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IELTS essay newspapers and books essay

This is one of my model IELTS essays lessons where you can

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  • do a vocabulary exercise
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Read the IELTS newspaper and books essay

Newspapers and books are outdated. Why do some people believe this? What is your opinion?

As we move into the twenty- first century an increasing number of people are relying on new forms of technology. A possible consequence of this is that traditional media such as books and newspapers are not just less popular but are considered by some to be outdated. Personally, I disagree with this point of view.

The principal reason why some people take this view is fairly clear in the case of newspapers. It is generally much easier and quicker to discover what is happening in the world from the internet or the television than from a newspaper. If you use Google or another search engine or simply switch on the television, you can instantly get the latest news bulletin. A newspaper, by contrast, is out of date the moment it is published because it contains yesterday’s news.

It is perhaps less obvious why books are said to be out of fashion. One possibility is that fewer people choose to read for pleasure nowadays because they prefer the instant gratification and thrills of modern technology. There is less effort involved in enjoying a 3D movie or playing a computer game than in turning the pages of a book.

My own view and conclusion is that books and newspapers will never go completely out of fashion or become redundant. The reason for this is that they serve basic human needs. I believe that people will always want to read about the news and escape into the imaginary worlds of great novels. However, books and newspapers may need to change to meet the new demands of twenty-first century consumers. We can already see this happening with the arrival of the audio-book and the various free newspaper internet sites. (292 words)

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Looking at the question

Newspapers and books are outdated. Why do some people believe this? What is your opinion?

This is a double question. Whatever else you do, make sure you answer both halves of the question by giving your own opinion and explaining why other people believe this.

Essay structure

There are different ways to structure this essay. The way I have chosen is to write one paragraph about newspapers and one about books and then use a slightly longer conclusion than usual for my own views. In this form of essay, one natural technique is to use the conclusion in this way.

  1. intro: modern technology partly to blame
  2. newspapers: problem that they are yesterday’s news
  3. books: problem that they are not instant gratification
  4. conclusion: books and newspapers are not redundant but may need to change in the modern world

Another option would be to use one topic paragraph for “advantages” of books and newspapers and one for their “disadvantages”.

The vocabulary

Topic vocabulary

You need vocabulary to talk about books and newspapers and other media. There is a great range to choose from here. Some of the topic vocabulary I use in this essay is:

  • great novels
  • use Google or another search engine
  • switch on the television
  • the latest news bulletin
  • read for pleasure
  • enjoying a 3D movie
  • in turning the pages of a book

Outdated and opinion vocabulary

If at all possible you do not want to repeat the vocabulary from the question too much. Here are some options for you for “opinion” and “outdated”.

  • people take this view
  • are said to be
  • My own view is
  • become redundant
  • out of date
  • out of fashion

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14 Responses to IELTS essay newspapers and books essay

  1. Dinaz September 7, 2011 at 11:18 am #

    The last line of the first paragraph should read ” are not just less popular —-BUT —-I feel the but is missing !!
    But awesome essay !
    thank you

    • Dominic Cole September 7, 2011 at 12:03 pm #

      Thanks for that. Do let me know if you find any more typos.

  2. Bumble bee November 3, 2011 at 5:04 am #

    I feel the conclusion is a little too much? Doesn’t it introduce a new idea of “books and newspapers are still having some value” which probably should have been a idea for a separate paragraph? just curious to know.

    • Dominic Cole December 8, 2011 at 8:00 pm #

      Excellent comment. I quite see your point and your suggestion about a separate paragraph makes sense.

      This is a “non-standard” conclusion as the final paragraph is in some ways a content paragraph in its own right. I wrote it this way because this is a double question. It asks for you to explain others opinions and also give your own. In this context, I believe it makes sense to use the conclusion as my personal viewpoint. It brings the essay to a natural end and it does reflect/summarise the content of the other topic paras.

