ISE 2, B2 written exam Trinity

Preparing for the writing exam tomorrow?


What type of writing task is this? Article, Essay, Letter etc
How many paragraphs will you have?

What will each paragraph be about?
Think of a few basic ideas you can include before you start!
150 – 180 words. Do not write 149 or 181 words (excluding the heading and the address)


Use as much grammar, vocabulary and strong connectors as possible. You don´t lose marks for trying!




Descriptive essay: Describing what you want to talk about : It could be a person, place, an experience.
Show NOT tell : I was tired. (tell) My eyes became very heavy and I wanted to fall asleep quickly (Show)


What or who do you want to describe and why, giving reason for your answers.
What are the particular qualities that you want to focus on?

Describing a person : their morals, intelligent, supportive, creative, did they teach you something?
Describing a place: sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and textures
Describing an experience : when did it take place, describe the place, who were you with? how did it make you feel?

Details are important, saying “it was a good experience” doesn’t really help your reader be transported by your description! Which details can you include to ensure that your readers understand your emotion?


Do all the paragraphs make sense for the reader?
Have I included enough emotional language , strong adjectives related to feeling or situations?


Argumentative Essay:

Interesting introduction and tell the reader if you are for or against!

“In this essay I aim to explain why Spain should not invest in wind power, and should instead look at alternatives such as solar and hydroelectric power generators” (I am AGAINST wind power)

“In this essay I hope to explain why longer school days would be a disaster for the Spanish education system, and why this proposal would cause problems for both teachers and students” (I am AGAINST the longer school day)

“Private education is a subject which provokes much debate. In this essay I will explain why I believe parents should have the right to choose a private education for their children”
Clear paragraphs :

Present your arguments and evidence which support your point of view
Present possible counterarguments, and say why you disagree with these
Present your THIRD argument and provide evidence.

Try to use a lot of linking words :

Connectors : For instance, So that, because of , due to,
Adding to your ideas: Firstly, secondly, furthermore..
When you are sure about something : Without doubt, unquestionably.
Contrasting ideas: However, nevertheless, On the contrary.
Conclusion: As a result, to conclude, Thus.

Support your arguments with statements about SOURCES

According to the Andalusian Government…
An article published last year in “El País” suggested that…
Climate researchers have stated over and over that…
Look back at your work and see if you have clear paragraphs.
Have you given reason for your points?
Is there a clear conclusion?

Article :

Direct conversation with the reader

Identify the reader from the beginning: In the exam question it will say the local community, students at the school, parents, teenagers, Remember WHO your audience is and speak to them directly with “you”.

Use semi-formal language and also try to include rhetorical questions:
What would life be like if we didn´t know how to recycle?
Have you ever…………..?
Are you one of those people who thinks that luck comes to us all?

You can use a rhetorical question in the first paragraph to introduce the topic!

Use reported speech to say what other people think, or give other evidence about the issue.
Try to include some phrasal verbs, relative clauses, and you should demonstrate adverbs and adjectives too.

How to write an article :

TITLE: Relate it to the question.

INTRO : Rhetorical question and talk about the topic ( look at the question!)

Use the question to structure your paragraphs.
DO Express your opinion and give specific examples.

Final paragraph:

What do you think about the question?

For me, the idea of recycling is essential due to the problems we are causing to our climate, such as the increase of global warming and ……………
Personally, /I believe/ I think
In my view….


Have I included plenty of adjectives, adverbs, strong connectors?

Informal email or letter : Informal writing
Remember the reason you are writing,

  • are you inviting them to a party?
  • Giving them some bad news?
  • Asking for advice?

You can normally write as if you are responding to a letter they have send you, or a phone call you have had:

“It was great to hear from you the other day”

“Thanks for your letter, it was great to hear from you”

Use informal language = contractions, phrasal verbs esp. with “get” – get in the sense of “become”

You should know some phrases that British people normally use in letters.

Hi Sam,
How are things? / Thanks for your email, it was great to hear from you! I am sorry I haven´t written for a while but we’ve been really busy with the preparations for my sister’s wedding.

(“really” instead of very – more informal)

Be careful to FULFILL THE TASK… sometimes you have to give advice, invite someone to something, congratulate someone – don’t forget to do what the question asks!

I am writing to ask you for some advice about ……………(advice)
Congratulations on passing your English exam, that is fantastic news! (congratulate)

Could you let me know if you can come to ……………(invitation)

I’d like to invite you to (invitation)

I will have to give a speech on the day of the wedding, I hope that I don’t get too nervous!

Anyway, as I was saying before I sent you an invitation to the wedding and I hope you can join us on the special day…
I must go now and feed my cat! I´ll give you a call over the weekend so that we can talk properly!

Give my love to the family,

All the best/ Speak to you soon,


Have I used informal language?
Have I answered the question?


Review :

Special type of article written for a magazine or newspaper

Always include a title
First describe and and then give your opinion the film/book.

Describe the plot – but don’t describe the ending! Just give your opinion:

“The ending was action-packed! Don’t miss it!”

“The ending was disappointing, and overall I wouldn’t recommend seeing the film.”
Use descriptive vocabulary
Introduction : Talk about the title the author, when is was published, type of book/film, the setting (where, when),
Examples :

Titanic is a film which really made me respect James Cameron as a film director. The plot revolves around two young people travelling to America, who fall in love.

Paragraph 2 :
PLOT : Main points and events of the story in chronological order.

Paragraph 3 : Positive and negative points of the film, using lots of adjectives and adverbs.
It is a brilliantly written and acted. The plot keeps you on the edge of your seats at all times !
The script is touching and suggests that there is hope for love even on a sinking ship!

Paragraph 4 : What do you think about the film? Your overall opinion, which should reflect the opinions you gave in paragraph 3. Should your readers run out and watch the film?
Titanic is a must see and definitely worth the 3 hours of your time !


Have I answered the question?
Have I written in clear paragraphs?
Have I used descriptive language? Exciting, stunning, timeless, stunning, pathetic, terrible etc.




Looking for some reading activities, or maybe gap fill?

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