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WRITING TOPICS & KEY IDEAS FOR ESSAYS

Feel free to use these ideas in you Speaking Test as well!

For your convenience, topics are presented in an alphabetical order.

1.ACCIDENTS

CAUSES: bad driving habits, drunk driving, over-confidence of the drivers, violation of essential rules (e.g. speeding and driving recklessly), distraction,                           carelessness, tiredness,          navigational       errors,      poor                          road conditions,    defective  equipment,         deficiencies    in                          the                vehicle,             poor visibility, poor weather conditions, relaxation of driving and safety law, lack of law enforcement and inadequate public education on this issue SOLUTIONS: promote public education (e.g. workshops and free booklets), redesign and reshape poor roads, equip roads and streets with necessary facilities (e.g. put up more road signs, install speed control devices, provide more speed bumps and humps), reduce car insurance, toughen driving laws, treat law-breakers more harshly (e.g. revoke the delinquents’ driving license)

 

2.ACID RAIN

EFFECTS: causes extensive damage to vegetation, water resources, natural ecosystem and living organisms (e.g. aquatic ecosystems are seriously threatened by acidic water); causes many health problems (e.g. skin disorders); endangers the wildlife (e.g. extinct species); damages agricultural products and often makes heavy losses; is highly corrosive, so it can damage the stonework of buildings and statues

 

HOW TO PREVENT IT: use environmentally-friendly and renewable sources of energy (since sulphur dioxide, a major contributor to acid rain, is released to the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels and wood); impose vehicle emission standards to control pollutants; introduce more efficient laws to deal with the environmental issue; encourage industries to move to suburbs by providing enough incentives and other financial assistance

 

3.ADDICTION

CAUSES & CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: weak willpower, personality deficiencies, family breakdown, poor family environment, regular use of tobacco products, recreational drug use, peer pressure, joblessness, relaxation of laws

 

HOW TO HELP THE ADDICTS: through addiction rehabilitation programmes: occupational therapy, vocational training, job placement, life skills training, community education, family support, behavioural therapy, medical treatment, counselling sessions to build up the addict’s character, preventative programmes; provide ongoing training for educators and treatment providers (Prevention is better than cure!)

 MEASURES TO ADDRESS DRUG ADDICTION: promote public

education, take action against drug trafficking, limit the availability of addictive drugs by tightening up the laws on drug possession

EFFECTS: psychological problems (e.g. anxiety, loneliness, self-pity, self-blame, hopelessness, concentration disorders and learning disabilities); physiological and physical problems (e.g. lung cancer, respiratory diseases); destroys human spirit and mental capabilities; destroys family relationships, major cause of family breakdown; is the root of many crimes

 

4.ADOPTION

ROLE: to promote the welfare of disadvantaged children; gives adoptive parents the ability to fulfill their dreams of having a child; provides adoptive children with a two-parent home and sometimes siblings; provides permanent, secure and nurturing environment for the child; promotes the well-being of children, birth-parents and adoptive families

 

5.ADVERTISING

PROS: helps heighten competition, lower prices, introduce new products and services; helps people find their latent needs; raises people’s awareness; provides people with a lot of useful information; enables consumers to make intelligent choices

CONS: uses tricky and catchy slogans to persuade people to buy things they don’t need; creates unreal needs; most products are flashy and poor in quality but heavily hyped; tempting and misleading; works through suggestion, gives people unrealistic expectations; affects people’s shopping habits; focuses on sales promotion only; often misinforms; uses unethical and unacceptable methods (e.g. gimmicks to target people to buy new products)

ROLE OF CONSUMERS’ ASSOCIATION: to protect consumers from unsafe products, to help consumers file formal complaints and deal with profiteering and overcharging

 

6.AGING & THE ELDERLY CARE

CAUSES OF EARLY AGING: genetic and environmental factors; poor lifestyles, inferior nutrition, low activity levels, excessive weight gain, harmful environmental elements (e.g. excessive UV light exposure, air pollution)

SUGGESTIONS TO DELAY AGING: having a healthy lifestyle; a balanced diet and healthy eating habits; sensible weight control; regular physical exercises; proper exercise and relaxation; plenty of rest; adequate sleep; proper medical care (e.g. regular check-ups and screening); regular use of quality supplements; having a skin care programme and protection from ultraviolet light; adequate attention to spiritual needs

 

7.AGRICULTURE

ROLE: contributes to the GDP and GNP of countries, forms the backbone of the rural economy, reduces rural poverty, provides food security, provides a variety of job opportunities, contributes to natural beauty and scenic landscapes

SUGGESTIONS TO DEVELOP AGRICULTURE: stabilising markets, guaranteeing a minimum price for agricultural products, supporting farmers with educational and technical assistance, reducing production costs and increasing productivity by offering equipment leasing services, constructing efficient irrigation networks, setting fair standards of living for the farmers population, offering financial support and loans in order to promote agricultural activities

 

8.AIDS

CAUSES: transmitted through using contaminated and shared blood products, sexual contact with an infected partner

SUGGESTIONS TO PREVENT AIDS: educate people on how the disease is spread, promote moral values, make testing services and anti- HIV drugs available, set up HIV prevention workshops and counselling sessions designed to increase people’s awareness

 

9.AIR POLLUTION

CAUSES: burning fossil fuels, emission of hazardous pollutants from factories and vehicles (e.g. carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide) EFFECTS: health problems (e.g. respiratory diseases, eye irritation, premature newborn babies), destruction of the ozone layer, global warming, damage to natural resources, ecosystem degradation, poor air quality

