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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer on the topic of education and crime.

If you want to learn about more recent questions from the test, you can sign up for my exclusive online lessons here.

It came up on the real IELTS exam recently but these are also topics (crime, education) that come up all the time on listening, reading, writing, and speaking.

It is very useful for you to practice and learn about the topics and vocabulary for when you take IELTS.

Read on for my answer, analysis, vocabulary practice and more!

IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample Answer: Education and Crime (Real Test)

The most common solution for criminal behaviour is prison but many believe education is a better method.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Real Past IELTS Tests

Many feel that instead of locking up criminals, we could better reduce crime by tackling systemic problems in our educational systems. In my opinion, although education is important, deterrence remains the primary inhibitor of criminality.

Many see education as a better remedy as it holds long-term promise. The main cause of crime is poverty and that can be linked directly to education. Take for example countries with strong educational systems. In Singapore, which has one of the most well-regarded school systems in the world, the majority of graduates can find well paid jobs and the crime rate is consequently among the lowest globally. There is no cause to commit a crime if you have enough money to provide for yourself and your family.

Despite the clear results education can bring about, deterrence remains the main reason why people do not commit crimes. If there was no threat of prison, people would feel free to steal, murder or commit whatever crime they choose. A good example of the effect of prison on crime is in countries with strict, mandatory sentencing guidelines. Many Southeast Asian countries have imposed severe sentences on drug related crimes to successfully curb drug trafficking and distribution. There is no substitute for the clearcut logic engendered by the threat of prison.

To sum up, despite the admitted benefits of education, the deterring effect of prison prevents most crime. Countries ought to invest in sustainable solutions such as education and economic reform while not neglecting the irreplaceable role of incarceration.

Sample Answer Analysis

1. Many feel that instead of locking up criminals, we could better reduce crime by tackling systemic problems in our educational systems. 2. In my opinion, although education is important, deterrence remains the primary inhibitor of criminality.

  1. The first sentence of your essay should simply restate what the general topic is.
  2. My second sentence gives my opinion – make your opinion totally clear or you will get band 5 for task achievement automatically.

1. Many see education as a better remedy as it holds long-term promise. 2. The main cause of crime is poverty and that can be linked directly to education. 3. Take for example countries with strong educational systems. 4. In Singapore, which has one of the most well-regarded school systems in the world, the majority of graduates can find well paid jobs and the crime rate is consequently among the lowest globally. 5. There is no cause to commit a crime if you have enough money to provide for yourself and your family.

  1. My first sentence is a topic sentence with my main idea for tha paragraph: education has long-term progress. Stick to 1 main idea so that you can develop it fully.
  2. The next sentence begins to develop this main idea.
  3. My third sentence begins my example. Try to make your examples as specific as possible: a real person, country, etc.
  4. The fourth sentence continues my example by making it even more specific and detailed.
  5. My fifth sentence concludes the paragraph by reiterating the link between lack of education and crime.

1. Despite the clear results education can bring about, deterrence remains the main reason why people do not commit crimes. 2. If there was no threat of prison, people would feel free to steal, murder or commit whatever crime they choose. 3. A good example of the effect of prison on crime is in countries with strict, mandatory sentencing guidelines. 4. Many Southeast Asian countries have imposed severe sentences on drug related crimes to successfully curb drug trafficking and distribution. 5. There is no substitute for the clearcut logic engendered by the threat of prison.

  1. My first sentence is another topic sentence with the main idea for this paragraph which is that prison deters people from committing crimes.
  2. The next sentence explains my main idea.
  3. My third sentence starts another example – make your examples the centerpiece of your paragraph!
  4. The fourth sentence develops the example by describing Southeast Asian countries.
  5. My fifth sentence finishes the paragraph by repeating why I think deterrence is more important than education.

1. To sum up, despite the admitted benefits of education, the deterring effect of prison prevents most crime. 2. Countries ought to invest in sustainable solutions such as education and economic reform while not neglecting the irreplaceable role of incarceration.

  1. The first sentence of my conlusion simple repeats my opinion.
  2. My last sentence adds an extra, extended detail that examiners will typically require for band 7+ for task achievement.

Vocabulary

Try to figure out the words in bold from the context of the sentence. Write down a definition or synonym for each.

Many feel that instead of locking up criminals, we could better reduce crime by tackling systemic problems in our educational systems. In my opinion, although education is important, deterrence remains the primary inhibitor of criminality.

Many see education as a better remedy as it holds long-term promise. The main cause of crime is poverty and that can be linked directly to education. Take for example countries with strong educational systems. In Singapore, which has one of the most well-regarded school systems in the world, the majority of graduates can find well paid jobs and the crime rate is consequently among the lowest globally. There is no cause to commit a crime if you have enough money to provide for yourself and your family.

