TOEFL Sample Questions : Writing


A company has announced that it wishes to build a large factory near your community.Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of this new influence on your community.Do you support or oppose the factory? Explain your position.

Sample essay is as follows:

New factories often bring many good things to a community, such as jobs and increased prosperity.However, in my opinion, the benefits of having a factory are outweighed by the risks.That is why I oppose the plan to build a factory near my community.

I believe that this city would be harmed by a large factory.In particular, a factory would destroy the quality of the air and water in town.Factories bring smog and pollution.In the long run, the environment will be hurt and people’s health will be affected.Having a factory is not worth that risk.

Of course, more jobs will be created by the factory.Our population will grow.To accommodate more workers, more homes and stores will be needed.Do we really want this much growth, so fast? If our town is going to grow, I would prefer slow growth with good planning.I don’t want to see rows of cheaply constructed townhouses.Our quality of life must be considered.

I believe that this growth will change our city too much.I love my hometown because it is a safe, small town.It is also easy to travel here.If we must expand to hold new citizens, the small town feel will be gone.I would miss that greatly.

A factory would be helpful in some ways.However, I feel that the dangers are greater than the benefits.I cannot support apian to build a factory here, and hope that others feel the same way.


It has been said, “Not everything that is learned is contained in books.” Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books.In your opinion, which source is more important? Why?

Sample essay is as follows:

People always are learning and practicing through their whole lives.From reading words in text book such as toy, car, train etc., people have the concept and ideas.They further understand the actual meaning of these words by playing toys and riding or driving cars, trains etc.

Education (books) and experience are the main two channels for People to gain their knowledge.Each play different roles for people.In my opinion, knowledge from experience is more important than that from books.

Experience first can prove if the knowledge form books are true or false.Textbooks are very wonderful in teaching people essential principles, how is the world looks like? what is the basic law of change of people and things? We can learn a lot through primary school, secondary school until university.However, people can only understand the really meaning of those form books and justify them if they are right through practices.A few hundred years ago, people learnt from text book that the earth was flat.However scientists found that was wrong through observations and measurement.

The knowledge from experience can improve and advance the world and our society.As books have limitation, they only teach us the what people found in the past.The knowledge from the books are constrained to the certain conditions and environment.For example, mould and tools design for plastics industry, the university course only taught me very simple cases, most knowledge are obtained from various different and complicated cases in my career.

There are a lot new inventions and new products which could not be found from textbooks.Our society and world are developed through continuous practices, those knowledge, never found in books, such as internet, e-business etc.are all developed through new practices.

“The truth comes from practices and experience”, people are continually discovering new things and assessing the creditability of the knowledge written in books.The knowledge from experience help us much more than those from books.


Nowadays, food has become easier to prepare.Has this change improved the way people live? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Sample essay is as follows:

The twentieth century has brought with it many advances.With those advances, human lives have changed dramatically.In some ways life is worse, but mostly it is better.Changes in food preparation methods, for example, have improved our lives greatly.

The convenience of preparing food today is amazing.Even stoves have gotten too slow for us.Microwave cooking is much easier.We can press a few buttons and a meal is completely cooked in just a short time.People used to spend hours preparing an oven-cooked meal, and now they can use that time for other, better things.Plus, there are all kinds of portable, prepackaged foods we can buy.Heat them in the office microwave, and lunch at work is quick and easy.

Food preparation today allows for more variety.With refrigerators and freezers; we can preserve a lot of different foods in our homes.Since technology makes cooking so much faster, people are willing to make several dishes for even a small meal.Parents are more likely to let children be picky, now that they can easily heat them up some prepackaged macaroni and cheese on the side.Needless to say, adults living in the same house may have very different eating habits as well.If they don’t want to cook a lot of different dishes, it’s common now to eat out at restaurants several times a week.

Healthful eating is also easier than ever now.When people cook, they can use new fat substitutes and cooking sprays to cut fat and calories.This reduces the risk of heart disease and high cholesterol.Additionally, we can buy fruits and vegetables fresh, frozen or canned.They’re easy to prepare, so many of us eat more of those nutritious items daily.A hundred years ago, you couldn’t imagine the process of taking some frozen fruit and ice from the freezer, adding some low fat yogurt from a plastic cup and some juice from a can in the refrigerator, and whipping up a low fat smoothie in the blender!

Our lifestyle is fast, but people still like good food.What .new food preparation technology has given us is more choices.Today, we can prepare food that is more convenient, healthier, and of greater variety than ever before in history.


Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Parents are the best teachers.Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Sample essay is as follows:

Throughout my life, I have been lucky enough to have a very good relationship with my parents.They have supported me, given me necessary criticism, and taught me a great deal about how to live my life.Parents can be very important teachers in our lives; however, they are not always the best teachers.

Parents may be too close to their children emotionally.Sometimes they can only see their children through the eyes of a protector.For example, they may limit a child’s freedom in the name of safety.A teacher might see a trip to a big city as a valuable new experience.However, it might seem too dangerous to a parent.

Another problem is that parents may expect their children’s interests to be similar to their own.They can’t seem to separate from their children in their mind.If they love science, they may try to force their child to love science too.But what if their child’s true love is art, or writing, or car repair?

Parents are usually eager to pass on their values to their children.But should children always believe what their parents do? Maybe different generations need different ways of thinking.When children are young, they believe that their parents are always right.But when they get older, they realize there are other views.Sometimes parents, especially older ones, can’t keep up with rapid social or technological changes.A student who has friends of all different races and backgrounds at school may find that his parents have narrower views.A student who loves computers may find that her parents don’t really understand or value the digital revolution.Sometimes kids have to find their own ways to what they believe in.

The most important thing to realize is that we all have many teachers in our lives.Our parents teach us, our teachers teach us, and our peers teach us.Books and newspapers and television also teach us.All of them are valuable.


People attend college or university for many different reasons (for example, new experiences, career preparation, increased knowledge).Why do you think people attend college or university? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Sample essay is as follows:

College is a place that the students can learn more and new knowledge and experience in it.Of course, different people have different reason to study in college.For example, some people want to be to go on a further study after they graduate from the college; some people hope to find a good job after their studying in the college and also some people wish to exchange their present situation through studying in the college.In my opinion, no matter what reason people study in the college for, studying in the college is just a preparation for their future’ life.

First of all, students can learn new knowledge and experiences from the studying in the college.There are many teachers, professors with abundant teaching experience who teach students lots of new knowledge and help them to solve the problems in their study.With their help, student can learn a lot of useful basic and professional knowledge which is very helpful for their future’ work.And study.After they finish their study in the college, students go to work in the society and contribute to the different fields.

Secondly, students can learn how to arrange their own time reasonably.Before their studying in college, their life often arranged by their parents and their study often arranged by their teachers. It is very different for them to live and study in college, because students studying in college have to arrange their life and study by themselves.They have right to arrange their part time, such as when to get up, when is the sport-time, when to finish the assignment etc.This is very important experience for students’ work and life in the future.

Finally, studying in the college make students having opportunity to live with other student and learn how to cooperate with other people.Usually, people often have uncomfortable feeling to live with a stranger, because they do not know each other and perhaps their habit and personality are different.But for the long run, it is good for them.They have to cooperate with each other and solve a lot of problems they will face together.Gradually, they can learn how to care and understand other people.It is a preparation for students to go to cooperate with other people in the society.

All in all, students not only can learn lots of new knowledge from the books but also can learn much more necessary experience such as how to arrange time and how to cooperate with other people.It is very important for their future’ wok and life.

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