Thursday, July 10, 2008

IELTS Essay: Are ads making us to buy more?

Today, the high sales of popular consumer goods reflect the power of advertising and not the real needs of the society in which they are sold.
To what extent do you agree or disagree?

This task was taken from the book Cambridge IELTS 6 Student's Book with answers: Examination papers from University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (IELTS Practice Tests) by Cambridge ESOL.

Nowadays millions of companies produce billions of products and the role of advertising is quite obvious. Ads help consumers to find the goods or services of their needs. However, do our needs grow equally fast as the number of products? Some market analysts insist modern commercials are not merely matchmakers of a product and a consumer, but actively interfere with buyer’s desires, developing artificial needs.

Undoubtedly, advertisement guides people through the market, serves those who do not have time to learn differences between goods. These products are probably the same, but loyalty to a particular brand, formed by a commercial helps make a choice. When a person buys one mobile phone out of 50 models, he thinks he made his choice himself. But that was a commercial who told him about the features of this phone.

Nevertheless, ads not only inform us about new goods, but force people to want them. This can be even useful, for example for someone who suffers from back pains and without commercials he would never imagine there are new mattresses which could ease their pains.

Unfortunately, promoters now operate our minds more aggressively. Commercials no longer promote products, but lifestyles. They told us to purchase things just because they are fashionable or up to date with the image of successful person. And we buy new cars, gadgets and clothes in order to match this image and not because old ones are no longer usable.

Personally I think that high sales of popular commodities are the result of new promotional technologies. The best illustration of that is that everyone now is concerned mostly about how a new mobile phone will reflect his personality, a new shirt – his image, or will a new car make colleagues feel jealous.

292 words
Expected IELTS Band – 7

Thursday, June 26, 2008

IELTS Letter: Some problems at work

You recently took a part-time job working for a local company. After a few weeks you realised there were some problems with the job.
Write a letter to the manager of the company. In your letter
- explain why you took the job
- describe the problems that you experienced
- suggest what could be done about them.

This task was taken from the book Insight into IELTS Extra, with Answers: The Cambridge IELTS Course Workbook (Cambridge Books for Cambridge Exams) by Vanessa Jakeman, Clare McDowell

Dear Mr. Thompson,

I am a part-time call-centre operator at your company, started working about 4 weeks ago. I am writing to indicate the problem I encountered during my work.

Actually, I decided to took the position of a telesales specialist because consider myself able to develop a career in sales due to my skill of establishing good contact with people and make them trust me. However, I realised there are some obstacles on a way to success.

The problems started 3 weeks ago then the system administrator updated my software. At the time of a call I was querying a customer for his personal data then suddenly my computer reloaded and this person’s profile was lost. This situation repeated in the future for several times. I asked the system administrator to solve this problem, but he told me this is solely my fault and my computer skills are below required to use this program.

I am assured the complete situation makes company profits lower. I believe that software managing specialist could fix the problem if the initiative would be taken by a senior manager of your rank.

Sincerely yours,
Anna Frank

192 words
Expected IELTS Band - 7

Monday, June 23, 2008

IELTS letter: Damaged suitcase

You travelled by long distance bus recently and your suitcase was damaged.
Write a letter to the bus company. In your letter
- inform the bus company of when and to where you travelled
- describe your suitcase and what happened to it
- explain why the company should pay for a new suitcase

This task was taken from the book IELTS on Track: Test Practice General Training.

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to require a compensation for the property damage, taken place at the time of the travelling by the bus of your company.

I travelled from Washington, D.C. to Boston by the bus #301 on February 21, 2007. Before the trip I passed my luggage to the driver, who helped me to place my suitcase in the luggage compartment of the bus. After arrival the driver opened this back compartment and the first thing I saw was that my new and brand-name suitcase was smashed under the pressure of the weight of the other’s luggage.

My suitcase was quite firm and very beautiful in its red colour and modern design. However it obviously hasn’t been designed to resist such a weight on it. I am very depressed because I can not use anymore my broken suitcase, its handle was bended and two wheels out of 4 were detached.

Since damage stated above was caused by the careless actions of your employee, I would like to require a compensation of $200, which was the original price of my suitcase. Please, deliver a cheque to the address, written above.

