August 18, 2013

For and Against Topics for Article Writing


Examinations should be abolished

For
Against
Examinations test only a limited range of skills; they favor people who have a good memory and good "exam techniques" even though they may not be very original or imaginative.
Passing an examination shows that the candidate can handle unfamiliar problems and communicate effectively; these are important qualities in the workplace.
Examinations depress students and deaden their initiative; teachers, too, become less creative as they are forced to "teach to the exam".
The mental effort of preparation for examinations is valuable; no harm is done to anyone. Without the discipline of examinations, teachers could fail to cover some important topics/skills.
Research has proven that different examiners grade student papers differently; indeed, the same examiner will often give different marks to the same paper after a few months!
Modern examination boards have sophisticated "moderation" systems for ensuring that marking is done fairly. In addition, most examinations include practical’s or orals, so a student’s result does not depend completely on written work.



Should Smoking  ban in public places

Scientists agree that smoking is dangerous. Tobacco smoke can cause cancer, strokes and heart disease. Smoking does not just harm the smoker – it also harms people nearby, who breathe in the smoke (this is called “passive smoking”). Smokers choose to smoke, but people nearby do not choose to smoke passively. People should only be exposed to harm if they understand the risks and choose to accept them. A complete ban on smoking in public is needed to protect people from passive smoking.
Society accepts that adults can decide to harm themselves to some extent, so long as they do not harm others. This is why the proposition is not arguing that people should be banned from smoking in private. Passive smokers do choose to breathe in other people’s smoke. If they do not want to smoke passively, they do not need to go to places where smoking is allowed. There is therefore no reason to ban smoking in public.
The opposition is wrong to say that people choose to smoke passively. In many places, there are no non-smoking bars or restaurants. Unless people refuse to go out with friends, they cannot avoid passive smoking. People who work in smoky workplaces (e.g. bars) often do not freely choose this sometimes no other jobs are available. In most countries, safety standards do not allow workers to be exposed to unnecessary danger, even if they agree. Workers should not be exposed to other people’s smoke, since they may not have made a free choice to do so.
If enough people want to go to non-smoking bars, companies will set up non-smoking bars. If there are no non-smoking bars, this suggests that very few people want them. Some people are quite happy to work in smoky places. In any case, workers should be allowed to choose to work in dangerous conditions. This is accepted for jobs like mining, fishing and the armed forces. Individuals decide that they are better doing this work than not having a job at all. A complete ban is not necessary to protect workers anyway – ventilation fans can remove most smoke.
People will not smoke more at home. Smokers need to maintain a certain level of nicotine in their blood to remain content. A ban on smoking in public would force them to smoke less while at work. Over time, this would lower the level of nicotine they need to feel content. This would reduce how often they need to smoke. They would therefore smoke less at home, as well as less at work.
Banning smoking in public will encourage people to smoke more at home. This will harm other people in their house, particularly children. This is important, since children are not old enough to choose freely to smoke passively. Also, people smoking at home may drink more alcohol than they would if they went to a bar. This is because they can buy it more cheaply at a supermarket or off-licence. Drinking more alcohol may lead to other health problems.
There have been few problems with bans where they have been introduced. Heavy fines put off companies from allowing people to smoke. A survey for the Scottish Executive found that 99.4% of premises were observing the ban three months after it was introduced.
It would be impossible to police this ban in many public places. Small workplaces will often ignore the ban and are unlikely to be caught. Staff who do not smoke are unlikely to report smokers, in case their colleagues work out who told the authorities.




Should schoolchildren be allowed to choose whether to attend school or not?



