Sunday, 11 August 2013

Academic Writing - Model Answer (Task 2)

Most of the world's poor live in countries where tourism is a growing industry. The issue is that tourism does not benefit the poorest. How can the income generated by tourism benefit the poor? And how can we ensure that tourism does not destroy traditional cultures and ways of life?

Many countries rely on income from tourism with the benefits being gained by hotels and tour operators. Those on low incomes are less likely to benefit from tourism even though they are likely to leave their traditional way of life in the hope of surviving by selling cheap hand-made products or working in the hotel industry.

Controls and checks should be put into place so that the poor can gain from visitors to a country. The government can ensure that they are not exploited by large profit-making companies but instead receive a minimum wage for their work. What is more, the government can promote fair competition so that those who are self-employed are able to provide their goods and services at competitive prices. Finally, the government can support poor businesses by providing subsidies, favourable loans, cheap rent and other financial benefits.

Unfortunately tourism does not take into account traditional ways of living, for example, people who were traditionally farmers or fishermen turn to tourism as it is more profitable and less labour intensive. An effort should be made to incorporate traditional cultures into tourism so these values and lifestyles are not lost to commercialism and mass production. Tourists could be taken to visit traditional villages and asked to follow certain rules such as refrain from taking photographs. They could also support the local community by purchasing products from them.

In general, tourists are the ones who should show respect when travelling abroad. It is the government's responsibility to protect local life by making sure that people are rewarded for their labour so they don't feel the need to abandon their lifestyle to work in the tourism sector.

Question taken from Focus on IELTS, Longman p.147

Academic Writing - Model Answer (Task 2)

According to a recent study, the more time people use the Internet, the less time they spend with real human beings. Should we worry about the effect this is having on social interaction or should we see the Internet as a way of opening up new communication possibilities worldwide. What are your views?

Current technology allows us to use the internet for endless functions ranging from entertainment, information and research to communication and social networking. For this reason many people are addicted to the internet spending most of their free time surfing the web at the expense of spending time with friends.
The internet allows people to communicate with their loved ones using various on-line applications like Skype for free. In the past it was difficult for people to communicate. They had to use letters or make costly overseas phone calls using a landline phone. All this has changed nowadays, with businesses also being able to benefit from advances in technology with traditional meetings being replaced with efficient and cheap video conferencing.

Face-to-face social interaction needs to be practiced by humans who are social beings. Being on the internet for long periods of time, isolates people and makes them anti-social. Internet addicts live like hermits and do not develop their communication skills. These people will have difficulty making new friends, going out and even feel left out in the workplace. Being social means having self-confidence, good people skills and being good at team activities.

Wi-Fi hot spots mean that we are able to keep-in-touch with our social network of family and friends at all times irrespective of their location. This has bought with it a new host of communication opportunities. In fact, I believe that it has strengthened ties between people as they are able to stay connected and in each other’s lives continuously.

Question taken from Focus on IELTS, Longman p.120

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)


Describe a person who has done a lot of work to help people. You should say:
  • Who this person is/was (say something about this person)
  • Where this person lives/lived (in the neighbourhood etc.)
  • What he/she has done to help people (organized charity events, used a hands-on approach, provided emotional support etc.)
  • And explain how you know about this person (met in person, have heard about them, found information on the internet etc.) 


What are some of the ways people can help others in the community?
Emotional support by visiting and talking to them which is what people need the most. Financial support by raising funds through charity events.

Why do you think some people like to help other people? It makes them feel good. It is part of their religious beliefs.

Some people say that people help others in the community more now than they did in the past. Do you agree or disagree? Why?
Communities were smaller and more closely knit in the past so they helped each other more. Today people are busy with their own lives and are too selfish to help others.


What types of services, such as libraries or health centres, are available to the people who live in your area? Mainly libraries, health centres and old age homes.

Which group of people generally need most support in a community? Why?  The elderly who are physically weak and lonely. Teenagers who may face issues like drugs, alcohol, bullying and peer pressure.

Who do you think should pay for the services that are available to the people in a community? Should it be the government or individual people? It is the government's responsibility to use tax payers' money to provide services for the community, as these services should be non-profit and distributed fairly.

Question taken from Cambridge IELTS 9, p.103

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)

Part 2

Describe a film, theatre or TV performer you admire. You should say:
· What they look like (describe appearance)
· What they do (act in plays, movies, TV shows etc.)
· Where and when you saw them (place and time)
And explain why you admire this person (talented, convincing in getting the message across, hard-working, makes good choices regarding the roles they perform etc.)

Part 3


·         Do you think that acting is a good profession for young people to enter? (If they are talented, passionate about what they do and hard-working they will succeed.)
·         What would be the advantages and disadvantages of being a famous actor or actress?
Advantages: money, fame, glory, recognition, authority, influence, attention.
Disadvantages: rumours, bad publicity, no private life, pressure, addictions and psychological problems.
·         Do you think there is too much interest in the private lives of famous people? (People believe the lives of famous people are more interesting than theirs, are interested in every aspect of their lives so the media meets their demands.)
·         What do you think about well-known TV and movie stars appearing in advertisements? (They increase the sale of products as viewers rush out to buy products they believe are consumed by celebrities.)
·         Are there any ways they could use their fame to do good in the world? (Positive role models for young people, raise funds and awareness using their fame and fortune, are on influential committees.)