      The moral for me is that you need to adapt your structure to the question and not simply have one essay plan. It is possible to write a “heavy” conclusion in a 250 word essay, particularly with this type of question. One alternative would be to write a very short/one sentence conclusion – something I personally dislike and I know many others do too. I dislike that option as the conclusion does matter – it is the last thing the examiner reads and the first thing s/he remembers. The other alternative would be to write an over-length 5 para essay – again something I dislike as it often leads to more mistakes and poorer writing,

  3. radha January 5, 2012 at 1:47 am #

    my essay is like this
    On one hand,some causes indicate why books and newspapers and books are outdated.Due to hectic schedule,people are paying less attention to read newspapers and books.For example,some people are interested to know about latest news so for that reason they switch over to Tv and radio where they can do their other works togather.Second point,online news are comparitavely easy and fast to read as per once time conviency.Some people feel bored to read such novels and story books so they perefer to watch the same reading materials in form of Cd and programmes which can make them relaxed.
    Moreover,computer and the Internet inventions are playing a vital role to deacrease popularity and an importance of two firms of reading.Nowadays,in schools,colleges and universities teachers and recommand and an encourage students to gain knowledge from E-books with specific changes and improvments in comparison of old edition text books.Newspaper has full bunch of informations,ads and news.As a result,some people are struggling to read their choice of news which they can easily get by searching on google within few seconds.For instance ,one day a week some newspapers have job vaccancies so especially, yongsters buy newspaper to get only two pages of job ads and throw it which is waste of paper.Lastly.use of paper for newpaper and book affect adversly on enviornment.
    (now in this eassay do i make error of articles much?)

  4. radha January 7, 2012 at 11:47 pm #

    I was waitinf for your replay for this essay..

    • Dominic Cole January 8, 2012 at 12:39 am #

      Apologies for not answering earlier. I simply don’t have time to look at individual essays properly. It would be much better if you approached a teacher form the teachers’ page – that is why they are there.

  5. radha January 9, 2012 at 12:01 am #

    ok Thanks a lot

  6. beatrix May 12, 2012 at 10:52 am #

    Can you tell us, what band is this essay?

  7. mz September 10, 2012 at 5:33 pm #

    Nowadays , with the advances in technology people are increasingly looking for other sources of information apart from newspapers and books. Although, there are grounds to argue that newspapers and books are now outdated, i believe that this traditional sources still have got an essential role to play in our life.

    On the one hand, there some convincing reasons why people think that newspapers and books are now have become outdated. Perhaps the main one is the availability of the internet and the easy access to different tv channels from different part of the world. By watching news on the tv or surfing the internet there are more opportunity to visualize events on other side of the word as they happening and it enable people to judge on general things more better . For example, it is easier to understand the personality of a politician by watching his body language as he speak rather than reading about him from a newspaper or a book.

    On the other hand, i would argue that books and news papers are still extremely beneficial for various reasons. Firstly, books are considerably reliable source of information. people tend to refer to books when they want to search a subject in depth, therefore it will still play important role in education. Secondly, although newspapers has not the powerful visual element compared to tv, it still able to communicate up to date information ,and most importantly it is portable, accessible to all people ,and cheaper. For example,many people prefer to buy a newspaper or read from a book while they are travelling or waiting for their flight. Finally.

    In conclusion, It is true that books and news papers do not have the strong and attractive visual element which is available in tv and internet,but it is also true that this traditional source of information will continue to serve a great function in education and entertaining.

  8. surendra March 20, 2013 at 4:12 pm #

    i am proud of u because these writing task helped me to improve my knowledge in related field


  9. Anonymous December 16, 2013 at 10:03 am #

    thanks a lot for your effort !

  10. hamid November 15, 2014 at 6:56 pm #

    very useful websites
    go ahead


  1. Newsworthy | Teach ESL with Technology - December 9, 2010

    […] Newspapers and books are outdated. Why do some people believe this? What is your opinion? (See Dominic Coles sample essay – Newspapers and books) Here are 2 ways to discover articles published in old-school mass media, and help form an opinion […]

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