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February 15, 2017


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Great essay but you haven't answered at the question: "To what extent do you agree or disagree with this view?"

I think you answered the essay really well. You have presented three different real life examples , in three completely different cultural settings, and linked the question to each example. You have shown how the industrial revolution changed the traditional culture of Britain. The Amazon rainforest people have kept their traditional culture without access to technology, and African farmers have to a large extent picked and chosen technology to enhance their standard of living, but purposelynot changed the endearing characteristics of their traditional life. Very well written. Thank you

@ Riccardo - While this may be true in the case of some societies, others seem to be unaffected by technology and the modern world.

He used balance approach to answer the question.


I was thinking about adding something like "I agree to a certain extent.." or "I partly agree" to make my answer really clear. However, I decided that the second introduction sentence made my opinion clear enough (as Bikram says above). Feel free to add the extra phrase if you want.

Sorry, I believe that your position is not clear. I finished reading without knowing if you agree or disagree.
Moreover, the "Amazon" example is not negating the thesis: "Technology and traditional cultures are incompatible". This is because those tribes have not adopted technology!!!! How can this be an example for the other POV? The other POV will be supported by an example of people who have embraced technology but kept their traditions, such as the African tribes you mentioned.

I think the task achievement is not as perfect as expected. It does not follow a logical flow.

With respect to your awesome language.


Simon's essay is a clear 9. The question is not only about cultures that adopt technology - it is simply about cultures continuing to exist in the modern world. To a native examiner, this is clearly a balanced essay and is easy to follow.

You have to realise that an IELTS essay is written in 40 minutes with no access to research. There is no expectation that an essay will be absolutely 'perfect'.

We actually did a sample for this question a few weeks ago on Wechat. For an alternative answer, it's now on our blog:


I am here to say thank you to Simon. Although I have never posted any comments on his website before, it is this blog as well as the video courses offered here that have helped me to achieve the desired IELTS result (both 9 in reading and listening, 8 in speaking and 7.5 in writing). Very practical techniques, and very clear explanations. And I will definitely recommend this website to my friends.
Thank you, Simon, and all those who have posted here.

Hi Simon

I would like to thank you that you always give birth to extraordinary band 9 essays like this one which has successfully attracted me.

Hi simon!
I just wanted to asked, what if i only wrote approxiamtely 220 words. How many points will they deduct into my score? cuz i just took the exam earlier and i'm so worried. :(

Is it helpful to add detailed examples (places, statistics, etc)?

Thank you for your incredibly clear and logical essay, Simon!
However, I've tried to plan this topic too and can you and others give me some comments as a favor, please?
I choose a balanced answer too and this is my introduction:
It's sometimes argued that the development of technology will lead to the disappear of traditional values. To a certain extent, I agree that technology nowadays changes our society significantly, however, I believe that its achievements play a key role in preserving traditional cultures.

Please make a comment what band it deserves.
It is speculated by some that extreme development and overuse of technology will have a worse influence on the traditional culture. I completely agree with the statement because it is significantly responsible for breaking down the way of leading life over centuries and old-fashioned social system.

The roaring technological innovation has a detrimental impact on the local tradition enjoyed for long time. While a lower proportion of people are used to repeating their ancestor’s footsteps, vast majority of young men remarkably have rejected them. For example, 20 years ago, in Bangladesh, agricultural crops were produced by native tools- cow and plough- as to loosen the soil to harvest the crops, but now these have been replaced by the mechanically updated instruments which is a great signpost for losing the traditional rituals. There is, therefore, no expectation to stay connected with instructions followed for decades. Thus, tradition is in danger and will totally be collapsed soon.

Moreover, technology-driven world has also a huge barrier for the social traditions. Although once local inhabitants had an outstanding social and family bondage in the community, over addiction of scientifically invented tools- cellphone and social media- seriously discourage us to be socialized like the past time. For instance, present generation’s young men do not visit to relatives in the prestigious ceremony-Eid, Durga Puja and Mary Christmas- rather than sending a text just pressing a button on the screen, but once this was out of our mind, and technology oriented features are unambiguously liable for this. Therefore, enormous application will relentlessly dominate the future and current trend will be out of track.

In conclusion, considering the stunning features of technology, it seems to me that home-grown culture and techno-world are incompatible, and this discrepancy will be continued as the technology survives.
(295 words)

Hi, Simon.
After reading your anwser, I feel I totally misunderstand the question!
Would it be OK if I thought "traditional cutures" as ancient art, history, literature, traditional festivals and traditional customs?
I write something that people are addicted to technology such as internet and they reluctant to learn more about traditional cutures such as visting a musuem.
Would i lose all points if i wrote in this way??



If you wrote 220 words you would lose one point for Task Response, but it also might affect vocabulary as well.


Yes, use specific names but DON'T use statistics, because you obviously don't have access to them in the exam.


