Words That Can Improve Your IELTS Graph Essay

The IELTS graph essay requires you to describe a graph. The graph can either be a pie chart or a line graph or a mixed graph. Around 25% of marks for this essay are reserved for the vocabulary. Most students tend to use similar words to describe the graph. If you expand your IELTS vocabulary and use different and innovative words, then you will surely score higher. Here are a few words that can help you in this aspect of the IELTS exam.


Most IELTS India essays start with the phrase, “The graph shows ….” Instead, try using synonyms for the words ‘graph‘ and ‘shows. Here are a few examples:

  • Shows: Depicts, illustrates, enumerates, compares, indicates, outlines, reveals, expresses, contrasts, demonstrates.
  • Graph: Data, bar graph, column graph, picture, information, pie chart.

Follow this up with what the graph depicts and when and where it happened.

Essay Body

The introduction is where you summarise what the graph shows and its overall trend. The next part is the body of the essay where you will need to analyse the graph elaborately and describe it in detail. You can use the following phrases to start this section:

  • According to the,
  • getting back to the details,
  • the graph gives the figure,
  • it is apparently seen that,
  • as can be seen in the,
  • it is interesting to note that,
  • it could be plainly viewed that, and
  • we can see that.

Changes in the Graph

You can use these synonyms to describe the changes in the graph.

  • Increase: rocket, climb, uplift, soar, leap, surge.
  • Decrease: plunge, plummet, decline, reduce, drop, slide.
  • Frequent changes: fluctuate, oscillate, palpitate, wave.
  • Steady: plateau, level off, remain stable, remain static.


You can use adverbs to increase the intensity of your writing and take it to the next level. These are used to show the extent of the changes. Here are a few useful adverbs:

gradually, approximately, dramatically, significantly, slightly, markedly, moderately, progressively, mildly, substantially, marginally

Expressing Time

You will need to describe the changes in the graph over a period of time. To specify this, you can try using the following time expressions –

  • In the next ‘X’ days.
  • Over a period of ‘X’ years/days.
  • At the beginning of the period.
  • At the end of the period.
  • Between ‘X’ and ‘Y’.

Improve Your Essay

A simple trick to remember while writing the essay is to write using simple words first. Then, think about the less common synonyms that you know and use them. The more you practice writing these essays, the better you get at them. You can also take the help of online IELTS coaching to improve your IELTS test score.

Hope you found these essay writing tips for IELTS useful. If you do, you can also share these with your friends and help them improve their vocabulary too.

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