Many students enjoy and benefit from school, and it is important that schools exist. But for some students the experience is not so good. Some may be seriously bullied; others may struggle with learning or simply find it boring. Some students may just resent being told what to do with their lives. It cannot be right to force children into a place which causes them so much fear or frustration.
Schools can and must do more to tackle issues like bullying, and students with learning difficulties. But the children affected by these issues are the ones who need more help, not less. In many cases just one good teacher or subject can change the way a student feels about school and learning. If we let children walk away at the first problems, many students who could have been happy at school will never get the chance
Schools teach everyone the same knowledge, but children are all very different and ‘one size doesn’t fit all’. The lessons and subjects at school are often not necessary for children to be successful when they are older. For example, very few adults do jobs based on history, or art or geography. Children can still learn if they are in charge of their own lives, but instead they can just learn what they need to know or what interests them. This is much more efficient and sensible, especially with internet connections in almost every home to give them access to all the information they need.
Schools don’t just teach ‘information’, but try to give students a basic understanding of the world around them. How can students decide what subjects interest them if they don’t understand them? And even if students can find jobs when they are older, it is still important that they understand basic ideas about how society works, about their history or about basic science. Schooling creates well-rounded young people who understand their place in the society and the world. This won’t happen if students only learn what they need to get by.
There are many other ways to learn ‘lessons’ from life. Young people can learn from parents or family members, or do apprenticeships to learn a particular skill. Often, practical knowledge is much more useful than ‘academic’ book knowledge. There are many examples of famous people (such as Richard Branson) who left school at the earliest opportunity but still managed to be far more successful than people who stayed at school much longer.
It is easy to focus on famous people who left school early, because we have all heard of them. We never hear about the majority of people who quit school and then struggle for the rest of their lives. This is a far more likely outcome though. Also, in the modern world it is far harder to learn one skill and stay with that choice for a lifetime. People today change careers an average of four times in their lives. Children who learn a wider range of skills will have a better chance of moving between jobs when they are older than someone with just basic knowledge in one or a few areas
Schools and teachers are very expensive (often using up to 10% of all the money governments spend). This money is wasted when it is spent on children who don’t want to learn, or worse, cause trouble at school and make life harder for other students. Having to provide fewer school places would save a good deal of money, and make schools even more effective for the students who choose to go.
Governments would find it impossible to decide how much to spend on schools each year if they didn’t know how many students would be attending. This could lead to more wasted money, or shortages if too few or too many students chose to go to school. Also, children cannot just be allowed to roam the streets by themselves all day. This means that some parents would have to leave their jobs in order to be with the children (which would harm them and the economy). Maybe the children would be forced to go to some other place for supervision.

Should children be allowed to own and use mobile phones?



Mobile phones are safe for children to use – we should ignore scare stories in the media. The latest research says that mobile phones do not damage brain cells. Even those earlier studies that suggested there might be a problem thought that people would have to use a cell phone for hours a day for there to be an effect. It is true that there is no 100% proof mobile phones are safe to use, but that is true of any scientific study
There are possible long-term health risks from using mobile phones. Some research suggests that the radio waves from mobile phones may harm people’s brains. Because children’s brains are still developing, any possible damage to them is even more worrying than for adults. It is true there is no total scientific proof about this, but it is better to play safe than take risks – the precautionary principle. Until science can prove mobile phones are completely safe for young people to use, they should not be allowed to have them
Children will always pressure their parents to have the latest thing; phones are only one example of this. Parents can always say “no” or set limits on what they can spend. With modern payment plans children can be given a set amount of credit for calls and texts. Learning to work within financial limits is an important part of growing up. In any case, many young people have part-time jobs so they are spending their own money, not their parents.
Mobile phones are too expensive for children. Even if basic models are cheap to buy, calls are expensive and charges soon mount up. Many young people run up big bills their parents have to pay. A few rich families might be able to afford this, but for many parents the hours their kids spend on their cell phones are an uncontrolled expense they cannot cope with. Others are under peer pressure to get the newest, most stylish phone with all the latest gadgets. Banning children from carrying cell phones would take away these problems from ordinary financially-stretched families.
Mobile phones are now a valuable part of student life. Because parents feel their children are safer carrying a phone, they are more likely to allow them to travel to school on their own rather then driving them. This promotes greater independence for the children, while taking traffic off the roads which is environmentally-friendly. Like many other things (girls! boys! the view out of the window!) mobiles can be distracting in class but this doesn’t mean they should be banned. Many schools allow phones to be carried providing they are turned off in lesson.
Mobile phones are inappropriate in schools. They take students’ attention away from their lessons and undermine discipline. Rules about having them turned off in lessons are impossible to enforce – students just put them in silent mode and secretly text or play games in the back of the class. There have been many cases of students using mobiles to cheat in tests, and some of students recording embarrassing footage of their teachers to post on the internet. Schools are for learning and anything which gets in the way of that should be banned.





