IELTS Writing Task 1 #116

Improve your English writing skills

Make sure you know how to use per cent and percentage.

  • per cent comes after a number.
  • percentage comes after words like the, a, this, that, etc. and is often preceded by an adjective, e.g. A high percentage of customers…
  • Both go with the preposition of.

When writing numbers or percentages, use words up to the number ten, e.g. eight per cent, and then figures, e.g. 12 percent. However, always write a number at the beginning of a sentence in words, e.g. Twelve per cent…

You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.

The Table below shows the results of a survey that asked 6800 Scottish adults (aged 16 years and over) whether they had taken part in different cultural activities in the past 12 months.

Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features, and make comparisons where relevant.

Write at least 150 words.

Participation in cultural activities, by age
16-24 25-44 45-74 All aged 16 and over
  % % % %
Any performance* 35 22 17 22
Undertaking any crafts 11 17 22 19
Cultural purchases 11 17 18 16
Any visual arts 30 16 11 15
Any writing 17 6 5 7
Computer based 10 9 5 6
* Dancing, singing, playing musical instruments and acting


  • Begin with an introductory statement, e.g. The table/graph shows…
  • Don’t try to describe every detail. Look for significant features, e.g. the biggest change, the overall trend, etc.
  • Don’t speculate about reasons for trends. Stick to the facts.
  • End with a comment on general trends, e.g. From this evidence we can conclude that…

Model answer

The table shows details of participation in a variety of cultural activities over a year, according to the age of the participants.

Overall, any performance, which includes dancing, singing, playing musical instruments and acting, had the highest level of participation, with 22% of respondents participating in the previous 12 months. By contrast, computer based activities had the lowest level of participation (6 per cent).

People aged between 45 and 74 years old were most likely to undertake any activity to do with crafts (22 per cent), while performances were more likely to be participated in by those aged 16 to 24 (35 per cent). The differences between age groups were particularly marked in the case of visual arts and writing categories, where participation rates were around three times higher for younger people than for the older ones. It is clear from the evidence that age plays a significant role in the popularity of the cultural activities listed.

(157 words)

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