Faithfully yours,
Anna Frank

197 words
Expected IELTS Band - 6.5-7

Sunday, June 15, 2008

IELTS Letter: Bad service at a shop

You recently had your computer fixed at the local computer store however you are not pleased with the service you received.
Write a letter to the store manager. In the letter
- describe the situation
- explain why you are dissatisfied
- say what you want the manager to do
Write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write your own address.
Begin your letter as follows:
Dear Sir or Madam,

This task was taken from the Scott's English Success web-site.

Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing to express my dissatisfaction with the service I received at your establishment.

Actually, the computer I have bought at your store on the late January was quite good, however after just half a year things got wrong. Some programs were getting frozen frequently. When I took my computer to your specialist and tried to explain the problem to the technician Michaels, he refused to take my computer into service because the problem did not appear that time. I was trying to convince him to spend more time to identify the reason it is getting stuck, but he was rude and impatient explaining this is the end of his shift. On the next day another technician listened to me carefully and fixed my computer in 10 minutes.

I suppose your employee Michaels is not suitable for his position because of his unprofessionalism. I suggest you to employ someone more skilled and with better personality in order not to cause your customers to loose their time like me.

Faithfully yours,
Anna Frank

177 words
Expected IELTS Band - 6-6.5

Saturday, June 14, 2008

IELTS Letter: Homestay in a New Zealand family

You are going to visit New Zealand for an 'English and Homestay' program. You have just received details of your homestay host family.
Write your first letter to the family. In your letter
- introduce yourself
- ask the family some questions to get information that is important to you
- tell the family about your arrival date and time.

This task was taken from the book IELTS on Track: Test Practice General Training.

Dear Mr Jones,

I have just received details of my future homestay at your family and writing to introduce myself and ask for some further information.

My name is Anna Frank, I am 21 and live with my family in Lyon, France, which is my hometown. My native language is French and I am looking forward to improving my English during the trip to New Zealand.

I would be grateful if you could provide more information about your family and its lifestyle. To begin with, I would like to ask you about your usual diet. It is very important to me since I am a vegetarian. Secondly, I would like to learn more about your family’s day routines, like games you used to play together, in order to get familiar with these activities while I am here. This could help me to participate in all your routines like a relative.

I am very eager to meet you in person! By the way, I have already bought the plane ticket and would be happy if you could meet me at the airport because this will be my first time abroad. I will arrive on September 13, at 10 am, Wellington time.

I am looking forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely yours,
Anna Frank.

213 words
Expected IELTS Band - 7

Friday, June 6, 2008

IELTS Letter: Unable to attend a course

You are employed full-time and also doing a part time evening course. You are not able to continue the course.
Write a letter to the course lecturer. In the letter
- explain why you cannot continue the course
- describe the situation
- say what you will be doing
Write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write your own address.
Begin your letter as follows:
Dear …………….,

This task was taken from the
Scott's English Success web-site.

Dear Dr. Jones,

I am writing to inform you that I no longer have a possibility to attend your evening lectures on treating emergencies.

As I told you earlier, I received a position of a nurse at the Thompson Hospital. My shift ends at 5 pm and since I have got a lot of overtime job recently, I found myself unable to be on time at your lectures, which start at 5.30 pm. This disappoints me a lot since I value and respect your course and your experience.

I would be grateful if you could consider letting me to study your course myself. Because of my job is closely related to the accidents treatment, I feel able to learn every point of the course in practice. In addition, I have already read almost every book you recommended as the supplementary reading for your lectures.

I hope to get your approval on this matter soon. I am looking forward to receiving your response.

Sincerely yours,
Anna Frank

166 words
Expected IELTS Band - 6-6.5

IELTS Letter: Local club membership cancellation

For the past year you have been a member of a local club. Now you want to discontinue your membership.
Write a letter to the club secretary. In your letter
- state what type of membership you have and how you have paid for this;
- give details of how you have benefited from the club;
- explain why you want to leave.

This task was taken from the book Insight into IELTS Extra, with Answers: The Cambridge IELTS Course Workbook (Cambridge Books for Cambridge Exams) by Vanessa Jakeman, Clare McDowell

Dear Mr. Jones,

I regret to inform you that I have to discontinue my membership at your Golden Hook Fishing Club.

