IELTS Practice Tests: Academic Writing Task 2

IELTS Academic Writing Task –  2
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic.
Governments spend millions of dollars each year on their space programmes. Most recently, Mars is the focus of scientists’ attention. Some people think this money would be better spent on dealing with problems closer to home.
Do you agree or disagree?

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 always going to be a discussion about the amount of money that is spent on space exploration. Scientific studies of the moon and the planets may provide information that is useful for us on earth. However, some people believe this cannot justify the huge amount of money spent on space research when there is a greater need for it here.

In the past, different countries used space exploration to compete with each other. For example, the US and the USSR raced each other to see who could put a man on the moon first. It would have been much easier and cheaper if they had pooled resources and information, and made a joint expedition into space. Fortunately, nowadays this is happening more and more, and thus less money overall is being wasted.

Nevertheless, some critics believe that all money given to space exploration is wasted. They argue that if the millions of dollars spent on space research were put into health and education programmes around the world, many lives would be significantly improved. It is certainly likely that if this money were invested in crop development in different parts of the world, we could save many more lives in countries where people do not have enough food. It is very difficult to argue against these criticisms.

In my opinion, we need a balance between how much money is spent on space exploration and how much money is invested into solving problems here on earth. With continued co-operation between nations over space travel more will be achieved for less money. This should leave more money to be spent on problems at home. 


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