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June 05, 2013


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Hi Simon
I have question for essay , but I don't understand how to analysis
Government should spen more money on adult people who cannot read and write rather than young people
Discuss both views and give your own opinion


Dear Simon,
I don't have much idea to answer this question. It was a exam question 24th november in Turkey.


Thank you so much. Have a nice day:)

Hi Simon
Did I understand it correctly?

If the question is: to what extent do you agree or disagree, and you partly agree, you have to write about both sides.
Doesn't it then turn to discussion essay and you will lose points for that?

Hi Simon, I have a question on introduction. I have read your many lesson on this and I understand your advise is to keep it short and sweet. However, I am still very much confused. First question is, does our introduction should be able to express to examiner that if we are going to write about both side or arguments or only one side. Because I understand we should introduce topic and then write our opinion, but then in essays where I would write both side vs one side there is no difference. For example, if we take topic
"Families who do not send their children to public schools should not be required to pay taxes that support universal education.
To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?"

I wrote this intro,

"Many people feel that citizens who don’t send their children to public school shouldn’t be required to pay education taxes. While I believe that there are arguments in the favor of this statement, I disagree with this point of view."

now it would be same even if I write both side of arguments here or write both para supporting disagree side. Please help, I have exam on June 8th this confusion is really making me nervous. thanks so much in advance!

Plz be serious....dont use this page for inappropriate comments

You don't 'lose marks' for looking at both sides of an issue in an essay. All IELTS looks at is a clear opinion supported by evidence. If you 'partly agree' then it is logical to look at both sides of an issue and the essay will naturally become more of a discussion. If you agree more strongly with one side of an issue then the essay structure will reflect that. With 'discuss both sides' questions I advise people to give an opinion more towards the middle (not strongly on one side) because the essay structure is more balanced. A simple approach is to look at the merits of both sides and then favour one in your conclusion.

Hi, simon I also want to know the same information about writing essay 2 that do we need to write on both side still if we are disagree or we could write 2 supporting paragraph .. I know simon do not have time to answer all comments .. Plz feel free if somebody else can give information regarding this .. I will really appreciate ...

Thnx in advance ...

Hi, Simon
Can I structure it in the following way?
1. Introduction
2. The first view
3. The second view
4. My opinion
5. Conclusion


Hi Veenu, if you totally agree/disagree with the statement, you can write one view.
1. Intoduction: topic sentence and your opinion.
2. Paragraph 1: give one reason with examples.
3. Paragraph 2: give another reason with examples.
4. Conclusion. Paraphrase and summarise your opinion.

Hi Veenu, if you totally agree/disagree with the statement, you can write one view.
1. Intoduction: topic sentence and your opinion.
2. Paragraph 1: give one reason with examples.
3. Paragraph 2: give another reason with examples.
4. Conclusion. Paraphrase and summarise your opinion.

Anyone can help me? It is there any problem if i use the words ``in my view`` in the introduction and then present the two sides of the question?
In summary , can i write ``in my view`` instead of ``partly agree`` and present two sides of essay?

The topic of 25th May 2013:
To educate young people is the most important task for the governments all over the world.
However educating Adults who are not able to write and read is more important and so the governments should spend more public money on this.
To what extent do you agree or disagree

Hi Simon,
What about an animal topic this time?

'Nowadays animal experiments are widely used to develop new medicines and to test the safety of other products. Many people argue that these should be banned because it is morally wrong to cause animals to suffer, while others are in favour of them as they bring more benefits to humanity.'
Discuss both views and give your opinion.Hope you will choose my topic!

Hello simon
The most recent ielts test that I sat was 3 weeks a go and the topic for task 2 was :
Whether governments should pay for primary secondary and university education or students should pay for their university education .
Discuss your opinion and why u think so with supporting examples
I thought that was a tricky topic as we still have to discuss both views because they mentioned primary and secondary education within the first part of the topic while students should only pay for university education with in the second part .
I was a bit confused in which information I should discuss in each paragraph ( 2&3)
Please try and make such topic more clear
Many thanks

Hi Simon,
Thank you very much for this great website!

I was on the following page from the official IELTS site and I read this sentence:

A variety of questions is used, chosen from the following types: multipl...

