Essay / Vocabulary

Tap into Your Perspective to Write a Preference Essay

Aug 30 2015When you get to the TOEFL writing section, you will have two tasks to perform in English. In both of those, you will show your language ability to put together a written argument. The second writing is the independent essay, in which you give your opinion. In this task on the exam day, you will have 30 minutes to state your opinion and support it with examples in your essay. One of the categories of questions you may get is the preference topic. To get a head start on what you will encounter on the test day, look over the list below of those topics so you will be better prepared for what is to come.

Preference Prompts:

121 It has been said, “Not everything that is learned is contained in books.” Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books. In your opinion, which source is more importand? Why?

122 A company has announced that it wishes to build a large factory near you community. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of this new influence on your community. Do you support or oppose the factory? Explain your position.

123 Some people prefer to live in a small town. Others prefer to live in a big city. Which place would you prefer to live in? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

124 Some people prefer to eat at food stands or restaurants. Other people prefer to prepare and eat food at home. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

125 It has recently been announced that a new restaurant may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

126 Some people think that they can learn better by themselves than with a teacher. Others think that it is always better to have a teacher. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons to develop your essay.

127 It has recently been announced that a large shopping center may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

128 It has recently been announced that a new movie theater may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

129 It has recently been announced that a new high school may be built in your neighborhood. Do you support or oppose this plan? Why? Use specific reasons and details in your answer.

130 Some place people spend their entire lives in one place. Others move a number of times throughout their lives, looking for a better job, house, community, or even climate. Which do you prefer: staying in one place or moving in search of another place? Use reasons and specific examples to support your opinion.

131 You have received a gift of money. The money is enough to buy either a piece of jewelry you like or tickest to a concert you want to attend? Which would you buy? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

132 Some people like to travel with a companion. Other people prefer to travel alone. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

133 Some people prefer to get up early in the morning and start the day’s work. Others prefer to get up later in the day and work until late at night. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and details to support your choice.

134 Some people prefer to work for a large company. Others prefer to wrok for a small company. Which would you prefer? Use specific reasons and details to support your choice.

135 Some people like to do only what they already do well. Other people prefer to try new things and take risks. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

136 Some movies are serious, designed to make the audience think. Other movies are designed primarily to amuse and entertain. Which type of movie do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

137 Some people are always in a hurry to go places and get things done. Other people prefer to take their time and live life at a slower pace. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

138 Some people prefer to work for themselves or own a business. Others prefer to work for an employer. Would you rather be self-employed, work for someone else, or own a business? Use specific reasons to explain your choice.

139 If you were an employer, which kind of worker would you prefer to hire: an inexperienced worker at a lower salary or an experienced worker at a higher salary? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

140 Some people prefer to live in places that have the same weather or climate all your long. Others like to live in areas where the weather changes several times a year. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

141 You have been told that dormitory rooms at your university must be shared by two students. Would you rather have the university assign a student to share a room with you, or would you rather choose your own roommate? Use specific reasons and details to explain your answer.

142 Some people think that governments should spend as much money as possible on developing or buying computer technology. Other people disagree and think that this money should be spent on more basic needs. Which one of these opinions do you agree with? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.

143 Some people like doing work by hand. Others prefer using machines. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

144 Students at universities often have a choice of places to live. They may choose to live in university dormitories, or they may choose to live in apartments in the community. Compare the advantages of living in the university housing with the advantages of living in an apartment in the community. Where would you prefer to live? Give reasons for your preference.

145 Some people believe that the best way of learning about life is by listening to the advice of family and friends. Other people believe that the best way of learning about life is through personal experience. Compare the advantages of these two different ways fo learning about life. Which do you think is preferable? Use specific examples to support your preference.

146 When people move to another country, some ofthem decide to follow the customs of the new country. Others prefer to keep their own customs. Compare these two choices. Which one do you prefer? Support your answer with specific details.

147 Some people prefer to spend most of their time alone. Others like to be with friends most of the time. Do you prefer to spend your time alone or with friends? Use specific reasons to support your answer.

148 Some people prefer to spend time with one or two close friends. Others choose to spend time with a large number of friends. Compare the advantages of each choice. Which of these two ways of spending time do you prefer? Use specific reasons to support your answer.

149 Some people think that family is the most important influence on young adults Other people think that friends are the most important influence on young adults. Which view do you agree with? Use examples to support your opinion.

150 Some people prefer to plan activities for their free time very carefully. Others choose not to make any plans at all for their free time. Compare the benefits of planning free-time activities with the benefits of not making plans. Which do you prefer–planning or not planning for your leisure time? Use specific reasons and examples to explain your choice.

151 People learn in different ways. Some people learn by doing things; other people learn by reading about things; others learn by listening to people talk about things. Which of these methods of learning is best for you? Use specific examples to support your choice.

152 Some people choose friends who are different from themselves. Others choose friends who are similar to themselves. Compare the advantages of having friends who are different from you with the advantages of having friends who are similar to you. Which kind of friend do you prefer for yourself? Why?

153 Some people enjoy change and they look forward to new experiences. Others like their lives to stay the same, and they do not change their usual habits. Compare these two approaches to life. Which approach do you prefer? Why?

154 Some items (such as clothes or furniture) can be made by hand or by machine. Which do you prefer–items made by hand or items made by machine? Use reasons and specific examples to explain your choice.

155 Would you prefer to live in a traditional house or in a more modern apartment building? Use specific reasons and details to support your choice.

156 Some people prefer to spend their free time outdoors. Other people prefer to spend their leisure time indoors. Would you prefer to be outside or would you prefer to be inside for your leisure activities? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

157 In the future, students may have the choice of studying at home by using technology such as computers or television or of studying at traditional schools. Which would you prefer? Use reasons and specific details to explain your choice.

158 When people need to complain about a product or poor service, some prefer to complain in writing and others prefer to complain in person. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

159 Some students like classes where teachers lecture (do all of the talking) in class. Other students prefer classes where the students do some of the talking. Which type of class do you prefer? Give specific reasons and details to support your choice.

160 Some students prefer to study alone. Others prefer to study with a group of students. Which do you prefer? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

161 Which do you feel is more important in your life: security or freedom and independence? Use reasons and specific examples to support your opinion.

162 Some music is very inspirational. Other music seems boring and meaningless. Which type of music do you listen to and why do you think some music forms are much more popular than others? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

163 If you could travel back in time or into the future, which would you choose and what exact period of time would you like to experience? Use specific reasons and examples to support your choice.

215 Some people prefer to follow their dream even if it is challenging and other people like setting practical goals, which do you prefer?

218 Which do you prefer: to donate money to the local towns that you live in or to donate your money to the more large-scale world?

If you like this list of preference prompts from the writing section, check out TOEFL Writing Independent Task: Agree or Disagree Essay.

 

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