect for Academic Writing Task 1.

Most likely, you will have to write about numbers in this IELTS essay.

Numbers always need to be placed in a sentence with prepositions!

Prepositions for Static Questions

Static graphs provide numbers for one time, like one year. These numbers don’t change.

This is easier as far as prepositions go. You can always use with or at. This is because you are talking one specific point.

For example, “Children saw the most movies in 2014, with 1 million.”


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Prepositions for Change Over Time

You will also use with or at when describing the highest or lowest point in this essay, such as, “Numbers peaked at 1 million.”

When talking about movement, you’ll use from/to and between/and. For example, “Between 2000 and 2010, quantities jumped from 1 to 100.”

Students often try to use the preposition during in this essay as well, but they end up making a mistake.

During is used by itself, to introduce one time period or one time, like, “During the 1960’s…” or “During the time period from 2000 to 2010…“.

By is used to describe the difference in the change. For instance, instead of saying, “Numbers increased from 1 to 6,” you can say, “Numbers increased by 5.”

One of the best ways to learn how to use this kind of prepositional allocation correctly is by seeing it done correctly. Read often and read widely!

It will be very useful for all IELTS candidates to create an IELTS vocabulary cheat sheet. On this same paper, also add a small box with today’s prepositions.

What questions do you have about IELTS Writing?

Leave us a note in the comments section below!

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