In this question, there is nothing wrong with interpreting 'traditional cultures' as being customs and traditions within an existing culture so you would be unlikely to be penalised for this.

Hi Simon,

Thank you very much for your great work.
Although some people commented that your view is not clear, for me it seems that a balance view.
Thanks again and I'm waiting for your essay analyzing.


To avoid confusion, I've now added the phrase "I partly agree with this assertion" to my introduction. This makes my answer / opinion 100% clear.



I understand your interpretation of the question, but my interpretation is a bit more general. For me, it doesn't matter that tribes have chosen not to "adopt" modern technologies - the simple fact is that their traditional cultures have survived in spite of the technological developments that have taken place in the world around them.

We shouldn't "overanalyse" this. IELTS questions can often be interpreted in slightly different ways. As sjm said in his answer to Lei (2 comments above), it would also be acceptable to write about customs and traditions within a culture, rather than writing about whole societies or communities. For example, here's sjm's model answer:


Hi Teacher Simon,
At first, I didn't know what to write about it, so I took your advice on previous lesson, searched Google for ideas on traditional cultures but what I found might be quite long and hard to remember, so I decided to take a more direct way as to read your essay, then copy your ideas^^ I'm so sorry for that. Here is my essay done after copying yours. It is a little bit long. But I just can't wait to share it with you right after I finished it couples of minutes ago. Thank you for your devotion! By the way, the examples sound quite silly since I made them up myself^^

Many people claim that technological advances lead to the vanishing of traditional customs and beliefs because technology and tradition cannot coexist. From my perspective, I partly agree with this view.

On the one hand, people are so engaged in top-end technological gadgets and devices during their daily lives that they may as well have less or no time to adhere to traditional customs. For example, in Viet Nam, by tradition, all family members had to pay their entire attention to serving meals and were not allowed to do anything else besides eating. Nowadays, this traditional eating etiquette gradually fades while it is commonplace to see many young adults or adolescents holding their smartphones to access social networking sites like Facebook during their meals. In addition, if the Internet did not exist, people would not have many chances to be exposed to other countries’ cultures, finally dismiss their indigenous ones and embrace new cultures. Conventions and perceptions on marriage of Asians have been heavily influenced by Western ways of life and drastically altered as arranged marriage is extremely rare in Asian communities nowadays.

On the other hand, despite the fast-paced development of technology, many traditional cultures still firmly exist. For instance, although state-of-the-art cooking facilities such as microwaves, electric stoves were invented and have long been introduced to Vietnam, the age-old tradition of using large metallic tanks and wood to make fire to cook traditional sticky rice cake at Tet still prevails and is consistently upheld. Furthermore, many traditional practices have progressed in line with technological development. To illustrate, Vietnamese farming has a proud long-standing tradition of using natural pesticides like honey bees to kill insects which are harmful for rice crops. Thanks to the invention of modern equipment and methods for cultivation, farmers have known more species of this type and extended this traditional eco-friendly practice in agriculture.

In conclusion, in my opinion, with the advent of technology, some traditional cultures have disappeared, while many still prevail and flourish.

Thank you again for your devotion! May you have a happy day!

Thanks simon for the information.
I'm so sad... :(

Is it ok if i write one para for some unchanged traditions and other for modern culture?

Hi Simon,

Always have this questions:

When to use semicolon in ielts writing?


Hi Simon,
This essay is really good.
I want to achieve a band 7 or 8 in Ielts writting, I wonder if you can post some essay samples of band 6,7,8 and 9 so that I can understand the marking criteria better.
Thanks a lot.


Dear simon
Here is my pre thinking

1.Introduction:eradicate, not tune in technology,antagonistic

2.agree: Globalization,competition,economic insufficiency,overpopulation, corruption

3.disagree( and my view): Glorious past,bengali new year. colorful event. nourishment.ethnic cleansing.

conclusion:inappropriate,goes down, uphold, stand up.

Hi Simon
what is the different between lead to and led to?

Thank you so much sir

Hi Simon!

It is allowed to paraphrase the question by using terms like "are not compatible" instead of "are incompatible"?

Or it is considered as the same by examiner?

Dear Simon,
Here is my essay, could you please have a look and give me some comments. How much score an essay like this can get? Thank you very much!


People claim that the development of technology directly causes the fade of traditional cultures, and they cannot coexist. I not only disagree with this idea, in fact, I think that technology generating can help traditional cultures to survive the modern age.

I’d like to argue that the disappearance of traditions is due to many reasons. Frist, since globalization and Internationalization are so popular these days, people are all chasing after worldwide trends, which make them pay less attention to national culture. Second, the governments are responsible for the situation as well, since they don’t pay much efforts in promoting the traditions, histories or old fashions. Instead, the advertisement for newly-born can be seen everywhere, on newspaper, TV shows and movies. Third, without development, some traditions have become unsuitable to the modern society. For example, people rarely wear traditional costumes nowadays because these costumes are too complicated and inconvenient in daily life.

