HomeIELTS Vocabulary15 of the Most Common Idioms for Academic Essays 

15 of the Most Common Idioms for Academic Essays 

While idioms can be found in written form, it is crucial to understand (especially if you are studying English for academic purposes: EAP) that most writing genres are formal in character, but idioms are not. 

Idioms may be found in social media messages, blogs, and novels, but they are rarely seen in advanced textbooks or journal papers, and they are rarely used while writing essays. 

On the other hand, Idioms are extremely prevalent in speech and can be utilized by native speakers to express themselves more creatively and entertainingly.

Below are some of the most common idioms that can be used in academic essays for your reference. 

Idioms MeaningSentence Examples
across the board  Something that is applicable to everyone in a group“Students across the board do not think that the new policy will benefit everyone.” 
at the end of the day When all factors are taken into account“The children’s future is what matters at the end of the day.”
bear in mindTo take into account a truth or scenario that you rememberBear in mind that the time you are given to accomplish the task is not that much.”
bridge the gapTo join two items together or reduce the distance between them“To bridge the gap between the privileged and the marginalized, education is vital.” 
come into playTo play a vital role “Daily weather changes have come into play in the decline of the sales of their product.” 
driving force A person or object with the ability to make things happen“Mr Smith is the driving force of the company.” 
go hand in hand with To go together “Perseverance and the right attitude go hand in hand in achieving one’s goals.” 
gold standardSomething that is the best, most dependable, or prestigious item of its kind“Smartphones are indeed today’s gold standard of communication.” 
golden age A romanticized, often fictitious bygone era of peace, wealth, and happiness“The 21st century is indeed the golden age of information technology.” 
in light ofTo gather information from something or to think about somethingIn light of the proclamation made last night, the company is calling a meeting this afternoon.” 
in the long runAfter a lengthy period of time or after a long period of time; gradually“They hope to compete internationally in the long run.” 
rule of thumbA generally accurate rule or concept based on practice or experience rather than theory“A proven rule of thumb is to put a pinch of salt in everything you cook.” 
state of the art The most recent stage in a product’s development, combining the most up-to-date technology, concepts, and features“The school’s music room is a state of the art indeed!” 
the bigger picture The most crucial facts regarding a situation, as well as the consequences of that condition on other factors“Stop for a while and try to reflect on the bigger picture.” 
the bottom lineThe most crucial or fundamental aspect of a situation, or the final conclusion of a situation“The bottom line is that the citizen’s welfare should be taken into consideration.”  


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