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Dear Ryan,
Thanks to your guidance, I was able to increase my writing score from 6.5 to 7.5, and then to 8.5! I really don't believe I could have done it without you.
-Imam Mohamed

Hi Ryan,
I am so happy to inform you that I scored 7.5 in writing!
-Sunish Manalody

Hi Ryan,
Thanks for your help, I’ve scored band 8 in writing.
-Vladan Martinovic

Hi Ryan,
I prepared just by looking at your videos and scored 7.5! Thank you!
-Rahul Paldiwal

Hi Ryan,
I would like to thank you for your very helpful lessons. I finally got 7 in all modules and can now start residency processing for New Zealand!
-Kiran Kiccha

Hi Ryan,
I obtained a writing score of 8.5. Your videos were instrumental in helping me achieving this score. Thanks, mate!
-Carlos Flores

Hi Ryan,
Thank you for my 8.0 writing score. You ebook played a pivotal role in my success!
-Awais Butt

Hi Ryan,
I read your blog every day and scored 7.5 in writing!
-Vikrant Mahajan

I went from band 6.0 to 7.5 following Ryan’s coaching!
-Viacheslav Porotikov

Updates from my side: new website, new IELTS vocab podcast, new essay contest (48 hours to enter! Hurry!) and a personal request

Posted on June 13, 2013 by - 22 Comments

Hi everyone,

I hope you have kicked off a productive summer.  In this update, I wanted to talk about a couple of the things I am working on and how you can get involved.  Don’t forget to enter the writing contest (update #3) and suggest an explanation for the New Yorker cartoon that has me stumped (update #4).

Screen shot 2013-06-13 at 5.04.43 PM

1 – New website

Please excuse the lack of updates to over the past few weeks.  I’m pulling together a new and updated version of this website, which will include material for the other three sections of the IELTS.  New versions of all writing ebooks are in the works, too (a task I’ve been working on since the start of 2013).  As always, those who purchased older ebook versions will receive the updated versions free of charge.  Please be patient as I pull together these new projects.  I am hoping to launch everything in July.


2 – New podcast

IELTS Speaking specialist Tom (from and I are testing a new vocabulary focused podcast.  You may have read about it on the Facebook page we set up (please add me as a Facebook friend if you haven’t already).  We’ve recorded two episodes and we’re looking for your feedback on whether the material is useful or not.  The idea is simple: each episode, we take 6 words from Victoria University of Wellington’s Academic Word List and use them to ask each other IELTS-like questions to demonstrate the words in use.  We’re hoping in future to take suggested questions from online IELTS student submissions.  We’re also hoping to get listeners on the show to participate.  If you have a free hour or so, please tune in to these pilot episodes and let us know what you think:

The Tom and Ryan IELTS Show – Episode 1

The Tom and Ryan IELTS Show – Episode 2

3 – New essay contest

Below is an IELTS essay that is missing cohesive devices in four places.  As a comment to this blog post, please suggest a word or group of words that you feel would fit in the blanks.  I will use your submissions in an upcoming IELTS video.

Does living with a pet enhance a person’s life?

A practice that has spanned across all cultures and countries throughout history is the domestication of animals.  1._________, living with a pet is a very common occurrence.  It is argued that several benefits derive from living with animals.  This will be proven by looking at the manner in which animals both provide companionship to the lonely and teach the importance of responsibility to children.

Firstly, living with animals provides companionship to people who are lonely, and 2._________ catalyzes healthful results.  For example, a study in the US revealed that widowed cat or dog owners tended to live longer than other widowed people living without pets.  As this example shows, the link between pet ownership and longevity can be seen.  Thus, it is clear that living with a pet enhances a person’s life.

In addition to the above, children who live with pets learn how to be responsible at a very young age.  For example, my nephew spent the first 15 years of his life caring for a family dog.  3._________ taught him the importance of maintaining routine, and I feel this pushed him to develop the healthy study regimen that resulted in his acceptance to a good university.  Therefore, living with animals can fortify a person’s ability to act responsibly.