I do believe that the accomplishment of technology development can be a great help to preserve, even develop traditional cultures. With the wide spread of Internet and smartphones, the ways of promoting have been totally evolved, people can gather any information easily. Therefore, organizing interesting online courses introducing traditions or opening online clubs for tradition-lovers, can attract more and more modern citizens to know more about customs. What’s more, combining newly-developed technique and old traditions together is also a good way to develop the culture and make it adaptable to the future world.

In conclusion, technology development is not only compatible with traditional cultures, but can help the cultures to thrive in modern life.

Dear Simon,

I have carefully studied your sample essay and vocabulary. Please give a band and make some comments on my essay below. Thank you!


Some people would argue that traditional culture is fading as a result of the rapid development of technology. I completely disagree with this assertion, because I see no reason why the emergence of new cannot coexist with traditional culture.

New technology should not be the scapegoat in this issue, because there are various other reasons which lead to the disappearance of traditions. Firstly, while world is becoming more globalized, most people are chasing for identity from others, which makes them tend to be more similar rather than distinct. Secondly, certain outmoded customs indeed have already not harmonized with modern society. For example, some folk costume, which seems to be clumsy and unfashionable, cannot be dressed in public or daily life. Finally, governmental support on promoting traditions pales in comparison with other main public issues, and mass media is keen to focus on newly-born things.

Evolution of technology have contributed to the conservation of traditional culture. Hitech production makes life more and more convenient, which means ways to spread tradition are becoming diversified, inclusive and efficient. For example, people who is willing to study traditional culture can easily go to online courses, regardless of location, age and background. Furthermore, traditions continue to thrive through the integration with technology and modern world. Traditional culture is protected and spread in a more innovative way with the help of up-to-date technology.

In conclusion, traditional culture is embracing the exploration of technology, and technological development helps traditions to prosper.

(245 words)

Dear Simon,

I wonder if the first statement is an opinion or the fact.
Is it possible to write a main paragraph about each statement?

so for example,

body 1 - agree that technology and traditional cultures are incompatible

body 2 - disagree that traditional cultures will be lost as technology develops
(the value of traditional cultures -> governments and people will keep giving an effort to protect them.
there are still some people who cannot get access to new technology. etc...)

Thanks in advance.

Some people argue that many traditional cultures disappeared as technology development, it seems those two are incompatible, I don’t agree with this assertion.

First, I think the loss of traditional cultures can’t be blamed by the progress of technology, the lack of interest and incentive to learn it among young people might be the real reason. Nowadays, young people across the country are eager to leave less developed area where traditional cultures started and have been thriving. They hope to find a well-paid job in technology company in big cities rather than learn something with little return as culture. Therefore, without the love and participation of new generation, traditional cultures are at risk of disappear.

Second, I believe new technology could be very helpful in protecting traditional culture. Much progress has been made on the technology of collecting, recording and transmitting the huge amount of information about culture. For example, the precious and great works of traditional culture can be preserved in the museums by advanced way of protection. On the other hand, people on the other side of world could have access to the images and history of culture far away with them, this also contribute to the research for traditional cultures.

In conclusion, although some traditional cultures faded away during recent years, I think it is not the fault of technology development itself, on the contrary, technology could play an important role in protecting it.

hi simon
is ita twopartquestion?

Hello Simon,
When i have balanced view about the statement, is it okay to say "I have neutral opinion or balanced opinion on this assertion and my views for the same are as follows"

Hi SImon. What do you think of my essay ?

Nowadays, traditional cultures are facing the strong impact of technology development and globalization. Some people think that technology advancement will inevitably lead to cultural loss, while others believe that cultures will remain able to express themselves. From my personal standpoint, I partly agree with this statement. This essay will discuss why technology advancement will somehow partially diminish the role of traditional cultures, but why cultures will be able to persist anyway.

On one hand, technology development has led to the supremacy of western world and the domination of English language. For instance people all around the world now are communicating and interacting in English language. Students nowadays are traveling to study abroad in the best universities in the western world. Clearly, this trend will have a negative impact on different traditional cultures.

On the other hand, cultures are the result of thousand of years of development and advancement. Thus it is very difficult to lose those characteristics under the effect of technology. As a proof, Japanese culture is famous for its cuisine and the way eating habits. Chopsticks use has never declined, despite the dominance of western lifestyle. Secondly, even under the dominance of western technology, oriental values are still preserved and respected. For instance, in the Arab world a main cultural feature is the respect of hierarchy and parental figures. To put it more simply, even if technology advancement has led to some superficial changes all around the world, values and main cultural characteristics are still highly respected.

To sum up, our world nowadays is witnessing the tremendous impact of technology on cultures. Although some characteristics are prone to be lost, in my opinion, the overall uniqueness of any traditional culture will be preserved and respected.

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