Although ideas are the most important parts of a Task 2 essay, many students find it difficult to write and express their ideas coherently and clearly. Today, I’ll share with you 3 easy steps that you can follow to write a good idea.
Here are my three steps:
Step 1: Think of a main idea. A main idea is what you write to support your opinions. For example, if you say that advertising is good, your main ideas would be the benefits of advertising.
Step 2: Develop your main idea with some supporting ideas. These ideas help to make your main idea clearer and stronger. There are a few different ways to write supporting ideas:
- Explain why
- Give a clear example for the main idea
- Give a positive/negative result of the main idea
I have already posted a lesson regarding this step. Have a look at the lesson here.
Step 3: After having the main idea and the supporting ideas, we link these ideas together to form complete sentences. This is the easiest step, you just need to use some linking words:
- Linking words for expressing causes/effects: Due to / Because of, Since / As / Because, or Therefore / As a result…
- Linking words for giving examples: such as / For example / For instance
Okay, so now you can apply these 3 steps to writing all your ideas.
Let’s look at one specific example. Here is one question that was recently given in Vietnam. This is an easy question (Note that you should begin practising new techniques with easier questions, and then you can gradually raise the difficulty level).
Question: The use of social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, is replacing face-to-face contact in this century. Do you think the advantages of this outweigh the disadvantages?
For this topic, let’s say I believe social media is good. Therefore, my main ideas will be about the benefits of social networks.
I will apply the 3 steps above to write my idea:
Step 1: Think of a main idea. What are the benefits of social networks? I can come up with a simple one: “Social networks make it easy for people to keep in touch with the latest activities of their family and friends, including those who live far away.”
Step 2: Develop the main idea with some supporting ideas. I will develop my main idea by several ways:
- Explain why. I ask myself: Why/How do social networks help people to do that? “Because social networks allow users to share content such as videos or photos with others via the Internet.”
- Give a clear example. “For example, when I was studying abroad in the UK, I was able to show my parents all the photos and I took at the places I went to.”
- Give a positive result. For this main idea, I can’t think of any good result, so I’ll skip this and just use the 2 supporting ideas above.
Step 3: Link these ideas together. This is the easiest step. I only need to use some simple linking words:
“Because social networks allow users to share content such as videos or photos with others via the Internet, they make it easy for people to keep in touch with the latest activities of their family and friends, including those who live far away. For example, when I was studying abroad in the UK, I was able to show my parents all the photos that I took at the places I went to.”
In order to have a complete body paragraph, you will need 2 ideas like that and link them together following this template:
“On the one hand, there are some benefits of social networks. Firstly, …………. *idea 1*………… . Secondly, ………….*idea 2*………… .
You can try this method to write about the disadvantages of social networks.