IELTS Map Vocabulary: Most Commonly Used Vocabulary, Best Tips

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Task 1 of the IELTS academic writing section includes a challenging task, i.e., describe a map. This task goes beyond mere English fluency; it demands critical thinking and analytical prowess to dissect the information and present it with clarity and insight. Vocabulary can play a major role in helping you bolster your chances of securing better scores in the IELTS academic writing test. A robust command of words allows you to paint a vivid picture of the map’s features, their relationships, and any underlying trends. So, how do you equip yourself with this linguistic arsenal? By ingraining the habit of daily English immersion. 


Consume news articles, watch documentaries, and listen to podcasts – every bit of exposure strengthens your grasp of vocabulary and its nuanced applications. This enrichment goes beyond rote memorisation; it equips you to wield words with precision and flair in your IELTS writing. Remember, mastering the map-describing task is about wielding both the map and the language with strategic brilliance. Hone your analytical skills, and fuel them with a rich vocabulary. That being said, read the article to know more about IELTS map vocabulary. 

Most Commonly Used IELTS Map Vocabulary 2024

Writing task 1 of the IELTS academic test includes a map test that poses a major challenge to students. In this task, you ought to describe the given map in a well-written, articulated, coherent and comprehensible essay of a minimum of 150 words. The IELTS writing task 1 gauges an individual’s proficiency and holds on to their English vocabulary. Thereby, you ought to broaden and hone your lexicon skills to score better in the IELTS Map test in the writing section. 

That being said, vocabulary plays a major role in helping students secure better scores in their IELTS writing task 1. It is even said that vocabulary in itself carries a weightage of 25% of your overall marks in the IELTS writing task 1. One thing to note is that students must never reiterate using the same words or vocabulary now and then. This is why it is imperative to broaden your vocabulary. Here are some of the most commonly used IELTS map vocabulary to help you score a perfect band 9 in the IELTS writing task 1. 

Crossroad Intersection
Housing AreaResidential Area
Entrance Doorway
Roundabout Road junction at which traffic moves in one direction round to reach one of the roads converging on it.
Go upTo move higher 
Go DownTo move lower
Start ByBegin
Is Located Is Situated
Run ThroughCross
CrossPass Over

Must Read: IELTS Syllabus 2023 & Section-Wise Exam Pattern

How to Describe a Map for IELTS Academic Task 1? 

The Writing Task 1 of IELTS Academic requires students to analyse the information given on maps and describe it in an essay in a cohesive and comprehensible manner. Furthermore, the map-describing task will require you to state the disparity between the past, present and future of the streets, buildings etc, shown in the map. This task gauges an individual’s writing prowess and scores them based on task achievement, coherence, lexical resources and grammatical accuracy. That being said, here are the best tips that you can refer to describe a map for IELTS Academic Task 1. 

  • Plan your exploration: Before diving into the map, take a moment to organise your thoughts. Consider the key features, their changes, and potential future developments.
  • Start with the entry point: Imagine entering the area depicted on the map. Describe what you see first, setting the stage for your exploration.
  • Wordsmith with purpose: Aim for at least 150 words, comprehensively covering all map details and proposed changes. Don’t forget to mention the timeline, if applicable.
  • Introduce with insight: Start with a concise overview of the map’s main features and any significant transformations. This context adds weight to your analysis.
  • Emphasise impact: Don’t just describe; analyse! Discuss the consequences of changes, whether environmental, social, or economic.
  • Clarity is key: Ensure your writing is clear and logical, guiding the reader through your map interpretation. Structure your essay with a clear introduction, supporting paragraphs, and a concluding summary.
  • Connect the dots: Seamless transitions are your allies. Use transition words and phrases to smoothly guide the reader between ideas and map elements.
  • Expand your vocabulary: The richer your vocabulary, the more impressive your analysis. Immerse yourself in English content to build your writing repertoire.
  • Variety is the spice: Avoid repetitive vocabulary. Opt for synonyms and diverse sentence structures to showcase your linguistic range.
  • Active or passive: While the passive voice has its place, consider using the active voice for a more engaging and dynamic writing style.

Must Read: IELTS Eligibility: IELTS Exam Age Limit & Qualification

IELTS Map Sample: Learn How to Describe a Map in IELTS Writing  Task 1

Refer to the data given below to get a solid understanding of the map describing tasks in the IELTS academic writing section. 


The map below shows the development of the village of Ryemouth between 1995 and the present. Summarise the information by selecting and reporting the main features and make comparisons where relevant. Write at least 150 words. 

Sample Answer: 

Ryemouth’s evolution over the past two and a half decades is evident in its burgeoning housing developments, the disappearance of its once-thriving fishing industry, and the blossoming of new sports venues. 

In 1995, Ryemouth buzzed with the life of a bustling fishing community. A vibrant port bustled with activity, delivering its bounty to a bustling fish market, while a quaint cafe hummed with the chatter of fishermen.

Fast forward to today, and the map tells a different story. The once-bustling fishing facilities have been replaced by modern apartments. Where shops once stood, tempting passersby, inviting restaurants now beckon diners.

Time has painted a new portrait of Ryemouth. The farmland has transformed into a manicured golf course, and the forest park has given way to energetic tennis courts. Yet, remnants of the past linger. The old houses hold their ground, while newbies join the scene along a brand-new road. Even the hotel, a timeless landmark, now offers the modern appeal of parking facilities.

So that was all about the map describing tasks in IELTS academic writing. We hope the blog has answered all your queries about the topic. 


Q1. How to describe a map in IELTS?

Ans. You can write IELTS map essays by analysing the given information, discerning the salient features of the data, writing a crisp and solid introduction, a to-the-point overview section and detailed body paragraphs. 

Q2. What vocabulary is used in the map questions in IELTS?

Ans. Some of the most common vocabulary used in map questions in IELTS are crossroad, intersection, housing area, etc. 

Q3. What is the scoring range of IELTS writing? 

Ans. The scoring range of IELTS writing is 0-9. 

Related Reads:

IELTS Eligibility: IELTS Exam Age Limit & QualificationIELTS Exam 2023 Dates, Registration, Result, Preparation
IELTS Syllabus 2023 & Section-Wise Exam PatternIELTS Sample Tests: PDF (Download), Exam Pattern
IELTS Marking Scheme | IELTS Scoring System & GradingIELTS Test Centres in India

Finally, visit the Leverage Live page of Leverage edu or contact our study abroad experts at 1800-57-2000 to strengthen your scores and application to secure your spot in your dream college. 

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