Formal examinations are the only effective way to assess a students

IELTS Writing Task 2 with sample answer.

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Formal examinations are the only effective way to assess a student’s performance. Continual assessment such as coursework and projects is not a satisfactory way to do this.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Sample Essay:

In modern education system, students are assessed in various ways including formal examinations and continual assessment like coursework and projects or assignments. Some people contend that formal examinations are the only effective approach to evaluate the strength of students. They argue that continual assessments are not satisfactory so as to formal examinations. In this stance, I do not believe that there is one approach cover all sides. The combination of both the formal examinations and continual assessment are essential to assess a student’s performance.

To start with, formal exams are introduced in order for teachers to see whether pupils really learn something from the lessons and the course as a whole. In doing so, students can be able to find their strength and weakness. In addition to this, formal exams are also beneficial for teachers as they can clearly see which student excels and those who need intense caring. However, it examines only the memorizing ability of a student, not his creativity. On the top of that, students often get nervous when they take part in an important exam. For example, one of my brilliant friends always performs badly in formal exams due to his nervousness.

On the flip side, continual assessment is a method in which students are assessed continuously over a period of time. Continuous assessment includes several types such as daily class work, course pertaining to projects and papers, and practical tasks. It has tremendous impact on pupils. Students get a constant stream of opportunity to excel themselves when assessment is continued. That is to say that assessment becomes embedded into the stream of learning. This results in that students is able to demonstrate their mastery as promptly as they choose to. Pupils’ lives become increasingly oriented towards real learning. On the other hand, there may have some malpractices in continuous assessment. Students may copy their projects or assignment from the Internet or other sources. For example, my elder brother very often copied his assignments from the Internet.

In fine, formal exams examine only the rote memory of a student whereas continuous assessment tests the students’ ability and overall competence in more natural way. In the case, I would like to say that the methods are not complement to each other since both the approaches have some drawbacks. Actually, the combination of formal exam and continuous assessment can meet the objective of assessment of a student.