Sample Responses to
Speaking Questions Part 2&3
Describe a business person you admire
You should say:
Who this person is
what his/her business is
And explain why you admire this person
Mr. Alex Smith (…or say a name you prefer…) is a successful businessman I know about. He is from my hometown and he now owns two groups of industries and the products line of his companies are famous in our country.
Since he is from the same town where I spent my childhood and teenage time, I have heard a lot about him and few times I met him as well.
He was a son of a successful local businessman and he inherited his father’s electronic industry many years back. That was just the starting and over time he has worked really hard and built his empire in the local business market. In few years, he took some giant leapt in his business and lately has been awarded as one of the bet business entrepreneurs in the country. From the local electronic business he had inherited from his father, he gradually and successfully amassed the fortune and business success and thus has become one of the enviable businessmen in the country.
Taking great decisions and gradually enhancing the business was his success mantra. Everyone in our locality agrees that he was an honest, hardworking and wise person who knew when to take risks and when not to. His timely decision, investment in promising sectors and hard work have rewarded him well and his industries have made the opportunity for others to earn their daily bread.
The business man I admire is Steve Jobs, who was a co-founder and the CEO of Apple. I got to know him many years ago on the Internet. Apple products like iPhone, iPad and MacBook are so popular that it is hard not to know him. He was a successful entrepreneur. He created a culture that attracts so many followers worldwide. It was him who made the ordinary electronic products like computers and phones into cultural icons, fashion items, and even status symbols. I admire him mainly because of the following reasons: firstly, he has a great business vision. At first, Apple’s main product was computers. Later Steve Jobs thought that smart phones would become a big market, so, iPhone came into being. Secondly, he was very hardworking. Even when he was really sick, he still worked very hard and traveled around for business meetings. Last but not least, he had great leadership skills. He was very good at inspiring people and giving people motivation to move toward their goals in life.
Oh, unfortunately they do as they have to complete a lot of tasks and ensure the smooth operation of their business. Small business owners usually hold responsibility for everything from hiring and training employees, conducting employee evaluation and terminations, planning ahead for the success of their business taking into account both short and long-term plans on out to meeting financial and production goals. Doing all this stuff takes load of time and makes businesspersons work to the max. So yeah, they just have to work long hours if they want to succeed.
2. What business will young people do?
Well, young people can make money doing whatever they are passionate about and good at. I mean they can start business from their hobby even if they don't have enough money to invest.
That's actually what a lot of young adults are doing these days. They start small and then grow gradually. I guess the most wide-spread business ideas implemented by the young are handmade gifts, home-baked cookies and cupcakes, online stores, bicycle rental points, language tutoring and delivery service. I also know young people who own coffee houses, bars, fashion boutiques and beauty salons though I think these types of business require initial investment and can I started only by the young who have a certain amount of money or an investor right from the jump.
3. How do business people relax?
Well, I guess by switching their attention from what they do all day long to something that will help them redress the balance. A vast number of business people relax by taking yoga classes or doing any kind of sport like exercising, jogging, going biking or swimming. There are also many businessmen who recharge their energy batteries by getting outside into nature. Getting a relaxing bath or massage and travelling to new destinations. One more way for busy people to relax is to spend quality time with their families and friends up new hobbies or trying something new.
4. What kinds of business are popular in your country?
As Iran is a huge market, all kinds of business can grow big and popular here, like opening a gift store or running a training school.
As far a as I know, more and more people are interested in doing online business. They combine their traditional products or services with Internet. Many clothing stores opened their online stores, even restaurants take the advantage the internet brings and get more customers.
5. If you had the opportunity, what kinds of business would you do?
If I have an opportunity to do business, I would want to open a book cafe. I like books, if I open a book safe, I know how to select books that will be appealing to the customers. Plus, I’ m a foodie, I’m fond of trying different kinds of food, snacks and drinks. People need to take a break after reading for some time. And it’s relaxing to have some refreshment and a cup of drink after you read. I think the business will be quite good.
6. What age do people want to retire in your country?
I think many people like to retire at an earlier age, maybe in their 50s, so that they can finally take a break and enjoy the retired life. But some other people may want to continue to work even after when they are 60. They have a passion for their career and want to devote more to their job, like some culture workers and entrepreneurs. They love what they do.
7. Would young people in your country like to open up their own business or find a job?
I think most young people would want to find a job and work for a couple of years before they start their own business. Young people usually don’t have the experience and money needed to run a business by themselves, therefore they need to accumulate those things by taking a job at other companies first. But I think more and more young people now are willing to open up a company and be their own boss.
8. Would people want to do online business or run a company in reality?
I think it depends on what business they do. For many businesses, a physical company or store is needed so that employees can work together and the customers can see their products or experience their services on site. But other people like to do business online, because the cost may be lower, and they can have a bigger audience on the internet. Many traditional businesses also move their products online in order to have a bigger market share.
Describe a car journey you went on
You should say:
Where you went
When and why you went there
With whom you went there
What you did in the trip
How you felt about it
And explain why this was such an unforgettable trip
This summer, my family took a car journey to the north of Iran where there was a famous resort by the sea. My uncle lives and works abroad. He rarely gets the chance to go home because his work is very demanding. Recently however he was able to take a few weeks off, so he came back. My uncle had told us about a plan he had to take a long trip through the country and all of us agreed. He said that it had always been his dream and now we are going to share in it.
We all packed our bags and he rented a vehicle large enough to accommodate all of us. He volunteered to drive the first few miles but since it was a long and exhausting drive for just one man, he and my father took turns on the wheel.
The resort was everything it promised to be and more. There were many activities for us to do like the usual sightseeing and picture taking. We also got the chance to try scuba diving, snorkeling and parasailing. Since it was the first time we had a trip by car, we felt so excited that we made as much noise as we could. We were all singing, telling jokes and sharing stories.
Well, travelling is wonderful in many ways, and there are a lot of benefits people can have from it. First of all, travelling lets people disconnect from their regular life, relax and get new experiences. It also helps them open their eyes to how the rest of the world lives and, as a result, gain a broader worldview. While travelling, people get to know different places, get accustomed to different cultures, increase their general knowledge and make friends from all over the globe. All these things and experiences make them inspired and happy and create memories for a lifetime.
2. Do you like to travel on your own or with your family?
Well, I really enjoy travelling on my own 'cause from time to time I need a break from my family and friends. I like to feel freedom, do what I want without being judged and be flexible with time, destinations and decisions I make. Travelling alone also lets me learn more about myself and what I am capable of, overcome my fears and achieve focus of mind. What is more, it lets me learn to listen to my heart, make new friends and experience new things, choosing the people and activities I really want but not have to choose.
3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of travelling alone and travelling with friends?
I adore travelling with my family. It gives me a lot of pleasure and joy, it fills me with energy and inspiration, it makes me really happy! Travelling with family members lets me enjoy spending time with my beloved ones, experience new things together and create lasting memories linking our hearts, it also lets us follow our dreams together and, as a result, enhances and strengthens our family bonds.
4. Do you like to visit popular places or less-known places?
Well, I would say it depends on my travel goals. I usually opt for popular destinations when I want to get some enjoyable experience, see lots of beautiful things and attractions, make new friends with people from different countries and have a lot of entertainment and fun. But when I am really tired and dream to get away from all the noise, walk along less crowded streets and beaches, enjoy more privacy and downtime and spend all my time with people I travel with. I go to off the beaten path places and enjoy the peace which I lack in my daily life.
5. Do people prefer long trips or short trips?
Well, I think it depends on what they want from their trip or vacation. If they want to fully immerse in the place or places they visit, they definitely opt for longer trips. Such trips don't only let people gain more knowledge and experience but also give them more time to really unplug and refresh. What is more, they let people save money on lodging costs because the longer you stay in the hotel, the less money you pay for extra nights. But if people just want to quickly recharge the batteries and get back to routine, they choose shorter trips which are a quick way to relieve stress. This kind of trips gives people a chance to seize the moment and go on vacation whenever they want. Moreover, it takes less planning time, costs less, exposes travelers to more surroundings and makes them feel happier than on long trips because enjoyment wanes as people get accustomed to their holiday lifestyle.
6. What kind of problems do people have when traveling?
Well, first of all, these are the problems connected with safety issues, I mean being robbed in the street or having valuables stolen from the hotel room. One more common kind of problems people face is budget problems like running out of money or just not having enough money to deal with problems or mishaps. Speaking another language is also quite a big problem for the majority of travelers. And, of course, flying problems such as delayed or cancelled flights, not enough leg-room on the plane, long queues at check-in and jet-lag if people fly across the Atlantic.
