Thursday, 16 April 2015

IELTS Academic Writing - Task 2

In the past, when students did a university degree, they tended to study in their own country.
Nowadays, they have more opportunity to study abroad.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of this development?

It seems that today more people choose to study at university in another country than they did in the past. By passing a language test and having certain qualifications, it is now possible to get into a foreign university.

There are many benefits to studying abroad. Firstly, it’s an opportunity to meet others from across the globe who have similar interests as you. Secondly, some countries and universities may offer a better level of education than that offered in your home country. The degree you obtain might also be recognised everywhere. Thirdly, by studying in a foreign country you learn how to be independent and deal with problems on your own as well as take responsibility. Finally, a student studying in a foreign country will be able to improve their language skills which will help them later on when they are looking for a job.

On the other hand, students underestimate local colleges and universities when they choose to go abroad and they also end up paying expensive fees. This in turn means the local economy suffers. It is often cheaper for a student to study in their own country because they will save on accommodation, transport and living expenses if they continue to live with their parents. Secondly, not everyone is comfortable with the idea of living alone in a foreign country with new surroundings and the pressure of making new friends.

All in all, apart from the costs and home sickness, I believe it is a good idea for students to experience studying abroad as this has so much to offer.

Question taken from The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic and General Training p. 264

Thursday, 9 April 2015

IELTS Academic Writing - Task 1

The line graph shows how three types of crime varied in central Newport over a ten year period.

In 2003 around 3,500 burglary incidents were noted and in the following year this increased by around 200. A drop is recorded in this type of crime and incidents reach the lowest point in 2008 (a little over 1,000). Between 2009 and 2012 reported burglaries are stable at approximately 1,500.

Robbery incidents in Newport fluctuate between 500 and 1,000 throughout the time period. In the first two reported years there were around 2,800 car theft cases. This figure dropped in 2006 reaching its lowest point of 2,000 incidents. Over the next 6 years there is a gradual rise in this type of crime and in 2012 it reaches 2,700.

As we can see, robbery is not committed as frequently as the other 2 types of crime and burglary in Newport drops. Initially car theft is high and although it decreases in 2006, it is on the rise until the end of the period.

Question taken from The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic and General Training p. 264

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

IELTS Academic Writing - Task 2

Nowadays technology is increasingly being used to monitor what people are saying and doing (for example, through cell phone tracking and security cameras). In many cases, the people being monitored are unaware that this is happening.
Do you think the advantages of this development outweigh the disadvantages?

Today, we are constantly monitored with the use of technology and CCTV cameras in shops, public buildings, public transport etc. and via the internet as we freely give out our personal information. This limits our freedom and means that we have no privacy. Many people do not even realise that they are being watched to such a large extent.

Often security cameras are able to ensure public safety. In cases of terrorism, they are able to identify terrorists or discover important clues through cell phone tracking. Many criminals have been caught because police have had this type of evidence. In fact, sometimes this is the only way to catch criminals.

Others might argue that modern means of tracking are an invasion of privacy. Those who are unaware they are being watched might have nothing to hide and it is unfair that they have their daily conversations and actions exposed. There have been many scandals in the U.K. with respect to the media monitoring the private lives of well-known people. If we think about it, we also help towards being monitored by providing all our contact details on social networking sites, posting personal photos, showing our preferences and opinions on certain topics as well as our location when we check-in.

To conclude, the excuse we have been given about excessive monitoring by the government is that it is for the benefit of public safety. Unfortunately, in order to be safe, everyone needs to be monitored all the time, especially in public places.

Question taken from The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic & General Training p. 244

Saturday, 4 April 2015

IELTS Academic Writing - Task 1

The bar chart shows three products exported by Southland in 2000, at present as well as expectations for 2025.

In 2000, international tourism accounted for 8 billion exports. This category is currently about 1 billion more. In 2025, exports of this category are predicted to increase to 10 billion.

In 2000, exports of dairy products stood at 7 billion. At present, exports of this produce are on par with projections of international tourism (10 billion). In the future, exports are likely to drop to 9.5 billion.

Finally, meat products are the least exported products and exports of this fall gradually from 6 billion in 2000 to 5.5 billion currently. A further 0.5 billion drop is anticipated in 2025.

To conclude, international tourism is on the rise while meat product exports are on the decline in Southland. The export of international tourism and dairy products are the greatest in 2025 and 2015 respectively.

Question taken from The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic & General Training p. 224

Academic Writing IELTS - Task 2

In some countries an increasing number of people are suffering from health problems as a result of eating too much fast food. It is therefore necessary for governments to impose a higher tax on this kind of food. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Eating fast food is on the rise. People are too busy to cook at home so opt for a fast, easy, cheap and tasty alternative. This is not always the best choice as junk food can create health problems. Eating artificial food high in salt, sugar, oil, preservatives etc. on a regular basis can lead to obesity, high blood pressure, heart attacks etc.

In order to protect people’s health the government could tax fast food so as to discourage people from eating it. One of the greatest benefits of junk food is that it is affordable. If prices go up and consumers need to pay a higher cost then they might go for something cheaper. In order for this scheme to work however it is necessary for the price of fresh fruit and vegetables to drop. Many low income groups choose unhealthy options because they simply can’t afford to buy groceries and cook for their entire family. It is much cheaper for them to purchase family meals at a fast food outlet.

On the other hand, some people might argue that eating fast food is an individual’s personal choice and taxing this is unlikely to make a difference to a person’s lifestyle. Some people, especially teenagers, enjoy eating junk food and a higher price might not put them off going to fast food outlets.

I believe our health is extremely important and to avoid getting ill we should stay away from unhealthy food. I think it is a good idea for governments to get involved as they did in the case of tobacco and tax fast food. But at the same time they should subsidize fresh fruit and vegetables so that poor families can afford them.

Question taken from The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic & General Training p. 224