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Found 6 results

  1. The following is a memorandum from the office of Mayor Harrison Smith Jones. "In order to relieve Briggsville’s notorious traffic congestion, Mayor Harrison Smith Jones plans to build a multi-million dollar subway system. The subway will run through the major downtown areas, a part of the town where buses serve as the only form of public transportation. For years, residents have been complaining both about inconsistent buses, and the general lack of safety while riding the buses. Additionally, the subway will be running twenty-four hours a day. Since motorists will spend less time in traffic, Mayor Harrison Smith Jones expects to see an immediate increase in worker productivity, which will improve the economy of Briggsville." Write a response in which you examine the stated and/or unstated assumptions of the argument. Be sure to explain how the argument depends on these assumptions and what the implications are for the argument if the assumptions prove unwarranted. My response: The prompt states that the proposed subway should most definitely resolve certain long-pressing issues for the citizens of Briggsville with the introduction of a new subway system. On analyzing the current described situation, certain ambiguities must be analyzed. Firstly, let's get to the safety factor mentioned in the prompt. It is being assumed that the subways will be safer than buses, which are currently seen as unsafe. It should be seen as to what safety issues are the people facing - whether it is in terms of physical safety, or if there have been constant reports of thefts or safety in terms of getting on and off the bus or frequent bus accidents, etc. Will the subway reduce instances of thefts or accidents? It is possible that bus-related accidents might reduce, but it can't be assured the subway will not introduce new kinds of accidents related to metros in the terminal. Regarding thefts, if security is bumped up, for example with cameras being added, it may reduce incidents of theft but since it isn't mentioned it can't be guaranteed that using a different mode of transport is going to reduce petty crimes and similar cases. More data regarding such incidents in subways in nearby cities may help get a clearer picture of whether safety will be improved and if adding such facilities may help. Next, coming to the location of the subway hubs, indeed, the downtown areas sound like commuting in well-traveled areas will be easier, but there isn't sufficient information on whether the impact on traffic reduction will be significant or negligible. It hasn't been established whether the downtown area is commercial or residential and whether the subway stops will make it easier for people living on the outskirts of the area to reach their work locations. Another thing to look at with respect to the location of the subway is if it will actually improve the commute for workers and in turn, help improve the economy. A lot of people may stay far away from the downtown area and may still have to use buses instead. More information regarding the locations of the stops would help get a decent idea about how many people would benefit and whether changing the stop locations would help improve the commute situation for the people. Although the proposed project may resolve certain issues related to traffic and other bus incidents, getting more data with respect to subway stops and records of nearby subway projects in similar areas may help make sure the project is as effective as intended.
  2. Hello everyone! I began writing practice GRE essays to improve my score and familiarize myself with the format and expectations of the AWA section. Can anyone read my sample essay and attempt to grade it? if not, then advice will suffice. I will include the sample prompt and my response below. Thanks in advance! The emergence of the online “blogosphere” and social media has significantly weakened the quality of political discourse in the United States. Reason: When anyone can publish political opinions easily, standards for covering news and political topics will inevitably decline. Write a response in which you examine your own position on the statement. Explore the extent to which you either agree or disagree with it, and support your reasoning with evidence and/or examples. Be sure to reflect on ways in which the statement might or might not be true, and how this informs your thinking on the subject. Anyone, regardless of political party and qualifications, should have the freedom to write their own political opinions on the internet and social media. The argument claims that the emergence of social media and blogging has weakened the quality of political discourse in America and has led to a decline in standards for covering news and political topics. I disagree with this statement. First, social media and blogging had led to an increase in resources and a diverse range of topics and opinions. Having different sources does not cause a decline in standards. The standards should not come from only a limited number of individuals and corporations. By doing so, the people are not able to see more than one side of a story. The quality of political discourse improves if bloggers and social media users are able to report news and write about political topics. Second, it is confirmed that media companies and newspapers are strongly influenced by political parties. For example, television news networks such as CNN and Fox News report on news and politics in vastly different ways. During the 2016 Presidential election, many news anchors reported that Hilary Clinton would easily win the election based on their polls and surveys. Fox News reported in support of Mr. Trump and displayed their survey in polls, indicating that he could win. These are two examples how much power a political party can have over a news company. Companies that publish a news article that is influenced by or is biased towards one party that turns out to be ultimately false and the motive was political gain. This weakens the standards of journalism. In journalism, one is taught to deliver news in a non-biased, neutral fashion. One must not report to support a political agenda as it becomes corrupt. Having a supportive stance on neutrality among bloggers and social media users strengthens the quality and standards of reporting the news. Having a variety of sources in news due to bloggers and social media improves the standards of delivering news to the American people. By limiting who can report on political topics, it weakens the quality of political discourse. Delivering news by the people and for the people is what the USA should be held to a high standard.