Following this look, it can be concluded that pet ownership can simultaneously discourage loneliness and encourage maturity.  The positive nature of 4._________ makes it clear that living with an animal enhances a person’s life.  It is hoped more people choose pets as a part of their lifestyle.

4 – Personal request

The New Yorker is an American publication that provides an eclectic grouping of composition, namely current affair commentary, interesting but sometimes obscure articles, short stories and poetry.  It is also peppered with single panel cartoons, renowned for occasionally being difficult to understand.

This week, I have come across one such cartoon.  No matter how I dissect it, I cannot seem to come up with an explanation for its humour.  I am thus addressing the wordsmiths of the online IELTS world to shed some light: why is this funny?  If you think you understand the joke, please share an explanation as a comment to this post.


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Academic Task 1: How to write at a 9 level

This eBook groups all information the student needs to know to perform well on Task 1 of their Academic exam.

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General Task 1: How to write at a 9 level

Learn to write the 6 letter types that appear on the General exam.

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Academic and General Task 2: How to write at a 9 level

An eBook describing everything necessary to compose a successful essay.

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Ryan's Recent Posts Posts

First model essay of 2017! I make up all of the examples!

Some people feel raising the age limit required for obtaining a driver’s licence can enhance road safety. Would this be an effective strategy in your country?

The age at which a person is legally able to drive is a very important consideration. In my home country of Canada, successful test takers can drive independently at the age of 16, an age that I feel is too young. I thus agree that raising the driving age limit in my country would enhance road safety. To prove this, I will look at a driver’s maturity and the motivators behind their decision to drive.

Firstly, the experimental nature of the adolescent growth stage makes it a dangerous time at which to drive. Adolescent men, for example, are scientifically reported to have heightened levels of aggression, a trait that statistically diminishes by the time they are 20 years old. Thus, removing people prone to these more immature emotions can clearly have real ramifications on the overall safety of driving in Canada. Increasing the driving age should therefore be supported.

This position is further exemplified when looking at motivators behind a person’s decision to drive. For 16 year olds in Canada, these motivators tend to be social in nature, such as using a car to meet friends. Although many would argue this is a sign of healthy social development in a human being, it is a driving arrangement that sets up scenarios that can be very distracting for an inexperienced driver. In Canada, for example, traffic accidents are reportedly higher among 16 to 18 year olds travelling in cars with several passengers. Because motivators become less social as a person enters their twenties, these statistics suggest Canadian roads would be safer were the age limit of drivers raised and their motivations for driving evolved.

As the above shows, raising the age at which a person can drive would increase the safety of roads in my country. It is my hope that Canada does indeed take steps to put this new restriction on driving in place.

My Task 2 ebook has been updated for 2017!

I’m very proud to present to you the 2017 version of my Task 2 ebook!

The 5th version of my popular Task 2 ebook is finally ready for download! As always, it is completely free to those of you that have purchased an earlier version!

(Existing customers: email your receipt to to receive the free update!)

Don’t have a copy?

Buy it now and receive free updates for life!

$15 USD

(The price is going up to $19 USD in 2017!)
Payment also possible using WeChat:

What’s in the updated version?
Here is what’s new in the 2017 version of Ryan’s ebook:

-89 pages of step-by-step IELTS advice! ✓✓

-All model responses have been read by an examiner and unofficially gauged Band 9! ✓✓

-There are new sections on applying argument and discussion essay structure to (1) advantage/disadvantage, (2) cause and effect, (3) problem and solution, and (4) double action Task 2 question types! ✓✓

-Learn how to concede points in your argument essay while remaining faithful to your thesis! ✓✓

-New discussion that will help you understand the IELTS Writing rubric and how the breadths influence each other! ✓✓

-A section outlining subtle language patterns in Task 2 questions that are often misread by candidates! ✓✓

-The perfect companion text to Ryan’s videos! ✓✓

Here is the table of contents:


I’ve been updating this popular ebook for over five years! Buy it today and receive all future updates free of charge!

Academic and General Task 1 updates coming in January!

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