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Sample TOEFL Essays and Writing Topics

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These sample essays have been written by a native speaker. They will show you how to structure your essays in an effective and organized fashion.

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Integrated Essays

  • Television Appearances by University Professors (casting doubt)
  • Portrait of an Elderly Woman in a White Bonnet (casting doubt)
  • Incan Fortress of Sacsayhuaman (casting doubt)
  • Iron Fertilization (casting doubt)
  • Moai of Easter Island (includes a full lecture and reading)
  • The Usefulness of Coal (casting doubt)
  • Monarch Butterflies (casting doubt)
  • Large Animals (casting doubt)
  • Wheat and Beer (from “Cracking the TOEFL 2016”)
  • Forest Fires (from “Cracking the TOEFL 2016”)
  • Endotherms (from “Official Collection”)
  • Online Encyclopedias (from “Official Collection”)
  • Buying a Franchise (from “Official Collection”)
  • Great Houses (from “Official Collection”)
  • Smart Cars (from “Official Collection”)
  • Eco-Friendly Wood (from “TOEFL Quick Prep”)
  • The Chevalier (from “TOEFL Quick Prep”)
  • Wave Farms (from “Hackers Actual Test”)
  • The Anasazi (from “Hackers Actual Test”)
  • Trans Lunar Phenomena (from “Hackers Actual Test”)

Independent Essays

(these topics are all taken from the Official Guide to the TOEFL (4th Edition) , which is a book I highly recommend!)

Question 1

The widespread use of the internet has given people access to information on a level never experienced before. How does this increase in the availability of information influence life in today’s world?

Question 2

Some students prefer classes with open discussions between the professor and students and almost no lectures. Other students prefer classes with lectures and almost no discussions. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 3

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? It is better to use printed material such as books and articles to do research than it is to use the internet. Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 4

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: grades encourage students to learn. Use specific reasons and examples to support your opinion.

Question 5

Neighbours are the people who live near us. In your opinion, what are the qualities of a good neighbor? Use specific details and examples in your answer.

Question 6

Have North Americans become too dependent on the automobile for travel?

Question 7

You have the opportunity to visit a foreign country for two weeks. Which country would you like to visit? Use specific reasons and details to explain your choice.

Question 8

Some people like to travel with a companion. Other people prefer to travel alone. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

Question 9

A company is going to give some money either to support the arts or to protect the environment. Which do you think the company should choose? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 10

What is your approach to problem-solving, and how does it work for you? Use specific details to support your response.

Question 11

Compare and contrast the way of your life with that of your parents. Which way of life do you think would be more satisfying for the next generations?

Question 12

In general, people are living longer now. Discuss the causes of this phenomenon. Use specific reasons and details to develop your essay.

Question 13

Is it better to enjoy your money when you earn it or is it better to save your money for some time in the future? Use specific reasons and details to support your opinion .

Question 14

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?

Question 15

How do movies or television influence people’s behavior? Use reasons and specific examples to support your answer.

Question 16

If you could change one important thing about your hometown, what would you change? Use reasons and specific examples to support your answer.

Question 17

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Television has destroyed communication among friends and family. Use specific reasons and examples to support your opinion.

Question 18

Some people prefer to live in a small town. Others prefer to live in a big city. Which place would you prefer to live in? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

Question 19

“When people succeed, it is because of hard work. Luck has nothing to do with success.” Do you agree or disagree with the quotation above? Use specific reasons and examples to explain your position.

Question 20

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? “Universities should give the same amount of money to their students’ sports activities as they give to their university libraries. Use specific reasons and examples to support your opinion.”

Question 21

Many people visit museums when they travel to new places. Why do you think people visit museums? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 22

It is better for children to grow up in the countryside than in a big city. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and examples to develop your essay.

Question 23

Some people believe that the Earth is being harmed (damaged) by human activity. Others feel that human activity makes the Earth a better place to live. What is your opinion? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 24

People work because they need money to live. What are some other reasons that people work? Discuss one or more of these reasons. Use specific examples and details to support your answer.

Question 25

People do many different things to stay healthy. What do you do for good health? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 26

It has recently been announced that a large shopping center may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

Question 27

Some students prefer to study alone. Others prefer to study with a group of students. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 28

Some people prefer to eat at food stands or restaurants. Other people prefer to prepare and eat food at home. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

Question 29

Some people believe that university students should be required to attend classes. Others believe that going to classes should be optional for students. Which point of view do you agree with? Use specific reasons and details to explain your answer.

Question 30

Some people think that they can learn better by themselves than with a teacher. Others think that it is always better to have a teacher. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons to develop your essay.

Question 31

What are some important qualities of a good supervisor (boss)? Use specific details and examples to explain why these qualities are important.

Question 32

In general, people are living longer now. Discuss the causes of this phenomenon. Use specific reasons and details to develop your essay (version two).

Question 33

We all work or will work in our jobs with many different kinds of people. In your opinion, what are some important characteristics of a co-worker (someone you work closely with)? Use reasons and specific examples to explain why these characteristics are important.

Question 34

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement:  in twenty years there will be fewer cars on the road than there are today.

Question 35

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement:  people today spend too much time on personal enjoyment – doing things they like to do – rather than doing things they should do. 

Question 36

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “Life today is easier and more comfortable than it was when your grandparents were children.”

Question 37

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “We can learn more from people at a higher level than us (like teachers) than from people who are at the same level as us”

Question 38

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “A person should never make an important decision alone.”

Question 39

It has recently been announced that a new restaurant may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

Question 40

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Sometimes it is better not to tell the truth. Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

 
 

 

Sample TOEFL Essays and Writing Topics

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