  3. This is an argument task topic off of the ETS page. I used a random number generator to pick the topic, and timed it out to 30 minutes. I am using Magoosh as my study prep, so I am using the guidelines used from them! This is my first attempt at an argument task, so any help would be appreciated! Thanks in advance! Topic: The following is a letter to the editor of an environmental magazine. "Two studies of amphibians in Xanadu National Park confirm a significant decline in the numbers of amphibians. In 1975 there were seven species of amphibians in the park, and there were abundant numbers of each species. However, in 2002 only four species of amphibians were observed in the park, and the numbers of each species were drastically reduced. One proposed explanation is that the decline was caused by the introduction of trout into the park's waters, which began in 1975. (Trout are known to eat amphibian eggs.)" Write a response in which you discuss one or more alternative explanations that could rival the proposed explanation and explain how your explanation(s) can plausibly account for the facts presented in the argument. Essay: The argument that the introduction of trout into the park’s waters is to blame for the decrease of the number of amphibious species is flawed for numerous reasons. There are several different reasons and possibilities that a decrease in the numbers of species can occur. The fact that the trout were introduced in 1975, and almost 30 years later there’s a decrease in numbers, could be a mere coincidence. All species must compete for survival, even in parks. The seven original amphibious species in the park may have competed other species to extinction. The animals must compete for food, mating, shelter, water, and several other things. Therefor, seven species in close quarters in a park could have been too much demand on the environment, leading some species to fall off the grid. The time between 1975 and 2002 is almost 30 years, which can be well more than a lifetime in many species. Similar to how normal environments change, the park where these animals live also changes. A drop in numbers could have resulted in an environmental change such as more or less rain in certain years, or maybe the park’s management changed over the years, resulting in a change in the upkeep of the park facilities. The amount of how this park could have changed in a matter of 27 years is endless. The letter states that the trout were introduced in 1975 and 27 years later they noticed the decrease in the amphibians. Meaning, the amphibians could have dropped in numbers at any point between those times. It could simply be a happenchance that the trout were introduced into the park at that time. The amphibians could have started to slowly decrease before then, or they could have had a more drastic change maybe only a few years before the numbers were recorded in 2002. Since the statistics weren’t recorded on a normal basis, there is no way to show when this phenomenon occurred within the park, therefor not being able to blame the trout introduction. There is no obvious proof to show that the trout are the reason for the reduction of amphibians found in the park. There are several ways this could have occurred over the course of 27 years and a simple cause and effect does not account for the numerous other factors that should be considered in this conclusion.
