Adjectives in IELTS


Adjectives are used to describe either the nature or number of noun. While IELTS uses a quarter of its scoring criteria from lexical resource and another one from grammar, you can use wide range of adjectives to explain general or precise information. They add enthusiasm and color to your tone.

A lot of candidates would use a sentence like “He is nice” or “She is kind”. Both these sentences are okay, but even for native speakers “nice” and “kind” are so common that they have become stale.

The table below will furnish you with synonyms for the most common adjectives which can serve as an adequate substitute in the IELTS test.

Adjectives Synonyms
Bad  Negative, detrimental, inferior, inadequate, incorrect, poor, unsatisfactory, harmful, unacceptable, unpleasant, discouraging, terrible
Big Sizable,  enormous, huge, immense, gigantic, vast, large, sizable, grand, great, tall, substantial, mammoth, astronomical, ample, broad, expansive, spacious, stout, tremendous, titanic, mountainous


Unbelievable, improbable, fantastic, fabulous, incredible,            wonderful,  astonishing, astounding, extraordinary


Dreadful, terrible, abominable, bad, poor, unpleasant


Mad, furious, wrathful, indignant, exasperated, aroused,              inflamed


Pleased, contented, satisfied, delighted, elated, joyful, cheerful, ecstatic, jubilant, gay, tickled, gratified, glad, blissful, overjoyed
Unhappy Miserable, uncomfortable, heart-broken, unfortunate, downhearted, sorrowful, depressed, gloomy, dismal, discouraged, sad


Fascinating , gripping, arresting, enthralling,         engaging, attractive, inviting, intriguing, provocative, though-provoking, challenging, inspiring, titillating, tantalizing, exciting, entertaining, piquant, engrossing, absorbing
Boring Mundane, dull, monotonous, tiresome, humdrum
Lazy Indolent, slothful, idle, inactive, sluggish


Noteworthy, worthy, distinguished, remarkable, grand, considerable, powerful, much, mighty
Good Acceptable, adroit, commendable, competent, excellent, exceptional, fabulous, fantastic, favorable, first-class, great, marvelous, proficient, satisfactory, skillful, splendid, stupendous, super, superb, superior, tip-top, valuable, wonderful
Important Chief, critical, crucial, essential, imperative, key, necessary, urgent, weighty, vital


 Attractive, breathtaking, wonderful, picturesque (landscape/view)

Attractive, glowing, gorgeous, good-looking (person)



Courageous, fearless, dauntless, intrepid, plucky, daring, heroic, valorous, audacious, bold, gallant, valiant, doughty, mettlesome


Shining, shiny, gleaming, brilliant, sparkling, shimmering, radiant, vivid, colorful, lustrous


Intelligent, knowing, smart, intellectual (person)



Quiet, peaceful, still, tranquil, mild, serene, smooth, composed, collected, unruffled, level-headed, unexcited, detached, aloof


Powerful, intense, firm, solid, potent
Weak Frail, feeble, shaky, flimsy, fragile


Perilous, hazardous, risky, uncertain, unsafe


 Savory, delectable, appetizing, luscious, scrumptious, palatable, delightful, enjoyable, toothsome, exquisite


 Well-known, renowned, celebrated, famed, eminent, illustrious, distinguished, noted, notorious


 Quick, rapid, speedy, fleet, hasty, snappy, mercurial, swiftly, rapidly, quickly, snappily, speedily, posthaste, hastily, expeditiously, like a flash


Plump, stout, corpulent, fleshy, beefy, paunchy, elephantine
Funny Humorous, amusing, droll, comic, comical, laughable, silly
Serious Alarming, grave, pressing, pressuring, severe, urgent
Small Insignificant, insubstantial, minimal, minor, tiny


Fresh, unique, original, unusual, novel, modern, current, recent, up-to-date
Old Feeble, ancient, aged, used, worn, dilapidated, former, old-fashioned, outmoded,  venerable, primitive, traditional, archaic, outdated, antiquated, obsolete


Fake, fraudulent, counterfeit, spurious, untrue, unfounded, erroneous, deceptive, groundless, fallacious
Wrong Amiss, arguable, askew, awry, bad, debatable, dubious, erroneous, fallacy, fallacious, false, inaccurate, incorrect, miscalculated, misconstrued, misguided, mistaken, on the wrong track, off target, perverse, spurious, unsatisfactory, untrue

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