Answer Checking

IELTS Academic Task 1 Correction: Growth In Population In Cities.

The charts below show the growth in the population in some of the world’s largest cities as well as the population distribution in urban and rural areas.

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

growth in population in cities IELTS Academic Task 1.png

20 minutes, 150 words at least.


The given bar graph illustrates the rise in population of 5 major cities around the world, (no comma) between 1970 to 2010, while the line graph compares the world population in terms of rural and urban habitation in-habitation.

Overall, while the population of New York increased marginally during this period, that of Bombay and Jakarta swelled tremendously.

In the bar graph, it can be seen that Tokyo, with a population of 16 million, had the largest number of inhabitants in 1970 at 16 million while Jakarta had the least at around 2.5 million. (1) After four decades, Tokyo still was at the top in population figures with 27.6 million people almost twice as much as in 1970, (2) whereas the least populated city was New York at around 17 million. (… whereas New York, with 17 million residents, was the least populated city in 2010.) (Note the placement of 17 million as a modifier.). It is obvious that the population of Bombay surged steeply in the last four decades to almost five times of that in 1970 and that by Jakarta whose inhabitants became Jakarta had 18 million, almost seven times of its initial figure of 2.7 million. Population growth was the highest in Jakarta while it was the least in New York.

1. It is really difficult to smoothly integrate the figures (numbers) with main features. 1970 is not at 16 million. Tokyo is. Find the most suitable place for numbers – place 16 million with Tokyo in the form of a modifier. Note that the question demands ‘main features’ and not numbers. You can choose to sacrifice numbers but not the main features.

2, Build a proper sentence. Note that I’ve not used the numbers. I’ve highlighted the main features. I’ve also compared Jakarta and New York in the second sentence – J was the least populated (previous sentence); now its NY.: In the next four decades, Tokyo’s population almost doubled and it retained the top position. However, Jakarta grew rapidly and New York gained the distinction of the least populated city in 2010.

The paragraph above does not mention all the main features and make all possible comparisons. Please wait for the video explanation of this question.

From the Line Graph, it is evident that in 1980 rural population outnumbered the urban population by one billion with the former at three and the latter at two billion respectively. Both of these figures rose steadily till 2010, to reach 3.5 and 2.7 Billion respectively, (3) (You’ve misread the data. This data is for the year 2000.) when the number of rural inhabitants started to steadily decline while the Urban population started to rise steeply. In 2005 the urban population overtook rural population and continued to rise till it reached four billion, twice the figure in 1980.

3. Put between two commas, this becomes a modifier that gives qualities of 2010. It means that 2010 increased. Not the population. Wrong sentence structure. Plus, the use of respectively is incorrect. It can refer to two terms within the same sentence. Not in the previous sentence. You’ve mentioned urban and rural in the previous sentence. Let me present a way out. From the line graph it is evident that the rural population outnumbered the urban population by one billion in 1980. While the former was almost the same in 2010, the latter swelled to more than 4 billion.

To summarise, it can be inferred from the bar graph that Population growth was controlled in New York in the last four decades, whereas in Bombay Tokyo and Jakarta the population has surged steadily over the period. Also, the line graph says that more and more people from rural areas are migrating towards Urban areas. Urban life is becoming more popular among people nowadays. No need of a summary in task 1. You, however, need to write an overall statement.

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