7. Why are more and more young people going on long trips nowadays?
Well, I guess, first of all, because only long trips let the young to escape from the daily grind and everyday stressors and reset before returning to their normal life. One more reason why young people opt for long trips is a chance to see more places of interest and learn more about the world and themselves, getting awesome and unforgettable experiences, expanding social networks and developing skills in problem-solving and creative thinking. I think these are the main things that make long trips appealing to the young.
8. Why do people need holidays?
Oh, I guess for a variety of reasons. First of all, people need rest just because they need to switch off from time to time, I mean leave their worries behind them, let off some steam and spend quality time with their families or friends. Secondly, it's really important for people to go on vacation in order to avoid monotony and prevent their mind and body from stagnating. A change from daily routine always lets people get back to work refreshed and in better form. I would also add that holidays are essential 'cause they help people broaden their horizons and memorable experiences, which lets everyone feel more fulfilled in the long run.
Describe a company or organization that employs a lot of people
You should say:
What it is
How big it is
How many employees work there
And explain what you think about it
I'm going to talk about MOBL-ASSA, which is a furniture manufacturer that is famous all around the world. It's all the rage in Iran.
I know this company because three years ago, I bought a bookshelf there. I really loved it and I'm still using it today. It's an international company, so I can only give my estimation of its workfoce at 50 thousand.
I guess MOBL-ASSA furniture and household appliances are extremely popular mainly because most MOBL-ASSA products are dirt cheap compared to other furniture manufacturers. Plus, they're of great quality too. But how can they be cheap and good at the same time?
I think the fundamental reason is that you can assemble all the parts of a piece of furniture all by yourself, which means you don't need to pay someone to do it for you. This allows you to save a big amount of money I think.
Last weekend, for example, I bought a board at MOBL-ASSA, I mean, a board to write on. It only cost me 15000 Toomans whereas if I buy a similar one elsewhere, it would cost something around 25000 Toomans, which is a lot more expensive.
Well, I guess everything is different from business size and organizational structure to communication and allocation of resources. For example, small companies mainly focus on a niche market, while big businesses tend to offer a variety of products and services worldwide. Also, in small companies strategic decision-making is more centralized as virtually all business decisions are made by company owners. The bigger the company is, the more decision-making authority spreads out among the various layers of management. One more thing I should mention is that in small companies each employee is responsible for a wide range of tasks, while in large companies worker has a specific operational role.
2. Are there many big companies in your country?
Oh yeah. There are plenty of big companies in my country these days. I guess the main reasons for this are the enormous size and increasing wealth of the market, economic liberalization, robust domestic demand and a young population of the country. Top 10 biggest companies in my country are state-owned or controlled oil and gas businesses, manufacturing companies and banks. One more thing which explains why there is a big number of large companies in my country is that here is the most attractive market for investment, mainly due to its low labor costs and a high return on investment.
3. What are the good things about working for a big company?
Oh, big companies always provide employees with big opportunities. Working for a large corporation you become part of a huge community and create invaluable networks, you get access to a host of resources such as specialist training courses and additional qualifications, you have tremendous room for upward and sideways growth opportunities without having to leave. What is more, you have greater security and a more steady work pace than employees of small businesses.
4. How can a small company grow big?
I think one of the most efficient ways to expand business these days is to go where its audience is on the web. What I mean is to start social accounts with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and inform potential or existing customers about novelties and special offers attracting their attention to the company again and again and motivating them to buy more and more. Some more ways to help a company grow big are to diversify its product or service, target other markets, merge or acquire another business and, of course, some motivational stuff like encourage employees to explore more efficient approaches to increasing sales and reward the team for meeting budgets and time lines.
5. Should big companies be punished more seriously than small companies?
Definitely yes! Fines must differ depending on the size of the company and its profit. If big companies get a fine which small companies can afford to pay, they just won't feel responsible and continue to violate laws. One more reason for big corporations to be punished more seriously than small companies is the fact that the bigger the company is, the bigger the scope and depth of its effects are. For instance, the level of pollution caused by a small company is significantly different from the one caused by a big multinational corporation, which, of course, must entail a different level of responsibility a punishment.
Describe a dream home you would like to have
You should say:
Were this place is
What it is like
When you want to live in there
And explain why you want to live in such a place
A dream home I would like to have is a bungalow that my family stayed in when I went on vacation in Mazandaran. It was half way up a mountain on the coast, overseeing the picturesque scenery of the beach and blue sea. There was a little yard in front of the house, where I could sit and have a cup of tea while enjoying the fresh air and amazing view. Inside the house, I could still see the greenery outside because of the big French windows in the living room. The walls were dotted here and there with artistic pictures, and the wooden furniture added yet more liveliness to the cozy rooms. In the morning, when I opened the window, sea breeze came pouring in, and I could hear birds chirping in the woods. I want to live in it after I graduate from school. It would be great if I could work from home there so that I could make the most of place. I want to live in this house because it was so beautiful and comfortable. The designer of this bungalow made the best use of architecture, nature and human emotions to create this wonderful work of art.
I think most people live in apartments. In cities, there are a lot of apartment buildings, and almost all urban citizens live in these buildings. Though a lot of people in the rural areas live in houses, I think the number of people living in apartments is still bigger.
2. Do young people in your country like to live with their parents or by themselves?
I think most young people prefer living by themselves, so that they can enjoy more freedom and avoid family problems caused by generation gap and different lifestyles. But when they get married, they may live with parents so their children can be taken care of when they are busy.
3. Do Iranian people like to rent a place to live?
The fact is that the majority of the population in the urban areas live in rented places, because they can't afford to buy their own. I can't say they like it, but they have to. I do know there are people renting an apartment even though they can afford to buy one, because they prefer moving around.
4. Would you live in a foreign country in the future?
Yes. Maybe just for a couple of years. Living in a foreign country is a great way to pick up a language, learn about another culture, and meet different people. But as I was born and raised in Iran, I'm more used to the lifestyle here. So I will come back after I experienced the life in another country.
5. How is modern home design (both inside & outside appearance) in your country different to that of the past?
I have to say there are many changes happened these years in terms of home design. In the past, homes were usually in lower buildings without elevators. Now most people live in tall apartment buildings. The interior design of houses in the past were very simple, but the houses now are decorated more beautifully with pictures, green plants and other things.
6. In your country, what type of home do most people live in?
Most people live in apartments. We have a very large population in Iran, so we build tall apartment buildings to provide room for more homes. Most people live in these apartments with their families. Unlike a lot of the developed countries where many people live in houses and have their own gardens, we share the public facilities in the buildings with our neighbours.
Describe a favorite sport which you watched
You should say:
What it is
When you watch it
Who you watch it with
And explain why you like watching it
I’m not actually very interested in sport, but there was an occasion a few years ago when I went to see a football match in a town about half an hour from where I live. It was a charity match – I think they were collecting funds for the local school – and it was very well attended. I think there must have been over 5,000 people there, which isn’t bad considering there aren’t any ‘star’ players.
I only went because a friend of mine really wanted to go but didn’t want to watch it on his own, so in the end there were a small group of us. One of the other people we went with was going anyway because his brother was in one of the teams, so it made it a lot more fun to have a team to support, otherwise I wouldn’t have really minded either way who won!
Although I did enjoy it, it hasn’t made me want to go back and see another game – it was good fun mostly because of the people I was with – we were only half focused on the game and spent the rest of the time just chatting or eating – we’d taken a picnic with us and it was a beautiful day! After the match, we met a lot of new people in the park – most people stayed for at least a few hours after the game just enjoying the sunshine.
As I mentioned, I’m not that interested in sport, but I do watch some of the World Cup games when they are on television – it’s a lot more fun than just following a local or national team, and there’s a lot more going on in the crowd. When Germany won the world cup not too long ago, there was a small group of German people in my town that had a 24 hour party and invited everyone – it was such a good atmosphere!
Oh, plenty of stuff, actually. They try to stay active as long as possible. The elderly does morning exercises on a regular basis, choose the stairs over the elevator, walk a lot, do garden work and play with their grandchildren. All these actions make them move a lot and train their muscles in everyday routine. Some old people think it's not enough and add doing functional fitness exercises to improve different types of movements necessary for daily life. They train bend-and-lift movements to be able to squat down to lift a shopping bag of groceries from the floor, single-leg movement for climbing and descending stairs, pushing movements for lifting the torso from a side-living position, pulling movements for being able to pull the car door and rotational movements to be able to reach across the body. The most active old people jog, swim and cycle as well.
2. How are the Olympic players trained in your country? Do they usually start training when they are born?
Well, I don't think that training for the games starts when the Olympic players are born, but what I am sure of, it starts many years before the event and demands a lot of efforts. I think that players in my country are trained more or less the same way as in the rest of the world, and it seems to me they devote huge amounts of time to physical training. They also eat properly and sleep tor 8-10 hours a day.
