IELTS 18 model answer on university studies

ielts writing paraphrasingIELTS discussion essay model answer about university studies.

This model answer is based on the topic of university education and whether students should learn about other subjects. It’s a discussion essay so I need to cover both sides and give my clear opinion.

The task was taken from the Cambridge IELTS 18 book.  As I have stated before in earlier posts, use authentic IELTS material when you are practicing. You can get these from the Cambridge IELTS books, the most recent being IELTS 18.

In terms of the structure, you should write about what both sides think of the topic and give your opinion, so decide on one side only. Do not agree with both sides as it may confuse the reader (the examiner). Below is an example of a structure that you can use to help get a good band score.

Useful discussion essay structure

ielts discussion essay structure

Model Answer

Some university students want to learn about different subjects in addition to their main subjects. Others believe it is more important to give all their time and attention to studying for a qualification. Discuss both these views and give your opinion.

Some students in university think it is better to devote most of their time to getting a specific qualification, whereas others would like to divide their time between learning other subjects and studying for their degree. This essay argues that it is important for undergraduates to study a variety of courses to best prepare themselves for the future.

On the one hand, some students would argue that dedicating all of their time to a specific subject will lead to greater expertise and better career prospects. This is because they feel that they have a much better chance of mastering their chosen area of expertise if they focus solely on being the best in that field without other distractions. For example, if a student is doing a degree in computer science, they may think that focusing on coding, algorithms, and Ai systems will make them more competitive in the IT job market. I believe this is true to an extent but university students need a wider range of skill sets.

On the other hand, other students desire a broader educational experience for their future job prospects. This is because they believe learning subjects beyond the core specialisation can help to develop broader thinking and problem-solving skills. For instance, if someone is studying psychology they may feel that if they take a course in nutrition, it will help them make a deeper connection to how cognition and temperament are directly linked to a healthy or unhealthy diet. I think that this holistic approach is important for a well-rounded university education and leads to greater chances of employment after graduation.

In conclusion, although views differ, I believe that universities should encourage students to explore a variety of subjects to enrich their educational experience and improve their career prospects.

294 words / IELTS 18 book


I have used the word students 6 times and the word subjects 4 times. Some people think that it’s repetition but this is fine actually. It’s difficult to find a synonym for the word ‘students‘ so I just kept the word. If possible use referencing or omission if you don’t want to keep repeating words.

You must state your opinion in the thesis statement, which is in the introduction. Also, make sure to state your opinion in the body paragraphs as well as the conclusion.

In the conclusion you can write ‘although views differ / despite differing views’ and then rephrase your opinion. Make sure you paraphrase your opinion from the introduction, don’t repeat the same words.

Leave a comment if you have any questions.

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