I was wondering should it be:
A variety of questions are used

the link to the page:

Some people believe that higher education should be funded by the government. Others, however, argue that it is the responsibility of individuals to fund their higher education.
Discuss both views and give your opinion.

People have different views about who should pay for tertiary education. Although there are good arguments in favour of the government paying for higher education, I personally believe that it is the responsibility of individuals to pay their way through university.

On the one hand, it can be argued that the government should pay for university education. If this did not happen, higher education would remain accessible only to the privileged class. This could result in a lack of social mobility in society. For instance, one of my friends, Dan, did not go to university because, as much as he wanted to go, he could not afford it. This resulted in him being unable to get a high paying job. Hence, it is clear that the government’s facilitation in tertiary education is important in creating a more balanced society.

On the other hand, there are people who believe that individuals rather than governments should pay for university. I share this opinion for several reasons. Firstly, the government cannot possibly afford to pay the higher education costs of its citizens. The government has to provide a lot of other services, such as healthcare and infrastructure. Due to this, the government exchequer cannot cope with extra pressure that would result if higher education is fully funded by the government. Secondly, students can still go to university by getting affordable loans from the government. In most of these loans, students do not pay a cent until they start earning. Because of these loans, students from a disadvantaged background can also get an opportunity to enrol in a university. Finally, if governments start free funding higher education, it is likely that many students will abuse the system. Many students who are not capable of finishing a degree might go to university, solely, to enjoy the student life experience and have fun.

To conclude, it seems to me that it is the responsibility of students to fund their university education. However, I strongly recommend that governments should provide easy and affordable loans to adolescents wishing to go to university.

AJ! Thanks for your good essay. May I ask what band you scored? I believe minimum 7.5? This is my target score...

Hi AJ,it's really very good essay. Structured as Simon does. It's look like band 9 essay.
Keep it up.
Good luck to you. Can I share my essays with you. Please send me your email id here: [email protected]

Dear IELTS test takers,

I welcome anyone who is living in Cardiff and willing to perform a combined study(Accademic IELTS)with me.
There is also a Library where we can have a peaceful time, access to computers, improve our speaking and important materials to be shared.Only serious persons need to contact plz.

My email : [email protected]


Hey , suman. I wrote a sample about the subject you posted. Whats your opinion?

People have differents views about scientists and politicians regards their influence. Although there are good arguments in favour of scientists , I personally believe that politicians have more influence in society.

Firstly , it has to be pointing out the scientists influences in society which is extremely important. They are responsibly for new discoveries in all science forms that can help society in possible diseases cure , new forms of energy and so on. Furthermore the scientists always was an important role in peoples` life as history has been proving in the last eight years. Another main point is the vital importance of scientists in biological wars , when they can create or identificate possible attacks being planned by other countries. Its also important to highlight the economic link with science and their findings , creating strategies for new technologies which directly affect a country economy and their goods.

On the other hand , the politicians also presents a vital role in society , exceeding the scientists importance in my opinion. One of main reasons is about their power in a counry being responsible for all sectors since the police force until the economic administration. In addiction the politicans have the right to conduct experiments as they want to , exercing an authority to change and modificate without previous authorization. Another point is the diplomacy with another countries where the politicians can make deals which can change a country drastically. This brings me to my last point which is the people`s hop being always deposited in the politicians which comproves their huge influence.

To sum up , it its clear to observe the scientists influence in society however when analyzed the subject it seems easy to comproves more power and influence being attributed for the politicians exercising more influence in my opinion.

Hi Simon,

I am confused about how to address this type of essay: discuss both views. I have written an essay by imitating an examiner's structure of response to this type of essay. Feel free to comment and illuminate me.

Some people think personal happiness is closely related to economic success; when others believe that this depends on other factors. Discuss both views and give you opinion.

Many people hold a belief that fortune can bring happiness to individuals’ lives, as wealth people are more likely to afford big houses, fancy cars, and therefore live a care-free life. They also argue that people of lower economic class, who spend most time to work in order to make both ends meet, usually suffer from mental stress and low self-esteem, which leads to an unhappy life.

