On Day 3 of our Writing Workshop we reviewed a specific essay outline designed to ensure a 7+ score. Our Workshop members were then asked to prepare essay plans in response to a number of prompts, including this one:
In many countries women no longer feel the need to get married. Some people believe that this is because women are able to earn their own income and therefore do not require the financial security that marriage can bring. To what extent do you agree?
When they posted their plans for feedback, a number of members had outlined arguments supporting the idea that women still felt the need for marriage.
Can you see the problem?
This prompt gives us a statement, followed by an argument. The statement is that in some countries women no longer feel the need to get married. The argument is that this is happening because women no longer require the financial security of marriage.
We are asked if we agree? However, we are being asked if we agree with the view. The prompt does NOT invite us to agree or disagree with the statement itself – we have to accept it as accurate. If we take the position that we disagree with the argument, that means we believe there are different reasons why women in some countries no longer feel the need to get married. Such reasons might include decline in the influence of religion, laws that recognise de facto relationships etc.
So when you are asked if you agree or disagree, make sure that you separate the statement from the argument!