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Wednesday, September 13, 2017


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here is my full essay

Due to increasing criminal activities, a boost in the security has become a must; therefore, to ensure everybody's safety, we can occasionally spy streets being equipped with surveillance cameras. Although it has its own negatives, I shall argue that its plus points are way more.

Being constantly under observations brings people inconvenience. Our privacy is invaded when we carry along the feeling that whatever we do and wherever we go is being recorded on a tape and can be seen by unknown people. For instance, if you are kissing your girlfriend on the street, you certainly need to be vigilant for hidden eyes that are recording your semi-intimacy and can share it on social networking sites and apps. The advent of smart phones has already been an invasion of our privacy and Installing cameras on the streets would deteriorate this fact and add insult to injury.

Despite the negatives mentioned above, I personally believe that CCTV brings us far more advantages. Firstly, when public criminals, say muggers, have this internal fear of being caught by cameras, they might lose the intention of mugging people on every street of the town. Similarly, robbers cannot easily walk into banks and wash them clean of money when they are aware of the fact that they are being closely watched. Secondly, even if any of the aforementioned crimes are carried out, the police can conduct their investigations by identifying these felons that had been caught on video through facial recognition.

In conclusion, surveillance cameras positively influence our lives since they are a best way to combat public crimes.
(264 words)

introduction sentence: video camera is being increase
other people's opinion: invasion of privacy
own opinion: benefits outweigh drawbacks

1. video camera can provide crime evidence to help police crack a case
( many of the crime cases can be solved because of the hints and evidences that polices found in the video recording)
2. video recording can be warning of surveillance and prevent crime
3. example(Theft may worried about being caught if there is camera)
4. provide sense of safeness

1. loss of privacy protection in the public
2. cost of maintenance

@iman DZ

As a verb, "spy" is marked "literary or formal" in this dictionary:

Coherence and cohesion: "Although it has its own..." What does it refer to?

"I shall argue that" seems to come up in philosophical texts, whereas "way more" seems to come up in more popular writing. Style should be consistent and "semi-formal or neutral" for task 2 academic.


"under observations" ??
"carry along" ??
"on tape" would be more common
"deteriorate this fact" ??

Look at the charts below for more: press "search lots of books" to see which phrases do not come up; and click on the underlined blue phrases at the bottom for examples.




"The advent of smart phones has already been" or "seen" ? See meaning #15 in :


Iman Dashtizadeh:
Dear kate
I do appreciate the effort you put into analyzing the previously-written essay and, of course, commenting on it.

inferred from the way you have evaluated this essay; I have come to this realization that you might be a teacher. If so, please be a bit wary of misleading your students by marking their papers subjectively!

Being overly meticulous has clouded your judgement. You need to be lenient and objective in such cases. Please make sure that you give your students proper feedback instead of confusing them!

Regarding the word choice, I kindly ask you to have a look at the IELTS writing band descriptor in the link below to scrutinize it and see how lexical resource should be evaluated in the IELTS essays. Go through the requirements to see if anything is mentioned about the words being neutral, semi-formal or formal. Then and only then, you'll find out about your own misjudgment!


you also need to do more exercises on the cohesive structures in which the words 'although' and 'while' are used.by the way, you missed my article typo in the concluding paragraph where I had to use 'The'!

Finally, please, have another look at the above-given link to check the band descriptor once again and learn the differences between coherence and cohesion while assessing a piece of writing.


See "Information for candidates" - page 5 Writing



British Council however state: "in a formal style" for academic writing test.




You may be pleased to learn that I don't do teaching. However Ngrams and google books as tools to learn English are interesting and useful, although tricky to use sometimes.
In my experience, writing in a foreign language is such hard work, and no matter how hard one tries, the result is just full of mistakes, or at least things that just don't sound right to a native speaker. Even professional translators much prefer to translate into their own language, rather than from their own. So onwards....

The fourth criterion "Cohesion & Coherence" was introduced into IELTS in 2005. There has been some research into how examiners rate it:

"... It is assumed that raters [examiners] might pay more attention to immediately noticeable and tangible cohesive devices and hence pay inadequate attention to a more serious concern,that is,coherence. ... Majdeddin (2010) also conducted a study to see if candidates get trained on CC, it can actually improve their scores. He gave the participants of his study explicit instructions on cohesive ties highlighting referencing, reiteration, synonyms, substitution and other related construct components.The results indicated significant changes in use of cohesive devices
especially reference and super-ordinate words leading to higher scores."


