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Saturday, 31 January 2015

Essay 62 (Govt. Funding for Performing Art Students)



IELTS Essay Question, Kottayam 29/1/2015

Some people believe that training courses of performing arts (eg. dance, music, drama etc.) should be funded by government.  Others believe that they should be done through other ways (eg. business or student’s family).

Discuss both view and give your opinion.

There is a view that government should provide financial support to talented students who intend to pursue a career in performing arts such as dance, music or theatre.  However, many people believe that taxpayers money should not be wasted for this purpose, and students should look for sponsorship from other sources like corporates or their own families.  This essay examines both perspectives.

On the one hand, state funding for students of performing arts is one of the best ways to conserve arts and culture, which is a major responsibility of the government.  This is very relevant today as the number of students opting for careers in such disciplines is declining and government’s patronage in this area would encourage an increasing number of students to choose performing arts.  For example, the government of Kerala in India provides free training to art aspirants in traditional performing art forms of the state like Kathakali, Mohiniyattam and Thullal, in a prestigious art-school called Kerala Kalamandalam. This initiative from the government has played a major role in generating interest in young Keralites in traditional performing arts of the state.

On the other hand, critics contend that since it is mostly students themselves who benefit from art education they should seek aid from other sources such as corporate funding and their own parents. For instance, like any other professionals musicians, dancers and actors also earn large sums of money from stage shows and other public performance. They also believe that since enormous amounts of money is required to fund art education, it would become an unnecessary liability for government, as it has more important priorities to deal with.

A close examination of both views reveal that it is necessary for government to sponsor art education because many parents are not financially capable of shouldering this responsibility and corporate funding is often impractical.

In conclusion, although it may be a serious financial obligation, government should not hesitate to support art students financially because safeguarding the cultural traditions of a country is one of it’s primary responsibility.

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Thursday, 29 January 2015

Essay 61 ( Commericialisation of Schools)


Some schools agree that fast food restaurants and supermarkets can promote their products in school and that schools benefit from it. Is it a positive or a negative development?


Today, a number of schools, especially in the developed countries allow corporate advertisements of fast foods and supermarkets and in this way they try to raise funds for schools activities.  This practice, in my view, is disadvantageous for school children.


To start with, showing commercials of fast foods, chocolates and similar products or making them available within school premises would reinforce children’s taste for such foods.  This can increase problems like obesity and other health issues among children.  For example, if hamburgers, fried meats and sweet beverages of brands like Mcdonalds or KFC are available in school cafeterias children would definitely have a tendency to consume them on a regular basis, instead of opting for healthier alternatives.  


Similarly, exposure to constant commercial messages within the academic environment can create a materialistic attitude in children.  For instance, if schools promote advertisements of children’s products like toys or computer games from supermarkets through educational materials, billboards or school television, children would think that they have the approval of teachers and school authorities.  Consequently, they may force their parents to buy the advertised products, when they visit supermarkets. This is a very obvious example of how commercialisation of schools can promote materialistic attitude in children.


On the other hand, some principals do not believe that children are unduly influenced by commercialisation of schools and they consider it advantageous to them, as a way to improve school facilities.  To cite an example, some corporates help financially strapped schools to buy library books or improve sports facilities for promoting their products inside the campus.

In conclusion, despite minor advantages, corporate commercial campaigns within school premises has greater negative influence on children as they would promote unhealthy habits and materialistic attitude in them.

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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Essay 60 (Criteria for a country's progress)

Economic progress is often used to measure a country's success. However, some people believe that other factors are more important. What other factors should also be considered when measuring a country's success? Do you think one factor is more important than others?


Financial status is mostly considered an important yardstick to assess the development of a nation.  However, many economists argue that a number of other criteria should also be given importance.  Among them, I believe education is the most significant.


To begin with, educated citizens in various professional sectors and scientific fields can be a major symbol of a nation's progress.  For example, scientists, engineers and technicians spearhead research and development, and industrial growth in most advanced countries.


Furthermore, effective health care sector can be an important measure to gauge a countries's development.  To explain, only a truly progressed nation can ensure efficient universal health care facilities for its citizens.  For example, the life expectancy of advanced countries in Europe, America and Asia is the highest, due to the availability of latest medical procedures, health care personnel and medicines.


Finally, scientific development in agricultural sector is a vital benchmark of progress.  This means that in most advanced nations, the highest level of agricultural production is achieved using the latest technology and minimum manpower.  For example, mechanised farm implements, high yielding seeds, highly effective fertilisers and other scientific methods practiced in these countries ensure maximum yield from agriculture.


I believe, the advancements in education is the most important indicator of the comprehensive development of a country.  The main reason is, only with the help of educated professionals in all fields, including healthcare, agriculture and industries can a country achieve success.

In conclusion, there are varied ways to measure the progress of a nation, but education is the most significant aspect, because all the other sectors depend on it.