3. Why does somebody dislike to watch the Olympic Games?
Well, I think on a large scale because of the commercialization of the Games and the fact that the Olympics are no longer a sporting contest but a contest of sponsors. Or, maybe, because people don't have that much time to watch all the sports and games, especially if there are only a few sports at the Olympics they care about. Oh, well, there can be one more reason for this, I think, the fact that their country doesn't participate in the contest, which makes watching it senseless.
4. Why do young people do less sports than their parents?
Well, I guess, first of all, because young people unlike their parents are not aware of health benefits and psychological bonuses sport can bring them. It can also be so because the young are very busy_ these days, which leads to the fact that exercise can sometimes be the last thing on their To Do list with a schedule filled with different classes and after-school activities. I guess, these are the main reasons.
Describe someone who is a good parent
You should say:
Who this person is
And explain why do you think he/she is a good parent
Speaking of a good parent, I think of my father. He is a teacher in high school. To me, he is a father, a teacher and a friend. When I went to school, he helped me with schoolwork. Of course, he didn't simply show me the answers. Instead, he gave me hints, and led me to work out the problems one step after another and then patiently explained the whole process to me. On weekends, my father often went hiking with me. And while we were walking in the woods, he would lead me to think about life and teach me how to become a helpful person. Now I don't see my father a lot, because I go to college in another city. But every time I go home, my father will cook a big meal for me. I will tell him about the problem I encounter at school and he can always offer useful suggestions. So, my father is the best parent I know.
If I can afford a babysitter, I would hire one to take care of my children. It doesn't mean that I'm not responsible as a parent, on the contrary, I think it's sensible to do so. Because if I'm too busy at work, it would be impossible for me to take good care of my children. And many babysitters now are certified and are more professional than us in terms of children care. So, they can even take better care of my children. But of course, I need to spend more time with the children myself whenever I have time.
2. Do you think it's fair to let mothers take care of children all the time?
No, it's not. I think it's both parents' responsibility to look after the children. Nowadays, women can also be busy at workplaces, so it's unfair if they must take care of the children all the time. So, fathers should help too. If both parents work together, they can provide better care and love for their children. Besides, children will not be close to their fathers if he doesn't spend time taking care of them, and it will also be harmful to the children's growth.
3. Some teenagers don't like to be controlled by their parents, what do you think?
Firstly, I think parents should not try to control their children, instead, they should guide them, influence them, understand them and support them. Secondly, teenagers tend to be disobedient at their age because they start to have their own ideas and opinions. Their parents should try to talk to them more and understand them better, so they can help their children in the right way.
4. What are the drawbacks if the children are looked after by their grandparents?
Many children are taken care by their grandparents now because their parents are busy with work, and there are some drawbacks. To begin with, grandparents tend to spoil their grandchildren. They give them whatever they want so the children become very dependent and can' t take care of themselves. Secondly, because the children grow up with old people, so they don' t have a good chance to be taught about the new things around them. Last but not least, their relationship with their parents may not be so close.
5. In your country, who will take care children?
I think it depends on the family situation. Parents will take care of their children if they are not too busy with work. But if they are, they will turn to their grandparents for help, which is often the case in cities now. Some families will hire babysitters to look after the children if no one in the family is available, or if they can afford hiring one.
6. Do you think you'll be a good parent?
I think so. Because I have good parents, they set very good examples to me. It's like a family tradition and I will pass it down to my own children. I will take good care of my children but at the same time, I won't spoil them. They should be taught to have good qualities like being independent, caring, and hardworking.
Describe someone who is knowledgeable
You should say:
Who this person is
And explain how do you know this person
When it comes to a knowledgeable person, I think of my high school history teacher. He was my teacher in the third year. All my classmates back then thought he was extremely knowledgeable. He knew many things beyond the textbooks. Even though we were faced with the college entrance exam, he often told us stories in the history that can't be found in our books . All my classmates were fascinated by his stories and amazed by his broad knowledge. Sometimes in the evening self-study period, he even helped us with problems of other subjects, like math or geography. We all guessed that he must have been a well-rounded student when he was a student himself. He taught himself psychology in his spare time, so he always helped us when we needed motivation and spiritual support during that hardship. He said it's never too old to learn. He really did put this old saying into practice. I have graduated from high school for years, but I still think he is a very knowledgeable person.
Well, it is a hard choice. I really can't choose one over another. By Internet, people could gain knowledge and information more convenient and with wider range; while books have their edge as well. The content is always more authoritative in books. They both have their own irreplaceable strengths. But I consider that is why people are always saying that everything exists for a reason.
2. Do you think books will disappear in the future?
I suppose the answer is a "no" .Maybe in some people's mind, books will be replaced by electronic books or Internet. And we can't deny the fact that the power of Internet influences our life deeply. But I still believe books are irreplaceable. Books are a part of our culture and civilization. Although I admit that the time of reading books will decline. To my point of view. Because of the profound thinking type, reading books will be a token of middle to high class. And can't be replaced forever.
3. If it is just about gaining information, why is it necessary for books to exist?
Well, I would say that the topic has been talked about for quite a while. I heard some believe that books need to be replaced by Internet or other more convenient sources. But I would say that authoritative is the main reason why we should not abandon books in our life. The information and knowledge in the books has been checked by editors for many times. But nowadays the information in the website is not objective or accurate because it is mostly the viewpoint of some people. Therefore, books could provide us more reliable information.
4. Nowadays many people rely on Internet very much, what do you think?
It has always been the topic that is widely talked about and debated. Internet changes our life indeed. Let me get started from the bright side. Internet makes our life more convenient and effective. Through Internet, we purchase, communicate and acquire knowledge. And of course, we can' t ignore its dark side. The first thing is that it' s hard to maintain solid relationship with our friends and families; another disadvantage spring to my mind is the separation of the real life· when someone relies on Internet very much. Therefore, I think these are two sides of the same coin.
5. How could people find reliable information on Internet?
Well, based on the disadvantages of this issue, I think there are some effective methods to find reliable information on Internet. Firstly, we should look for information through formal websites. For example, government website, corporate website or major media sites are good choices. Secondly, we need to verify the information by comparing with other resources. And the last but the most important, it is pivotal to keep critical thinking during the process. I believe we can rise the accuracy and authority when we find information on Internet with the methods above.
Describe a leisure facility (cinema, theater, sports center) you would like to have in your home town
You should say:
What it is
Why you would like to have this facility in your home town
How the facility change your life
And explain how you felt about it
I wish we could have an IMAX movie theater. When I went to university in Tehran, I saw some movies in the IMAX movie theaters there, and I was really amazed by its super clear pictures and great sound effects. I wish we could have an IMAX movie theater back in my hometown, so I could go with my family and friends . It should be in the center of our town, so it would be more accessible to all the residents and the business would be better. Because there aren't many leisure facilities in my hometown at present, there's no place to go when I go back on holidays. With an IMAX movie theater, there would be a new fun activity to do during the Iranian New Year. Actually, I heard that a new mall was going to be built in my town and it would be equipped with an IMAX movie theater, I hope it wasn't just a rumor. How awesome it will be if I could watch an IMAX movie with my family just a few minutes away from home!
I think so. People have different hobbies at different ages, so their way of entertainment also changes as they grow. Children like to play with toys, but when they become teenagers, they may switch to listening to music or going to movies for recreation. In their 30s or 40s, they are likely to choose hiking or playing golf to entertain themselves. While playing chess is among the most popular activities for senior citizens.
2. What do young people do for fun?
Most young people do all sorts of things for fun, like listening to music, playing computer games, going shopping, playing sports, going to movies, to name a few. Because young people are full of creativity and curiosity, they like to try new things for fun. Personally, I like to sing with friends, I always have a good time, even though I' m not a very good singer.
3. Do you think entertainment methods will be home-based in the future?
I don't really think so. Even though entertainment facilities like home theaters become more accessible for homes, I still think exploring the fun things on the streets is more fun . Since you can't invite all your friends over to your house, and you often have to keep your voice down at home, you can't really enjoy. But when you are outside, you can try different kinds of entertainment with your friends, and you don't need to worry of disturbing your family in case you get too excited.
4. What kinds of leisure facilities are popular in your country?
In Iran, leisure facilities like movie theaters, coffee shops and video game arcades are very popular. You can find them in the shopping malls or business streets in cities. On the weekends, these facilities are packed with young people streaming in and out with friends.
