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CELPIP Writing Task 2 (Responding to Survey Questions)

In English proficiency test writing tasks, we need more than ‘pot-luck’. Candidates need a clear structure and strategy to follow.

Sample Question:P

You are employed by a large restaurant chain. Your line manager has written to you to ask your opinion on plans for the yearly staff trip in the coming winter. There are two options to choose from and your manager would like feedback on which you think is best.

Choose the option that you prefer. Why do you prefer your choice? Explain the reasons for your choice. Write about 150-200 words.

Option A: Take all the employees to a local restaurant with a small charge to each employee.

Option B: Have a ‘pot luck’ dinner at the office, where everyone brings a dish that they have bought or prepared.

What is a pot-luck dinner?

Can you tell from the question?

Planning:

Benefits of Option A

Benefits of Options B

 

 

 

  • More variety
  • Team building

 

Paragraph 1:

There is no need to write a greeting for Task 2.

  • Write which option you chose.
  • Recognize that there are advantages to the other option.

Useful Phrases/Discourse Markers are highlighted in red and purple:

While I do see the benefit of_____, I believe the _____ option is a better choice because(state 2 reasons)

Example Paragraph 1:

While I do see the benefit of having the meal at a local restaurant this year, I believe the ‘pot luck’ option is a better choice because there will be more variety, and it will help to build a sense of community. 

Paragraph 2:

Students should use the PES method of developing each argument:

  • P = Present

State the first argument in the first sentence.

As a multicultural team with people from all age groups, bringing our own dishes would be an excellent way to ensure that there is something for everyone.

  • E = Extend

Expand the argument by explaining in more detail or giving a consequence of the action.

In this way, people would get the chance to try new things and could always fall back on their own dish if they aren’t feeling adventurous.

  • S = Support

Provide evidence for your claims using real-life or hypothetical examples to back up your point.

For example, I would love to try some homecooked Canadian dishes, and some of the staff would be intrigued to taste the food from my region.

Example Paragraph 2

Useful Phrases/Discourse Markers are highlighted in red and purple:

As a multicultural team with people from all age groups, bringing our own dishes would be an excellent way to ensure that there is something for everyone. In this way, people would get the chance to try new things and could always fall back on their own dish if they aren’t feeling adventurous. For example, I would love to try some homecooked Canadian dishes, and some of the staff would be intrigued to taste the food from my region.

Paragraph 3:

  • P = Present

State the second argument in the first sentence.

In addition, the idea that everyone contributes something is great for teambuilding.

  • E = Extend

Expand the argument by explaining in more detail or giving a consequence of the action.

In other words, the act of sharing what we have created and discussing the different dishes and cuisines helps to build relationships and trust.

  • S = Support

Provide evidence for your claims using real-life or hypothetical examples to back up your point.

For instance, everyone has a responsibility to bring something to the table, and this strengthens the community spirit as we will all be relying on each other.

Example Paragraph 3

Useful Phrases/Discourse Markers are highlighted in red and purple:

In addition, the idea that everyone contributes something is great for teambuilding. In other words, the act of sharing what we have created and discussing the different dishes and cuisines helps to build relationships and trust. For instance, everyone has a responsibility to bring something to the table, and this strengthens the community spirit as we will all be relying on each other.

Paragraph 4

  • Write a 1-2 sentence summary of your views and arguments.
  • Polite sentence expressing your hopes about the choice to be made (optional).

Example Paragraph 4

Useful Phrases/Discourse Markers are highlighted in red and purple:

In summary, whilst eating at a restaurant has its own charms, the ‘pot luck’ dinner would strengthen the sense of community and give us all the chance to share our cultures and try something new. Thank you for giving us the chance to get involved in the decision-making process, and I look forward to seeing you at the dinner.

Putting it all Together: 

While I do see the benefit of having the meal at a local restaurant this year, I believe the ‘pot luck’ option is a better choice because there will be more variety, and it will help to build a sense of community.

As a multicultural team with people from all age groups, bringing our own dishes would be an excellent way to ensure that there is something for everyone. In this way, people would get the chance to try new things and could always fall back on their own dish if they don’t feel adventurous. For example, I would love to try some homecooked Canadian dishes, and some of the staff would be intrigued to taste the food from my region.

In addition, the idea that everyone contributes something is great for teambuilding. In other words, the act of sharing what we have created and discussing the different dishes and cuisines helps to build relationships and trust. For instance, everyone has a responsibility to bring something to the table, and this strengthens the community spirit as we will all be relying on each other.

 In summary, whilst eating at a restaurant has its own charms, the ‘pot luck’ dinner would strengthen the sense of community and give us all the chance to share our cultures and try something new. Thank you for giving us the chance to get involved in the decision-making process, and I look forward to seeing you at the dinner.

Discourse Markers

Use these discourse markers followed by a comma to introduce each paragraph and to create links between the different parts of each argument:

in addition therefore otherwise in summary
incidentally hence finally on the contrary
nonetheless moreover instead first of all
as a result thus for example hence
indeed however furthermore secondly

 

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