This type of essay question asks test-takers to explain the reasons behind a problem, and then propose a solution or solutions.

In this type of essay it is very tempting to list causes and solutions, but this leads to poor IELTS essays because there is very little development. IELTS paragraphs are usually best when test-takers use one main idea per paragraph, but for this type of essay we must be careful. The question asks for reasons (plural) so an examiner can mark you down if there is only one mentioned. It is fine to use two paragraphs to provide two reasons, but to do this you must be able to write fast and will probably have a high word count. However, this essay shows how to deal with two reason in one paragraph.

Remember, all the model essays shown on this website follow structures that can be learned and practised by taking the writing courses available. There is no better way to study IELTS writing.


You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

People often have no interaction with their neighbours and this is harming communities.

What are the reasons for this and what can be done to solve this problem?

Give reasons for your answers and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or

Write at least 250 words

Model essay

Throughout history, the majority of the world’s population lived in small communities where it was normal to interact with everyone who lived nearby. These days, rapidly increasing population densities in urban areas have led to much larger communities and a decline in interaction between neighbours. However, this problem can be solved with more community space.   

The main reasons that many people no longer interact with their neighbours are that communities are too large and dense. With so many people living in neighbourhoods, the sense of community is lost because people cannot keep track of everyone living around them. For example, in a high rise building there may be over a hundred families, which is too many for people to interact with. This has a negative effect on communities because when people are surrounded by unknown families they end to isolate, and do not spend the time needed together to build relationships.   

To solve this problem architects and urban planners need to increase the amount of community space available to larger communities and ensure this space is free. These policies will encourage interaction between neighbours as people are much more likely to communicate in public spaces, especially if they see each other regularly. In New York, a recent study showed that residents of communities with pubic spaces were three times more likely to talk to their neighbours than in those without community areas. This clearly shows that these spaces are an effective solution to the problem.   

 In conclusion, the main reason why some neighbours no longer interact with each other is that communities are too big and impersonal. This problem can be solved by constructing public spaces that encourage community interaction, so authorities should make sure these areas are included in all building designs.

305 words

This essay was graded by a current IELTS examiner. Read the notes and grade given below:


Fully addresses all parts of the task and present a fully developed position in answer to the question with relevant, fully extended and well supported ideas.

Arguments and ideas presented are relevant, balanced (causes and solutions) and well supported. The topic is introduced within the first paragraph whilst the conclusion wraps up the response, perfect in summation.

Vocabulary is used skilfully and flexibly with plenty of less common items used with precision.

Cohesion is well-managed throughout with skilful paragraphing that promotes a good sense of logical organisation to the response. Linking and sequencing of ideas attract no attention.

In terms of grammar, there’s a variety of structures used with full precision and flexibility. Subject-verb agreements show no issues and punctuation is well controlled.

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