Countries, businesses, and schools are three areas that need good leaders. (Full Score)
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TOEFL Writing Sample: Countries, businesses, and schools are three areas that need good leaders. Choose one of these three areas and describe the most important qualities of a leader in that area. Explain why these qualities are important, using specific examples and details. (full score)
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All people want good government and good leaders. But it is not always easy to describe the qualities of a good leader. I suppose one needs to start with honesty. It is particularly difficult to be honest to yourself and to all of the other people at the same time. The problem is even worse because many people disagree with each other about what is ‘true’. How can a person be honest if nobody even agrees about what is true? When a good leader tells the truth, the majority of people can recognize it. Then it is easier for them to oppose bad ideas. Without a good leader, it is difficult to prevent political movements from starting that can lead to wars.
For the same reason leaders need to remain firm and not change their ideas every day. The people who vote for leaders expect them to be reliable, but they should also be flexible and willing to compromise. I think that a good leader always tries to avoid having problems with leaders from other countries. For instance, the leader of the US seems to have difficulties getting along with many of the world’s leaders. I don’t think that is a quality of a good leader.
Last but not least, a national leader should listen to ideas that are important to the poor people. That means there must be a way for people to communicate with the leader. Sometimes the best ideas come from faraway places. Most of the time these ideas are lost because there is nobody to hear them. I think that technology can help a leader to find out more about what the citizens think.
In conclusion, I think that honesty, reliability and openness to communication are three important qualities of a good national leader.
- All of the prompts are from former TOEFL exams.
- The information available online, i.e., Google search results, is either misleading or wrong relative to length: [an organization] states independent essays should be between 280-320 words. More words than needed is equivalent to more opportunities to make a mistake. Students should be informed re: word count, i.e., MORE WORDS does not mean a higher score.
- Information concerning paragraphs/content available from [a TOEFL training school], etc. is also wrong: the number of paragraphs is irrelevant and the only important issue re: content is to RESPOND DIRECTLY to the prompt, i.e., the raters/software doesn’t care about structure or content except the latter must Make sense and Must directly respond to the prompt [to preclude prepared essays].
- UK usage/spelling is entirely acceptable.
- AVOID complex grammar; avoid ‘Chinese English’ usage; 5 tenses: present, past, future, present perfect [have done/has been], and conditional [would go/could do it] are OPTIMAL.
- Don’t rewrite the prompt in the first paragraph of your essay…it’s okay to paraphrase [use words that mean the same thing].
- Recent TOEFL change…students found test takes too long, so there are fewer multiple-choice questions, i.e., essays are now more heavily ‘weighted’]
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