I joined the Club 1 year ago and the benefits from the participation exceeded the fee. Round tables and lectures of famous fishermen were absolutely brilliant. Moreover, discounts on the equipment in sports gear shops helped me to save money. The last but not the least, your monthly illustrated magazine was a precious treat to me.

Unfortunately I have to move to another country because my father, living in France, is in a desperate health condition. I must acknowledge that continuing the membership in your Club is no longer an option to me.

I have paid the last year fee by my credit card and its details are in your database. Because of stated above I would like to ask you not to charge me for the following year. I hope that in the future I will have an opportunity to recommence having advantages of participation in your Club.

Sincerely yours,
Anna Frank

174 words
Expected IELTS Band - 7

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

IELTS Essay: Children' leisure activities

Some people believe that children’s leisure activities must be educational, otherwise they are a complete waste of time.
Do you agree or disagree?
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your experience.

Nowadays children spend so much time at school and attend various additional classes and this makes some educational specialists feel pity for them. They suggest giving kids more spare time to play and have fun. Meanwhile, there is an opinion that youngsters should do only those activities that benefit their knowledge and educate them, and I totally agree with this point of view.

Of course, the volume of the information children receive at school and ought to memorize is enormous and they should be given some free time to relax. Playing with others is essential to develop communication skills and this also gives young brains some rest.

Although, we have to admit that in our competitive world the more time a kid devotes to the study process the better life he can achieve. There are ways to make playing with others very educational and parents should encourage their children to play games which make brain work. For example, kids could have a competition combining physical activity and some kind of trivia on geography, like we had in our childhood. Moreover, even computer games can be very intelligent. There are so many electronic entertainments which teach languages, gives information on history, geography, that child addicted to computers could become very smart and educated.

In addition, unattended kid hardly makes proper use of his leisure time. If it happens, children just watch TV or get under peer pressure. They unfortunately do not have skills of analyzing and filtering what is bad or what is good. Education through games instead makes them occupied and in the same time teaches analyzing.

To conclude with, education through fun is not very exhausting for kids but its usefulness can be great. It would be a shame to devote this time to the TV or other entertainment.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

IELTS Essay: Smoke kills!

It has been proved that smoking kills. In some countries it has been made illegal for people to smoke in all public places except in certain areas. All countries should make these rules.
Do you agree or disagree with this statement?

The idea of banning smoking from public places always was a very controversial one. Those who defend smoking on streets and in offices refer to human rights and the fact that tobacco is legal. Others hold an opinion that since there are undeniable proofs that cigarettes cause lethal diseases not only to smokers but to surrounding people, smoking should be allowed only in special places. I totally agree with the idea of making smoking legal in certain places only.

On the one hand, it is the society who makes smokers to smoke and it would be not fair just to put them into exile and consider the problem solved. Since we sell them tobacco they should have right to use it wherever they want.

On the other hand, those who do not smoke should have the right to breathe clean air. When somebody is smoking cigarette, health of non-smokers is under attack. Personally I am a former smoker, but even for me breathing tobacco smell is unbearable. It is not only makes people to temporarily feel bad but also causes long term effect. There are researches showing that so called ‘passive smoking’ could be even worse for health than smoking itself. Causing damage to anyone’s health is illegal, that is why there is no excuse for smoking in public places.

Another reason for this is the fact that not every legal action is allowed on public. Moral, cultural and juridical limitations are exist. For example, there are toilets for people’s bladder and nobody is allowed to urinate on streets. Tobacco is much more dangerous than that so there is no doubt every country should consider moving smokers to special places.

To conclude with, every country must think of the wellbeing of its citizens and make steps to protect them from dangerous effects of tobacco by banning smoking from public places.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

IELTS Essay: More money for The Art?

The Art should be better funded by the government but there must be more control over where the money goes. Discuss.

Since prehistoric ages The Art highlights our lives, adds beauty and happiness and cultivates the taste among the people. However, nowadays creative projects became very pricey and can not bring pay-off to its authors. Some people think that the government should pay for those projects and, of course, observe precisely how those funds are being spent.

This is quite obvious that no structure except government knows nations cultural needs best. It can evaluate which sphere of cultural life have the necessity of development and achieve its goals of public loyalty by funding a specific field of The Art, controlling budget by giving maintenance only to projects they are interested in.