The central issue to the line of argument rests on the definition of happiness. What is happiness? Happiness is a state of mind, a feeling generated by individuals with their personal experiences. In reality, there are many factors contributing to a happy mind. Certainly, personal wealth can enhance a person’s quality of life and consequently makes him/her happy. Other factors, such as physical and mental health, harmonious relationships, a satisfactory career, or even the clean and healthy natural environment are conducive to an individual a sense of happiness. For example, a millionaire, an owner and CEO of a top corporation committed suicide for he felt his life was hallow and meaningless. In contrast, glowing smiles we find on blue collar workers’ faces tell us how happy they are despite of their minimum wage.

People all pursue happiness in their different ways. The fundamental thing is to understand what happiness is instead of simply associating it with money or wealth. Realizing that many other factors playing roles in making us happy will help us appreciate what we have already possessed and increase our sense of happiness in daily life.

men and women have different abilities that make them suitable for specific jobs. Discuss both views and your opinion

simply I don't know how can you write two idea views on this topic.

Dear Simon,
Excuse me that i posed my question here,for i didn't find any place to question.
I am new to your website and i want to study on writing task 2. There are so many articles here and i don't know from which article should i start so that i can get a comprehensive view of different structure of essay.
I would grateful if you would determine an article to start.

Hello Lucas,
Thank you so much for a very good sample answer. It's look like Simon's style.
I like your answer.
Thank you once again.

hii all
i gave my exam today and the writing question was somewhat this: Some people encourage to buy more and more consumer products. Buying consumer products can have an economical impact and also can very badly impact the society as a whole. discuss both views and give your opinion.

i found it bit tricky because the concept of consumer products was not clear to me....can anyone please guide me on this one with good points....


hi simon and eevryone !!!!
can anyone here help me please..
i took my ielts test on 25th may..and unfortunately i didnt score well in writing section.i got 6 band ..i had a question in task 2 , given below..
To educate young people is the most important task for the governments all over the world.
However educating Adults who are not able to write and read is more important and so the governments should spend more public money on this.
To what extent do you agree or disagree,,

i wrote my opinion essay in favour of it ..but in my essay i gave strong points related to adults education importance...
i didnt mention the part which is '' to educate young ppl is most important task for govt all over the world'' ..was i supposed to give main points abt this part as well ??? please clear me ..

Hi, Simon
I took the exam in february and writing task 2 was about consumer goods, is it positive or negative development? are they the sama ideas about consumerism in your e-book?

To educate young people is the most important task for the governments all over the world.
However educating Adults who are not able to write and read is more important and so the governments should spend more public money on this.
To what extent do you agree or disagree,,...

that was my topic in task2 when i took ielts on 25th may..was i supposed to write some points abt the point''to educate young people is the most important task for the governments all over the world''?
because i got my result yesterday and secured 6 band in writing which is pretty disturbing for me !!although ,i gave strong points in favour of adult education,but didnt write anything related young ppl education....please make me clear!!!

Some cultures value old people, while others value youth more.Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Hi Simon,
In task 2 of the writing part could you pls give me your opinion if they ask a qs like this.

Playing musical instrument. Is it useful or waste of time. Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Hi Simon,

I think that your website on IELTS is truly excellent.

I recently retired to Melbourne after teaching English in Japan for 14 years. I have had little experience of IELTS but a friend is asking me for help. I am very much into the Halliday SFL genre approach and would like to ask you if a brief text opener (Macrotheme) would be helpful - coming immediately after the Introduction. Also re my genre experience - would a topic sentence (Hypertheme) be helpful for every paragraph? I see in your structures that one topic sentence governs all the following sentences. (Perhaps 250 words only allows for this?)

On reflection your topic sentence is my idea of a text opener?

Congratulations on your website,

John Curran

hai simon
I bought ur ebook,it finds very usefull aswell as commendable.ur site is exemplary.it helps me a lot in preparing for ielts.thank u

Hi everyone and Simon sir,
Can any one please help me what to write about this topic in the 2 and 3 paragraphs please
I got this question in my recent exam in June 8
In today's world school children and students are taught to push themselves and become better than their classmates instead of thinking about everyone's benefit
Do the disadvantage of teaching young children to be competitive outweighs the advantage
Simon sir can u help me regarding this please


I'm afraid I no longer have time to answer everyone's questions individually. However, I do still read them all, and I try to use them as the basis for my lessons.