5. Do you think it's important to take some time off work or study and do some leisure activities?
Yes, I think it is important. Leisure activities give our mind a rest from daily stress. It relieves our boredom and stress from work and study, which can improve our physical and emotional health. Besides, doing leisure activities, especially group leisure activities enhances our communication skills. It also helps us reach a balance between our work and life.
Describe a piece of furniture
You should say:
What it is
Where it is
What it looks like( or what it is made of)
And explain how or why you use it
I want to talk about a wardrobe in my grandparents’ house. When I was young, I lived with grandparents because my parents were busy. In my grandma’s bedroom, there was a big wardrobe, or at least it seemed big to me then. It was white, with two single doors on the front. And on one door, there was a big mirror attached, which was as tall as the wardrobe itself. My grandma kept her clothes in wardrobe. But don’t underestimate it, it had more functions than that. She also hid snacks in a secret drawer inside the wardrobe, but I always managed to find them like a treasure hunter. And when I played hide-and-seek with my cousins, I sometimes would hide myself in it. Of course, whenever I bought new clothes, I would look myself in that mirror for a long time. Now the wardrobe is still in my grandparents’ house and when I go to visit them, I would take a good look at it. Even though I’m now taller than it, it brings me back to the time when I was a kid.
Some people go to big furniture malls like MOBL-ASSA where they can find all kinds of furniture. I went there once and saw many people busy shopping for beds, tables, and sofas. It is kind of like a self-service furniture supermarket where you choose the furniture on your own, put it in a cart and pay at the cashier. Other people go to home design companies that can customize your furniture or even give you a whole-house furniture plan.
2. What factors do people need to consider when buying furniture for the home?
First of all, they need to consider the overall style of their house.Whether it’s modern, traditional Iranian or any other styles, they should select furniture that matches it, which means the color and material should fit in. The second factor is the quality. Good furniture is more durable. And of course, price is another important factor that they should take into consideration.
3. Why do some people like to buy expensive furniture?
Expensive furniture is usually better in many ways than its cheaper counterpart. It not only has better design and better material but also come with better after-sale services. For example, a leather sofa with great design can be quite pricy, but it can be very comfortable as well. Of course, people who buy expensive furniture tend to be financially well off.
4. What’s the difference between furniture in the office and furniture at home?
I have to say there are many differences between them. As office furniture is designed for working, the style is usually simple and plain. It doesn’t come with the extra decorations, so as to fit in the formal working environment. However, home furniture can be more personal. It is designed to create comfort for families, so it uses more soft materials such as cloth.
5. Do you think the style is important?
Yes. The style of furniture is important, as beautiful furniture can smarten up a house. It’s a part of interior design which can easily improve or ruin the overall effect of your decoration. And home is where we live, so we see and use the furniture every day. If it’s beautifully designed, it will improve our experience with it and make our time at home more pleasant. So I think the style is of importance.
Describe a positive change in your life
You should say:
What the change was
When it happened
How it happened
And explain why it was a positive change
Well, the positive change happened in my life was going to college in Tehran, my dream city. This experience not only significantly broadened my horizons, but also altered the course of my life.
Tehran had always been the dream city in my heart since my childhood. Therefore, I made up my mind to go to a university in Tehran since my high school time. Through hard-work, I got good results in the college entrance examination and later chose to go to the university in my dream without hesitation.
In order to achieve my dream of going to a college in Tehran, I clearly knew that I need to make thorough preparation because of the high standard. Therefore, I concentrated myself on the study all the time from the first year to the last in high school. Moreover, I always consulted my teachers after class in terms of difficult questions as well as learning methods in various subjects. Undoubtedly, I encountered difficulties while chasing my dream, but I always told myself that only by being tougher and tenacious can I finally touch my dream.
I think the change benefited me in many aspects. Firstly, I finally got access to the capital of Iran. The city was so charming and energetic that I felt so happy to spend years there and got familiar with this metropolis. Secondly, Tehran had attracted excellent professors and classmates that I did improve my professional skills in the university. Thirdly, through internships in large companies in Tehran, I acquainted myself with many talents who were being smart and humble. Therefore, going to the college was pretty much a milestone in my life.
Oh yeah, it is. My country is getting better and better year after year making rapid progress in a number of areas. First of all, more and more people in Iran are getting education and proper medical help as new schools and hospitals are being built and opened all around the country including rural areas. As a result, educational attainment level and health indicators like Infant Mortality and Average Life Expectancy have significantly improved over the last decade. What is more, facilities in the country are getting better and better, for example, roads are being built and fixed, a lot of modern buildings, shopping-centers and amusement parks are being constructed. Cities and towns look more and more attractive. One more thing I want to mention is the fact that a lot of modern and forward-looking businesses are being created providing more people with employment and, as a result, improving standard of living in the country.
2. Do you think change is good?
No doubt it is. It is a major driver of growth and development as it forces people outside their comfort zone, gets them out of their rut and teaches them to be flexible. Change always brings adventure into life, always challenges people and, as a result, makes them stronger. It also presents new opportunities and brings excitement to life. It breaks up routine and forces people to move. What is more, it keeps the mind active and this way triggers progress. Unfortunately, in many situations change puts a strain on people and makes them feel insecure or helpless, but still, in the long run, it brings better results. So I am sure people should embrace changes with open arms if they want to improve their lives.
3. What are some of the major changes that occur to people throughout their lives?
Oh, I guess the major changes in our lives start from finishing school, entering a university and then graduating from it. At this point we become adults and start building our professional lives. Later on we face such professional changes as getting a job, having a new boss, getting promoted or losing a job. All these changes may trigger confusion, tension and fear making us feel nervous and sometimes even helpless. As far as major personal changes are concerned, are getting married, having a child children, getting divorced and losing a family member. I can also add such situations as moving to another country, having new neighbours and losing a lot of money. All of them are important as they usually put a severe strain on people forcing them outside their comfort zone.
4. In what ways have changes in technology changed people's lives?
Well, I would say in all possible ways. Changes in technology have made everything much easier. They have helped businesses go global and made banking and shopping faster and more efficient. People have become digitally, connected to the entire world. These days people can send an email to another country and get a reply within several minutes, moreover, they don't pay postage for that. Traditional chats have been replaced with virtual ones, letting people from all over the world communicate with each other whenever they have a wish and a spare moment. What is more, life has become much more technologically advanced opening plenty of opportunities such as travelling to other cities and countries, reading and watching films, studying and even working online.
Describe a product you bought and felt happy
You should say:
What it was
Where you bought it
What it was for/ how it was used
And explain why it made you happy
About half a year ago, I bought a television online, and it was a pretty good deal. I’m a regular user of this online shopping website called ASSAN-KHARID. It is where you can find products of good quality and nice prices. I used to buy large household appliances in a real store, but this time I decided to try online shopping. So I just searched for the brands that I liked and compared the prices and some technical facts about TV. Then I made the payment and waited for two days of delivery. The new TV’s brand is called TASSVIR-TV. Customers can get free access to all kinds of programs, which means that even if I don’t get cable service, I still can watch lots of TV programs for free. Plus it is high-definition so for a video game player like me, it provides better experience compared with the old one. Well, since I got this new TV, I could play car racing games and feel exactly like I was in the car for real. Besides, it was a deal as I got 50% discount so I save some money to buy other things.
sample(2) The thing I recently bought that I’m happy with was a computer monitor stand. I used my desktop computer a lot in the dorm and I suffered a pain in my neck and shoulders from it. My friend recommended a product to me and sent me the link of it on ASSAN-KHARID. It was very cheap. So I placed an order and a couple of days later I received it. When I opened the package, I was surprised that there were just some boards and a bag of rubber rings in it. How could I put my monitor on them? But later I found a tutorial at the bottom of the package box. I followed the tutorial, put the board together and fasten them with the rubber rings. When I finished, it looked so different. It’s like a little shelf. I put my computer monitor on top of it. So, my screen was now on the same level of my eyes, there was no need to lower my head and bend my back any more. And I have some additional drawers and shelves now where I put some stationary. I’m really happy with it.
Well, actually it’s hard to generalize how often people go shopping because it varies person to person. For those who come from generally well-off families, going shopping seems to be just part of their life, so I can say they do go shopping very often. But for those who are from poor family background or live from hand to mouth, I think they hardly ever go shopping because they are on a tight budget.
sample(2) I think it really depends. Some people are shopping freaks, especially some young women. They shop almost every day, in the malls or on their phones. While some guys hardly ever shop, they think it’s a waste of their time. They may only shop for clothes two or three times a year. As far as I know, most of my friends go shopping for clothes once or twice a month.
