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This is my IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of the value of old age and youth from the real IELTS exam.

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IELTS Essay: Value of Old Age and Youth

In some places, old age is valued, while in other cultures youth is considered more important.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

In certain nations, the interests of elderly people are prioritized over younger generations. In my opinion, although young people are important for economic reasons, valuing an older population is a revealing commitment to human dignity.

Those who value the youth in a nation argue they form a country’s economic base. There is little doubt that the majority of all workforces globally are comprised of young adults and middle-aged citizens. The average working age in nearly all industries is around 30. Young people have the energy, passion, and motivation to work hard and achieve not only for the good of society but also to establish a higher standard of living for themselves and their families. It is therefore logical that governments should ensure younger generations have ample access to education and the resources needed to become contributing members of society. They will contribute the most in all likelihood.

However, human progress is about more than simply utilitarian benefits. In the past, it might have been necessary for human civilization to cruelly neglect older populations when they were fighting wars and resources were scarce. That is no longer the situation. Most countries, even developing ones, can now afford to provide healthcare for all citizens and some degree of retirement support. By undertaking these kindnesses, humans distinguish themselves clearly from their basest and most animalistic instincts. This can be understood as the surest sign that humanity is an evolved species culturally, socially, and emotionally and trumps any materialistic concerns related to growing already mature economies.

In conclusion, though there are utilitarian reasons to support youth movements, it is more important and principled to value older people. This is already done in some cultures but should be more widespread.

Analysis

1. In certain nations, the interests of elderly people are prioritized over younger generations. 2. In my opinion, although young people are important for economic reasons, valuing an older population is a revealing commitment to human dignity.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Those who value the youth in a nation argue they form a country’s economic base. 2. There is little doubt that the majority of all workforces globally are comprised of young adults and middle-aged citizens. 3. The average working age in nearly all industries is around 30. 4. Young people have the energy, passion, and motivation to work hard and achieve not only for the good of society but also to establish a higher standard of living for themselves and their families. 5. It is therefore logical that governments should ensure younger generations have ample access to education and the resources needed to become contributing members of society. 6. They will contribute the most in all likelihood.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific or hypothetical examples.
  4. Keep developing it fully.
  5. Use short and long sentences.
  6. Finish strong.

1. However, human progress is about more than simply utilitarian benefits. 2. In the past, it might have been necessary for human civilization to cruelly neglect older populations when they were fighting wars and resources were scarce. 3. That is no longer the situation. 4. Most countries, even developing ones, can now afford to provide healthcare for all citizens and some degree of retirement support. 5. By undertaking these kindnesses, humans distinguish themselves clearly from their basest and most animalistic instincts. 6. This can be understood as the surest sign that humanity is an evolved species culturally, socially, and emotionally and trumps any materialistic concerns related to growing already mature economies.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your new main idea.
  3. Include specific details and examples.
  4. Add as much information as you can and make sure it links logically.
  5. Develop the example fully.
  6. This paragraph can be longer than the other one.

1. In conclusion, though there are utilitarian reasons to support youth movements, it is more important and principled to value older people. 2. This is already done in some cultures but should be more widespread.

  1. Summarise your main ideas.
  2. Include a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean? Make some notes on paper to aid memory and then check below.

In certain nations, the interests of elderly people are prioritized over younger generations. In my opinion, although young people are important for economic reasons, valuing an older population is a revealing commitment to human dignity.

Those who value the youth in a nation argue they form a country’s economic base. There is little doubt that the majority of all workforces globally are comprised of young adults and middle-aged citizens. The average working age in nearly all industries is around 30. Young people have the energy, passion, and motivation to work hard and achieve not only for the good of society but also to establish a higher standard of living for themselves and their families. It is therefore logical that governments should ensure younger generations have ample access to education and the resources needed to become contributing members of society. They will contribute the most in all likelihood.

