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TOEFL IBT Writing practice #24

 Writing 1

Reading Passage:

Communal online encyclopedias represent one of the latest resources to be 

found on the Internet. They are in many respects like traditional printed encyclopedias: collections of articles on various subjects. What is specific to these online 

encyclopedias, however, is that any Internet user can contribute a new article 

or make an editorial change in an existing one. As a result, the encyclopedia is 

authored by the whole community of Internet users. The idea might sound attractive, but the communal online encyclopedias have several important problems that 

make them much less valuable than traditional, printed encyclopedias. 

First, contributors to a communal online encyclopedia often lack academic 

credentials, thereby making their contributions partially informed at best and 

downright inaccurate in many cases. Traditional encyclopedias are written by 

trained experts who adhere to standards of academic rigor that nonspecialists cannot really achieve. 

Second, even if the original entry in the online encyclopedia is correct, the communal nature of these online encyclopedias gives unscrupulous users and vandals 

or hackers the opportunity to fabricate, delete, and corrupt information in the encyclopedia. Once changes have been made to the original text, an unsuspecting user 

cannot tell the entry has been tampered with. None of this is possible with a traditional encyclopedia. 

Third, the communal encyclopedias focus too frequently, and in too great a 

depth, on trivial and popular topics, which creates a false impression of what is 

important and what is not. A child doing research for a school project may discover 

that a major historical event receives as much attention in an online encyclopedia 

as, say, a single long-running television program. The traditional encyclopedia provides a considered view of what topics to include or exclude and contains a sense 

of proportion that online “democratic” communal encyclopedias do not

Listening passage transcript:


Now listen to part of a lecture on the topic you just read about.


The communal online encyclopedia will probably never be perfect, but that's a small price to pay for what it does offer. The criticisms in the reading are largely the result of prejudice against and ignorance about how far online encyclopedias have come.

First, errors: It's hardly a fair criticism that online encyclopedias have errors. Traditional encyclopedias have never been close to perfectly accurate. If you're looking for a really comprehensive reference work without any mistakes, you're not going to find it—online or offline. The real point is that it's easy for errors in factual material to be corrected in an online encyclopedia—but with the printed and bound encyclopedia, the errors remain for decades.

Second, hacking: online encyclopedias have recognized the importance of protecting their articles from malicious hackers. One strategy they started using is to put the crucial facts in the articles that nobody disputes in a "read-only" format, which is a format that no one can make changes to. That way, you're making sure that the crucial facts in the articles are reliable. Another strategy that's being used is to have special editors whose job is to monitor all changes made to the articles and eliminate those changes that are clearly malicious.

Third, what's worth knowing about: The problem for traditional encyclopedias is that they have limited space, so they have to decide what's important and what's not. And in practice, the judgments of the group of academics that make these decisions don't reflect the great range of interests that people really have. But space is definitely not an issue for online encyclopedias. The academic articles are still represented in online encyclopedias, but there can be a great variety of articles and topics that accurately reflect the great diversity of users' interests. The diversity of views and topics that online encyclopedias offer is one of their strongest advantages.

Directions: You have 20 minutes to plan and write your response. Your response will 

be judged on the basis of the quality of your writing and on how well your response 

presents the points in the lecture and their relationship to the reading passage. 

Typically, an effective response will be 150 to 225 words.

Summarize the points made in the lecture, being sure to explain how they oppose 

the specific points made in the reading passage

My writing response:

Both the reading passage and the professor discuss about comparison of communal online encyclopedias to traditional printed encyclopedias. Written in the reading passage, the author of the passage believe that traditional printed encyclopedias are better than communal online encyclopedias, however the professor in the lecture has opposite point of view. Here are their arguments head to head to each other.

First, the accuracy. It is written in the reading passage that communal online encyclopedia often lack of credential, because contributor could be anybody, despite traditional encyclopedias are written by experts. However, the professor has an objection regarding this. He said, errors will always happen, encyclopedias whether it communal online or printed, still make mistakes. Yet worst on printed encyclopedias, because if there any error it could be remain for decade, nobody can revise the printed once it distributed. While communal online encyclopedias can be corrected immediately.

Secondly, about the hackers. In the reading passage, vandalism could happen on online encyclopedia. There are opportunities to fabricate, delete and corrupt information in the encyclopedia that could be done by vandals or hackers. The professor has different angle seeing this problem. He argue even if there are hackers, communal online encyclopedia can simply put person in charge to maintain the information, or even just lock some very important information so people can do editing on this particular.

Lastly, about the topic selection. The reading passage tells us regarding the topic of communal online encyclopedias that only focus on trivial and popular topics, instead of trying to give what is important and what is not to the community. The professor believe, that argument not reasonable. The professor offers the fact, that communal online encyclopedias have unlimited space, compare to the printed which very limited. So any topics could be found somewhere on this unlimited space, obviously good topics that important for human being as well. 