2. What kinds of places are popular for shopping in Iran?
People like to go shopping in large department stores or big shopping centers. There are many other recreational facilities in the shopping mall, like movie theaters, coffee shops, so they can shop for a while and then do something else to kill time. But now, because of the thriving of Internet, more and more people tend to buy things online, for example: ASSAN-KHARID, 360buy and some places like that.
sample(2) Popular places for shopping are usually in central areas and they usually offer a variety of choices for customers. Among these places, shopping malls and department stores are very popular.
Some shopping malls are packed with people during the weekends.
They provide people a very enjoyable shopping experience for the customers, so people love to go there.
3. Do you think online shopping will replace shopping in reality?
Well, from where I’m standing, I think online shopping won’t replace shopping in reality, there will be a smaller number of shopping malls existing in the future. In other words, most of them will be replaced by on-line shopping. But they are still useful in some cases. For example, if someone is buying clothes, he always needs to find a place to try it out, which cannot be achieved on online shopping websites I guess.
sample(2) No. I’m pretty sure traditional shopping will not be replaced. Although shopping online has many advantages, it still lacks many things which traditional shopping can offer. People go shopping in stores not only for the products, but also for the experience. They can go with their family and friends, and enjoy shopping and talking at the same time. When people shop in reality, they can feel the material with their hands, they can try the clothes on, which they can’t if they shop online. So I don’t think online shopping will replace traditional shopping.
4. Did you ever have bad shopping experience?
Well, it was about a couple of weeks ago, I wanted to get a new pair of jogging shoes from a large department store. It was really huge, and the store was jam-packed with people, so it took quite a while to look for the jogging shoes section. The seller I met was an inpatient old lady. I spent about half an hour haggling with her and finally got my shoes but I felt terrible. I think it’ s one of the bad shopping experiences I had recently.
sample(2) Yes. A few weeks ago, I needed a shirt so I went into a store. The clerk there was playing a game on her cellphone and she wasn’t paying attention to me. So I just looked at the shirts on my own. When I finally found one that I liked, I asked her if they had it in my size. She suggested reluctantly that I could try the one hanging on the wall first, which was apparently too big for me. After trying it on, I decided that I would take one if they did have my size. She searched in the storage for about 10 minutes and finally told me she didn’t have it. It’s my worst ever.
5. What would you do if you bought something disappointing from the internet?
Well, I guess it depends on how much it costs me. I mean, if it’s a cheap stuff, I will keep it or just let it go. But if I bought something costly,
I will get contact with the seller after receiving the disappointing products. And then I would tell them directly that I felt really terrible about their products and would ask them for a refund.
sample(2) Since I cannot see the real products when I shop online, disappointments occasionally happen when I receive the packages.
Sometimes the size of a shirt is wrong, the quality is not good.
Anyway, they can be very different from what I expected. If it’s a minor problem, I would contact the customer service and ask them to change a new one for me. But if it’s totally not what I want, I would get a refund.
6. How is online shopping so popular these days?
These days, people want to save money and time, so online shopping provides people with a new way that could make it come true. You don’t have to step out of your house if you want to buy some stuff. Also, there are a great number of products on display for people to choose from, so we can have more choices.
sample(2) I think the first reason is that online shopping is very convenient. People can shop anytime anywhere as long as they have a computer or smartphone. And they can compare things more easily through a list on the screen. The second reason is that the price is usually cheaper in many online stores. Plus, now almost everybody has a smartphone and internet, which helps boost online shopping.
Describe a public park or garden
You should say:
where it is
what it looks like
What you do there
And explain how you feel about it
The park that I'm going to talk about is the forest park in my city. It' s located on the eastern suburbs, just off a high way. There are different varieties of trees in the park, and no matter where I go in the park, I never lose sight of the greenery. In the northwest corner of the park, lies a smaller park where people can try all kinds of adventure activities like jungle flight or canoeing. In a clearing in the east side of the park, people can have barbeques. The visitors usually bring their own food here and rent a grill from the staff. Then they can enjoy the delicious food and chat with their family and friends. I once went there with my classmates. We had a lot of fun there. One of my friends fell into the pond when he was trying to cross a single-plank bridge, which made us laugh to tears. We then went cycling in the woods. It felt so wonderful to be close to nature.
Well, it has already become one of the most important issues for a city today. It is hard to imagine how a city could offer citizen a place for leisure without building gardens. And it is not too much to say that gardens help a city to raise happiness index. Moreover, a public construction like building gardens could promote employment and consumption. If a city or a country doesn't build gardens at all, I'm not exaggerating; it must be an unwelcome region lacking activeness. From the above, building gardens is requisite nowadays.
2. Should parks be built in big cities?
I suppose the answer is a "yes" . As we all know, it has a lot of benefits. Firstly, people in big cities live in a stressful life. Parks are just what they want for leisure and relieve their pressure. And we can't deny the fact that parks help to improve the environment of big cities indeed. For example, parks bring fresh air and maintain biodiversity in big cities. I don't think there is anyone in the cities who wants to see the day when parks disappear in big cities. So we should vote for more parks.
3. What kinds of facilities should a park provide?
To my point of view, there are a lot of facilities that a park should provide. For starters, basic facilities should be provided such as benches and pavilions. It is hard to imagine how a park could be attractive without all those basic issues. Another type of facilities must be recreation facilities like amusement park or even fitness equipment. I think the majority of people could enjoy themselves with all the facilities mentioned above.
4. Do you think parks should be free of charge?
I think it is a mixed blessing. Free parks are good for the people who are not rich enough for leisure events. However, it could be bad because of the low requirement to, entry and terrible financial situation of those free parks. That is, visitors will not keep the environment clean without tickets. And the facilities couldn't be maintained in good condition without money. So it is very hard to give a definite "yes" or "no" as an answer. It just depends on the quality of citizens financial support and the expectation around the parks.
5. What kinds of things do Iranian people like to do in the parks?
According to my own experience, there are a lot of interesting activities to do for Iranian people in the parks. The first group is senior citizens. Having physical training is their favorite activity. They always take gentle exercises with their friends. The second group is young people. To the contrary, most of them love vigorous activities like running. Of course, competitive sports such as basketball, badminton and table tennis are prevalent among all the people. Therefore, you just need to do what you want and you could always find your partner in the parks.
Describe a rule at your school that you agree or disagree
You should say:
What the rule is
Why this rule has to be established
What will happen if we break down this rule
And explain what the positive and negative effects of this rule are
I’m going to talk about a rule at my primary school. The school I went to wasn’t a pretty relaxed place and in fact there weren’t that many rules and regulations. We were for instance encouraged to speak in class as much as possible because our teachers wanted us to learn how to express ourselves. It was that sort of place – really liberal.
The one rule that I really remember though was that we couldn’t use our mobile phones in class. The school was really strict about this and you could get into a lot of trouble if you became a repeat offender. Normally it wasn’t much of a problem. If a teacher saw a student with a mobile, he’d just tell him to turn it off and pay attention to what he was saying. Then again, there were some teachers who would confiscate any mobile phones they saw at all – even if they were not being used and were just lying on the desk.
I suppose the reason for the rule was to make sure that all the students were paying attention to the teacher or just doing what they were supposed to be doing and not texting their friends or browsing the net. I think the idea was that the school was happy to have kids talking to each other but weren’t nearly so happy if they were writing texts – perhaps because the teacher wouldn’t know what was being said.
Did I like the rule? Not really. I thought that it would have been much better of we’d been allowed to use out phones more. There’re so many great learning apps on phones that it seemed a little silly that we had to learn on just and paper.
During the freshman year, there was a rule in our school that all the students should rise early and go morning jogging. I think it was made because many college students liked to sleep in. Some of them didn’t want to get up until the last minute and were often late for morning classes. So the school set the rule that we must meet at the playground at 6:30 am for the roll call. And after we finished running, we were required to sign our names on a sheet. If someone was absent during the jogging without asking for a leave in advance, his or her name would be exposed on the school bulletin board. Personally, I think this rule is necessary because it helps students form a good habit. Morning is an important part of the day, instead of wasting it, we can make it productive. Moreover, jogging is good morning exercise to freshen up our body and mind. So it’s a superb way to start a day.
Oh yeah, definitely yes......because obsessive overwork has major consequences both for employees and companies they work for. Uncontrolled overwork impairs the emotional and psychological competencies of workforce and, as a result, damaging productivity. So, setting up rules about overwork is really important for avoiding company-wide burnout and achieving targeted results.
2. Why do we have rules in society?
Well, to allow everyone to live in a safe and pleasant environment, I guess. Rules are essential as they prevent chaos, encourage uniformity and maintain order and status. What is more, they let people feel more secure as they regulate unwanted and harmful behaviour and also encourage wanted or beneficial behaviour of individual society members. To sum up, we have rules to make things more fair and life safer.
