001. Environmental problems are so big that they cannot be solved by any person or country alone. Instead, it should be solved at an international level. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this view? 4
002. In some countries, it is now possible for people to buy products made in other countries. To what extent do the benefits of this development outweigh the drawbacks?
003. Some people believe that charities should give aid to those who need the aid most, wherever they live. Some people believe that charity organisations would better concentrate on people in their own country instead. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
004. Rich countries often give financial aid to poor countries, but it does not address poverty effectively. For this reason, rich countries should give other types of help to poor countries rather than financial aid. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
005. To what extent do you agree that countries benefit from international tourism?
006. More and more students choose to go to another country for their higher education. Do you think the benefits outweigh the problems associated with it?
007. English has become a universal language. Discuss the positive and negative effects of this trend.
008. Some people think that it is necessary to travel abroad to learn about other countries. But other people believe we can learn all the information on TV and Internet. Discuss both opinions and give your own opinion.
009. When we travel to foreign countries, we tend to see the same things as we see in our home countries. What are the causes of this phenomenon and do you think this is positive or negative?
010. Some people think the increasing business and cultural contact between countries brings many positive effects. Others say it causes the loss of national identities. Discuss on both sides and give your opinion.
011. Some people think visitors to others countries should imitate local customers and behaviours. Some people disagree; they think the host country should welcome cultural differences. Discuss the two views and give your opinion.
012. Some people think that cultural traditions may be destroyed when they are used as money-making attractions aimed at tourists. Others believe it is the only way to save these traditions. Discuss on both sides and give your opinion.
013. Some people think governments should introduce new technology to improve the lives in developing countries while others think they should provide free education to achieve that. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
014. Some people think the foreign visitors should be charged more than the local visitors when they visit the cultural and historical attractions in another country. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
015. A country should try to produce all the food to its people and reduce imports. Do you agree or disagree?
016. Some people think the government should spend money on measures to save some languages from dying out. Others think it is a waste of financial resources. Discuss both sides and give your own opinion.
017. Multi-cultural societies, in which there is a mixture of different ethnic peoples, bring more benefits than drawbacks to a country. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
018. Exposure to international media such as films, TV and magazines has a significant impact on local cultures. What do you think has been the impact? Do you think its advantages outweigh the disadvantages?
Science and Technology
019. Technological progress in the past century has its negative effect, despite its remarkable contribution. To what extent do you agree or disagree and what can be done to reduce the negative effect?
020. Nowadays, distance-learning programs are such common thing for us (the study material by post, by internet), but some people argue that courses can never be taken as good as those by attending a college or university in person. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
021. Mobile phones have made life easier: You can answer your phone at any place or any time. Dose this development has more positive or negative effects on both individuals and society? Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
022. People can perform everyday tasks, such as shopping and banking as well as business transactions, without meeting other people face-to-face. What are the effects on an individual and the society as a whole?
023. Only employees (but not employers) can benefit from working at home. Do you agree or disagree?
024. Some people support the developments in agriculture such as factory farming and creations of new types of fruits and vegetables, while others oppose this view. Discuss both views and give your opinion.
025. Maintaining public libraries is a waste of money since the computer can now perform their functions. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
026. Some people think cheap air travel brings us benefits while others believe that non-essential flights should be cut in order to reduce environmental problems caused by cheap air travel. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
027. While it is important to protect the environment, little effort has been made by individuals. Why has this happened? What can individuals do to protect the environment? 4
028. There are many extinct animal species in the world nowadays. Some people say we should protect these animals from dying out, while others say we should concentrate more on problems of human beings. Discuss both opinions and give your personal view.
029. Some people think pollution and the damage to the environment have resulted from a country developing and becoming richer, and this is unavoidable. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
030. Many people think that companies and individuals should pay for the pollution they have produced while the government should not take any responsibilities. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
031. Industries and businesses should be moved from cities to small towns. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
032. In many countries traditional food is being replaced by international fast food. This is has negative effects on both families and societies. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
033. Professionals such as doctors, nurses and teachers should be paid more than sports and entertainment personalities. To what extent do you agree?
034. Economic progress is one way to measure the success of one country, while some people think there are other factors. What other factors should be considered? Within these factors, do you think that any factor is more important than the others?
035. Many people think that it is costly and time-consuming to preserve old buildings. We should knock them down and replace them with modern ones. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
036. Many people are moving from rural areas to big cities. Why has this happened? To what extent do you think it is a good trend?
037. It is argued that we are living in a throw-away society: people throw away what they use in daily life, instead of recycling or reusing them. Why has this happened and what are the effects of this trend?
038. The perception of careers is changing rapidly. People hardly rely on one job for life. Discuss the possible causes for this change and give your suggestions on how people should prepare for work in the future.
039. Some people think schools should only teach students academic subjects. Others think schools should also teach students how to discriminate between right and wrong. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
040. Some employers think that formal academic qualifications are more important than life experiences and personal qualities when they look for an employee. Why is it the case? Is it a positive or negative development?
