Sample Essay Answer For An Advantages Outweigh The Disadvantages Writing Task 2 Question.

The International English Language Testing System(or IELTS) Exam is the worlds’ premier English language proficiency test. The exam is co-owned by the British Council, IDP Education Australia and Cambridge University and is offered around the world including in Singapore. The exam comprises of 4 sections for listening, reading, writing and speaking. The writing test is often thought to be the toughest component of the exam. Let’s take a look at one of the common essay questions that is asked in the writing component of the IELTS academic exam.

In the advantages and disadvantages essay question, you will be asked to analyse the advantages and disadvantages of a particular topic or issue. There are two types of Advantages/Disadvantages essays. In the first type, you need to simply discuss the advantages and disadvantages.

In the second type, you have to discuss the advantages and disadvantages AND give your opinion on whether the advantages outweigh the disadvantages or vice versa. This type of advantages and disadvantages question is often considered more challenging and test-takers struggle to fully understand what is required of them. In this article, we will take a look at what constitutes a high scoring ‘do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages’ IELTS essay type and provide you with a band 9 sample/ model answer so that you can understand how to put these strategies and tips into good use.

Understanding The Question

It might not seem like a big difference, but the word ‘outweigh’ has a significant impact on the content and even the layout of your answer. Many students misunderstand the meaning of this word and incorrectly assume that if the advantages of a situation outweigh the disadvantages, it means that there are a greater number of advantages than disadvantages. This is highly incorrect. If the advantages of a situation outweigh the disadvantages, then this means that the advantages are of greater significance or importance than the disadvantages. Failing to understand this key difference in meaning often costs students valuable marks in the task achievement criteria.

Before you actually start writing, take a few minutes to analyse the question and come up with a few ideas. Try to think of valid points and examples to support each idea you come up with, as well as good topic-specific vocabulary that you could include in your essay.

Sample question:

“A lot of places in the world rely on tourism as a main source of income. Unfortunately, tourism can also be a source of problems if it is not managed correctly.

Describe the advantages and disadvantages of tourism in the modern world. Do you think that the benefits of tourism outweigh its drawbacks?”

Writing A Good Introduction

To write a good introduction you need to rephrase the question statement using synonyms and then write a brief outline (called a thesis statement) of what to expect in the upcoming paragraphs. Make sure that you clearly state your opinion in the introduction paragraph of your essay, in order to straight away give the examiner a clear idea that you have understood the meaning of the question. You could do this by stating something like ‘I believe that this has more benefits than drawbacks.’

Sample Introduction:

Nowadays tourism generates a significant portion of the national income for many countries, but it has certain drawbacks too. This essay will examine the advantages and disadvantages of tourism and provide a logical conclusion. 

The Main Body Paragraphs

For these types of questions, it is usually customary to have two main body paragraphs, on for the advantages and one for the disadvantages. You should begin with whichever option you have decided has a greater impact. So if you are of the opinion that the advantages of a particular situation are more significant, then your first main body paragraph will be about the advantages.

We need to develop our rough ideas into a cohesive paragraph using good vocabulary and cohesive devices. Use one of your main ideas to create a topic sentence. The rest of the paragraph will expand on these ideas. One of the simplest ways to do this is to add an explanation.

You can also add an example (true or not) to further justify your stance. You simply need to repeat the same process for the second paragraph.

The Conclusion

A good conclusion will neatly end the essay by linking all your ideas together and sum up your arguments or opinions. You should not introduce any new ideas or make your conclusion too long. Every conclusion should include only two to three sentences. The first sentence is basically just a summary of your introduction. And the last sentence of your conclusion should either be a recommendation sentence or a prediction sentence.

Sample Conclusion:

To conclude, although tourism can have certain negative effects like the destruction of cultural heritage sites and the growth of the crime rate, it also has an extremely positive influence on country’s economy and provides a large number of new jobs for the local people. I believe that these benefits of tourism outweigh its drawbacks.  Governments should invest more effort, in terms of time and money, into organizing and managing the tourism sector.

Useful Vocabulary For The Advantages And Disadvantages Essay

  • Here are some good phrases that you can use in both your introduction and the main body of the paragraphs:
    • “In my opinion,”
    • “From my perspective,”
    • “In my view,”
    • “From my point of view,”
    • “Taking into account/consideration the fact that … I (firmly) believe…”
    • “I (strongly) agree/disagree with the view that…”

 

  • Phrases you can use while you discuss the advantages:
    • The first advantage of “this” is …”
    • “There are many advantages to … and one of them is…”
    • “The positive aspects of … are …”
    • “The positive points include …”
    • “Another positive aspect is …”
    • “Another benefit is …”
    • “Another advantage is …”
    • “The benefits/ advantages are far more than the disadvantages.”
  • Phrases you can use while you discuss the disadvantages:
    • “The first disadvantage of … is ….”
    • “There are many negative aspects and one of them is…”
    • “The drawbacks are…”
    • “The negative points include…”
    • “Another disadvantage is …”
    • “One of the major disadvantages is the fact that….”
    • “A negative consequence of … is …”
    • “The disadvantages are far more than the positive aspects of this case.”

Sample Question:

“A lot of places in the world rely on tourism as a main source of income. Unfortunately, tourism can also be a source of problems if it is not managed correctly.

Describe the advantages and disadvantages of tourism in the modern world. Do you think that the benefits of tourism outweigh its drawbacks?

IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample Answer:

Nowadays tourism generates a significant portion of the national income for many countries, but it has certain drawbacks too. This essay will examine the advantages and disadvantages of tourism and provide a logical conclusion.

The two main advantages of the developed tourism industry are a boost to the country’s economy and a large number of new job openings for the locals. To begin with, tourists spend money on a wide range of services, including hotels, amusements, transportation, food and medical services. In this way, tourism yields an additional income, which can greatly support the country’s economy. Secondly, tourism increases the level of employment within a country by creating new jobs in different sectors of the economy. For instance, the influx of tourists results in a larger demand for restaurant workers, tour guides, hotel staff and employees of retail services. Consequently, business owners are prompted to hire more people to fill these positions.

On the other hand, it should be noted that tourism also has some major disadvantages like the destruction of popular and pristine tourist destinations along with the development of illegal economic activities. Ancient buildings, temples and monuments are ill-equipped to cope with the vast amount of visitors. For example, many tourists have desecrated world heritage sites like the Great Pyramids of Giza, due to their ignorance and the resulting loss of such precious historical artefacts is immeasurable. Furthermore, the presence of a considerable number of wealthy tourists often carrying valuables such as cameras and jewellery catches the attention of criminals and result in an increase in activities like robbery and drug dealing. However, proper hospitality management and correct usage of tourism revenue by the local government can eliminate these disadvantages.

To conclude, although tourism can have certain negative effects like the destruction of cultural heritage sites and the growth of the crime rate, it also has an extremely positive influence on country’s economy and provides a large number of new jobs for the local people. I believe that these benefits of tourism outweigh its drawbacks.  Governments should invest more effort, in terms of time and money, into organizing and managing the tourism sector.

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