Writing powerful texts in your CELPIP writing component

Writing powerful texts in your CELPIP writing component

In order to be able to fit within the given timeframe of 26-27 minutes make sure you know exactly what you need to do considering the level of stress and required concentration, you are supposed to demonstrate.

Below is our timed workable strategy to achieve the highest possible score based on step-by-step techniques. You should not count for 26 minutes for writing the essay, it is 23 minutes plus the remaining time for proofreading.

The formal email of TASK 1 is set as an example

Step 1 — Read the information on the left and instructions on the right of the task page — 2 mins.

Step 2 — Identify the context you are dealing with- formal or informal — 1 min.

Step 3 — Once the writing style is identified, write the beginning and the end of the letter – it is doubtful that you might make a mistake there- the formal letter layout is always quite typical — 3 mins.

Start with:

Dear Sir or Madam,

(In case the addressee’s last name is known- Dear + Title (Mr./ Mrs./Ms.+ Last name)
(the following greetings are also acceptable: Dear Manager/ To the attention of the teacher/
To whom it may concern)

I am writing to you to…

I look forward to your prompt response.


John Smith 

These sentences account for 20 words and are automatically typed without overanalyzing. They should therefore be learned by heart.

Step 4 — Copy all 3 questions inside the task and make each of them a separate body part. This is to ensure that task coherence is under control — 1 min (7 mins total, 18 remaining).

Step 5 — Finish the ‘purpose line’ of the letter, the options here being:

I am writing to you to…express my concern, gratitude, disappointment / to complain/ to report an issue, to inform1 min (8 mins total, 17 remaining).

Step 6 — Write an answer to each question crossing the task line you’ve copied to make sure the task fulfilment criteria are properly met. You need to answer the set question in one sentence and add at least two supporting sentences. You have 5–6 minutes to complete each paragraph.


Now we’d like to present a checklist of items to be verified once you’re done with your email

1. Proofreading stage — 3 to 4 mins

2. I reached the set word count (150-200)

3. All my sentences have a period in the end.

4. I used no contractions (don’t, can’t) in my essay.

5. There are no exclamation marks as the formal style requires a neutral tone.

6. There is a space between paragraphs which is required by the exam readability criterion.

7. I used a variety of grammatical structures. In case your target at over 7 CLB the set of those includes, but are not limited to:

  • Perfect Tenses (I have noticed)
  • Passive Voice (the issue was reported)
  • Modal Verbs (the measures must be taken)

8. There are at least 10 academic words or phrases in my essay to highlight:

  • cause and effect (therefore, thus)
  • sequence (finally, furthermore)
  • comparison (likewise, nevertheless)
  • contrast (despite, although)
  • examples (for instance)
  • conclusion (to summarize, in other words)

Their purpose is to make a transition to the next paragraph coherent.

9. I avoid using phrasal verbs (verb + preposition combination — give up, run into) in the formal context since their casualty contradicts the overall business-like letter format.

10. No lexical items are repeated, and synonyms are used instead – vocabulary is evaluated based on reaching this goal.

11. Words like very, big, and small which are considered fairly basic are replaced by their more sophisticated equivalents — extremely, large, tiny, and the like.

Our company offers guided writing teaching addressing each type of the CELPIP writing section (formal, semi-formal, and informal emails, a survey of task 2) with hands-on exercises and analysis of your homework. The initial placement feedback aims to identify your common weak areas and improve them through your hard work with our tutors.

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