  4. I'm using Magoosh as my GRE Study Prep, and following the guidelines they used! I got the topic off the ETS website and used a random generator to pick the topic. I timed myself exactly 30 minutes. This is my first attempt, so it's probably pretty rough :) and this is an Issue Task Essay! Topic: Educators should base their assessment of students' learning not on students' grasp of facts but on the ability to explain the ideas, trends, and concepts that those facts illustrate. Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the recommendation and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, describe specific circumstances in which adopting the recommendation would or would not be advantageous and explain how these examples shape your position. Essay: Almost everyone at some point in their lifetime will take a test to assess their knowledge supposedly learned on a certain subject matter. Educators should base this assessment of a student’s knowledge, not simply by testing their factual remembrance and memory, but also by questioning how they can apply that information into real world situations. Schools and other educational programs have become to be known as teaching through memorization. They are assessing their students’ using test after test, and enforcing them to study via flashcards and other memory-strengthening tools. This continues throughout the length of the class, ending the program with similar assessments that they began with. This shows that the educators are focusing more on cramming the students with factual information, rather than them building upon the knowledge they have already been taught and assessing them in a new manner. While it is imperative for students to have and hold on to this knowledge of factual material, they must be able to understand the big picture in order to apply it to real world situations. Simply knowing or recognizing terminology will not suffice once they must use this knowledge they have learned into their field later in life. An aspiring scientist might know a single chemical reaction, but if they cannot apply this to a bigger, broader experiment, then the information can be deemed useless. With this being said, grasping facts is the foundation of their ability to explain bigger ideas and concepts of that subject. To an extent, assessing students’ understanding of the basic facts of a subject is imperative before expecting them to be able to comprehend and explain the more elusive concepts that make up everyday life. Therefor, teachers should assess students on their comprehension of factual information before moving on to more difficult material in the hierarchy of the subject. Though, this is not saying that these kinds of assessments should be the sole basis of the students’ understanding of an entire subject. Educators assessing the true knowledge learned by their students is much more complex than a simple factual multiple-choice test. Teachers need to go more in depth in their assessments in order to prove that their students’ can understand and explain difficult concepts and ideas regarding the subject they have apparently been teaching.
  5. In order to become well-rounded individuals, all college students should be required to take courses in which they read poetry, novels, mythology, and other types of imaginative literature. Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the recommendation and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, describe specific circumstances in which adopting the recommendation would or would not be advantageous and explain how these examples shape your position. As a college student, one is expected to develop different skills that will serve the general purpose of preparing him or her for a professional environment. There are qualities that one is expected to possess as a professional that could be divided into qualities that are specific to the particular field of the student's career, and general qualities that the student should develop in order to be prepared to face problems and interact with other professionals. The first set can be labeled as technical qualities, and the latter should include qualities such as critical thinking, interpersonal skills, general world knowledge and adaptability. One could argue that the college student will greatly benefit from focusing only on developing skills that will strengthen his/her technical skills throughout his/her college career. In other words, not being obligated to take general courses that will force him/her to read poetry, novels, mythology, and other types of imaginative literature. That is, if the major of the college student is not related to english, literature, writing, or other majors where reading imaginative literature is essential in the professional formation of the individual. However, one is ignoring the hidden benefits that reading imaginative literature could offer to a college student. Forcing them to engage in imaginative literature, could provide benefits such as broadening the student's vocabulary, advancing the student's skills in reading comprehension, involve the student in an artistic environment, or even help in developing the student's creativity. If the student focuses his/her college career on taking courses that are only directly related to their major, then the student is at risk of narrowing his/her perspective. The student's college career should be in greater percentage related to his/her specific field of study, however, some course load should be dedicated to other worldly subjects, where reading imaginative literature may be included. For example, a student who is pursuing a science major such as biology, will perhaps have little interest in taking a course on English Literature. This student will inevitably, given the fact that science majors are prepared to be methodological and analytical, is at risk of becoming an inflexible individual. If this biology student is forced to take courses such as English Literature, this student may learn to take a broader perspective in understanding other students that may follow a different way of thinking and processing things. This bioogy student may realize that in some occasions thinking artistically, instead of analitically, may offer advantages. In other words, this biology student may be able to develop the latter set of qualities mentioned in this text's introduction if the student is forced to take some courses that include reading imaginative literature. The student may develop critical thinking, interpersonal skills, general world knowledge and adaptability that will better prepare him/her for a professional environment.
