The topic below was seen in the Academic IELTS exam in Singapore, June 2011.
General Training Writing Task 2
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
In most parts of the world people are living longer. What are the possible causes of this situation? Is this a negative or positive development?
You should write at least 250 words.
Longevity in the world over has been increasing for a variety of reasons. Babies born today enjoy much longer life spans than those of their parents. It is argued that this increase is a positive phenomenon and that the main causes of it are both the deepening of medical understanding and the sharing of such information between people via tools like the Internet. These causes will be examined in detail to prove their value in the lengthening of worldwide life spans.
Firstly, medical advancements over the last century have allowed people to postpone death. Among the more significant discoveries that made this possible is the development of antibiotics. Antibiotics, now available to most people the world over, dramatically lower incidences of infection and have thus greatly curbed the number of people the world over who die due to diseases once thought incurable. Thus, advancements in science can be seen as one of the more major contributors to the extending of worldwide life spans.
Secondly, the Internet and the information shared across it has made the debunking of ineffective medical practices much easier. For example, medical folklore in countries like Ghana and rural China dictate new mothers avoid washing themselves for a month after giving birth. Before tools like the Internet, ridiculous and unsanitary practices such as this were widely believed to be in the best interests of the mother’s health. Today, few people in either country would argue in favour of this postnatal tradition. Thus, the Internet has allowed people to share life-promoting information the world over.
In conclusion, human life is precious and the global extending of life spans should be seen as positive. It is hoped medical discoveries continue to increase in number and that access to the Internet continues to grow, allowing longevity to be a pleasure enjoyed everywhere.