In this type of question, you’re given a statement, and then the rubric asks you to discuss two related subtopics. Sometimes the rubric asks you to discuss the problems and solutions. Sometimes you’re given two related questions. Whatever the questions, you should follow this structure:
In terms of paragraphing, you have one option:
Body paragraph 1: Discuss the first part of the question.
Body paragraph 2: Discuss the second part of the question.
Here’s the question we’re going to work on:
More and more people are migrating to cities in search of a better life, but city life can be extremely difficult.
Explain some of the difficulties of living in a city. How can governments make urban life better for everyone?
First part: Explain some of the difficulties of living in a city.
Second part: How can governments make urban life better for everyone?
Step 1: Spend 2 minutes reading and understanding the question. Once you have fully understood what the question is asking for, you can move on to the next step. Remember that every word counts!
Step 2: Spend 8 minutes to come up with a plan, from introduction to conclusion. If you don’t do this step properly, it will be nearly impossible to get to band 7 or above.
Note 1: To learn how you can do steps 1 and 2 properly, take a look at this article.
Note 2: It might be difficult for you to understand every part of my plan without reading my essay. My planning shows my thinking process with signs and shortened statements. I’ve put it here so that you see how I do it. Once you do your planning like this, it will make sense to you.
Here’s my plan:
Introduction: Paraphrase the question + Thesis statement
Rural area…leave.. migrate to… hope of finding a comfortable life.
Doesn’t necessarily mean high quality…city… challenges.
measure…govs… eliminates some of them.
Body paragraph 1: Difficulties of living in a city
Main idea: Difficult for some to have a fulfilling life
Support 1: higher cost of living: most difficult to deal with. Reason→retail prices higher…
Support 2: Smaller living space: apartments designed … more in smaller space→ less personal space + freedom = lower overall happiness.
Body paragraph 2: Things governments can do
Main idea: Solutions…make life easier for…
Support 1: lower tax on business = lower the cost of production→lower retail prices
Support 2: building more highways= facilitate transport→faster delivery (fuel)=lower consumer price
Support 3: encourage city planners…expand city sprawls + better use of interior space
Conclusion: urbanization→life difficult for people in cities… authorities… facilitate some of them.
Step 3: Spend 25 minutes writing your essay.
Here’s my full essay:
People from rural areas often decide to leave their life behind and migrate to cities in the hope of finding a more comfortable one, but little do they know that migration does not necessarily lead to a higher quality of life since urban lifestyle comes with its own share of problems. Nevertheless, there are measures that governments can take to eliminate these difficulties.
Urban lifestyle, despite its surface glamor, makes it difficult for some people to have a fulfilling life. A higher cost of living, for instance, is one that many migrants would find the most difficult to deal with. This is because of the fact that retail prices of consumer goods such as food and clothes are much higher in cities than in rural areas. Moreover, smaller living spaces in an urban setting (the apartments designed to accommodate more people in smaller areas) may also have an adverse effect on the overall happiness of urban residents since such accommodations do not allow people to have much personal space. Therefore, living in a city may lead to families going broke or becoming depressed due to lack of personal freedom.
However, there are solutions to the above-mentioned issues, which can make life much easier for people in metropolises. First, by lowering tax rates for businesses, governments can lower production costs, leading to a decrease in retail prices. Second, more roads and highways should be built to facilitate the transportation of goods because faster delivery time means lower fuel consumption of transport vehicles, which results in lower consumer prices. Finally, the authorities should encourage city planners and architects to develop ideas to expand city sprawls and make better use of the interior space of each residential building. By implementing these measures, people could have affordable lives and more freedom, leading to higher levels of fulfillment.
In conclusion, urbanization is a phenomenon that makes life extremely difficult for people residing in cities, but the responsible authorities can facilitate such challenges through some changes in the infrastructure of urban areas.
Step 4: Spend 5 minutes reviewing your essay and correcting your mistakes.
Here’s the summary of all the steps:
- Read and understand the question in 2 minutes.
- Plan your essay in 8 minutes.
- Write your essay in 25 minutes.
- Review your work in 5 minutes.