1. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? People should sometimes do things that they do not enjoy doing. Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.
It is only natural that we do things that we enjoy doing. However, doing things that we hate to do is a basic component of life. I agree that people occasionally have to do things that they dislike doing. There are a great number of things that we should do but hate to do. Moreover, by doing things we hate to do first, sometimes we learn to like them.
In their personal lives, people sometimes have to accomplish tasks that they dislike doing. Who enjoys visiting a doctor, for example? We do this, however, because it is essential to taking care of our health. I do not know many people who enjoy doing household chores. But we do them because we need to maintain an orderly family life.
In their professional live, people occasionally have to finish tasks that are not fun, but that are essential components of their jobs. Few people like to work with someone who no one else likes. But if the person is a representative of our business partner, we may have to work with the person. If we are teachers, we may sometimes have to discipline students in class, for example, by asking them to turn off their cellular phones and publishing some policy regarding similar behavior. Teachers may feel reluctant to do so, but this is part of their professional responsibilities.
Moreover, sometimes something that we hate to do turns into something enjoyable. Just by trying it, we may begin to enjoy doing it. For example, students may dislike learning some subjects at first. The have to learn them in order to graduate. Yet, somehow, they begin to enjoy learning them after some time. This also applies to other situations where people try new things.
Not everything in life is enjoyable. Unpleasant tasks are an essential component of life. We do not enjoy them, but we accomplish them anyway. Unexpectedly, they sometimes lead to enjoyment.
2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? It is more important for students to study history and literature than it is for them to study science and mathematics. Use specific reasons to support your opinion.
While I was in middle school, I was told by my mathematics teacher, “If you understand science and mathematics, you can make it anywhere in the world.” This is still true today. History and literature are very important, and need to be studied. However, if I have to choose between the two, I infer that it is more important to study science and mathematics sin they are more practical. In fact, it is easier to secure a job with skills in science and mathematics. Also, experts in science and mathematics have higher social statuses and make more money.
The primary reason for studying science and mathematics is that those who do so land jobs more easily than those who study history and literature. Jobs are always available in fields such as medicine, engineering, and other professions that make it a requisite to have a science or mathematics background. Students who study history or literature can find jobs, but most of jobs are either teaching or writing and seldom well-paying. For example, one friend of mine with a degree in history from a prestigious university was offered a job of teaching in a community college for 7,000 dollars a year whereas another friend of mine with a degree in chemistry from a good university got a job in a company which paid him 14,000 dollars a year.
The second reason why it is more important to study science and mathematics is that scientists and mathematicians are valued more than experts in history and literature. For example, when asked what they do, experts in history and literature may receive little attention when they provide the information. In contrast, a scientist may excite a lot of interest among those who listen to his or her introduction. The reason for such a differential treatment is not personal, but is indicative of a social trend; scientists and mathematicians in general enjoy more social prestige than those who study history and literature.
The third reason for such a choice is that scientists and mathematicians generally make more money than people in other professions. Like the differential attention that they may receive, the two groups of people are assigned different values money wise. A doctor, a chemist, or a person in one of these fields often has a much higher salary than a professor of literature or an expert in history. Moreover, scientists and mathematicians generally have more projects to work on and therefore make even more money.
Our society places a great value on science and mathematics, so it is important to learn skills in these fields. With a science or mathematics background, one will secure a high-paying job, enjoy much social prestige, and receive a hefty salary. Such being the case, who would choose to study anything other than science and mathematics?
3. Many students choose to attend schools or universities outside their home countries. Why do some students study abroad? Use specific reasons and details to explain your answer.
Studying in one's home country offers unique benefits. For example, the home country provides the best education in some subject that other countries do no offer. However, it is important to study overseas for at least part of one's higher education. By studying abroad, students can acquire a new language, get to know another culture, and pursue good programs.
The most obvious advantage of studying overseas is learning a new language. It is important to be bilingual or even multilingual nowadays. For example, international communication is essential for our global economy. For many students who choose to study in English-speaking countries, they can easily pick up English if they are actively engaged in speaking English. Even for those who have had a good grasp of English in reading and writing, they can still improve spoken English after exposure to an English-speaking environment.
As important as learning a new language is becoming acquainted with a new culture. Cultures differ from one another and they are even diametrically opposite on some points. By studying overseas, students become familiar with other ways of life and learn to respect them. For example, to students from some cultures, privacy is a relatively new concept. The students may choose to tell their academic grades to their classmates in the foreign country and ask them for similar information. In turn, they may feel disappointed or even shocked to receive no answer and be told that this is privacy. After a while, however, they have a better understanding of the concept of pervasive privacy in the foreign country.
Last but not least, we are able to undertake excellent programs in the foreign country where we choose to study. Some programs may not be available in the students' home country. For example, a student who is interested in American literature may find that no university in his or her country offers this program. Other programs are available in the students' home country but not on a par with similar programs in a foreign country. This can be illustrated by MBA programs of American universities. A number of countries offer MBA programs, but many think that American universities offer the best MBA programs. This accounts for the fact that the majority of MBA holders have obtained the degree from American universities.
Studying abroad can be rewarding. Not only can students acquire a new language and know more about a different culture, but they can pursue excellent programs as well. Indeed, studying in a foreign country is a worthwhile experience.