However, funding The Art selectively can lead artists to the lack of freedom in expressing themselves. In other words, then those who have power use money to regulate cultural life, it can limit the imagination and put artists into borders they would be scared to cross. Thus, here comes the censorship, which has nothing in common with the main democracy principles. For example, similar situation was in the Soviet Union, there solely the government controlled The Art and therefore the only career an artist could pursue is praising the Communist Party by his creations.

As an alternative of letting a government to control spending money on The Art, a non-governmental independent organization could be established. It must consist of the best cultural activists from a country. This would add a certain level of budget control and would guarantee there are no limits for The Art.

To conclude with, I believe that funding The Art is one of the main tasks of a state, but the purpose of it should be development, not making it to serve government political needs.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

IELTS essay: Should education be free?

All education, primary, secondary and further education, should be free to all people and paid for by the government.
Do you agree or disagree with this statement?

The opinion that every citizen should have the right to study at school or university for free is very controversial one. Those, who disagree, refer to enormous expenditures of government in case of establishing such laws. Although, I hold the viewpoint that not charging people for education could become very beneficial for country and its economy.

First, young people from poor families could be very smart. Looking back to history and biographies of distinguished people, raised in poverty can illustrate this best. Making schooling available only for fortunate is not fair. Moreover, the state well-being could also be affected, because there would be a lack of talented specialists, whose skills was not discovered and developed by proper training.

Another advantage of making education free of charge is happiness of the nation. Inability of individual to collect amount of money needed to pay school or university fees cause stress and anxiety of the middle-class society, which can even keep them from having children. Nowadays we can see that the lowest birthrate is in countries where prices of enrollment to highest education institutions are very high. This clearly indicates the fact that citizens of rich countries do not feel able to provide their future offspring proper education.

Finally, nothing seems to be more beneficial to economy than intelligent nation. Free courses and study programs can prepare excellent specialists, who would work to bring profit themselves and hence their country. That would surely compensate most expenses of state budget caused by education of no charge.

To sum up, even though making all schools free can be very expensive for state economy, advantages are invaluable. After several years such improvements would bring fruits of happy, intelligent nation confident about its future.

Monday, March 24, 2008

IELTS essay: Can TV teach people?

Some people say that television is a very useful tool when it comes to education. Others argue that television is a much overused, ineffective teacher.
Discuss both of these views and give your opinion as to the usefulness of television as an educational tool.
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
You should write at least 250 words.

There is a lot of controversy about whether TV can play a role of teacher. Some people hold a viewpoint that it can never be educational at all. Others, although, disagree, reffering to TV's high potential of teaching through amusement.

As a matter of fact, television nowdays can hardly be called educational. All those talk shows and soap operas we can see every day are completely waste of time and can even have negative effects by distracting young and undisciplined people from their studies. Moreother, the most of so called educational programms like National Geographic can not replace books and academic lectures because they tend to entertain people and have not an aim to give deep and concentrated knowledge.

Hovewer, TV can be a powerful mean of delivering information and a nice part of learning process. Educational methodists have proved that the more senses are involved at the time of studying, the more effective result can be achieved. Television produce both picture and sound, so its usefulness is obvious. Many teachers already use this advantage actively by showing to students videocassetes which go as supplimentary material to many language courses. So why not to broadcast such movies through television?

The problem of ineffectiveness of television as educational tool is in fact not a problem of television itself, but of people who decide the content of particular channel. It is hardly unlikely that content directors would abandon their high profits and change talk shows to lectures and video-lessons. Therefore, those, who insist on TVs uselessness maybe right, but let us not forget that as technology improves new cheap ways of broadcasting appear, for instance video podcasts. They can prove exclusive power of such learning tool as television.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

IELTS essay: Who learn languages better?

Some people think children are more successful in foreign language studies than adults. Discuss.

