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August 25, 2010


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Hello Simon,
Is it ok for you to check this essay pls?..tnx so much...I'm really aiming for a high grade..=)
Nowadays,there are young people who are encouraged to work or travel for a year between finishing high school and studying university studies in some countries. Other people think it is beneficial, but some perceive certain drawbacks. I think it is a good idea to be able to relax before and after years of studying and earn enough money for personal needs. However, I believe that there are certain disadvantages like the tendency of not going back anymore and being late in finishing school.

..Can i give my own experiences to prove my point in my introduction?..
..tnx so much...=)

.i forgot to tell you that the topic was all about ..there are certain countries that encourage young people to work or travel for a year between finishing high school and starting university studies..(sorry..that should be 'starting' not 'studying')..what are the disadvantages and advantages of it..

..tnx agen!=)

Hi Em,

I'm afraid I don't check or grade students' essays here in the comments area.

However, you can ask questions here. You asked a question about giving your experiences in the introduction - I think it's better if you leave your experiences for the main body paragraphs. In fact, although your introduction contains some nice ideas, in my opinion it is too long.

Have a look at this lesson to see how I do introductions:


Hope this helps


thanks so much simon..uhmm i have another queston...is there a required number of words in the introduction?

No, just keep it short and simple - I often write about 30 or 40 words. The main body paragraphs are much more important.

All the best


Hi Simon,

I have a question. Some words are always used together, such as "advantage & disadvantage", "benefit & drawback" and "strength & weakness". Can we exchange their counterparts, like "benefit & weakness"? And besides the words I mentioned, would u mind telling me some other examples?


Hi Lei,

No, we don't tend to mix them. Others are 'positives and negatives', 'for and against', 'pros and cons' etc.

Hi Siomon,
I like many words in the essay: prestigious,open door to,broaden students' horizons,be exposed to,language barrier,experience culture shock.
I know these words and phrases and have seen them more than once, but I just can't use them by myself.
Thank you Simon. I think I need to work harder.

Hi Jessie,

Yes, those are the kind of words/phrases that can help your score if you use them well. Keep working hard!

I think these words can be considered as band 7 or higher:
1. prestigious university
2. immerse...in a language...
3. culture shock

As am following the advice on your e-book, i think this kind of question is a discussion question and candidate suppose to write one paragraph which is about benifit of studying abroad and another one is about drawbacks.what about in conclusion? this question didnt ask the opinion... what should i write in conclusion? or i write... kind of balance ideas?i'm confusing..

and if you dont mind. could you please write some conclusion example...?

best regards,

Hi Simon,

I guesss the link above is broken. Can you give me the new one :)


Hi Gokce,

Maybe it was this one:


Hello Simon;
In some situation I am using the words "he or she" instead of "they" or "student" is that right or can you give me another type of usage please?

That's fine Ahmet.

Hi Simon

For this question, Could i write two EQUAL paragraphs for pros and cons and then make a positive conclusion to support studying abroad?


Yes, that would be fine.

Hi Simon

Hi Simon, Im stuck from the beginning. So...this question, I need to write Opinion essay like agree or disagree? But they did't ask my opinion so just write simple, Introduction, Main(benefits), Main(drawbacks), Conclusion? How can I tell "outweigh" without my opinion? Sorry. Make sense??

hi simon
sometimes i am using etc is is ok or not

Hi, Simon. What's the proper approach for this kind of question? Are we supposed to focus on why we agree that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks all throughout our essay? Thank you so much!

so close

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