041. Schools should concentrate on teaching students the academic subjects that will be useful for their future careers. Subjects such as music and sports are not useful. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
042. Some people think children should obey the rules set by their parents and teachers set, but others think that less control will help children to deal with their future adult life. Discuss both views and give your opinion.
043. Some people think students should go to boarding schools instead of living at home. Do you agree or disagree?
044. Some school leavers tend to go travelling or work for a period of time before going to university directly. What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages and what is your own opinion?
045. Some people think university education should prepare students for employment while others think it should help students acquire theoretical knowledge. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
046. University students always focus on one specialist subject, but some people think universities should encourage their students to study a wide range of subjects in addition to their own subject. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?
047. Some teachers think it is effective for students to study in group while others think it is better to study alone. Discuss both views and give your opinion.
048. Some people think that schools should select pupils according to their academic abilities, while others believe that it is better to have pupils with different abilities study together. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
049. Some people believe that some unpaid community service should be a compulsory part of high school programmes. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
050. Some people think that students benefit from going to private secondary schools. Others, however, feel that private secondary schools can have a negative effect on society as a whole. Discuss both these views and give your own opinion.
Mass Media Issues
051. The government should control the amount of violence in films and on TV can help to reduce crime. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
052. Studies suggest that children spend more time watching TV than they did in the past and spend less on doing active or creative things. Why do you think it is the case? What methods can be used to tackle it?
053. Today, advertising has a powerful influence on our lives. Do you think the positive effects of advertising overweigh the negative effects?
054. Nowadays, advertising aimed at children should be banned. To what extent you agree or disagree?
055. Newspapers have a remarkable influence in people’s opinions and ideas. Do you think it is a positive or negative change?
056. Detailed description of crimes on newspaper and TV can have bad consequences on society, so this kind of information should be restricted on the media. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?
057. A longer prison term as a way of punishing those who break the law is not as good as other methods. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
058. Some people think zoos are cruel and all the zoos should be closed. However, some people think zoos are useful to protect the rare animals. Discuss both these views and give your opinion.
059. Some people think it is necessary to use animals for testing medicines intended for human use. Others, however, criticise this as animal cruelty. Discuss both of these views and give you own opinion.
060. Women have different qualities from men, so gender imbalance in some occupations is acceptable. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
061. In many countries，the proportion of older people is steadily increasing. Does this trend make positive or negative effects to society?
062. In many parts of the world, teenagers and young people are committing more crimes. Why is this happening? How to address this issue?
063. In some countries, it is illegal for companies to reject job applicants on the grounds of age. Is this a positive or negative development?
064. Discuss the reasons why the youth unemployment has become an urgent issue and the methods to address this problem.
065. Some people think that good health is a basic human need, so the medical service should not be run by profit-making companies. Do you think the disadvantages of the private health care outweigh the advantages?
066. Some people believe creative arts should get financial support from government. Others think they should get support from other resources. Discuss both sides and give your own opinion.
067. Housing shortage in big cities has severe social consequences. Some people think only the government action can solve this problem. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
068. In today’s world, private companies rather than the government pay for and carry out scientific research. To what extent do you think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages? 2
069. Some people think that by paying taxes they have made enough contribution to their society, others think there are more responsibilities than paying taxes. Discuss both views and give your opinion. 2
070. Some people believe that the improvement of public health relies on the number of sports facilities; others believe that some other measures should be taken. Discuss both views and give your opinion.
071. Some people think it is more important to spend public money on promoting healthy lifestyle in order to prevent illness than to spend it on the treatment for people who are already ill. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
072. As the number of cars increases, more money has to be spent on road systems. Some people think the government should pay for this. Others, however, think that the user should pay for the cost. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.
073. Some people think that robots are very important to human’s future development. Others think that they are dangerous and have negative effects on society. Discuss both opinions and give your personal view.
074. There are social, medical and technical problems associated with the use of mobile phones. What forms do they take? Do you agree that the problems outweigh the benefits of mobile phones?
075. In today's society, more and more work is done by machines. Do you think the positive effects of the development overweigh the negative effects on individuals and society?
076. Today, foods travel thousands of miles from the farm to customers. Why has this happened? Is this trend positive or negative?
077. Some people argue that technology such as the cell phone destroys social interaction. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
078. In the past century when a human astronaut first arrived on the Moon, he said, ‘It is a big step for mankind.’ But some people think it makes little difference to our daily life. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
079. The development of technology has changed the way people interact with each other. In which ways does it change the types of relationship that people make with each other? Does it have a positive or negative effect on society?
080. Air travel can only benefit the richest people in the world. Ordinary people can get no advantage with the development of air travel. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
081. Food can be produced much more cheaply today because of improved fertilisers and better machinery. However, some of the methods used to do this may be dangerous to human health and may have negative effects on local communities. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
082. Leisure is a growing industry, but people no longer entertain themselves as much as they used to because the use of modern technology has made them less creative. Do you agree or disagree?