The viewpoint that children are better learners became almost a common sense, although it is not always true in terms of learning foreign languages. When it comes to make an approach to, for example, Japanese or French, adults have proven themselves superior learners because of their experience of getting knowledge of their own language and their performance is generally better motivated.
Every adult have some amount of education it their past and it mean he has already received general understanding of the structure of native language. Thus, this more or less categorized base usually serves as a template for foreign grammar or vocabulary. Person only has to place new material on certain shelves in his memory and operate them like it their own language. Children, in contrast, are usually confused by any grammar, even of their country. Bringing foreign language to curriculum adds embarrassment because they do not have sufficient understanding of grammatical of semantic categories and can not bring to order such huge amounts of information.
Grown-ups also appear to be more enthusiastic about language studies. As a matter of fact, this skill for them is a tool that can be used to achieve career goals. Obviously, more motivated individual do better, and even if his abilities are modest, through practice success can come very fast and lot of success stories can prove it. Kids, though, usually consider second language lessons as a fun or, otherwise, something boring and, even if they tend to absorb knowledge like sponges, without use it rapidly disappears. With no proper encouragement youngsters just do not know they have to practice new words and grammar in order not to forget them.
Thus, while it would not be mistake to suggest children are naturally better learners, let us not forget that adults are usually better suited to language studies.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

IELTS essay: University or working?

Some people think high school graduates should travel or work for a period of
time instead of going directly to study at university.
Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both approaches.
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
You should write at least 250 words.

There is a considerable controversy about what young people should do after receiving graduation certificate of high school. The majority holds the viewpoint that obtaining an university degree immediately after school is the only option to become successful and established person. Others, however, tend to disagree; in their opinion after finishing school individual should receive an opportunity to see the world or try his skills on job.
On the one hand, basic knowledge, came into posession of a pupil at school should be preserved and receive futher development at university. Human brain forgets facts rapidly, espessially those, which are not in use. In the case of making a long pause between graduation from school and enrolling to an university, person may become unable to pass admission exams.
On the other hand, on job training may provide an opportunity of receiving experience and choosing career before deciding the sphere, in which student wants to obtain higher education. For instance, young person can try his skills of management, working as an assistant manager in a small shop. In addition, that could also help him to understand if this work is really what he desires and prevent from making an expensive mistake of choosing wrong major.
Another option of understanding someone’s needs is travelling. This is a perfect way to see the world and different professions in use. Person, who have never been in rural areas could be charmed, for example, by romantism of cheesemaking and come to decision to make genuine milk products all his life.
To sum up, there are some ways different from the standart scheme of going to university right after school and they should not be overlooked. Personally I think that whichever option person chooses, time before university should not be wasted on entertainment or parties. It is essential to use it wisely, thinking about the future.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

IELTS essay: The rubbish problem

Nowadays we are producing more and more rubbish.

Why do you think this is happening?

What can governments do to help reduce the amount of rubbish produced?

In our highly industrialized era there is a growing awareness about the exessive amounts of trash people producing. We are about to be flooded by different types of garbage if certain measures will not be taken. This essay will explore some causes of this and propose ways to solve the problem.

To begin with, different food producers decided that their products will be selling better if they will pack them in small-sized boxes and packets. These colorful and attractive packs go straight to the trashcan, the number of packs is growing along with the consuming groth.

More consuming produces more waste. Government and businesses encourage consuming because it leads to high profits and development of state economy. They are not interested in the situation there a person is going to use something for a long time. Society is being bombarded with commersials, pleading to buy, for instance, a new mobile phone. Buying new things cause throwing away old but good things.

The problem of garbage is very complicated. As we can see, government is not interested of reducing consuming. Thus, the responsibility has to be taken by individuals and non-governmental organizations. Certain laws, regulating the percentage of packaging material per ton of product should be established. Moreover, interesting programs, involving people to participate can be developed. For example, bonuses for not asking for a plastic bag in supermarkets or for buying extra large packs of food.

In addition, everyone should become conserned about the future of human beings and our planet. If we do not wish to be buried in rubbish, we should think twice before buying things we do not need.

This essay has been checked and graded by the real IELTS teacher. See bellow the teacher's comments:
This is a good essay. It has the right structure and the contents cover the task. The paragraphs are correctly built and logically connected. The language is fine, however the grammar needs more attention. Overall, looks like a band 7 essay.
For the whole list of teacher's comments click here.

IELTS letter: Apologizing for the noise

Your neighbours have recently written to you to complain about the noise from your houseflat.

