IELTS Writing Task 2: Main Functions of a University.

University Subjects IELTS PTE

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Some people think that universities should provide graduates with the knowledge and skills for the workplace in the future. Others think that the true function of a university is to provide access to knowledge for its own sake. What do you think are the main functions of a university?

40 minutes, 250 words at least.


Let me present a suitable structure for this question along with an explanation of “knowledge for its own sake”.

Introduction: Introduce the topic with a general statement on the CORE of the topic – University Education’s Function. This should be followed by your opinion. What are the functions of a university? Let me present a sample introduction:

While some people believe that higher education institutions are meant to prepare students for a long and prosperous career through professional education and skills, others opine universities should promote the pursuit of knowledge. I think these institutions should be an amalgamation of the two approaches. (45 words.)

Body Paragraph 1: Please explain why universities should promote professional education. Try writing about 80 words. Two sentences in general followed by an example in two sentences.

Body Paragraph 2: Please explain why universities should promote knowledge for its own sake. What exactly does this mean? Let me explain.

There is a belief that knowledge should be an end in itself and not a tool to achieve something. That is, it should not be used for tangible or career benefits. A person must learn things because he is in love with the process of learning. For my Indian readers, this refers to learning engineering Phunsuk Wangdu (Amir Khan) style in “The Three Idiots”. I’m sure the idea is much clear now.

Again, write 80 words. Two sentences in general explaining the idea and two sentences giving an example.

Sample Paragraph:

The progress of human civilization can equally be attributed to the selfless pursuit of knowledge. Universities have always nurtured creative and dedicated individuals who study and research subjects and topics in detail to solve humanity’s problems rather than securing employment. For instance, Albert Einstein pursued research in Physics at the Harvard University not to secure job in a corporation but to solve humanity’s pressing problems. Similarly, Amartya Sen, a Nobel prize winner and a renowned economist, studies welfare economics at the Oxford University to find out ways to eradicate poverty. (90 words)

Conclusion: 40 to 50 words. About two sentences using the elements of future and impact.

Please feel free to ask any doubts in the comments box below.

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