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Question 1: The Internet will never replace traditional course books in schools.

How far
do you agree with this prediction?
There is a huge range of resources available to the modern teacher, and the right
selection is crucial in delivering effective lessons. I agree that there will always be a place
for course books in the school curriculum, despite the many benefits of the Internet.
Firstly, course books (whether conventional or digital) have been developed by
pedagogical experts and designed to be incorporated into a subject syllabus, leading to
testing procedures such as formal examinations or continuous assessment. This means that
they are proven to improve students academic achievement, enhancing their potential for
progression to further or higher education. Furthermore, the use of modern course books
allows pupils to coordinate their studies as part of group work, hopefully making their
lessons less teacher-led and more about autonomous learning. This in itself teaches study
skills such as independent research and synthesising sources, rather than old-fashioned rotelearning. This is where the Internet, in fact, can play a useful part: to supplement and add to
knowledge which the students are assimilating via their course books. However, it is the role
of teachers and school management generally to ensure that use of the Internet remains a
guided learning process, and not an exercise in data-gathering from Internet sources which
may be unreliable or even misleading.
It is true that the Internet can be invaluable for adults (for example in distance learning
or self-study modules) who are able to discriminate between sources and sift information to
marshal their facts. However, this is a mature skill and we should not assume that school age
pupils are ready to do this.
Overall, it appears that course books, with their quality and depth of material, are
set to remain an integral part of the syllabus. The internet can be judged a useful
supplement to this, if used carefully and under supervision.
Question 2: Many people go to university for academic study. More people should be
encouraged to do vocational training because there is a lack of qualified workers such as
electricians and plumbers. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Planning the ideas
Introduce idea: many young people study academic subjects at university. This is necessary, but more
vocational training is also needed.
Paragraph 2: two reasons why more vocationally-trained workers are required:
1 electricians, plumbers and other trades are vital when buildings are constructed or need maintenance
example: schools, hospitals, museums safety of public buildings in general.
2 too many academic graduates in some countries resulting in graduate unemployment.
Paragraph 3: more vocational training must be provided to meet societys needs.
1 schools must make changes in the curriculum and provide workshops to teach practical skills.
2 parents should encourage their children to consider learning a skilled trade as a good alternative
to university, with good job prospects when they qualify.
Conclusion: repeat using some different words.

ANSWER:

It is true that many people prefer to pursue academic studies at university rather than to
follow a vocational training course. While nobody can deny the need for university graduates, I
totally agree that we should encourage more people to qualify as electricians, plumbers or other
essential manual workers.
There are two important reasons why more workers must be trained in skilled professions
such as plumbing or electrical work. Firstly, such workers are vital when new buildings are
constructed or when existing buildings have to be renovated or simply maintained. Indeed, in
many countries, a permanent maintenance staff of skilled tradesmen is employed in hospitals,
schools or museums, ensuring the safety of all who use the buildings. Secondly, in some
developed countries, there is an existing imbalance in the economy, resulting in graduate
unemployment, while at the same time there is a shortage of skilled labour. Governments in
those countries need, therefore, to work with employers to ensure that extra vocational training is
provided.
More people must be encouraged to attend vocational training courses. [1] The bonus is
on schools to incorporate relevant subjects into the curriculum, so that not all the emphasis is
placed on preparation for academic study at university. Many boys and girls are not academically
inclined, but this does not mean that schools should consider them as failures. For example,
workshops in schools could provide an opportunity to learn hands-on skills, adapting the
theory of the physics lessons to practical applications. [2] Parents should also help their children
to choose vocational careers, explaining the good employment prospects and remuneration for
manual workers with qualifications and skills
In conclusion, I agree that it is vital that we encourage more people to do vocational
training because without such skilled workers, society cannot function effectively.
VOCABULARY

renovate (sa sang): to repair something so that it is in good condition again.


Imbalance (thiu cn bng): a situation in which two things are not the same size, in a
way that causes problems.

Callout (gi th sa): an occasion when someone is called to do repairs.


in all weathers (trong mi iu kin thi tit): if the weather is good or bad.
vocational training (o to ngh): training in the skills and knowledge that you need
in order to do a particular job.

Accountant (k ton): a person whose job it is to keep or check financial records.


manual work (lao ng chn tay): a type of work in which you use you use your hands
and your physical strength.

white-collar jobs (cng vic vn phng): jobs in which you work in an office.
blue-collar jobs (cng nhn): jobs in which you work in a factory or other work site.
fulfill their dreams (thc hin c m): to do or to achieve what they hoped to do.
Potential (tim nng): qualities that exist and can be developed.
Example: He has the potential to become a world-famous artist.

skill set (tp hp cc k nng): a persons range of abilities.