Write a letter to your neighbours. In your letter
explain the reasons for the noise
describe what action you will take

Dear Mr Jones,

I am writing in response to your letter, complaining about the sounds my musical instrument is producing. I feel that I have to explain myself and humbly ask for your forgiveness.

Actually, I am a student of the North Carolina Arts College and as a part of my end of term exams I have to perform 4 plays by flute. Therefore I have to reherse every day because I am eager to make a good impression to my teachers. To achieve my goal I am supposed to play about 3 hours a day.

I must apologize for playing in inappropriate hours. It was all my fault since I did not bother reading the rules of our house owner, prohibiting playing musical instruments.

I have consulted with my class teacher and he suggested me to use one of the rooms of the college to reherse for a small fee. I assure you by no means will be disturbed again with the noise from my appartment.

I beg for your understanding and forgiveness. Please, accept this box of chocolate as a token of my appreciation for not giving this problem a legal action.

Yours sincerely,

Anna Frank

This letter has been checked and graded by the real IELTS teacher. See bellow the teacher's comments:
This is a great letter. It is written according to all the guidelines and will probably get Band 7 at least. Pay more attention to grammar though.
For the whole list of teacher's comments click here.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

IELTS letter: Bad meal in a restaurant

You took your family to a near-by restaurant. You were disappointed with the meal and wish to complain to the manager.
Write a letter to the manager of the restaurant. In the letter
- explain why you were at the restaurant
- describe the problems
- write about the action you want the manager to take
Write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write your own address.
Begin your letter as follows:
Dear Sir or Madam,

Dear Sir or Madam,
On July 15th my family and I visited your establishment to have a traditional celebration of my sister’s birthday. Since she lives in France we annually go to this restaurant, because we always considered it as the most classy French cuisine place. Having the onion soup there is also our family tradition because my sister loved it very much before her moving to France. I suppose, you can imagine our disappointment when we found the onion soup absolutely inedible last time. Firstly, it was cold. Secondly, it seemed your chef did not stir it well while cooking, so there were some clogs of flour. The last but not the least, its taste made us to suggest that the cook used artificial instant soup base. We asked our waitress about the reasons soup is so awful and she told the cook of current shift has changed and this is the vision of the soup of the new one.
It is highly unlikely this new chef with his vision is suitable for such famous restaurant as yours. I recommend changing or sending him to training in order your customers could further enjoy genuine French cuisine.
Faithfully yours,
Anna Frank

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

IELTS Essay: Information Technologies lead to social problems?

The age of Information Technology has taken a lot of people by surprise. While it has become a way of life for some, others know very little about it and may be unlikely to learn. Eventually we will have a polarised society and this will lead to serious social problems.
To what extent do you agree with this statement?

Our highly informatized era became quite a shock for many of us. At the time one part of society uses new means of information very actively, other people stay in the dark without any chance to make an approach to understanding new technologies. There is a raising awareness of does this problem have a potential danger of slicing the society into two parts which would never understand each other.
It is the fact that many of everyday activities became available for computer users only. For example, if you are a university student, you are supposed to submit your term paper as typed and printed document, they no longer accept hand-written papers. Furthermore, some manufacturers do not distribute information leaflets, but give a website address on their products’ packs, thus only the Internet users can have an access for product details. The last but not the least, the computer skills became a crucial requirement for employment in urban areas.
Meanwhile, inhabitants of rural areas do not need new means of acquiring information. Their work and everyday activities do not demand using computers. For example, a farmer can use radio to hear news and ordinary mail to communicate.
Taking into account the fact not every citizen can use new information technologies, governments would not change the traditional ways of interaction with their people. It is highly unlikely people would no longer have a possibility to vote by filling papers by hand or do other activities, important for their citizenship.
Informatization of society affected those, who have a need of instant information exchange. People, whose lifestyle do not require any haste in communication have an opportunity to use traditional ways of it. I am assured that as long as situation does not make others to change their way of life against their will, there is no risk of receiving serious social problems.

This essay has been checked and graded by the real IELTS teacher. See bellow the teacher's comments:
This is a good essay. The only improvement it needs is length reduction (from 304 words to 250-265 words) and perhaps paying more attention to grammar. Overall, looks like a Band 7 essay.
For the whole list of teacher's comments click here.