3. What are some examples of rules that exist in many families?
Oh, that's a tough question. I guess the most widespread family rules include telling the truth to each other even when it's not pleasant, looking for ways to be kind and helpful to each other, respecting each other's property and not going to bed on an argument. I also think each family has a set of rules about what they think should be done at home, for example, taking their shoes off in the house, always locking the door when they leave, putting plates in the dishwasher after eating and turning the lights off when they are not using room. These are the most common rules that exist in families I know.
4. Do you think the students themselves should have a say in what school rules to have?
Oh, I am more than sure they should as having a say on school rules will make children feel more valued and, as a result, increase the bond between them and the school. What is more, I think it will make students more willing to accept changes, which will, no doubt, have a positive impact on their learning and behaviour. Though, in some cases it can undermine the power of adults and fuel bad behaviour among children, so it’s necessary to be careful while engaging kids in making rules and changes to them but still, it's worth trying as advantages outweigh the disadvantages.
5. What are some rules that exist in schools or workplaces in your country?
Well, there are quite a lot of them, actually, and they usually differ from school to school and from company to company. The most common school rules that exist in my country are connected with getting to school on time, being respectful to school property, teachers and other students, and keeping the school environment and the local community free from litter. As far as workplace rules are concerned, they are mostly about being punctual. trustworthy, flexible and open-minded keeping the desk organized instead spreading out into space that isn't keeping the noise level to a minimum especially in open-plan offices, and being considerate with files and equipment you share.
6. Should companies have rules?
Yes. There’s a saying in Iran that goes like, nothing can be achieved without rules and standards. Companies need rules to regulate the behaviors of their employees and improve productivity. A lot of the rules are necessary, like, be at work on time. But a lot of companies only have punishments for employees who break the rules, but no awards or incentives for people who follow them. That’s not very fair.
7. Do you think strict rules are necessary in schools?
No. Rules in schools can help discipline the students, but if they are too strict or even against human nature, students would hate them, which could cause troubles. When I was in middle school, I once got the punishment of standing in the boiling sun for 1 hour in summer just because I didn’t want to take a nap at noon, which I think was too strict.
8. Should students involve in rule-making?
I think they should. It makes them look at their own behaviours from teachers’ perspective, so that they can better understand what is right or wrong. And if the rules are made by students themselves, they are more likely to obey. Actually many schools, especially universities have student unions, which allow students to make rules and carry out the supervisions. I think rule-making can develop students’ creativity and responsibility.
Describe a situation (or a time) when you helped someone
You should say:
What the situation was
Who the person was
How you helped them
And explain how you felt after helping them
Last summer vacation, I volunteered to be an English tutor helping my nephew with his English.He was so bad at English that he didn't even attend the final test. His mom was angry and desperate. She was complaining to my parents when she came to our home, I told her that I was willing to give it a go and see if I could change my nephew' s attitude towards English. Hopefully, by the end of the school vacation he was able to catch up with most of his classmates.So she agreed and sent my nephew to my home. It sounds like I was homeschooling him, wasn't I? HAHA. At the beginning, I didn't blame him for being a bad student as I got to know what weaknesses he had. It turned out that he hated to learn textbook English for it never helped him to understand Marvel comics. Then I got an idea, which was to use a few of his favorite superhero cartoons to teach him. It went slow at first because he had to use a dictionary constantly, but he was committed to it. A month later, he was able to use simple sentences and speak with good pronunciation.I was proud of him as he proved that I could be a good teacher. Besides I never knew that English cartoons totally beat textbooks, it seemed like a miracle!
Yes, I think it's typical of people to be helped or help the others. It pays to help others because it can enable me to make more friends, and the others will also giving their helping hands when I'm in trouble.
My answer is totally yes. There are so many advantages to do so. As we all know, being active to help others is a good trait of people. And this trait can be contagious. It will be very useful for creating a harmonious social atmosphere if everyone contributes a little effort. On the other hand, personally, I believe that I will need others' help sooner or later. And as an old saying goes, all for one, one for all. These are the reasons why I like helping others.
2. In your view, should children be taught to help others?
Of course. Actually, children can learn many things when they help others. They'll be less selfish and willing to share with others . I remember when I was little, we had to read and write a lot about helping others, we were taught it's typical of people to help the others. Also, by learning how to help others, children will become friendlier and become more popular among their classmates when they grow up.
I suppose the answer is a "yes" . First of all, helping others is part of our tradition that children need to inherit. And we can't deny the fact that it is very hard to imagine how a society will be without enthusiasm. And most importantly, being taught to help others can assist children establish the correct value. I don't think there is anyone in the world wants to see the day when every child is self interested . Therefore, children should be encouraged to help others.
3. How can we encourage children to help others?
I think a good way to encourage children to help others is to set examples for them. We shouldn't only tell them that helping others is important, but we should demonstrate to them through our actions. I remember when I was little, my teacher often advocated us to join in some volunteer programs, she would do some communities services with us during the holidays. We thought it was really rewarding to help others.
Actually, I am in no position to talk a lot on this question because I have no kids, you know. But as far as I am concerned, there are two ways I could think of to encourage children to help others. I guess the top priority is to set a great example for children. Another thing is to praise children when they do well. Only in this way are they able to realize what they do is brilliant. These are two methods I could figure out to encourage children to help others.
4. Do you think people are less willing to help others these days, compared to the past? (Why?/Why not?)
Yes, I think so. But it's not because people don't want to help others, they just don't have the courage to help others. We often heard those astonishing stories: those who helped others are cheated, and some of them even are required to pay for the expensive medical fee. This kind of story is happening every day around us, so more and more people are becoming afraid of helping strangers.
According to my own life experience, I would say a "yes" for this question. But I think there are many reasons make people to do like this nowadays. Firstly, with the population mobility, the relationship between people are not as solid as it was in the past. Secondly, the gap between the rich and the poor is much bigger than before. The demand of the sense of security impels people to avoid danger and risk. Therefore, these reasons make people not to help others like before.
5. Do people today trust others as much as they used to in the past?
I feel that people today trust others less than before. In the past, people who lived in the same community knew each other well and they often visited other people's homes during their time off. People were always willing to help others when other families were in trouble. But now, things are different. We are not familiar with our neighbors, and we even don't have the courage to help others.
6. How do people in your community help one another?
Actually, I really don't know much about others. Sometimes when I have problems, I will ask my neighbors for help. Like one time, when I was writing a paper at home, my Internet disconnected. And since I was in a hurry to turn it in, so I knocked at my neighbor's door and asked to use their Internet, they were very kind and let me into their house to use their Internet. Also, we would raise money for people who are seriously ill and need a lot of money for surgery.
7. How do students, such as high school students, help each other?
Actually, I think it depends on what problems they have. Our head teacher once advocated the top students to help those who didn't do well in study. The top students would help those weaker students to review what they've learned in class and supervised them to finish homework. Also, when some students had problems or difficulties in life, we would give them some suggestions or do other trivial things for them.
Describe a situation that you received some useful advice
You should say:
Who gave you this advice
What kind of advice he/she gave you
Why he/she gave you this advice
And explain how the advice helped you
I remember when I was considering which course I wanted to follow at university I received two pieces of good advices from two different people. One of them was my father and the other was one of my teachers at school.
My teacher told me that based on my abilities and academic performance I would probably be good at subjects like economics or maybe mathematics. My father told me that I should study something I am interested in, no matter what other people think about my choice. I think that both of them gave me good advices.
My teacher observed that I was very good at analyzing things and understanding how different things can influence each other. I was very interested in economics at school when we studied it because it involves many different aspects of life, business, and social factors.
She (my teacher) said that I would probably find it more satisfying to study something I was really interested in than try and do something that was maybe more popular like something related to oil and gas or medicine which is quite popular for women here.
Finally, I decided to study Economics because I like the subject and because I knew I would be happy doing it. I’m almost finished my course now and I have really enjoyed it so I think it was a good decision.
Hopefully, I will be able to get a good job, either here or abroad when I graduate. So I guess you could say I followed the advice from both people who gave me it. I’m happy about my choice, and my father and teacher too.
Is positive feedback required in the workplace?
Well, definitely it is, because it is a valuable business-boosting opportunity. Positive feedback promotes engagement and improves the quality of work. It also prevents destructive information gags, increases accountability and boosts performance. Oh, and, of course, it encourages wanted behaviour, so, no doubt, it's required in the workplace.
2. Should bosses give positive and negative feedback to staff?
I guess, yes as both of them generate a higher-performing work environment if used expertly. Positive feedback improves employee productivity and strengthens relationships between employees and their supervisors. What is more, it encourages wanted behaviour of the staff. As far as negative feedback is concerned, it inspires change and can be used as a means of improvement in terms of performance, which is also good for business. Though it may also have a negative impact, if used incorrectly. For example, it may weaken employee morale, decrease their self-esteem as a result, increase stress in the workplace which will cause a loss of productivity. So, negative feedback should be used skillfully or not use at all, I think.
