This essay topic was seen in recent IELTS test in Taiwan.
Some people believe that the purpose of education is to make individuals useful to society, while others think that education should help people pursue personal ambitions. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
When it comes to the purpose of education, opinions are divided as some see its primary role as preparing individuals to be useful to society while others believe it should primarily serve people’s personal ambitions. In my view, education should strike a balance between these two objectives, catering to the needs of society as well as the aspirations of the individual.
Those who see education as a tool for societal utility argue that it should produce individuals who can contribute effectively to the economic and social fabric of their communities. This perspective emphasises the importance of equipping students with practical skills and knowledge that align with the demands of the job market. Such an approach is crucial for the economic development and stability of any society, because it ensures a workforce that is both skilled and employable.
However, the importance of education to individual ambitions and personal growth is hard to dismiss. Advocates of this view argue that education should nurture creativity, critical thinking, and personal exploration, allowing individuals to realise their unique potential. This approach not only fosters self-actualisation but also encourages the development of innovators and original thinkers who can contribute uniquely to society.
In conclusion, education should ideally encompass both these perspectives. By providing a balanced curriculum that caters to the practical needs of society while also encouraging individual exploration and creativity, education can produce well-rounded individuals. Their capability of contributing effectively to their communities while pursuing personal fulfillment and growth will likely lead to a more dynamic and prosperous society.
Overall, this essay is a strong Band 8.5 example.
Task Response: Band 9
Your essay fully addresses the task prompt, presenting a clear opinion that education should balance societal needs and personal ambitions. You effectively discuss both sides of the argument and provide a reasoned conclusion, meeting the requirements for a high score in this criterion.
Coherence and Cohesion: Band 8
The essay is well-organised, with clear paragraphing and logical progression of ideas. Each paragraph has a clear central idea, and cohesive devices are used effectively. However, to achieve a perfect score, transitions could be slightly smoother, ensuring seamless flow from one idea to the next.
Lexical Resource: Band 8
You demonstrate a strong command of vocabulary, with appropriate word choice and collocations (“economic and social fabric,” “self-actualisation,” “well-rounded individuals”). Minor improvements could be made for a perfect score, such as varying your language a bit more to avoid repetition (e.g., using synonyms for “education” and “society”).
Grammatical Range and Accuracy: Band 9
The essay showcases a wide range of sentence structures and accurate grammar. The use of complex structures is effective and contributes to the clarity of your arguments.
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