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CIES | 12-September-2019

There is 25% weight-age given to Coherence and Cohesion in IELTS Exam. They are preferred with high weight out of all the resources. People are focusing on correcting the lexical resources alone in the IELTS Exam. They are not paying attention to Coherence and Cohesion. That’s why they score a low band in writing and speaking task in IELTS.

Meaning of Coherence

Coherence is the quality of being logical and consistent. It mean’s sentences are logical throughout the essay and speech. In addition to it, your writing and speech should be in consistent flow.

Meaning of Cohesion

It concentrates on your writing and speech being focused and not vague. Cohesion is the action or fact of forming a united whole. It’s how you present your topic as a whole, with all the grammar correct.

There is need of coherence for IELTS. Why?

IELTS exams writing and speaking test you on coherence along with other criteria. Therefore, when you write your task test in IELTS you should familiarize yourself. All the ideas you pen down in your essay should be linked with each other. That’s when you will have consistency in your speech.

What’s the impact of coherence and cohesion on your band score?

This happens because often candidates take Coherence and Cohesion lightly and then score low band. Let’s first, check how is your band graded based on Coherence and Cohesion. Here are IELTS Task 2 Writing band descriptors:

Bands With Grading

1.     Band 9

Use cohesion in a way that it attracts attention.

There is skillfully management to paragraph.


2.     Band 8

Uses paragraphing sufficiently and appropriately and sequences information and ideas


3.     Band 7

May be some under-/over-use. But logically organizes information and ideas through clear progression throughout. A clear central topic is being presented within each paragraph


4.     Band 6

There is use of paragraphing, but not always
logically. There is effective use of cohesive devices but cohesion within and/or between
sentences by faulty. There is coherent arrangement of information and ideas through clear progression. may not always use referencing clearly


5.     Band 5

Presents some main ideas but these are limited and not sufficiently developed


6.     Band 4


There may be a lack of overall progression. But that’s right that the information presented is with some organization. Make inaccurate, inadequate or overuse of cohesive devices. It may be repetitive due to lack of substitution and referencing. Paragraphing may be inadequate..

7.     Band 3


There may be very limited use of cohesive devices, and those being used may not indicate a logical relationship between ideas…Ideas are not being organized logically.


8.     Band 2

There is very little control in organizational structure..


9.     Band 1

There is failure to communicate any message



Why do we lose the most score band?

There is consistent record of Indians with low scoring in speaking and writing test. It’s mainly due to the fact that they are not well aware with the English language. There is every possible reason for your less score as coherence is an acquired skill that need to be taught and not everyone is aware of it. Due to the negative in the IELTS writing test, you would lose at least 2 bands.

Candidates from India are having less coherence and cohesion in their sentences and there is no central idea to the speech.

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