Describe a statue or work of art
You should say:
How it looks like
Where you saw it
When you saw it
And explain how you felt about this work
Mona Lisa is a half-length portrait painting which is extremely famous in the whole world. It was created by Leonardo da Vinci. And in fact, this is the most known and most praised painting in the world. A wide number of criticisms are found in this painting. I am really lucky to have this candidate task card and will explain this painting which is one of the finest art works the world has ever produced.
I first saw the painting at a museum in Paris. I was a kid then. Later, I came to know about the vastness of this piece of art. Actually, my parents took me to Louvre Museum in Paris where I first met with this painting and the character. When I grew up, I paid some visits in the same museum only to see the painting. It is said that the painting is the portrait of a woman named Lisa who was the wife of a noble man at that time.
I like the painting for a few specific reasons. The most important reason behind liking the painting is the mysterious smile of the character portrayed in. The historical value of this painting is also notable. Though no exact date of origin for this painting is found, it is assumed that it has been painted in 1506. The past history of this painting also attracts me. It was acquired by King Francis but later, the painting has become the property of the French government. Moreover, it has been exhibited since 1797 in the display of this museum permanently.
Honestly, I did not have any special feeling when I first saw it. Actually, I was a small boy then. But gradually I came to know about the history of the painting and a special attraction grew in me. Now I am a diehard fan of this painting indeed.
sample(2) My favorite piece of art is the Japanese ink painting also known as Sumi-E. It’s an old form of art and it is by one of my favorite artists known as Sesshu. Sesshu is considered one of the greatest Sumi-E artists of all time. Living during the Muromachi period, Sesshu traveled to the home of ink wash, China, in order to gain a better understanding of the art. He took what he learned and transformed it into a style that was uniquely Japanese. This old form of art is different from modern art and very traditional. I enjoy this piece of art because it shows how art can be found in just about anything. Through Sumi-E, the correlation between art and language can be found. It shows that language and writing is truly a form of art and many images and art can be depicted from characters and alphabets.
Well, I think it depends on people and their preferences. Some compatriots of mine adore Fine or Visual Arts, I mean drawings, paintings, sculptures, printmakinq and photography despite the fact they have no functional purpose except to be admired and contemplated as aesthetic objects. Others give their preference to Decorative Arts such as woodworkinq, ceramics, pottery or weavings 'cause they are visual and aesthetically pleasing as well as serve a useful function such as furniture, tableware, textiles and so on. What are more, they enhance the decor of people's homes, which is highly appreciated by many of my fellow citizens. All people are different that’s why types of art that appeal to people are also different but the effect that art has on them is very similar - the moment they indulge deep into the artwork their thoughts and emotions change helping them de-stress and forget about their worries, which makes both Visual and Decorative Arts attractive and valued.
2. Would you say art is important?
Of course, I would. Art is an essential ingredient to empowering the hearts of people as it reminds them that there is beauty in the world and they can strive to see and appreciate it. It is also a remarkable mode of depicting culture from all over the world as art says things words just can't say. I can also add that art makes our imagination works, encourages creative thinking and lets people come up with their own unique solutions. It boosts people's ability to analyze and problem-solve in myriad ways, allowing for multiple interpretations and helping to invent new ways of thinking. So, it's definitely important both for children and adults.
3. What kinds of art are the most valuable in terms of monetary value?
Well, paintings and sculptures as far as I know as some of them cost hundreds of millions of dollars. I guess it is so because, first of all, a big number of famous paintings and sculptures are held in important public collections and are unlikely to be deaccessioned. At the same time there are scarce works held by private collectors, which immediately increases the price of those artwork' they are ready to sell. And second because fashion and a great status artist play a role, making their sculptures and paintings wanted and hugely expensive.
4. Why do some paintings have higher value than others?
Oh, I would say because the artists who painted them are either fashionable or eternal and very important in art history. I can also predict that it is so because the paintings themselves are highly recognizable, have got the impact that makes people want to own them or have a better provenance than those which have a lower value. By provenance I mean whose collection they've been in, where they've been exhibited or which dealers have handled them. That's it.
Describe a subject of science that you learned in secondary/high school
You should say:
What it was
What you learned
What do you think of the teacher
And explain how you felt about it
When it comes to science subjects, I want to talk about physics. As a liberal art major, I’m not really good at science subjects. But among them, I think physics is kind of interesting and useful. In middle school, I learned about some simple theories to explain common natural phenomena. For instance, we see the lightning before we hear the thunder because light travels faster than sound. And it also taught us methods to solve some problems in life, say, we can stir the soup in order to let it cool faster. The physics teacher was very helpful and creative, he often brought equipment to the class to do experiments in front of us, which made the classes more interesting. And he could always use practical examples in our daily life to explain the theories. So we could understand better. I haven’t been learning physics for many years, but I can still remember a lot of the theories, because many little things in my life can remind me of them.
Yes. Science was compulsory in my middle school and high school.
We had to learn math, physics, chemistry and biology. And now the science majors in my university are very popular. There are many labs on my campus where science students do experiments. And students from my school can find a good job easily with a science degree.
2. In what ways people learn about science?
As science is becoming more and more popular, there are many different ways for people to learn it. First, there is a school education. Middle schools and high schools have science subjects which teach students the fundamental theories of science, and they can keep studying science in college if they are interested. Then, there are lots of science channels on TV which play a lot of science programs. Besides that, there are now more and more training centers that offer STEM courses for children, and STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
3. Would men learn science faster than women?
I don’t think so. Actually, many of my friends who are girls are really good at science. Maybe many girls are often more interested in liberal arts subjects like English and French, but that doesn’t mean women are slower in science. Women can excel in science too if they put effort into it. But the truth is that many scientists are men, maybe it’s because they are more interested in science.
4. Is science popular in your country?
Yes, and it’s becoming more and more popular. Many high school students choose to study science because they think it would be easier for them to find a job with a science degree, which is often true. And many training schools now offer extra curriculum science courses, such as computer technology courses, to students. I think the popularity of science can be a good thing for the development of science and technology in our country.
Describe a time you felt happy that you used your cellphone
You should say:
When it happened
Where it happened
Who you were with
And explain why you felt happy by using your cellphone
When it comes to the experience, the most impressive memory in my mind was happening in last summer.
During the holiday, I stayed at home alone and I was so addicted into playing mobile phone, which sometimes can make me bored to death. One day, suddenly, I wanted to find a foreign pen pal on the Internet. It was a coincidence that it's the first time I knew the website called PenPal World. Then I used my phone to register an account by instinct. After that, I uploaded some personal information and my email address. Finishing, I started to browse others' home page in order to find more fascinating and excellent pals.
I was attracted by a Belarus boy's introduction, and I saw that he can speak fluent English, Russian and German. I was so amazed by that he also had gift in playing musical instruments. So I pressed the button and sent an email to him and asked him some questions about how to acquire more skills in a short time. It was so amazing that he replied me an hour later and he was so nice to answer all of my questions in a gentle way. I was touched by his behavior, I mean, I was a totally stranger to him. So it's just organically happening that we became pen pals.
From that moment on, I was so delighted to use my mobile phone to check my mail box. It was quite a pleasure for me to share my happiness and troubles with a stranger. I felt so magical to get in touch with a stranger through my mobile phone.
Last summer when I went to Rasht, I used my cellphone to video call my grandparents and showed the Caspian Sea to them. I felt really happy. I went to Rasht with my classmate. I took many pictures of the beautiful scenery there with my phone. When I was on a boat, the breathtaking sight made me very excited. I remembered my grandparent. They had never been to Rasht, and they wished to see the Caspian Sea. So I took out my cellphone and called my dad to tell him that I wanted to show the lake to my grandparents via video call. He said he was with them, therefore I made a video call to my dad. During the call, I showed my grandparents around the Caspian Sea, and they looked very happy. But I felt even happier. My grandparents took care of me when I was young. Now they are old and can't travel very far. I wish they could see more of the world. I was so happy that I had my phone with which I could not only take pictures, but also give my family a video tour of the beautiful places.
Oh, definitely no. Seniors generally lag behind their younger counterparts especially when it comes to using mobile phones. The only pattern they share is voice calling. In other patterns old people are usually second to the young. Teens and young adults are more enthusiastic users of cellphones. They are also bigger users of text messaging. I guess the young send and receive at least five times more messages a day than older people. Younger adults tend to use their phones for multimedia content, for taking pictures or video, for accessing the internet. They are also more likely to turn to their phones to avoid others around them to fight boredom. All this is still strange for the old.