Tradesmen (th): skilled men, especially those who work with their hands in some
professions. A woman is referred to as a tradesperson.

Sanitation (thit b, h thng v sinh): the equipment and systems that keep places
clean and free from all types of waste.

Lift (thang my): the Americans say elevator a machine that carries people or goods
up or down to different levels in a building.

Glazier (th lp knh): a person who fits glass into windows.


hospital ward (phng bnh): a room in a hospital where patients are in bed.
operating theatre (phng phu thut): a special room in a hospital where doctors

perform operations on patients.


Question 3: Some people believe that studying at university or college is the best route
to a successful career, while others believe that it is better to get a job straight after school.
Discuss both views
ANSWER:
Upon graduating from high school, the young often wonder whether they ought to keep
on studying further or not. Many people believe that continuing to study at a university or
college will be the best way to guarantee a successful career, whereas others believe that
working right after school is a better option.
Working straight after graduation is beneficial in some ways. Firstly, by working, young
people will be able to earn money as soon as possible, and since they will likely be mature
enough, they will be able to live independently on their own income. It is also common
knowledge that having a job leads to even more maturity. Secondly, a person who chooses to get
a job instead of pursuing higher education is likely to progress rapidly in their career. This
may help them to obtain a lot of real experience and skills in their chosen profession.
On the other hand, there are a variety reasons why people tend to choose to continue
their education after high school. First, a college education prepares young people to meet

higher-level qualifications, which is what most employers expect these days. University
graduates usually get a much higher salary than those without a university education.
Furthermore, the job market is becoming more and more competitive and nowadays people are
well-advised to get a degree, as hundreds of applicants often chase the top jobs. Having a
degree is an obvious advantage that university graduates have. In Vietnam, students who
graduate with an engineering degree are highly paid and have an easy time getting a good job.
In conclusion, it seems evident that both working right after school and choosing to
continue higher-level studies each have their own unique advantages.
VOCABULARY

upon graduating from (ngay sau khi tt nghip t): you use upon to talk about once
you have finished doing something, in this case graduating from a school.

guarantee a successful career (m bo mt s nghip thnh cng): to ensure that


someone has a good career; to make sure someone has success in their career.

straight after (ngay sau khi): when you do something directly after another thing; right after.
to earn money (kim tin): to make money; to be paid for your work.

to live independently (t lp): to live on your own, outside of your parents home.
leads to (dn n): to go from one state to another; something that causes a change that
makes you go from one state to another; something causes another thing.

pursuing higher education (theo ui bc hc cao hn): to continue to study at


higher and higher levels

progress rapidly (thng tin nhanh chng): to improve very quickly.


to obtain a lot of real experience (c nhiu kinh nghim thc tin): to obtain means to
get and real experience means real-life experience in the real world.
chosen profession (ngh nghip chn): the career that a person chooses is their
chosen profession.
to tend to do something (c nh lm g): to usually do a certain thing; they tend
to go swimming on a hot day
to meet higher-level qualifications (c kh nng p ng nhng cng vic i hi
trnh cao): to be able to do higher-level jobs; the qualifications are the things that
youare supposed to be able to do if you want a specific job; he didnt get the job
because he did not meet the higher-level qualifications required for the position
chase the top jobs (tm kim cng vic tt nht, c v tr quan trng nht): to go after
the best jobs; to try to get the most important positions

to have an obvious advantage (c li ch r rng): to have a clear advantage; to be


clearly better at something than another

it seems evident that (hin nhin rng, r rng l): to appear clear that something
is true

unique advantages (nhng li ch c bit): special, one-of-a-kind advantages; things


that make you better than another

Question 4: Some people think that schools should reward students who show the
best academic results, while others believe that it is more important to reward students
who show improvements. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
Planning the ideas
Introduce idea: there are different views. My opinion reward students who show
improvements.
Paragraph 2: [View I disagree with]
1 rewards = competition among students. Result: children try harder to get good scores at
school.
2 rewards = the best students are identified. They can be given special attention to develop
their abilities. Personal example: my own school.
Paragraph 3: [View I agree with]
1 equal chance for all students to receive rewards. Result: all children are motivated to try
hard.
2 promotes learning for enjoyment and understanding, not to gain high scores. Reduces exam
pressure and cheating to score high marks.
Conclusion: repeat using some different words.
ANSWER:
It is true that the question of whether to reward students with excellent academic results
or those showing great improvements remains a source of controversy in the education field.
While a number of people believe that only students achieving the highest grades deserve
rewards, I would argue that praising students who achieve improvements is much more
reasonable.
On the one hand, there are a variety of reasons why awards should be given to students
having excellent academic performances. [1] Firstly, this could create a highly competitive
studying environment at school, seeing that students often desire to win prizes. As a
consequence, school children could be encouraged to put their effort into studying for the highest
scores. [2] Secondly, by adopting this approach, gifted students who are outstanding could be
given opportunities to nurture their abilities. My secondary school, for instance, selects
students with the best results for extra classes to develop their capabilities in order to take them
to national competitions.

