Answer Checking

IELTS Essay Correction: Construct New Railway Lines Or Improve Existing Transport.

In a number of countries, some people think that it is necessary to spend large sums of money on constructing new railway lines for very fast trains between cities. Others believe money should be spent on improving existing transport.

Discuss both views and give your own opinion.

40 minutes, 250 words at least.


Lack of the (reliable is abstract and not specific. You should not use the with non-specific words) reliable transport facilities is one of the major problems we are facing as a result of urbanization. According to some, it is important to build the highspeed bullet trains to improve the connectivity between cities, while others believe that money would be better spent it is better to spend money (prefer active voice over passive voice) on the modernization of existing public transport infrastructure. (NOTE: modernization is specific here. It is of existing public transport. You must use an article here.) I am of the opinion, (1) that public transport should be prioritized at the earliest.

1. Never put a comma before of after THAT as it indicates the presence of a dependant or a restrictive clause. Also, you should prefer the active voice: I am of the opinion that priority should be given to public transport.

On the one hand, building high-speed bullet trains will improve travel between cities, (2) by saving the time (you’re using time in general and not in a specific context. Specific: the time to travel between Bombay and Delhi.) and efforts. Consequently, it can reduce the burden on the big cities where existing infrastructure facilities are already overstretched as employees can commute to their native places daily after work rather than staying in the cities. As the traveling becomes easier, (Need a comma here – 3) it will bring people together people come closer because of more personal interaction. (This sentence is about comparison. Do not use IT. Correct construction – As X, Y(How? Please explain.) High speed rail networks are known to be helpful to the industry, it (These are two independent clauses that can’t be connected using a comma. Write them as separate sentences or use a connecting device – and) . It can boost job opportunities, eventually helping the economy of a nation. For instance, Japan has benefitted immensely by building large network of bullet trains. (How has the Japanese economy benefitted from bullet trains? Be more specific to score higher bands.)

2. Wrong use of the comma. Saving time and effort is dependant on the main sentence for the subject. It can be either a modifier (in this case it must be placed next to the word it modifies) or a dependant clause (in this case there must be a preposition to link it with the main sentence). Read my article on MODIFIERS.

3. An introductory word or phrase that sets the stage for a sentence must be followed by a comma. These include – however, unfortunately, Similarly, etc.

In the above paragraph, you have not explained two points adequately – personal interaction and economy. Since bullet trains are extremely fast and help people reach home quickly, they facilitate personal interaction between family members. This makes a society more stable and peaceful.

Strengthening public transport is far more cost-effective to the society. While bullet trains will help handful of citizens staying in limited cities, developing basic transport infrastructure will help the whole of the nation. (While X, Y. In X and Y you need to compare the comparables. Compare apples with apples, not apples with oranges. You can’t compare bullet trains with developing. You can compare bullet trains with basic transport.) Nowadays, most of the towns and cities are plagued by problems of pollution, traffic congestion.(4) Investment in public transport like buses, and trains will help curb this issue by reducing the number of vehicles on road, and, therby, improving improve the overall health of the community as a result. (You can’t connect a cause and effect relationship with a comma. You need connecting devices or you should write a separate sentence.) (You have to write this in context of bullet trains. Will bullet trains fail in tackling the issues of pollution and traffic congestion?) Since bullet trains are effective over long distances, they can not effectively solve these problems. Expenditure on roads and transportation facilities is more cost effective as against the high-speed train systems as it does not require large land and costly machinery.

4. Try writing in the active voice: Nowadays, the problems of pollution and traffic congestion plague most of the towns and cities of the world.

In conclusion, though bullet trains have been beneficial to the nations, I strongly believe that improvement in public transport facilities is more important and universally beneficial useful. (avoid repetition of the word beneficial.)

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