However, human progress is about more than simply utilitarian benefits. In the past, it might have been necessary for human civilization to cruelly neglect older populations when they were fighting wars and resources were scarce. That is no longer the situation. Most countries, even developing ones, can now afford to provide healthcare for all citizens and some degree of retirement support. By undertaking these kindnesses, humans distinguish themselves clearly from their basest and most animalistic instincts. This can be understood as the surest sign that humanity is an evolved species culturally, socially, and emotionally and trumps any materialistic concerns related to growing already mature economies.

In conclusion, though there are utilitarian reasons to support youth movements, it is more important and principled to value older people. This is already done in some cultures but should be more widespread.

Answers

For extra practice, write an antonym (opposite word) on a piece of paper to help you remember the new vocabulary:

certain nations some countries

interests what is good for someone

elderly people old people, over 60+

prioritized over more important than

younger generations people who are not old, under 60

although despite

economic reasons good for the economy

valuing considering important

older population people who are not young, how many old people

revealing commitment important responsibility

human dignity how people think of themselves

argue think

form make up

economic base financial backbone

There is little doubt that it can’t be questioned that

majority most of

workforces globally employed people around the world

comprised of made up of

middle-aged citizens people around 40

average working age how old most working people are

nearly all industries most fields

energy stamina

passion motivation

motivation interest in

achieve do something

for the good of society for all people

establish make sure of

a higher standard of living better quality of life

families kids

It is therefore logical that thus

ensure make sure of

ample access can get to

resources needed stuff they need

contributing members of society functioning parts of the public

contribute the most add a lot

in all likelihood probably

human progress civilization

simply utilitarian benefits just what someone gets from it

In the past before

necessary needed

human civilization the progress of mankind

cruelly neglect in a mean way ignore

fighting wars battling

resources were scarce not enough to go around

no longer the situation not true now

even developing ones poorer countries

afford can pay for

provide healthcare give medical treatment to

some degree of an amount of

retirement support pensions, etc.

undertaking doing

kindnesses kind acts

distinguish differentiate

clearly obviously

basest lowest

animalistic instincts drives like animals

surest sign best example

evolved species higher life form

culturally in terms of art and culture

socially in terms of interacting

emotionally in terms of feelings and emotions

trumps is stronger than

materialistic concerns only worried about money

related to concerning

growing already mature economies helping something that is already doing well

utilitarian reasons just for what you get out of it

support youth movements aid young people

principled has good reasons behind it

widespread common

Pronunciation

Practice saying the vocabulary below and use this tip about Google voice search:

ˈsɜːtn ˈneɪʃənz 
ˈɪntrɪsts 
ˈɛldəli ˈpiːpl 
praɪˈɒrɪˌtaɪzd ˈəʊvə 
ˈjʌŋə ˌʤɛnəˈreɪʃənz
ɔːlˈðəʊ 
ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪk ˈriːznz
ˈvæljuːɪŋ 
ˈəʊldə ˌpɒpjʊˈleɪʃən 
rɪˈviːlɪŋ kəˈmɪtmənt 
ˈhjuːmən ˈdɪgnɪti
ˈɑːgjuː 
fɔːm 
ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪk beɪs
ðeər ɪz ˈlɪtl daʊt ðæt 
məˈʤɒrɪti 
ˈwɜːkˌfɔːsɪz ˈgləʊbəli 
kəmˈpraɪzd ɒv 
ˈmɪdlˈeɪʤd ˈsɪtɪznz
ˈævərɪʤ ˈwɜːkɪŋ eɪʤ 
ˈnɪəli ɔːl ˈɪndəstriz 
ˈɛnəʤi
ˈpæʃən 
ˌməʊtɪˈveɪʃən
əˈʧiːv 
fɔː ðə gʊd ɒv səˈsaɪəti 
ɪsˈtæblɪʃ 
ə ˈhaɪə ˈstændəd ɒv ˈlɪvɪŋ 
ˈfæmɪliz
ɪt ɪz ˈðeəfɔː ˈlɒʤɪkəl ðæt 
ɪnˈʃʊə 
ˈæmpl ˈæksɛs 
rɪˈsɔːsɪz ˈniːdɪd 
kənˈtrɪbju(ː)tɪŋ ˈmɛmbəz ɒv səˈsaɪəti
kənˈtrɪbju(ː)t ðə məʊst 
ɪn ɔːl ˈlaɪklɪhʊd
ˈhjuːmən ˈprəʊgrəs 
ˈsɪmpli ˌjuːtɪlɪˈteərɪən ˈbɛnɪfɪts
ɪn ðə pɑːst 
ˈnɛsɪsəri 
ˈhjuːmən ˌsɪvɪlaɪˈzeɪʃən 
ˈkrʊəli nɪˈglɛkt 
ˈfaɪtɪŋ wɔːz 
rɪˈsɔːsɪz wɜː skeəs
nəʊ ˈlɒŋgə ðə ˌsɪtjʊˈeɪʃən
ˈiːvən dɪˈvɛləpɪŋ wʌnz
əˈfɔːd 
prəˈvaɪd ˈhɛlθkeə 
sʌm dɪˈgriː ɒv 
rɪˈtaɪəmənt səˈpɔːt.
ˌʌndəˈteɪkɪŋ 
ˈkaɪndnɪsɪz 
dɪsˈtɪŋgwɪʃ 
ˈklɪəli 
ˈbeɪsɪst 
ænəməlistic ˈɪnstɪŋkts
ˈʃʊərɪst saɪn 
ɪˈvɒlvd ˈspiːʃiːz 
ˈkʌlʧərəli
ˈsəʊʃəli 
ɪˈməʊʃənli 
trʌmps 
məˌtɪərɪəˈlɪstɪk kənˈsɜːnz 
rɪˈleɪtɪd tuː 
ˈgrəʊɪŋ ɔːlˈrɛdi məˈtjʊər i(ː)ˈkɒnəmiz
ˌjuːtɪlɪˈteərɪən ˈriːznz 
səˈpɔːt juːθ ˈmuːvmənts
ˈprɪnsəpld 
ˈwaɪdsprɛd

Vocabulary Practice

I recommend getting a pencil and piece of paper because that aids memory. Then write down the missing vocabulary from my sample answer in your notebook:

In c______________s, the i_____________s of e________________e are p_____________________r y_______________________s. In my opinion, a______________h young people are important for e___________________s, v_________g an o_________________n is a r____________________________t to h______________y.

Those who value the youth in a nation a_____e they f____m a country’s e________________e. T_______________________t the m____________y of all w_______________________y are c______________f young adults and m__________________s. The a__________________________e in n____________________s is around 30. Young people have the e______y, p_________n, and m__________n to work hard and a_________e not only f_____________________y but also to e_____________________________________g for themselves and their f___________s. I________________________t governments should e________e younger generations have a____________s to education and the r_________________d to become c___________________________________y. They will c_______________________t i_________________d.

However, h____________________s is about more than s_____________________________s. I_____________t, it might have been n______________y for h__________________n to c_________________t older populations when they were f_________________s and r______________________e. That is n_______________________n. Most countries, e_______________________s, can now a_______d to p_____________________e for all citizens and s_____________________f r______________________t. By u____________g these k______________s, humans d_______________h themselves c________y from their b________t and most a___________________s. This can be understood as the s________________n that humanity is an e___________________s c___________y, s___________y, and e________________y and t____________s any m____________________s r____________o g___________________________________s.

In conclusion, though there are u__________________s to s____________________s, it is more important and p______________d to value older people. This is already done in some cultures but should be more w______________d.

Listening Practice

Learn more about this topic by watching from YouTube below and practice with these activities:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic and use these ideas to practice:

https://theconversation.com/50-year-old-muscles-just-cant-grow-big-like-they-used-to-the-biology-of-how-muscles-change-with-age-172941

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Old Age

  1. Do you know a lot of older people?
  2. How often do you talk with your grandparents?
  3. Do you think people get happier as they get older?
  4. Are people living longer in your country?

Writing Practice

Practice with the related IELTS essay topic below:

In some places, young people find it difficult to communicate with older people.

Why is this?

What are the solutions?


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