IELTS Writing Task 2/ Essay Topics with sample answer.

IELTS Essay # 1156 - Traditional examination are not often true to student’s ability

IELTS Writing Task 2/ IELTS Essay:

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

During the last twenty years, the assessment of students has undergone a major transformation. Many educational institutions have shifted their focus from traditional examination towards a variety of innovative assessment techniques, as they believe traditional examination results are not often true to student’s ability.

To what extent do you agree with the claim that traditional examination results are not true to the student’s ability?

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

You should write at least 250 words.

Sample Answer 1: (Agreement)
For more than a century, traditional examination to assess students' abilities is in place, but, a more suitable and modern approach has been adopted by many schools, and this is often regarded as a better technique to evaluate a pupil’s learning ability and knowledge. I personally agree with the claim and believe that the innovative modern assessment technique is more suitable.

To begin with, the conventional exam system has a major flaw which is its inadequacy to evaluate the true knowledge of pupils. For instance, in the conventional paper-based exam system, students can memorise answers to a few questions and pass the exam with a good grade. Someone with little knowledge of a subject can get a higher grade by memorising answers. On the contrary, innovative approaches like group assignments, sudden quizzes, hands-on tests and so on can reflect the actual level of a student’s learning. This is why many educational institutions are shifting towards these assessment techniques from the traditional exam system.

Moreover, the paper-based exam system allows students to cheat on the exam and pass it without even studying hard. On the contrary, a student would not be able to pass a hands-on test or an open-book exam where he or she needs to propose a solution to a problem rather than just write answers from books. From my experience, I can tell that I had to study more to pass the sudden class tests than my term finals as I had no clue what teachers would assess on these sudden tests. Many schools have already introduced a few innovative assessment techniques due to their experience with traditional tests and their limitations. The latest methods are in place because they are more suitable.

To conclude, the proper evaluation method for students is important, and no stone should be unturned to introduce the most effective way of doing it. Something is missing in the conventional exam system, and I believe this is where the modern methods of evaluating fit in.


Sample Answer 2: (Disagreement)
In recent years, there has been a growing belief that conventional examination methods do not accurately represent a student's real ability and skill. However, I strongly disagree with this claim. Traditional examinations have been used for centuries as a means of assessing a student's knowledge and understanding of a subject, and they continue to be the most reliable way of measuring a student's abilities.

Firstly, traditional examinations are standardized and objective. They are designed to test a specific set of skills and knowledge, and this makes it easy for examiners to assess the performance of students in a fair and consistent way. This is in contrast to other forms of assessment, such as coursework and essays, which can be subjective and vary depending on the marking criteria and the individual opinions of the examiner.

Secondly, traditional examinations are a proven way of testing a student's ability to perform under pressure. In many careers, such as medicine and law, it is essential that individuals can work well under pressure and perform to the best of their abilities in high-stress situations. By preparing students for the stress and pressure of exams, traditional examinations help to develop these important skills.

Finally, traditional examinations provide a clear and objective measure of a student's performance, which is essential for universities and employers when making decisions about admissions and employment. Without a standardized measure of performance, it would be much harder to compare the abilities of different students and make fair decisions.

In summary, while there could be some limitations to traditional examinations, I believe that they are still the most reliable and objective way of measuring a student's abilities. The focus should be on improving the quality and effectiveness of these examinations, rather than abandoning them in favour of less reliable and less objective forms of assessment.

Model Answer 3: (Agreement)
A change in the student evaluation process could be observed in the last two decades and formal examination has been less frequently used in many educational institutions in different parts of the world. The result of the paper-based exam, though used extensively in many schools, is believed to be less suitable for assessing the ability of learners, and I believe that it should be replaced by modern evaluation approaches.

To begin with, formal examinations, in many cases, do not reflect a pupil’s true ability and knowledge. Examination or any assessment test is meant to scrutinize a student objectively, but a formal test fails to do it, especially because it involved the memorise-and-pass technique. Some students take more time to produce any result and though they take a longer time, they have a better result in producing capability. Traditional exams would also score these sorts of students poorly.

On the other hand, modern assessment systems to test a student’s skill and knowledge can be quite effective and bring out far better results. For instance, oral presentations, assignments, sudden quizzes, class tests, course work, and other modern methods of evaluation can examine students from various perspectives and when the result is combined, the indication is far more accurate. These tests scrutinise a learner’s creativity, depth of knowledge, creativity, and ability to use the knowledge in the practical world, and are important parameters of a student’s reasoning and reflection of learning ability.

In conclusion, evaluating a learner accurately is important, and the best method for this should be in place. No doubt the formal examination system had been used for a long, but the time has come to adopt a more accurate and practical assessment system, and hence the shift towards a combination of innovative assessment systems is imperative.


Sample Answer 4: (Agreement)

Over the last two decades, there has been a noticeable shift in educational institutions from traditional exams towards more innovative and practical assessment methods. Standardized tests often rely solely on memorization and do not allow for the application of critical thinking skills, creativity, and problem-solving abilities that are crucial in real-world situations. So, I strongly agree with the claim that traditional examination results may not be the best indicator of a student's ability.

Traditional examinations can be an immense source of distress and unease for several students, resulting in subpar performance and an inequitable assessment of their capabilities. For instance, students who suffer from learning disabilities, mental health issues, or anxiety disorders may face significant challenges when it comes to performing well under the demanding conditions of exams, which can lead to an incorrect and misleading evaluation of their aptitude.

In contrast, innovative assessment methods such as project-based learning, presentations, and group work offer a more accurate reflection of a student's abilities. These methods allow students to showcase their problem-solving, analytical, and critical-thinking skills, which are vital for success in today's society. Additionally, these assessments often offer more opportunities for feedback, which is critical for students to learn from their mistakes and improve their performance. The modern approach for evaluating students encourages students to learn more about the practical aspect of lessons and thus prepare them better for the future which traditional exams often fail to achieve.

All things considered, I strongly believe that traditional examination often fails to provide an accurate reflection of a student's abilities and knowledge. Innovative assessment methods offer a more comprehensive understanding of a student's strengths and weaknesses and better prepare them for success in the real world.

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