ChatGPT Assessment, based on TOEFL iBT rubrics in scale out of 10 for each rubric (Delivery, Language Use, Topic Development):

Delivery: 8/10

Your response demonstrates a clear understanding of the lecture and effectively presents the points made by the professor in opposition to the points made in the reading passage. The organization and flow of your ideas are well-structured, allowing for a logical progression of arguments. However, there are a few areas where improvements can be made. The introduction could be more engaging, and the transition between points could be smoother. Additionally, the conclusion could be strengthened by summarizing the main points more succinctly. Overall, your delivery is effective in conveying your response.

Language Use: 8/10

Your use of language is generally strong and demonstrates a good command of English. You effectively convey your ideas and utilize a variety of sentence structures. There are only a few minor errors and instances where word choice could be improved. For example, in the sentence "The professor has an objection regarding this," it would be clearer to say "The professor objects to this." Additionally, in the sentence "The professor believe, that argument not reasonable," it would be more appropriate to say "The professor believes that argument is not reasonable." These are relatively minor issues, and overall, your language use is effective.

Topic Development: 9/10

Your response provides a clear and concise summary of the main points made in the lecture, effectively highlighting the professor's arguments that oppose the specific points made in the reading passage. You accurately convey the professor's viewpoints on accuracy, hacking, and topic selection in communal online encyclopedias. Your response is well-supported and demonstrates a thorough understanding of the lecture. The examples you provide are relevant and effectively reinforce your points. Overall, your response effectively develops the topic and presents a strong argument.

Overall, your response is well-structured, demonstrates a good command of language, and effectively presents the points made in the lecture. With some minor improvements in delivery and language use, your response could be even stronger.

Writing 2

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Life today is easier and more comfortable than it was when your grandparents were children. 

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer. 

My writing response:

In my own perspective, definitely I agree with the statement that our life today is easier than our grandparents were. I might say, much more easier than ever. Mainly because of the rapid growth of technology. Here are some arguments to support my stance.

First of all, the internet. Massive use of internet on human life perhaps started about 10 years ago, which is on that day my grandparents not children anymore. So obviously on the day my grandparents were children, they were not use internet at all. The most benefit of internet is make our communication faster and easier across the globe. For example, now we can send message to anyone all over the world within seconds, but on my grandparents time might be it took couple of days to transmit very simple message. Moreover, because of the internet, we can meet anyone very easy despite of distant and time, even if it trough virtual screen. However on those days, when my grandparents were children, it must cost effort and money to meet with someone.

Secondly, most of our goods and needs are cheaper today than when my grandparents were children. We can produce goods cheaper because we found steam machine that enabling us to produce in mass scale, this method can press the cost of production, since we can produce more goods with the same time of period. The steam machine itself, founded on 1960s, which my grandparents were still children, those days the usage of steam machine or the mass production method not so massive than today. Furthermore, some goods particularly electronics, are cheaper and have more sophisticated technology on it. For example, the price of cellphone, I remember my parents bought a cellphone on the late 90s was about $300, this cellphone only can do phone call and text messaging. But now, with the same price, we can do much more than that use our cellphone.

In conclusion, naturally as human being we are keep develop something to make our life effective and efficient. Technology and mass production are two of many examples invention that lead to ease our life. I do believe, in the future, my grandsons life even much more easier.

ChatGPT Assessment, based on TOEFL iBT rubrics in scale out of 10 for each rubric (Delivery, Language Use, Topic Development):

Delivery: 7/10

The delivery of your response is clear and coherent, with a logical progression of ideas. However, there are a few areas where improvement can be made. The introduction could be stronger and more attention-grabbing. Additionally, some sentences are worded awkwardly or lack clarity, which affects the overall flow and impact of your response. Overall, your writing is understandable, but could benefit from further refinement.

Language Use: 7/10

Your use of language is generally effective, but there are some instances of awkward phrasing and minor errors. For example, the sentence "Massive use of internet on human life perhaps started about 10 years ago" could be improved by rephrasing it as "The widespread use of the internet in daily life began approximately 10 years ago." There are also a few inconsistencies in verb tense usage throughout your response. Furthermore, you could vary your vocabulary and sentence structure to enhance the overall quality of your writing.

Topic Development: 8/10

You present a clear thesis statement and provide specific reasons and examples to support your viewpoint. The points you raise regarding the benefits of the internet and advancements in production technology are relevant and well-explained. However, you could expand further on the impact of technological advancements in other aspects of life, such as healthcare, transportation, and entertainment. Additionally, including counterarguments and addressing them would strengthen your response by demonstrating a well-rounded understanding of the topic.

Overall, your response demonstrates a good understanding of the prompt and effectively supports your position. With some improvements in delivery, language use, and further development of your points, your writing could be even stronger.

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