IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample 658 - Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

It is often cited that “Not everything that is learned is contained in books”. According to many, we learn most of the things from our own experience while others believe that books are our main source of knowledge. Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books. In your opinion, which source is more important? Why?  

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

You should write at least 250 words.

Model Answer 1:
Knowledge is a very important aspect of our daily lives. Its application helps us go through life with fewer hitches. As the saying goes, “knowledge is power”. Therefore, in our society today the most knowledgeable is considered to be the most powerful. Knowledge can be obtained from life experiences or from reading books. In my opinion, one cannot depend on either of the two in isolation. The best is to make use of both at times of need.

First and foremost, before an individual is able to read and write, one must obtain knowledge through life experiences. For example, children begin to learn right from the day they are born. A child learns how to sit, stand, develop sense of right and wrong and so on. This learning experience is necessary for the child’s development.

Secondly, as the child grows, he/she develops qualities such as compassion, empathy, friendliness and so on. These qualities are not learned in books but can only be obtained through life experiences.

On the other hand, formal education is obtained by attending classes and reading books. This aspect of learning is equally important for an individual’s future career. For instance, as a doctor, I am only able to keep myself updated by reading up on various changes on diagnosis and management of various diseases so as to offer my patients comprehensive care.

In conclusion, knowledge learned from life experiences is as important as knowledge acquired from reading books. The former helps one develop certain human characteristics which are informal whereas the latter helps one achieve a target career goal.

[ Written by - Abdurrahim Zakari ]

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