PS. There are some good essays in the comments above. It's nice to see people following my advice (e.g. 4 paragraphs, short introductions and conclusions, detailed explanation in the main body paragraphs). Remember to keep it simple - expression of relevant ideas is more important than specific constructions.

Keep working hard!

Hi Simon

Is it good to use to use idioms and phrases for speaking and writing sections!

Some people believe that higher education should be funded by the government. Others, however, argue that it is the responsibility of individuals to fund their higher education.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Higher education is one of the fundamental key for any country to progress. However, people have different views about funding higher education. One group thinks that students are responsible to compete with the expenses of getting higher education, although, there are good arguments from some people that it's the responsibility of the government to provide financial support for further education to students. I am partly in favour of this argument that government ought to provide funds for higher education.

In the first view, people argue that individuals should earn themselves in order to meet the expenses of their education. They think it's very fruitful for them to perform both activities such as learn and work. By doing this, they can have exposure of professional lifestyle within their student lives. Furthermore, it's the great opportunity for them to implement their concepts which they get through learning books into practical environment. In addition, they further provide evidences that the proportion of inflation is rising rapidly and it's becoming extremely difficult for heads of families to compete for daily routine expenses of their families. So, students should earn to assist them.

In the second view, other group of the people says that government is responsible to provide funds for further education. They believe, at the present time, education is becoming more and more advance. So, learners are required to put extra efforts to grasp latest trends, which require time. Moreover, they also explain that students should spend some time on extracurricular activities as well, to keep themselves fresh. They further explain, it's extremely difficult for overseas students to meet expenses of advanced education, so government should take care of their financial matters.

In my opinion, government ought to provide support to some extent. They need to treat differently with several levels of higher education. I personally believe that government should provide full and partial financial support at bachelour stage and master stage respectively. For PHD level, government should provide job opportunities to students in order to meet their expenses.

Thank you,
Mubashir Ali

Hi Simon,

Is below question is argumentative essay or discussion essay question?

If we are afraid to reveal our lack of knowledge we will not be able to learn. In order to make progress we must admit where we are now. Does the current system of education encourage us to admit our lack of knowledge, or is there too much pressure to demonstrate the acquisition of knowledge? Share your discussions.

Hi Simon,
I was just wandering on the web and found your website.It is so much helpful for me.Thank you very much!!!

I found this new question for writing task 2 and there is some argument about the topic:

Many families are having fewer children. Having even just one child can have a dramatic impact on the parents' lives. Write about this impact in about 250 words. You can discuss the negative impact, the positive impact, or both.

What should I focus on, the impact on families with only one child or the impact of having babies on couples?

Dear Simon,

Thanks for your useful blog.

I just wrote the task 2 writing of test 2, Cambridge 6 following the structure recommended here. At the end I took a look at the model answer at the end of the book. The model is introduced as a "very good answer" by an examiner. But I found its structure totally different from mine. How is that?
The writer has not mentioned his own opinion until the conclusion section. Besides, he/she has not said any word about the views in the introduction part. Is this because of the structure that this writing can not be considered as a "band 9 receiving" writing?

Dear Simon,
I wonder if I am not sure which view I will vote for in my introduction, can I say "Both views will be discussed in the following." and give my opinion in the conclusion?
Thank you very much! ^^

Dear Simon,

For this 'discuss both views and give your opinion' essay, do you think it is okay to give opinion that is different from both given views? of course if I can deliver it in time

Hi All,

Could you please review and grade my essay.

Young people who commit serious crimes should be punished the same way as adults. Do you agree or disagree?
In recent decades, many of the countries are concerned about crime rates. Though a government is conducting awareness programs, crime rate is at peak level. Unfortunately, many children are involving in serious misconducts. Some advocates believe that juvenile delinquency should be punished as same way as adults.Personally, i don't completely agree with this notion.

To begin with, only severe punishments acts as a barrier for wrongdoers against re-offending. For instance,a young murderer may not feel guilty and feared of criminal justice system and continue to do more misconducts if he was not given a severe punishment. As a result, this will be dangerous to the society. So, punishment should be equally given irrespective of age.