On the other hand, I believe that giving encouragement to those who make strides in
their studies results in more favourable outcomes. [1]The first benefit is that this could give equal
chances for every student to receive awards, rather than only focus on the highest achievers.
Instead of feeling disappointed when competing with their top classmates, students who are
recognized for their effort during semesters will feel motivated if they are rewarded for making
significant progress. [2] Another benefit is that this form of recogniton follows the holistic
principle of learning, which is to access the world of knowledge, not just to gain high scores.
Consequently, several common phenomena which occur when examinations approach, including
pressure, anxiety and cheating, would be reduced.
In conclusion, although rewarding students with the highest scores is advantageous to
some extent, it seems to me that it is better to give encouragement to those who have improved
their level of academic performance.
VOCABULARY

a source of controversy (vn gy tranh ci)= a subject of public discussion, about which
people strongly disagree.

highly competitive (c tnh cnh tranh cao)= a situation in which people or organisations
have to compete against each other.

nurture their abilities (bi dng nng khiu)= to develop their capacity to learn or do
things while they are growing.

make strides in (c bc tin)= to make great improvements in the way that something is
developing.

the highest achievers (hc sinh c thnh tch tt nht)= the students who have the most
success and the highest marks.

the holistic principle of learning (nguyn tc ton din trong hc tp)= considering

education as a whole thing, rather than as separate facts or subjects.


Question 5: In many countries schools have severe problems with student behavior.
What do you think are the causes of this? What solutions can you suggest?

Sample Answer 1:
Nowadays, schools in various parts of the world report that students tend to have
behavioural problems. Unfortunately, this will make it harder for schools to educate students
as problematic behaviours are likely to interfere with the education process.
There are some reasons as to why students behave inappropriately. Firstly, the way
society works these days affect students behavioural patterns. For instance, parents might
spend more time at work than at home and as a result, children lack parental guidance, not
knowing how they are supposed to behave. This in turn is likely to cause them to have
behavioural problems. Secondly, such behaviours might be caused by external influences, such
as internet and television. Students, for example, might watch TV shows that use a lot of

violence. Therefore, they are likely to imitate in real life by being more aggressive and using
more violence. After all, students, especially teenagers, are easily affected by external parties.
In order to counter such problem, teachers should be friendly while still maintaining
their professionalism. By being friendly, teachers might be able to understand students point
of views and thus devise the right strategies to connect with them. This is because students are
more likely to listen to teachers if they feel they can relate to the teachers and that the teachers
understand them. Furthermore, it is also important to handle students patiently. This is really
crucial, since rough treatments might worsen their behaviours or encourage them to play
truant. It is therefore wiser to be patient and guide students gradually to be well-behaved
rather than using force to do so.
In conclusion, behavioural problems are resulted from the way society works these days
(e.g. lack of parental guidance) and external parties, such as bad influences from TV shows.
Nevertheless, by understanding students views and guiding them patiently, students can
gradually change and behave in a more appropriate manner.
Sample Answer 2:
Aggressive student behaviour is a major cause of concern in many countries. This
article addresses the reasons behind such behaviour and the measures that can be taken to
prevent it.

Violent student behaviour can be attributed to a bad family atmosphere, a competitive


school environment and lifestyle/dietary habits. A students behaviour in society depends upon
the atmosphere at his/her home. If the parents of student do not devote enough time for
him/her, the adolescent mind goes wayward. Research and study have shown that major acts
of violence were committed by people who have had abusive mother or father in their
childhood. Another factor that influences student behaviour is the environment at school. A
competitive and comparison-based education structure adds fuel to fire. The last but least
acknowledged factor in violent behaviour is their lifestyle/dietary habits. Excess meat
consumption and lack of adequate physical exercise results in an unhealthy body and mind
which leads to violent acts.
The behaviour of a student reflects the society we live in. Although violent student
behaviour is a matter of grave concern, there are adequate and simple measures to prevent it.
Parents and teachers must devote enough time for the student and understand his/her strengths
and weaknesses. They must never compare one student with another. A great deal of emphasis
must be placed by schools in physical activities like swimming, running and other sports. These
help to channelize the great energy of the students in a better manner. Students should also be
encouraged to take up activities like gardening and caring for domestic animals. These help in
providing opportunities for them to appreciate nature and the other living creatures in this
planet.

Violent student behaviour, although on the rise, can be purged at the grass-root level if
proper preventive measures are taken. The youth are the future of our society and it is our
solemn duty to guide and make them compassionate human beings.