  6. Issue Essay Critical judgment of work in any given field has little value unless it comes from someone who is an expert in that field. Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the claim. In developing and supporting your position, be sure to address the most compelling reasons and/or examples that could be used to challenge your position. Experts spend time and effort studying a certain field to gain expertise, and to be able to understand a range of works that come out of their chosen field. The more familiar an expert is with the issues and specifics of their field, the better they can assess other works within their field of expertise. Due to their deep understanding of the details and nuances of a field, an expert is much better suited to give critical judgement on work in that field than someone not as familiar with that field. Someone who is considered an expert in their field has presumably spent a large amount of time learning about the details and nuances of their chosen field. Therefore, they have a deeper understanding of topics related to their field than someone who has not devoted as much of their time to expertise in that same field. In critiquing a work borne out of their chosen field, an expert has valuable experience to draw from in offering criticism or support of the work. Jane Goodall, a celebrated scientist of primate anthropology, would offer highly valued critical judgment on a paper by another scientist that examines the eating habits of a group of chimpanzees. In contrast, Stephen Hawking, while also a celebrated scientist, would not be able to offer the same level of judgment on that paper, as it is outside his area of expertise. Experts know the details and nuances of their work better than someone not in that specific field, and so they are better equipped than anyone to critique work in their own field. If someone is not an expert in a field yet is offering critical judgment on a work from that field, they likely would not be able to understand certain specifics of issues the work introduces. Therefore, their criticism may be misguided, or may focus on unimportant parts of the work. This kind of critique is not valuable, as it does not get at the root of what the work is based on. However, it could be said that someone who is not an expert in that field could give a valuable outside perspective on a piece of work since they are able to see the big picture. Although in some cases this outside perspective could be valuable, in general, it is still more valuable to have another expert’s opinion on a work in their own field. Due to a deep understanding of a field, an expert’s critical judgment on a work in that field is ultimately more insightful and valuable than someone outside this field. Argument Essay The following appeared as a letter to the editor of a national newspaper. "Your recent article on corporate downsizing* in Elthyria maintains that the majority of competent workers who have lost jobs as a result of downsizing face serious economic hardship, often for years, before finding other suitable employment. But this claim is undermined by a recent report on the Elthyrian economy, which found that since 1999 far more jobs have been created than have been eliminated, bringing the unemployment rate in Elthyria to its lowest level in decades. Moreover, two-thirds of these newly created jobs have been in industries that tend to pay above-average wages, and the vast majority of these jobs are full-time." *Downsizing is the process whereby corporations deliberately make themselves smaller, reducing the number of their employees. Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument. This argument is flawed, mainly because it makes no connection between the ability of the majority of competent workers who have lost jobs as a result of downsizing to get these newly created jobs in Elthyria. Just because more jobs have been created than have been eliminated since 1999, does not mean that those workers who have lost jobs as a result of corporate downsizing will necessarily get these created jobs. The fact that more jobs have been created than have been eliminated does not affect the claim that the majority of victims of corporate downsizing face serious economic hardship before finding other suitable employment. The fact that two-thirds of these newly created jobs are in industries that tend to pay above-average wages and are full-time, also does not mean that those who have lost jobs as a result of downsizing will get these new jobs and consequently will not suffer economic hardship. There is no evidence that the victims of corporate downsizing have the skills necessary to obtain a job in the industries that tend to pay above-average wages and are full-time. Therefore, there is no guarantee that these high paying full-time jobs are accessible to workers looking for new jobs as a result of downsizing. In addition, the other third of these new jobs could be low-paying or part-time jobs, that would not be able to support workers that have lost their jobs as a result of corporate downsizing. Therefore, this fact provides no evidence to suggest that these workers will not face serious economic hardship. Further, the recent report on the Elthyrian economy does not necessarily undermine the article on corporate downsizing, because the findings of the report as detailed in the letter do not disprove the article’s claim. The fact that the unemployment rate in Elthyria is the lowest its been in decades, does not dictate the employment rate of workers who have lost their jobs due to downsizing. In order to strengthen this argument, evidence in the Elthyrian economy report needs to be brought forth providing that the majority of victims of downsizing in Elthyria are eligible for and able to secure these newly created jobs that pay above-average wages and are full-time.
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