Exams. 04.04.2016
Your IELTS

IELTS. Academic Writing. Task 1. Bar Graph

Я считаю описание графиков одним из самых легких заданий теста IELTS. Несмотря на то, что многие боятся графиков, таблиц и всяких таких схем. Особенно это сбивает с толку тех, кто в обычной жизни не сталкивается с графиками и диаграммами. Бояться их не стоит, поскольку подготовиться к этому заданию очень легко. Даже если уровень английского языка в целом у вас не очень высокий, но есть упорство и большое желание, то вы можете просто-напросто выучить нужную лексику и устоявшиеся обороты, которые помогут вам описать тот или иной график. Грамматика и лексика здесь очень стандартная – вызубрил, и применяй себе. Никаких заморочек. Вам не нужно высказывать  свое мнение, излагать какую-то идею, приводить доводы. Описание графика – предельно просто и лаконично. Начнем с такого вида как Bar Graph или Bar Chart. 

A bar chart consists of rectangular bars arranged horizontally or vertically from the x or y axis.
The length of a bar shows the values it represents. The values are listed on one axis and each bar shows what is being measured on the other axis. Bar charts are useful for comparing data. In studying a bar chart, you may want to look for the following information: 
Which is the tallest bar? 
Which is the shortest bar? 
Have the bars changed over time? How? 
How do the bars compare to each other?

 

Вот так он может выглядеть: 

There are three basic things you need to structure an IELTS writing task 1. 
1. Introduce the graph
Introduction Example
This bar graph shows/represents/demonstrates/illustrates the changes in sales between 1990 and 1996/over a six year period/from 1990 to 1996. 
2. Give an overview
3. Give the detail

Посмотрев это видео, вы узнаете, как описывать Bar Graph. Здесь изложены основные моменты, правила и советы описания этого типа графика: 

Следующие два видео предлагают на примере более подробный разбор описания такого графика:

Example  
You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.
    The chart shows components of GDP in the UK from 1992 to 2000.
    Summarize the information by selecting and reporting the main features and make comparisons where relevant.
Write at least 150 words.

Gross Domestic Product in the UK

Model Answer
The bar chart illustrates the gross domestic product generated from the IT and Service Industry in the UK from 1992 to 2000. It is measured in percentages. Overall, it can be seen that both increased as a percentage of GDP, but IT remained at a higher rate throughout this time.
At the beginning of the period, in 1992, the Service Industry accounted for 4 per cent of GDP, whereas IT exceeded this, at just over 6 per cent. Over the next four years, the levels became more similar, with both components standing between 6 and just over 8 per cent. IT was still higher overall, though it dropped slightly from 1994 to 1996.
However, over the following four years, the patterns of the two components were noticeably different. The percentage of GDP from IT increased quite sharply to 12 in 1998 and then nearly 15 in 2000, while the Service Industry stayed nearly the same, increasing to only 8 per cent. 
At the end of the period, the percentage of GDP from IT was almost twice that of the Service Industry.

Words 182 
Comments
This answer meets the requirements of the task.
The introduction explains what the graph is about, and gives an overview of the main points.
The body paragraphs are ordered logically and clearly. The first body paragraph discusses the first three years, where the patterns are fairly similar. This is contrasted in the second body paragraph, where the GDP of each country diverges noticably. There are a wide variety of sentence structures and the language of change is correctly used. The correct tense - the past - is used.

Множество таких примеров можно найти по этой ссылке: www.ielts-exam.net

Для раскачки можно потренироваться, используя следующие упражнения: 
Task 1 

You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.
    The chart shows the percentage of drugs taken by girls and boys in a school in New Zealand.
    Summarize the information by selecting and reporting the main features and make comparisons where relevant.
Write at least 150 words.