However, There are many drawbacks if we punish juvenile offenders in similar to adults. Firstly, most of the teenagers are misconducting due to the lack of maturity levels and they may not be fully aware of wrongdoings they make. For example, group of teenagers may perform dangerous stunts which may led to a person death. If they are sentenced as similar to adults, they might suffer from shock or mental disorders. Secondly, facing long sentences may led to adopt negative behavior. For example, they might develop negative feeling on law system and may try to take revenge once they finish their sentence.

In conclusion, every one who commits a misconduct should be punished. But for teenagers, keeping their career and maturity levels in mind, justice system should focus more on rehabilitation which develops positive environment for juvenile rather than severe punishments.

Hi simon
I'm going to take my ielts recently .writing is hard for me how i can improve my knowledge


Can you give more specific information about the discussion essay

Hi everyone!

Is it ok to not take a stand in both the views in your opinion? I mean I want to give a balanced favour on both. For example, the question is about some people think that receiving a high salary is more important , while others argue that a good working atmosphere should be given more importance.

Can I say like this in the conclusion? : I believe the benefits of giving a good pay positively correlate with providing an efficient working environment. It depends on the decision that the employers prefer to make.

Thanks much indeed !

Some people think that only government can make significant changes in society,
while others think that individuals can have a lot of influence, what is your opinion?

Alterations in the society can be brought by government and sometimes by individuals too, think people. However, it is true that society is made by every single person but controlled by government. Although individuals can make changes but the ideas and will of every person differ; therefore government not only has to spread the awareness among people but it also has to impose new laws, which everyone has to follow or is compelled to follow, in order to make society an excellent place to inhabit.

Some people like to invest their own belongings to make their society better while some are reluctant just because they think the government should fulfill their needs particularly the basic ones. For instance, two persons living in a same street: one throws the garbage in the dustbin which he himself has planted outside his home. Other throws his garbage on the road of the same street and thinks that any government servant will come and clean the street. So, by these two opposite actions the society cannot be cleaned because the hard work of one person will go in vein just because of the action on another person.

Government has the power to make people aware of things which harm and which are beneficial for the society. For example, government should spread the awareness through things like media and home to home surveys. This will reduce the negatives in society and increase the positives.

In addition to the government's range of authority, government can introduce new laws and can bound people to follow them. Like, if one's idea or will of benefiting society does not match another's idea then it does not matter because government wants them to follow what it wants them to follow. By doing this, opposition of one another will vanish.

To conclude, despite individuals' clash in changing society, the government can make them do the same work which would be constructive for the sovereignty. I believe if citizens abide the laws which are promulgated my government then the society will be as clean as a whistle.

written By: "M.H.KHAN."
fb/twitter/instagram,etc: "mhkhanbangash"

Do I need a pararaph to write about my opinion ? Or I can write my opinion in conclusion

Hi Simon,

I have no idea about how write an essay about a question that is 'There is no need to provide secondary education to students who are unlikely to find a job in the future. To what extent you agree or disagree?'Can I ask for you advice for it?

Hi Simon,

First of all, heartfelt thanks for your efforts and insightful posts.

I have a question and I need your advice. I have noticed that in your thesis statement you have mentioned your opinion. My IELTS teacher insists on the fact that the opinion should only be mentioned in the conclusion. So the thesis statement would look like: ” Some people believe …. and others …. without mentioning MY opinion. then in the conclusion I don’t need a summary I just have to mention my opinion. Can you please advise me on this?

Please make my confusion clear some people told me that this type of essay should be written in 5 paragraph at firts we have to write indroduction then first view after that second view sebsequently our opinion and finally conclusion ??

Hello Simon,

Can I start the second paragraph where I have to discuss the first opinion of my essay with, "Let us discuss about....."?

Ser plzzzzzzzzzzzzz tell me early on this page that how can we improve task 2

Hi Simon
Thanks for your great work
I'm confused, can I write first main paragraph including merits and also drawbacks while I write second paragraph only about positive points?

Hi Simon, i would ask u a question.
How can we write an intro of "discuss the advantages and disadvantages of living and working a foreign country?

I would discuss that benefits and drawbacks of moved out abroad and working in a foreign country that i try to compare with hometown.

How is it? What would u suggest me?

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