Academic Writing - Task 2 (Model answer)

A person’s worth nowadays seems to be judged according to social status and material possessions. Old-fashioned values, such as honour, kindness and trust, no longer seem important. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this opinion?

Today value systems seem to have shifted from one extreme to another. Whereas in the past personal qualities were important, today people are valued according to their assets such as flashy cars and luxury houses as well as the position they hold in society.

As society has become competitive and people struggle to survive in a world with limited resources, values that bound communities together in the past when life was simple are disappearing. In a drive to make a profit and gain an attractive salary, ambitious, career-oriented individuals have no time for solid old-fashioned values. Having a kind or honourable personality is often regarded as a weakness in today’s power driven society and assertive or aggressive people often push for what they want rather than maintaining loyalty to a single person or an organisation.

This is not however true of all societies. In some developing countries such as India and in some religions like Buddhism human qualities such as compassion and honesty are promoted. These types of internal characteristics exist even today despite the fact that these people live in poverty and are regarded as a measure of a true human being.

How a person has been brought up and what values are given priority varies among individuals. The influence of advertising and consumerism adds pressure to people’s value system while competitiveness challenges a person’s sensitivity in favour of materialism and a false sense of superiority due to the acquisition of wealth. Although material wealth is a sign of a person’s financial success it does not necessarily reflect their human nature.
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1 comment for "Academic Writing - Task 2 (Model answer)"

  1. I find it troubling that children are no longer being taught all forms of writing -- and, crucially, instructed by teachers who have an APTITUDE for teaching writing -- for they ought to be offered the options to craft the most efficient and legible method of handwritten communication for their lives (whether it's cursive, or printing, or even some permutation of the two). Handwritten communication will always exist as long as humans are bimanual, in spite of our electronic world, because laptops, tablets, mobiles, et al. are not always handy and in immediate access for jotting down thoughts and information in passing.

    There is something to be said, too, for the cognitive benefits of writing -- and this is coming from a grad student who is primarily a keyboardist at 90 wpm. I have found that it's often worth putting pen to paper before typing up; it's also interesting to look back on first drafts of analyses and compare them to the finished products. How did my argument evolve? Which sections did I revise? Are there any omitted fragments that I ought to tuck away for the future? So handwriting still plays a role in my thoroughly modern existence. And it might be the fastest way to write an essay.