FCE Written task – Task 1

Task one is compulsory and you might be asked to write a transactional letter. Transactional means that the letter or email has a purpose, and will require further action by its reader. It means that you will want your reader to write back to you. This is called a reply, or a response.

The most common topics in FCE writing part 1 are: writing to find out about a language course or complaining about something. In the FCE exam there is no difference between an email and a letter.

So what shall you do to write the letter correctly?

a) Include all the points given in the task
b) write between 120 and 150 words
c) Use paragraphs
d) No contractions, no informal or dirty language
e) Don´t include anything that is not in the task
f) Write legibly

Useful FCE Vocabulary and Phrases

There are some phrases that will make the FCE examiners happy: 🙂

Greetings:Dear Sir, Dear Madam, Dear Sir/Madam, Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms (Smith)
Reason for writing: I am writing with regard to … I am writing in reponse to …
Ending the letter: I look forward to …-ing, Yours faithfully (if you start with Dear Sir)… Yours sincerely (if you start with the name of the person. eg. Dear Mr. Thomas)

Here are a few phrases to use when you should write a complaint: 🙁

Reason for writing: I am writing in order to complain about…

Introducing first complaint: First of all, In the first place, The first problem is…, My first complaint is…, The first thing I would like to draw to your attention is…

Introducing further complaints: Not only… but also…, In addition (to this), The… was also unacceptable.

Demanding action: I suggest that you replace the item. I would be grateful if you could give me a refund.

Ending the letter: I look forward to hearing from you. I look forward to receiving your explanation. I look forward to receiving a full refund.

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