Place the right word into the space. Make sure you write (or copy and paste) the word exactly as it appears in the box, otherwise it will get marked as wrong.

at approximately 8% / the least / school children / are similar / gender /
in percentages / more than / equal / at the same level / percentages for /
at only 5% / around 33% / is exactly / 4% for / bar chart illustrates

The 1._________________ information on the quantity of drugs 2. _________________  in New Zealand take, divided by 3. _________________ and measured 4. _________________  . Overall, it is immediately apparent that hashish or marijuana is used 5. _________________ any of the other drugs, whereas LSD is used 6. _________________. At first glance we can see that boys take more drugs than girls for 6 out of 7 of the drugs listed, however an 7. _________________ number of boys and girls take cocaine.

To begin with, boys use more hashish or marijuana than girls at 8. _________________ and 29% respectively. Following this, boys take heroin, opium or morphine 9. _________________ but girls 10. _________________

On the other hand, the 11. _________________  amphetamines and solvents 12. _________________ for both boys and girls at 2% and 3% for girls and 13. _________________ both drugs for boys. Next, the pattern for LSD and medical drugs 14. _________________ the same for both genders at 1% for girls and 3% for boys. Finally, boys and girls take cocaine 15. _________________ 4%.

 

Task 2
You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.
The charts give information about two genres of TV programmes watched by men and women and four different age groups in Australia.
Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.
Write at least 150 words.

Fill in the gaps in the model answer.

The charts give information about the genres of TV programs that Australian men and women and different age groups watch. It is clear from the charts that women tend to watch ........... television than man overall, although they watch slightly ........... game shows. The people who watch the ........... television are in the 45+ age group.
Nearly 70% of women watch reality shows, which is almost ........... as many as the percentage of men who choose this genre of program. Nevertheless, most age groups watch ........... reality shows than game shows revealing that game shows are generally ........... popular than reality shows.

The percentage of people watching reality shows increases steadily from ages 16 to 45 with the ........... percentage of viewers, at just over 50% of the age group 16-24 and the ........... percentage, at 68% of the over-45s.

However, the pattern is different for game shows. The number of programs watched by 25- to 44-year-olds is ........... lower than the number watched by 16- to 24-year-olds and those over 45. Just over 50% of 16- to 24-year-olds watch game shows, but this share is not ........... high as the share of people aged 45 and over watching game shows, at nearly 70%. Only 41% of 35- to 44-year-olds watch game shows, and the share of 24- to 34-year-olds is ........... lower at 38%.

 

Task 3
You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.
The bar chart below shows shares of expenditures for five major categories in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan in the year 2009.
Write a report for a university lecturer describing the information below.
Write at least 150 words.

Read the following sample answer. Complete the answer by filling the gaps with the words in the box.

by contrast    indicates    lowest    compares
overall    whereas    except    higher
highest    however    largest    among

 

The bar chart ........... how consumers in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan allocated different shares of total spending to categories such as food, housing, and transportation in 2009.

We can see that the United States had the ........... housing expenditure share, 26% of total expenditures in 2009. The United Kingdom and Japan followed, with 24% and 22%, respectively. Canada had the ........... housing share at 21%. Housing was the ........... expenditure component in all countries ........... Japan.

..........., Canada had the largest transportation share of all four countries at 20%. The United States and the United Kingdom had the next-highest transportation shares, 17% and 15%, respectively. Japan had the lowest, at 10%.

..........., in Japan, consumers spent 23% of their total expenditures on food in 2009. The United Kingdom had the second-highest share at 20%. Canada, with 15%, and the United States, with 14% had the lowest food expenditure shares among the countries studied.

..........., the data ........... that housing and health care shares of total expenditures were ........... in the United States than in Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan in 2009, ........... Americans had the lowest clothing share. Canada had the highest clothing and transportation shares, and Japan had the highest food share, ........... the countries compared.

