Writing Task 2-Full Opinion Essay Sample

A couple of days ago in my previous post on writing task 2, I promised to post my complete answer to the following IELTS essay task:

Some people think governments should spend less money on arts and invest more in education.

How far do you agree or disagree?

So, here’s my band-9 essay. While you read through this, it would really help to pay attention to the organisation of the information and ideas, as well as to how I have presented and developed my reasons. These points contribute half of your score in the writing section and are as important as the vocabulary and grammar that you use in your essay:

I agree that public budgets for arts should be decreased, and more money ought to be spent on education instead. This is true about the money allocated to music, paintings and other forms of art, and governments should invest in the development and improvement of schools, teachers and educational resources.

Education normally plays a more important role in the development of a country than the arts. While art has great cultural significance, it seems that learning important sciences and skills effectively contributes more greatly to a nation’s progress. This is because the development of industries, healthcare and defense relies mostly on a country’s progress in different fields of science and technology, which in turn requires skillful teachers, advanced computers and better-equipped laboratories.

Art is also already immensely supported by the private sector in most parts of the world. Many art galleries invest in new or professional artists, and a large number of wealthy art lovers tend to spend lavishly to buy different forms of art like paintings and sculptures on a regular basis. Musicians also earn a lot from the sales of their CDs, as well as the online sales of their music and concert tickets. Therefore, most artists are not likely to require government financial support.

Some may argue that governments have historically supported artists, and withdrawing this support would put arts at risk of extinction, but I think times have changed as most artists are not that dependent on state aid anymore, and financial support for arts should be curbed in favour of education budgets.

(256 words)


  1. Dear Mr. Tahasoni,
    I’ve read that since it’s an academic writing, you better avoid using personal pronouns and use the passive voice instead. What do you say about it?
    I’ve also read that you need to paraphrase the rubric first and then narrow it towards the theses in the introductory paragraph. Isn’t it necessary?
    Thank you 🙂

    1. Sajjad
      First, take a look at the following examples from the most credible sources available to us all:

      Cambridge IELTS 7, page 163:

      Par. 4, line 1:
      I personally think…

      Par. 5, line 1:
      In conclusion, I agree that…

      Cambridge IELTS 8, page 167:
      Par. 3, line 1:
      I think to tackle…

      Par. 5, line 1:
      In conclusion, I think…

      Cambridge IELTS 9, page 167:
      Par. 3, line 4:
      …as my local council…

      Par. 5, line 1:
      In my opinion

      These were all academic examples written by Cambridge examiners, and there are more examples in the GT samples. As you can barely see, it is actually quite normal – and most of the time necessary – to use the personal tone when referring to your own ideas or experiences. So, I’d advise you to read such examples carefully before accepting advice on the writing module.

    2. The answer to your second question is simply “NO”. Remember that 1) there are various approaches to writing an essay, and 2) the contents of the introduction paragraph depend on the task itself.

      The approach I’ve taken here is the one used in many other opinion essay examples from Cambridge. You can find more details and references in this post:


  2. apart from conclusion and introduction, this essay has developed two ideas and supported each in one paragraph. so it doesn’t deserve 9 in TR. GR and LR are not at the height of a band 9 writing. not at all

    1. 1. What exactly do you think is wrong with the intro and conclusion?
      2. What is wrong with having two ideas in two different paragraphs? Mind you, I did the same in my own exam and scored 9, and the band descriptors do not demand more.
      3.GR and LR at band nine require error-free sentences (which are present) and a wide variety of words and structures used flexibly (which are again evident). If you are looking for outlandish sentences and vocabulary, you’ll probably need to study the band descriptors and examiners’ model answers in Cambridge IELTS.

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