Writing Task 1: Describing Trends

by ICL Education Group


  • rise (v): Production costs rose to their highest level of the year in July.
  • rise (n): There was a rise in production costs to the highest level of the year.
  • go up (v): Between 1900 and 2000, the population went up by over a million people.
  • grow (grew, grown) (v): The number of first-time users grew rapidly in 2017.
  • growth (n): There was solid growth in the number of first-time users in 2015.
  • increase (v): The numbers of cyclists increased between 2005 and 2010.
  • increase (n): There was an increase in the number of cyclists between 2005 and 2010.


  • decline (v): The construction of new homes declined for ten years in succession.
  • decline (n): There was a decline in the number of new homes for ten years in succession.
  • go down (v): After a rise, imports went down again.
  • decrease (v): Average test scores decreased at three of the schools.
  • decrease (n): There was a decrease in test scores at three of the schools.
  • drop (v): In 2008, foreign investment dropped by over 20%.
  • drop (n): In 2008, there was a drop in foreign investment of over 20%.
  • fall (fell, fallen) (v): The number of overseas students fell in 2013.
  • fall (n): There was a fall in the number of international students in 2013.


  • stay the same: The company’s market share stayed the same.
  • remain constant: For three months, the percentage remained constant.


  • fluctuate (v): The number of seasonal workers employed by the company fluctuates each year.
  • fluctuation (n): There have been fluctuations in the number of seasonal workers employed by the company.
  • go up and down (v): Fares have gone up and down over the last few months.



  • rapidly (adv): The number of smartphones in use has risen rapidly over the last ten years.
  • rapid (adj): In this decade, there was a rapid increase in smartphone use.
  • suddenly (adv): Employment figures dropped suddenly during the following ten years.
  • sudden (adj): The next decade saw a sudden decrease in employment figures.
  • sharply (adv): The price of textbooks rose sharply.
  • sharp (adj): There was a sharp rise in the price of textbooks.
  • dramatically (adv): Exports fell dramatically last year.
  • dramatic (adj): There was a dramatic fall in exports last year.
  • significantly (adv): Property taxes rose significantly in 2014.
  • significant (adj): There was a significant rise in property taxes in 2014.
  • steeply (adv): The number of people attending the event increased steeply in 2013.
  • steep (adj): The year 2013 saw a steep increase in the number of people attending the event.
  • major (adj): A major expansion of the company’s parent department is expected in the next few years.


  • steadily (adv): The number of tourists visiting the park rose steadily.
  • steady (adj): The park experienced a steady increase in the number of tourists.
  • gradually (adv): The population of the province gradually declined.
  • gradual (adj): There was a gradual decline in the population of the province.
  • slightly (adv): Bus fares may go up slightly.
  • slight (adj): A slight increase in bus fares is expected.
  • minor (adj): There were minor fluctuations in the value of raw materials.