 

Ну а когда вы уже приступите к самостоятельному описанию графика, вам может пригодиться следующая лексика: 

Ways to compare

1. Comparisons between sentences
One way to make comparisons is to start a new sentence with a word/phrase that shows that you are about to make a comparison with the previous sentence. The basic words you need here are:
In contrast
The most popular form of holiday among the Welsh was self-catering with over 60% choosing to cook for themselves. In contrast, only 5 % of the English chose this form of vacation and hotel accommodation was much more popular at 48%.
In comparison
Almost 50% of the English, Scots and Northern Irish chose to stay in a hotel for their holiday. In comparison, staying in self-catering accommodation was much less popular with around 10% of people choosing this.
However
The general pattern was for hotel accommodation to be the most popular with around half the people choosing it. The majority of the Welsh, however, chose to stay in self-catering accommodation.
On the other hand
It is clear that a majority of the British chose to stay in hotel for their holiday. On the other hand, there was an exception to this because over 50%  of the Welsh opted for self-catering accommodation.
Note that we normally use a comma after In contrast and In comparison.
Note that there are lots of different ways to use compare and contrast and these are just the most basic examples. If you are looking for a higher band score, it’s good advice to learn different ways to use these words.
Note too that typically however is not used as the first word in a sentence.

2. Comparisons within sentences
Another possibility is to compare two pieces of information within the same sentence. The basic words you need here are:
while
While there are 4 million miles of train lines in the UK, there are only 3 million in France.
whereas
Whereas the majority of the French prefer to travel to work by train, only a small minority of the British do.
although
Although 15% of the French read novels, only 5% of the British do.
but
Almost 25% of French females study maths with a private tutor, but nearly 60% study English with one.

3. Comparisons with more or less/fewer
This is another obvious way to make comparisons and contrasts. You should note though that you are normally going to compare numbers and nouns and not adjectives. You want to remember these two key bit of grammar:
Than
Remember that after more/less/fewer we use than
5% more girls chose to read books than go to cinema.
Fewer/less
If the word is uncountable we use less, if it is countable we use fewer:
Fewer mobiles phones were bought in 2013 than 2014.
Less oil was consumed in 2013 than 2014.
 

4. Qualify your comparisons with much/far/slightly or a number
This is similar. The idea here is that you still use less/more/fewer but this time you explain how much. Typically, the best way to do this is to use a number:
Far fewer people chose to travel by train than by car. [Where’s the detail?]
25% fewer people chose to travel by train than by car. [Better now we have detail and not just a comparison]

5. Comparisons with most or least/fewest
When you are looking for details to include, the highest/lowest number is almost always important. This too is a form of comparison.
The most popular form of entertainment in the UK was going to the cinema.
The least common form of transport was taking a taxi.

6. Comparisons with similar or same or as…..as
Don’t forget that some of the numbers you will be comparing are similar. These are the basic words and structures you need.
Similar (to)
The percentage of females and males who studied languages at university were very similar.
A similar amount of gas and electricity was used domestically in homes.
The figures for 2012 were very similar to the figures for 2013.
Same as …as
The percentage of females who studied at university in 2011 was almost exactly the same as in 2012

7. Comparisons with differ/different/difference
If something is similar, it can also be different! Here is another set of basic variations for you:
The amount of time spent at home differed by almost 25% according to gender.
There was a difference of over 25% in the amount of time males and females spent at home.
This figure was very different among males, only half of whom watched television. 

8. Comparisons with numbers
Another way to make comparisons is to do some simple arithmetic! Here are some simple variations:
[5 million] more/less/fewer 5 million fewer units of gas were sold in 2014.
Twice 
Twice as many people elected to use gas and not electricity for cooking [note the twice as …as structure]
Twice the amount of gas was used for cooking in this period. [note that we amount with uncountable nouns]
Three/four etc times 
Four times as many people chose to heat their house with electricity as with gas.
Half
Half the number of people chose to use gas as electricity. Electricity was half as popular as gas for cooking.

 

Describing a movement

Если вы выучите данную лексику и обороты, проработаете какое-то количество готовых примеров описания таких графиков, вы с легкостью сможете дать письменное описание Bar Graph, если такой вам попадется. 

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