2. What are the differences between writing a letter and writing a text message on a cell phone?
Oh, there are quite a few of differences, actually. First of all, writing a text message is faster than writing a letter 'cause text messages are generally much shorter. Secondly, messages are instant while letters can take weeks to be delivered, which makes communication more complicated. On the other hand, it is more personal to write by hand as it adds a human touch to the relationship. Handwritten letters always convey greater effort and greater care taken, let recipients know that they are important for somebody.
3. Many people think mobile phones can be annoying at times. Can you give any examples of that?
Well, one of the examples when I get annoyed with a mobile phone is when the phone ring interrupts an important conversation or distracts my attention from what I really need to do at the moment. Another annoying case is when people talk loudly on their phones on public transport. Such phone conversations grab my attention and don't let me relax or focus on my thoughts, which I dislike. I am also irritated when people around play music loudly on a phone 'cause it shows their disrespect to others, which I don't consider appropriate. These are the main situations I don't like to get in.
4. Does most people have mobile phones in your country?
Yes, mobile phones have become very common in our daily life, even children have them. Everyone in my family has one, including my grandparents. And mobile phones are becoming cheaper and cheaper. I can't imagine only rich people can have them not many years ago.
5. Will the use of cellphone cause any problems to others?
Yes, it will, if not used properly. For example, in some public areas, like movie theaters, libraries, or during meetings, the use of cellphone could disturb other people. So we should silence our phones in these situations. Using cellphones on a plane can even have very serious consequences. Moreover, it's not polite if we use too much of our cellphone at the presence of other people. My friends will not be happy if I spend too much time looking at my phone when I hang out with them.
6. What do people use cellphones for?
Phones are becoming smarter and smarter, allowing us to do all kinds stuff on them. Besides the basic function of making and receiving phone calls and messages, it now can work as a clock, a map, a music player, a calculator, almost anything you can think of. People can use their cellphones to shop online, order a taxi, pay vendors, learn English and do so many more things. It has become an important part of people's life.
7. What are the advantages of having a mobile phone?
The advantages of having a mobile phone are obvious. It can make you connected with people wherever you go. If you want to talk to your family when you are away from home, all you have to do is to dial their numbers. Having a cellphone makes your life a lot easier, too, since you can do things like listening to music, watching movies, ordering food, buying plane tickets, and so much more. Without a mobile phone, our life will be much less efficient and more boring.
8. Are children allowed to use mobile phones in your country?
Most of the time, children are not allowed to use mobile phones. The reason is that most children don' t have a very good command of self-control, so they will spend too much time on their phones. They use it to play games and watch cartoon, therefore it may affect their studies and it' s harmful to their eyes. Some mobile phone companies are very smart, they added a parent-control feature to the phones so their parents can control what their children do with their phones.
9. What are the effects when someone is making a lot of noise by using a mobile phone in a public place?
Well, actually this happens a lot. Although most people are civilized and very polite, there are always some people who do things that we are not happy with, like talking loudly on the phone in a cinema. Most people look down upon these bad behaviors of them, some might tell them to be quiet. I think people should respect others and behave in a civilized way in public.
Describe a time you received something but not pay it
You should say:
When you had this gift
Where you had it
What the gift was
And explain how you felt about it
It’s pretty common for us to receive something free when we go shopping or eating out, especially if there is a sales promotion.
Last month, I decided to have my hair cut since my hair was a little bit long for me. There was a newly opened barbershop across the campus according to my best friend. He had his haircut done there. In the afternoon on a weekend, I walked to the shop from my dormitory with him. However, since I hadn’t made a barbering appointment in advance, I had to wait for a while – there were a couple of customers before me. When it was my turn, the barber washed my hair with shampoo. I could feel the lather on my hair. Then the barber covered my head with a hot towel, and gave me a haircut, using the straight razor shave. He cut my hair to fit my head shape, and listened to my special request that I would like it to be shorter. After that, he also trimmed my beard.
It was a great service. When I was about to pay and leave the shop, I was told that the service was free! The reason was that it was my friend who had recommended the shop to me, and my friend held its membership. So I could get a free haircut at the first time. This was something really out of expectation. I decided to get a membership in the shop as well. It wasn’t too pricey, 40000 Toomans for a year and a half. When I got my membership card, the barber also handed me a box. It was a free gift for the new membership. The gift was a little lamp, which would be very useful to me when I did my homework in the evening.
Anyway, both the free service and the free gift made me really satisfied with the visit.
Oh, yes, I really enjoy gift-giving because it is a perfect way to strengthen bonds with others showing interest and appreciation, expressing gratitude or apology and just letting other people know that I care. I like to bring joy and pleasure to people raising a smile on their faces and fulfilling their small dreams. Even a little present can cheer a person up because it is love and care that matter but not the present itself.
2. What gifts would parents give to children?
Well, I guess it, first of all, depends on the gender of a child and their preferences and needs. As far as I know, boys adore gadgets like smartphones and tablets, tech toys like different kinds of robots and, of course, radio controlled toys which are a great deal of fun to play with. They also enjoy getting toy cars, building and construction sets, different ride-ons and board games as presents. However, girls give more preference to something more creative and intimate like arts and crafts kits, collectible and plush toys as well as something, emphasizing their femininity like clothes, accessories and beauty gift sets. So, I guess parents would choose something from the list of gifts I mentioned.
3. What factors do parents consider when choosing a gift for children?
Well, to my mind, the first factor parents take into account is the occasion. Keeping it in mind, they then set the budget and get to the next important factor which is the needs of their child. Thinking about the needs of the kid parents also think about their kids' likes and dislikes, their interests at that specific period of time, their habits and, of course, their dreams. Considering all of them, parents make their final choice usually balancing between what a child really wants and needs. I guess it happens this way, at least in the families with kids that I know.
Describe a time you saw lots of people were smiling
You should say:
When you saw them
Where you saw them
Who you were with
And explain why people were smiling
This topic reminds me of the time we took class pictures on graduation day.
Actually, we all had mixed feelings, on the one hand, we were pretty psyched about graduating from university and getting a diploma. On the other hand, we also felt a little bit sad ‘cause we had to say goodbye to all the classmates who have spent the last four years with each other.
However, when we took the picture, we still didn’t forget to be funny. I mean, we made faces and posed hilariously to the camera despite the photographer’s objection. He was so pissed off.
In the end, he couldn’t stand us anymore, and shouted couldn’t you guys act like normal people and just smile to the camera?
After we were done having fun, we thought, maybe we should listen to the photographer and take a decent picture together.
So we stood still, and said cheese when he clicked the shutter.
After we got the picture, we were surprised to see that everybody looked great in the picture, I mean, we all had a sweet smile on our face, looking energetic and hopeful.
I framed the picture and put it on my bookshelf. It would bring back memories from my college years.
Every time I saw those smiling faces I would recall all the precious moments we had together during those four years, and I just couldn’t help cracking a smile.
What makes people laugh in your country or in your culture?
Well, I guess everything that sounds funny or causes a chain reaction such as the sound of roaring laughter, for example. A lot of people laugh at pranks, slapsticks, Freudian slips, puns and just everyday jokes. Some people can burst out laughing looking at funny impressions of someone, recalling embarrassing moments and after saying or doing something silly. There are situations when people start to laugh playing with pets or communicating with little kids.
2. Do you think there are differences between what males and females think is humorous?
Oh, no. I don't think that a sense of humour depends on gender. To my mind, it is highly individualized and varies from person to person. It's most likely that a sense of humour can be an indicator of emotional intelligence. In many cases the environment and experiences are specific to an individual. To sum up, I don't think that there are any gender differences in what people find funny.
3. What do you think are the differences between seeing comedy on TV and reading funny materials in a book?
Well, actually both of them make people laugh, take away stress and sadness and make people feel good and happy. I think that the only difference between watching comedies and reading something funny in books is that books require more use of imagination allowing and inviting the readers to create their own personalized mental images of the stories they are immersed in while comedies present the images without the need for audiences to exert their imagination. Oh, and one more thing that differs books from funny films is that watching comedies is usually seen as a group activity while reading is slow people opt for when they are alone.
4. What do you think are the benefits of laughter?
Oh, there are plenty of them, to my mind. First of all, laughter binds people together and, as a result, increases happiness and intimacy. It boosts the energy and adds joy and zest to life. It also eases anxiety and fear, enhances resilience and helps defuse conflict. What is more, laughter has huge health benefits as it triggers healthy physical changes in the body, strengthens the immune system, diminishes pain and just promotes an overall sense of well-being.