Flo-Joe for Cambridge English Exams

Cambridge English: Advanced

Try Flo-Joe's latest CAE Writing task

Writing Task (go to Checklist)

Writing Paper Part 2. Task Type: Letter to an Editor

You are reading your favourite newspaper and you come across a letter which attacks the education system in your country (or a country that you know well).

...What a pity our school system is so out-of- date. I would suggest that some major educational reforms are needed!

Yours sincerely
Prof Collins To give YOUR view contact the editor by writing to...

Write a letter to the editor of the newspaper giving your response to Prof. Collins' letter (Between 220-260 words).

What you need to do to pass
Read our checklist first to understand what the examiner is looking for in a good answer.

Ideas for writing
Ask yourself the following questions to help you get started:

  • Write down three points that the professor could have made in the letter about an 'out-of-date' school system. (These will be the basis of your letter of reply.)
    1) need for better teachers
    2) pupils leaving school without skills needed for employment
    3) not enough equipment - books, computers, etc.
  • Now decide which of the points in your list that you agree with, partly agree with or completely disagree with, and write down some notes.
    Example: 'The professor suggests that schools should spend more money on computer equipment. However, this is a ridiculous suggestion....
  • The letter also suggests that some reforms are needed. If you agree with this, what changes are you going to suggest? Try to think of two or three recommendations.
  • Looking at your notes, are you mainly in agreement with the professor's view or are you strongly opposed? Think about how the tone of your letter will be affected by your own viewpoint. Are you going to adopt a sympathetic tone or perhaps a less friendly one?

Drafting and proofreading your work

You should look at your first draft of the task and decide:

  • Does your letter sound realistic?
  • Is the layout and organisation appropriate?
  • Is the language correct with a good range of structures?
  • Is the style appropriate and consistent?
  • Will it have a positive effect on the reader?

If the answer is 'no' to any of these questions then you will need to do some more drafting!


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