IELTS Writing Task 2 #21

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Attitude is as important as knowledge in a test situation. To what extent do you agree?

Write at least 250 words.

model answer:

Students react in different ways to different pressures, but for many people examinations and tests are a time of nervousness and panic. It is here that it could be argued that these kinds of assessments are not a true test of a subject but of the candidate’s character, a point of view I will now consider.

Candidates taking a test with no understanding of the subject are unlikely to do very well. Without understanding what they are being asked to respond to, they are forced to rely only on common sense, presenting an answer that may be correct. In comparison with studious and prepared candidates, it is obvious that the latter would perform better.

However, a counterargument can be made by considering nervous candidates who have little confidence. Such people could find themselves sitting in the test but unable to organise any of their thoughts, finding that the time allotted for the test has gone before having time to write more than a few lines. Now compare the candidates who have written fluently and at length with candidates who have managed only a few lines, and it becomes considerably more difficult to assess whether attitude is as important as knowledge.

Candidates with a confident attitude and others with knowledge of the subject being tested consequently have the possibility of attaining a similar grade. Overall, therefore, what is needed in a test situation is a balance between the two, in which the information gleaned from studying is balanced with a positive and organised approach to the test itself.

(257 words)