IELTS Writing Sample #114

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

As the world becomes technologically advanced, computers are replacing more and more jobs.

Describe some job positions that may be lost because of computers, and discuss at least one problem that may result.

You should write at least 250 words.

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

model answer:

When computers first made their way into the business sector, everyone believed that they would make people's jobs easier. What was not expected was that computers would eliminate jobs. Besides contributing to unemployment, these automated workers often exhibit inadequate job performance.

A number of jobs have been lost as a direct result of new computer technology. Ticket agents in various transportation facilities, from subway/underground stations to airports are virtually nonexistent these days. Bank tellers have been greatly reduced due to automated bank machines. In addition, many call centers/centres that have help lines are almost entirely computerized/computerised. A few years ago I worked as a helper in our local library. Today this position does not exist, because six new computers have been installed. The number of positions lost to computers grows exponentially, and unemployment continues to get worse.

While a computer may easily achieve the main tasks of these jobs, most computers fall short when customers have a unique request or problem. A pre-paid ticket booth does not have insight about the entertainment district and cannot offer friendly directions to a tourist. Similarly, an automated bank machine cannot provide assistance and reassurance to a customer who has just had his credit card stolen. And, more often than not, automated telephone operators cannot answer the one question that we have, and we end up waiting on the line to speak with someone anyway. Every time I go into the library where I worked I notice elderly people who don't know how to use the computers and can't find anyone to help.

In the future, I believe a new business trend will evolve. As computers eliminate jobs, new positions will have to be invented. More and more people will go into business for themselves, and hopefully put the personal touch back into business. I believe that the human workforce will demonstrate that it is more valuable than computers.

(315 words)

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