Dear Simon,
Is it correct to include our own view in the essay if it is not asking directly for our opinion in the question? I couldn't find any phrase in the question asking for our opinion.

Here is my essay, please feel free to point out my mistakes.

It is true that video surveillance has become commonplace in many cities in recent years. While I understand that critics may see this as an invasion of privacy, I believe that there are more benefits than drawbacks.

Two basic reasons can be stated why some individuals maintain that people’s privacy might be in danger if surveillance cameras are installed. Firstly, it is not clear to the general public where and how the footage that is being recorded by the surveillance systems is used. There have been some cases, especially in dictatorship regimes like China that governments used CCTV footage to identify and arrest government oppositions which is fundamentally against the individual freedom rights. Secondly, protecting the databases that contain people’s video footage is not an easy task for the authorities because this kind of information is exactly what criminals are after, and if they gain access to this data, they may use it to blackmail citizens.

Despite the invasion of privacy that may happen by using security cameras, I still believe these devices are vital for maintaining safety. Unfortunately, nowadays more than ever before cities are attacked by suicide bombers and terrorists. If there is no camera installed in train stations, crossroads, shopping malls, it would be impossible to single out and subsequently, arrest these terrorists since no image would be available to identify them in the first place. Furthermore, the presence of a CCTV camera by itself has proven to reduce crime rates as offenders might be unwilling to commit a crime if they realize that a camera is recording them while they are committing an offense.

In conclusion, it seems to me that the advantages of having cameras placed in public places outweigh the loss of privacy that might occur since we live in an era that crime rate is on the rise.

Dear Simon,

It is 02 sentence introduction with paraphrasing of the question and your opinion (answer for the question)

- video cameras = video surveillance
- being increased = become commonplace
- restrict our individual freedom = invasion of privacy
- some people = critics

Here is my paragraph on drawback:

There are various reasons why people consider the use of surveillance cameras may undermine their personal freedom. When city authorities put their residences on monitor 24/7, they are able to have intelligence on each citizen's whereabouts. Some people deem this action synonymous to stalking and may thereby develop some sort of uncomfortable feelings or react hysterically. Furthermore, since these information are channeled through a series of digital devices, they are, to a high extent, vulnerable to acts of sabotage from hacker groups. Once these ill-intended hackers found their ways to penetrate into the system, everyone's information are at stake of exposure or used against their will. Henceforth, surveillance devices could put their citizens into more risks if they are not built with proper defense measures from the first place.

· paraphrasing the original introduction
video camera = video surveillance
has become commonplace = is being increased
· partly agree that there are some drawbacks
· come up with his own opinion:
benefits overweight drawbacks
· the first main body paragraph
- there are some drawbacks on the video camera
- an invasion of privacy
- people are supervised by some people
· the second main body paragraph
- there are some reason why we need video surveillance
- watch areas for long time
- prevent the crimes
- the criminals are afraid of being recorded when they try to carry out crimes
- record people`s bad behaviors

Hi Simon:
I have a question about task 2 essay. I follow your steps to practice my writings. However, while I sent my discussion essay to be corrected, the corrector put this sentence as a suggestion that is " Both viewpoints will be discussed before presenting a personal opinion on the matter".I do not see you put a sentence like this, and should I memorize and use it in my essay writing? Thank you very much.


For an examiner, that kind of sentence is obviously memorised, and so it won't help your score at all.


"If there is no camera installed..."
-> If no cameras were installed .. ?







"information are" ?


Thank you Quango
Your comments were of great help to me, and I deeply appreciate them.

Hello Simon, i really appreciate what you offer here in your blog. i got the test last Saturday and there's one thing that i've been concerning a lot everyday....

the Task2 question is giving some problematic statement and ask the reason , solution.

so i made 3 paragraphs. First - summarize the statement
Second - analyze the reason
Third - giving solutions.

what i'm concerning is that i didn't make conclusion paragraph. but i thought it would be strange if i made conclusion statement from this kind of question.

so my question is....would it be a problem that i didn't make the conclusion paragraph?

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