Despite the clear results education can bring about, deterrence remains the main reason why people do not commit crimes. If there was no threat of prison, people would feel free to steal, murder or commit whatever crime they choose. A good example of the effect of prison on crime is in countries with strict, mandatory sentencing guidelines. Many Southeast Asian countries have imposed severe sentences on drug related crimes to successfully curb drug trafficking and distribution. There is no substitute for the clearcut logic engendered by the threat of prison.

To sum up, despite the admitted benefits of education, the deterring effect of prison prevents most crime. Countries ought to invest in sustainable solutions such as education and economic reform while not neglecting the irreplaceable role of incarceration.

Answers

locking up: incarcerate

tackling systemic problems: dealing with institutational issues

deterrence dissuade

inhibitor deterring factor

criminality crime

better remedy superior solution

holds long-term promise will have an impact in the future

linked directly stems from

well-regarded school systems good schools

well paid jobs good jobs

crime rate the level of crime

consequently as a result

commit a crime take part in a crime

provide for support

clear results definite outcomes

bring about cause

threat danger

strict harsh

mandatory sentencing guidelines rules for prison terms

imposed severe sentences hand out long prison sentences

curb drug trafficking slow down the transport of drugs

distribution selling of drugs

There is no substitute for nothing can replace

clearcut logic engendered clear reasons created

admitted benefits unequivocal positives

sustainable solutions long term remedies

economic reform changes to economic policy

neglecting ignoring

irreplaceable role cannot be replaced

incarceration going to prison

Pronunciation

ˈlɒkɪŋ ʌp 
ˈtæklɪŋ sɪˈstɛmɪk ˈprɒbləmz 
dɪˈtɛrəns 
ɪnˈhɪbɪtə 
ˌkrɪmɪˈnælɪti
ˈbɛtə ˈrɛmɪdi 
həʊldz ˈlɒŋtɜːm ˈprɒmɪs
lɪŋkt dɪˈrɛktli 
wɛl-rɪˈgɑːdɪd skuːl ˈsɪstɪmz 
wɛl peɪd ʤɒbz 
kraɪm reɪt 
ˈkɒnsɪkwəntli 
kəˈmɪt ə kraɪm 
prəˈvaɪd fɔː 
klɪə rɪˈzʌlts 
brɪŋ əˈbaʊt
θrɛt 
strɪkt
ˈmændətəri ˈsɛntənsɪŋ ˈgaɪdlaɪnz
ɪmˈpəʊzd sɪˈvɪə ˈsɛntənsɪz 
kɜːb drʌg ˈtræfɪkɪŋ 
ˌdɪstrɪˈbjuːʃən
ðeər ɪz nəʊ ˈsʌbstɪtjuːt fɔː 
ˌklɪəˈkʌt ˈlɒʤɪk ɪnˈʤɛndəd 
ədˈmɪtɪd ˈbɛnɪfɪts 
səsˈteɪnəbl səˈluːʃənz 
ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪk ˌriːˈfɔːm 
nɪˈglɛktɪŋ 
ˌɪrɪˈpleɪsəbl rəʊl 
ɪnˌkɑːsəˈreɪʃən

Listen and repeat:

Vocabulary Practice

Many feel that instead of ________________ criminals, we could better reduce crime by ________________ in our educational systems. In my opinion, although education is important, ________________ remains the primary ________________ of ________________.

Many see education as a ________________ as it ________________. The main cause of crime is poverty and that can be ________________ to education. Take for example countries with strong educational systems. In Singapore, which has one of the most________________ in the world, the majority of graduates can find ________________ and the is ________________ among the lowest globally. There is no cause to ________________ if you have enough money to ________________ yourself and your family.

Despite the ________________ education can ________________, deterrence remains the main reason why people do not commit crimes. If there was no ________________ of prison, people would feel free to steal, murder or commit whatever crime they choose. A good example of the effect of prison on crime is in countries with ________________, ________________. Many Southeast Asian countries have ________________ on drug related crimes to successfully ________________ ________________ and ________________ . the ________________ by the threat of prison.

To sum up, despite the ________________ benefits of education, the deterring effect of prison prevents most crime. Countries ought to invest in ________________ such as education and ________________ while not ________________ the ________________ of ________________ .

Listen and check:

Listening Practice

Review the ideas and vocabulary above with this video. To improve your listening you can use the tips here.

Reading Practice

Read the article below to review the vocabulary and ideas from my sample answer. Here are some ideas for activities when your read the article below.

https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/economics-of-crime/0/steps/20289

Comment below your own writing for feedback!

Learn more about my online courses here.

http://course.howtodoielts.com/online-course

Finally, here are some corrections related to a similar question:


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