Question taken from Cambridge IELTS 9, p.158

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)

 Describe your favorite style of dress. You should say:
  • What kind of clothes you like to wear (casual, sporty, trendy, comfortable, formal, dresses, jeans etc.)
  • What fabrics and colors you prefer (cotton, silk, leather, bright/dark colors etc.)
  • What (or who) influences you in your choice of clothes (magazines, fashion TV, friends, celebrities, chose what suits you etc.)
  • And explain whether clothes are important to you or not (clothes are a form of expression and are an indication of the type of person someone is e.g. if you follow fashion or are concerned about your appearance)


Do you think it’s important to wear formal clothes for a job interview? (You should wear a suit, a shirt and tie, to show you are professional and serious about getting the job.)

How much can you judge a person by their appearance, in your opinion? (Appearance is what you notice first on a person. When you get to know them better you are able to judge them in other ways.)

Do you think people should be free to wear whatever they like at work? (Work is done in a professional environment and employers expect employees to be well-dressed. Staff in creative professions such as hairdressers and tattoo artists should be able to dress as they wish.)

What do you think about school uniforms? (Convenient for parents and children. Don’t have to worry about what to wear. Economical. No distinction between rich and poor students.)

Do you think the fashion industry is a bad influence on young people? (Bad influence in terms of body image and people wanting to spend too much on latest trends.)

Question taken from Cambridge IELTS 9, p.158

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)


Describe something you did that was new or exciting. You should say:
  • What you did (extreme sport, travel to exciting destination etc.)
  • Where and when you did this (place and time)
  • Who you shared the activity with (friends, family members, boyfriend/girlfriend etc.)
  • And explain why this activity was new or exciting for you (different experience, hadn’t done it before, challenging etc.)


Why do you think some people like doing new things? Exciting, challenging, for the experience, break away from routine.

What problems can people have when they try new activities for the first time? Might be dangerous, disappointed that it didn’t meet expectations, don’t have enough experience.

Do you think it’s best to do new things on your own or with other people? Why? It’s best to share the excitement and experience with others, as well as discuss it.


What kind of things do children learn to do when they are very young? How important are these things? How to function alone, like eating, drinking, going to the toilet etc. These are basic skills and need to be learnt.

Do you think children and adults learn to do new things in the same way? How is their learning style different? Children can learn easier and through play while adults have the advantage of maturity and experience.

Some people say that it is more important to be able to learn new things now than it was in the past. Do you agree or disagree with that? Why? People have to keep up with new technology and new trends in their field of work otherwise they will be at a disadvantage. It is also important to learn new languages.

Question taken from Cambridge IELTS 9, p.55

Friday, 2 August 2013

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)


Describe a leisure activity that you enjoy. You should say:
  • What the activity is (a sport, art, shopping, hobby etc.)
  • Where and when you take part in it (place and time)
  • What it involves (any equipmnet you may need)
  • And explain why you enjoy it so much (helps you to relax, unwind, keep fit, helps deal with stress, pleasurable activity, make new friends etc.)


Why is it a good idea for a child to have a hobby? Need to relax, have interests, do something they enjoy.

Do young people get enough physical exercise these days? Spend too much time indoors with TV and electronic games.

Is watching television a good way of relaxing? You can switch off and not use your brain, so your mind relaxes.

What leisure activities would you recommend as a way of combating stress? A sport like swimming because it keeps you fit, relaxes you and you feel good about yourself.

Question taken from Focus on IELTS, Longman, p.51

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)


Describe a present you bought which gave someone a lot of pleasure. You should say:
  • What the present was (describe the gift - size, color, price, where you bought it)
  • Who it was for (person e.g. family member, relative, friend, girlfriend/boyfriend, classmate etc.) 
  • Why you chose it (based on person's character, cost, convenience etc.)
  • and explain why the person who received it was so pleased (you thought of them, they like that item etc.)


What kind of presents do children ask for today? Expensive, brands, electronic games, latest trends.

What effect has advertising had on this? Children like to copy their friends and classmates and are influenced more by them than TV advertising.

Is there a case for banning advertising directed at children? Children are naive, vulnerable and don't understand how advertising works so are ideal victims. They can apply pressure on their parents to buy products for them.


Is it better to shop in big supermarkets or in small local shops? Local shops support the community but prices are higher and they don't have the variety available in large supermarkets.

What are the dangers of credit cards? Spend too much without realizing it. High interest rates. Fraud.

How can children be encouraged to develop a responsible attitude towards money and spending? Should do chores around the home in return for money so they can understand how difficult it is to earn money. They will appreciate money and be responsible with spending.

Question taken from Focus on IELTS, Longman p.183

Speaking IELTS - Part 2 & 3 (Model notes)

Describe a journey (e.g. by car, plane, boat) that you remember well. You should say:
  • Where you went (destination)
  • How you travelled (transport mode)
  • Why you went on the journey (holiday, work, to visit a friend etc.)
  • and explain why you remember this journey well (the landscape, how you spent your time e.g. chatting to an interesting stranger, watching a good movie etc.)

Why do people need to travel every day? (to go to work, school, shopping, visit others etc.)
What problems can people have when they are on their daily journey, for example to work or school? (accident, traffic jam, miss a bus/train, pick-pocketed etc.)
Some people say that daily journeys like these will not be so common in the future. Do you agree or disagree? (people are increasingly working from home as everything can be done on-line these days, however children still need to be physically present at school)


What do you  think people can learn from travelling to other countries? (culture, history, geography, knowledge of food and lifestyle, habits, respect others, become open-minded, new experiences)

Can travel make a positive difference to the economy of a country? (many countries and citizens depend on income from tourists. Tourism encourages development and growth of an economy)

Do you think a society can benefit if its members have experience of travelling to other countries? (citizens will be well-informed, knowledgeable, accepting of others, open-minded, tolerant of differences in their own surroundings)

Questions taken from Cambridge IELTS 9, p.78