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Article Writing – important Phrases




Opening Phrases
  • In the last few years
  • During the early days . . .
  • Shortly after the invention of . . .
  • A vast majority of
  • During the past years
  • Towards the end of  19th century . . .
  • Most of the population thinks that
  • As a long period of time
  • Is it any wonder that   . . . ?
  • Don’t you think   . . . ?
  • Isn’t it clear that  . . . ?
  • Isn’t it the case that . . . ?
  • How can anyone believe this?
  • Does anyone really believe that . . .?
  • Many people believes that

Useful phrases
·         In fact . . .
·         AsI see it . .
·         It appears to me . . .
·         It seems to me that . . .
·         One argument for this is that . .
·         I would counter this view because . . .
·         On the other hand . . .
·         It seems posssibly to  . . .
·         Therefore . . .
·         In addition . . .
·         Moreover . . .
·         Furthermore . . .
·         Nevertheless . . .
·         Subsequently . . .
·         Consequently . . .
·         However . . .
·         In point of fact . . .
It is precisely because . . .
·         Naturally . . .
·         Doubtless . . .
·         It is surprising that . . .
·         It surprises me that  . . .
·         It is no surprise that . . .
·         It would seem logical to . . .
·         Let us now turn to . . .
·         Let’s consider . . .
·         An example of this is . . .
·         My next point concerns . . .
·         To begin with . . .
·         Next . . .
·         After that
·         Following that . . .
·         After a while . . .
·         Wait a moment before . . .
·         Before long . . .
·         After a minute . . .
·         First . . .
·         First of all . ..
·         Firstly . . .
·         Next . . .
·         After . . .
·         Afterwards . . .
·         After that . . .
·         When . . .
·         At this point . . .
·         Lastly . . .
·         Finally . . .
·         Subsequently . . .
·         To begin with . . .
·         After that
·         Following that . . .
·         After a while . . .
·         Wait a moment before . . .
·         Before long . . .
After a minute . . .

Causal connectives

·         So . . .
·         This causes . . .
·         As a result . . .
·         This results in . . .
·         This leads to . . .
·         This is because . . .
·         This was because . . .
·         Because . . .
·         Therefore . . .
·         Furthermore . . .
·         I believe that  . . .
·         I think that  . . .
·         It seems to me that  . . .
·         It is clear that  . . .
·         It strikes me that  . . .
·         There is no doubt that  . . .    
·         I am convinced that  . . .
·         It appears that  . . .
·         It is obvious that . . .
·         In addition . . .
·         Everyone understands that . . .
·         Nobody knows why . . .
·         Many people believe . . .

·         I believe that  . . .
·         It is true to say that . . .
·         Even though . . 
·         For once . . .
·         At least . . .
·         At times . . .
·         Sometimes . . .
·         I felt so . . .

Phrases to finish
·         My last point is  . . .
·         My final point is  . . .
·         Finally,
·         In conclusion, 
·         In summary,                                       
·         To conclude I would like to say  . . .  
·         On the basis of the evidence presented . . .
·         On balance . . .
·         The evidence presented supports the view that . . .   
·         It is my sincere belief that . . .
·         In conclusion . . .
·         It is my conviction that . . .
·         It is clear that . . .
·         Finally I would like to add . . .
·         To sum up . . .
·         My overall feeling is . . .
·         The evidence presented leads me to conclude that . . .
By and large