This style of question will be used on the redesigned TOEFL iBT starting July 26. Get more samples here.
The test-taker must read the question posted by the professor and the two student responses. Finally, they should write their own response which addresses the question and adds to the conversation. They have ten minutes to complete the task.
Your professor is teaching a class on business management. Write a post responding to the professor’s question. In your response, you should
- express and support your personal opinion
- make a contribution to the discussion in your own words
An effective response will contain at least 100 words. You have ten minutes to write.
Professor: Today, we’re going to talk about the benefits and drawbacks of remote work. Many companies have implemented remote work policies in the past few years, and many others are considering joining them. Given that this represents a major change in the way we work and interact with each other, companies must carefully consider all relevant details before making a decision. What do you think? Is remote work beneficial, or do you think it’s a bad idea?
Sara: I think remote work is a very positive trend. When we work from home, we spend commuting and we have more flexible schedules. Plus, many people find that they are more productive when working from home. Some people say this is because they aren’t distracted by their coworkers, while others suggest it’s because their energy isn’t drained during a long and bothersome commute.
Michael: While I can see the benefits of remote work, I don’t think it should become the new normal. There’s something to be said for the atmosphere that comes from being in the same physical space as your colleagues. I also think that remote work can make it harder to build relationships and collaborate effectively. This means it might limit our chances to earn promotions and raises. And what about people who don’t have enough room for a home office? They’ll suffer if this trend continues.
In my opinion, letting employees work from home is a fantastic idea and more companies should consider it. I strongly agree with Sara’s idea that people work more productively from home. I’d add that we feel much more comfortable in our own house, so we can think more creatively about our assigned tasks. Nowadays, employers value creativity above all else, so they ought to consider giving employees this option. Michael raised the relevant point that it’s important to form relationships with our colleagues, but he didn’t mention that we can easily do this on social networks. For example, most professionals use services like LinkedIn to keep in touch these days. In many ways websites like these are better ways to socialize with people in our field than talking to them in person. That’s because they are convenient and make it really easy to share articles and videos relevant to our careers.
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