Culture vocabulary for IELTS essay

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When writing any IELTS essay, having a wide range of vocabulary can greatly improve your chances of receiving a high band score. This depth of vocabulary is what is referred to as lexical range.

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Improve your lexical range for IELTS culture essays

When writing any IELTS essay, having a wide range of vocabulary can greatly improve your chances of receiving a high band score. This depth of vocabulary is what is referred to as lexical range. Here, we’ll focus on high-level vocabulary centred around the topic of culture. If you’re equipped with advanced, relevant terminology going into the IELTS exam, this will indicate you have a firm understanding of the potential topics that could arise.


Now, let’s focus on the topic of culture. Culture is a broad topic that encompasses a variety of different aspects, including art, music, religion, customs, traditions, and more. To write a strong essay on cultural topics, you need to accurately express your ideas and opinions using appropriate vocabulary.


This guide will cover some practical concepts and words and phrases that you could incorporate into your essay. By integrating this vocabulary, your essay will have the depth and cohesion that can lead to an impressive outcome.

Culture vocabulary for IELTS essay

Let’s explore cultural vocabulary terms that can help you improve your lexical range on IELTS culture essays.


A tradition is a specific custom or practice handed down through generations.


Heritage is something inherited or passed down from previous generations, often used in reference to cultural practices and values.

Cultural exchange

Cultural exchange is the process of sharing and learning about different cultural traditions, often through travel or communication.


Multiculturalism is the coexistence of multiple cultures within a society that is often celebrated and respected.

Intercultural communication

Intercultural communication is exchanging information and ideas between individuals or groups from different cultural backgrounds.

Cultural identity

Cultural identity is the sense of belonging to a particular culture or community that is often shaped by shared traditions, values, and beliefs.


Cultural sensitivity

Cultural sensitivity is the ability to recognise and respect cultural differences, often demonstrated through language and behaviour.


A stereotype is an oversimplified or exaggerated belief about a particular cultural group.

Cultural assimilation

Cultural assimilation is the process of adopting the values and customs of a new culture, often at the expense of one’s own cultural heritage.

Cultural relativism

Cultural relativism is the belief that cultural practices and beliefs should be evaluated within the context of their own culture rather than using external standards.


Prejudice refers to a preconceived negative opinion or attitude towards a person, group, or thing, usually based on stereotypes or inadequate information.


Globalisation refers to the increasing interconnectedness and integration of people, businesses, and countries worldwide through the rapid exchange of goods, services, information, and ideas.

Cultural norms

Cultural norms refer to the shared expectations and rules of behaviour that govern the attitudes and actions of individuals within a particular society or cultural group.


Civilisation is a complex and organised human society marked by advanced culture, technology, and social organisation, usually characterised by the development of cities, writing, art, and other forms of human expression.


Conformity refers to the tendency of individuals to adjust their beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours to match the expectations and norms of a particular group or society, often to avoid social disapproval or gain acceptance.


A value is a person’s or society’s beliefs and principles about what is important and desirable in life. Many factors, such as religion, culture, upbringing, and personal experiences, can influence values.

Cultural diffusion

Cultural diffusion is the spread of cultural beliefs, customs, and ideas from one society or group to another. It occurs through various means, such as trade, migration, and communication.


A society is a group of people who share a common culture and way of life. Societies can be organised in various ways, such as through family, community, and government structures.


Customs are traditional practices or ways of doing things within a particular culture or society. They can include behaviours, rituals, and ceremonies passed down from generation to generation.



Folklore is the traditional beliefs, stories, and customs of a particular culture or society. It includes myths, legends, fairy tales, and other forms of oral and written literature passed down from generation to generation. Folklore can provide insights into a society’s values, beliefs, and cultural practices.

Preparing for an IELTS culture essay

When using these terms in your essay, it’s important to ensure that you’re using them appropriately and demonstrate a strong understanding of the concepts they represent. Additionally, you should aim to incorporate a mix of common cultural vocabulary terms and more complex or niche vocabulary to demonstrate a strong lexical range.


By expanding your cultural vocabulary and using it effectively in your essays, you can demonstrate a nuanced understanding of cultural issues and express your ideas more effectively. This can help you earn a higher score on your IELTS culture essays and ultimately achieve your academic and professional goals.

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Culture vovabluary

Culture vocabulary for IELTS essay

When writing any IELTS essay, having a wide range of vocabulary can greatly improve your chances of receiving a high band score. This depth of vocabulary is what is referred to as lexical range.