HOW TO MINIMISE AIR POLLUTION: implement energy efficiency programmes, introduce vehicle emission standards, expand car replacement programmes (new cars with old cars), extend environmentally-friendly means of transport, expand public transport facilities (e.g. park-and-ride terminals, carpool facilities, obligatory regular check-ups for cars), use of more efficient engines and modern exhaust-filtering devices, use cleaner fuels (e.g. unleaded petrol), develop tree-planting programmes

 

10.ANIMAL TESTING

FOR: many medical treatments and procedures have been developed from experiments on animals, a ban on the use of animals will prevent the possible production of certain vaccines, provides scientists with important data to treat human diseases; legislation in most countries set standards for animal testing and laboratories have guidelines to prevent cruelty

AGAINST: animals have the right to live their own lives peacefully and we are not to meddle just because we can; many experiments cause discomfort, suffering, harm, pain and death; there are other alternatives available (e.g. computer simulation); results are not applicable to humans; it is cruel, inhumane and unethical

 

11.ART

EFFECTS: to express feelings, convey opinions, transmit values, connect people with a common vision, enhance the sensitivity of humans, encourage self-expression, creativity and innovation, sharpen and enlighten the mind, encourage analytical thinking, stimulate imagination, enhance critical thinking by presenting new ideas, raise questions, promote dialogue, bridge the gap among cultures, bring joy through harmony, colour and form; a way of self-fulfillment, a universal language that can be enjoyed by different people; is inspiring; life without art would be dull and incomplete

 

12.ASTROLOGY

FOR: can be used for describing the character of individuals and increasing self-awareness; helps us gain new perspectives about ourselves, understand our strengths and weaknesses; is a tool of empowerment; promotes self-understanding and self-discovery; helps us predict impending events and other issues; is harmless and amusing AGAINST: promotes fatalism, superstition and illusion; is irrational and unscientific; promotes the worst thing in the world, i.e. uncritical thinking; has no acceptable mechanism; its principles are invalid; it has failed hundreds of tests

 

13.AUTOMATION

PROS: higher product quality, greater production capacity and higher output, efficient use of materials, reduced factory lead times and fewer worker health problems; has helped to reduce the workload and operational costs; robots are used to perform a wide range of tasks that require speed, flexibility and high level of precision that result in greater control and consistency of product quality; labour saving machines can be programmed to perform the same tasks over and over (most production lines are repeatable and self-checking); robots aren’t impressed by human behaviour; gives humans an opportunity to relieve from repetitive, hazardous and unpleasant tasks

CONS: unemployment, redundancies and layoffs, high capital expenditure and ongoing maintenance costs are required to invest in automated machines; purchased equipment become outdated and are not usually compatible with new devices

 

 

14.BRAIN DRAIN

CAUSES & CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: ‘Push’ factors include economic instability, shortage of educational and research facilities, desire for higher qualifications, poor working conditions, limited career prospects, low salaries, unemployment, desire for a better urban life, political unrest and conflicts; ‘Pull’ factors include better economic prospects, modern educational systems, better research facilities, better opportunities for higher qualifications, prestige of foreign training, higher salaries and incomes, better employment opportunities, higher standards of living, attraction of overseas life

EFFECTS: hinders sustainable development and economic growth; is a burden to the economy; the national budget spent on the education of students who ultimately contribute to economies of other countries SUGGESTIONS TO ADDRESS BRAIN DRAIN: ensure economic stability, provide adequate educational facilities, support think tanks and researchers financially, provide elites with necessary facilities

 

15.BRIBERY

CAUSES & CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: inefficient administrative systems, mismanagement, a lack of well-defined or rigid laws, incomplete regulations and laxity of administrative laws, poor law enforcement, financial problems, low salaries

EFFECTS: against organisational code of ethics, abuse of power and authority, hinders sustainable development and economic growth, causes a growing gap between the rich and the poor

SUGGESTIONS TO PREVENT BRIBERY: promote moral values, define efficient administrative systems, introduce stricter laws, impose heavy penalties on bribery

 

16.CHARITY

MISSIONS OF CHARITIES: to relieve human suffering, improve living conditions of the needy, help disadvantaged people who live in poverty, provide necessary facilities for depressed areas, provide accommodation assistance, provide medical care for low-income families and individuals, improve educational standards, raise donation for victims of natural disasters, promote public awareness about different social issues,

 

support and strengthen families, provide low-interests loans for low- income earners, provide employment opportunities, support people who suffer from physical and mental diseases, assist the disabled by providing free training courses, adoption services, aid to immigrants, public education, supply of expensive medical equipment and services

 

17.CHILDCARE

ROLE OF CHILDCARE: promote the physical, mental, emotional, intellectual and social development of children, provide a variety of health-promoting and disease-preventing services (e.g. providing a warm, safe, homelike and nurturing environment for children)

TYPES OF CHILDCARE: family daycare, childcare providers, nursery schools, caregivers, trained teachers, pre-school centres, after-school care programmes, in-home care programmes

 

18.CHILD LABOUR

CAUSES: inefficient labour laws, a lack of law enforcement, decline in education opportunities, socio-economic problems (e.g. family poverty, family breakdown, child abuse)

EFFECTS: affects the intellectual development of the child, endangers the child’s learning ability, prevents many children from attending school, causes heath issues, damages children’s mental health and causes irreversible physical harm, contributes to adult unemployment (as children are hired at lower wages), is exploitative, against moral principles

 

19.CHILDHOOD

It is a time filled with happy memories of carefree play and excitement. Plays an important role in building character, developing personality, and enhancing intellectual abilities. It is the best time to promote social and emotional development, modify or correct unfavourable traits, teach or learn good habits, such as proper exercise and good eating habits.

It is the best time to learn lifelong skills.

 

20.CHILDREN’S EDUCATION

ROLE: provide a safe learning atmosphere, teach basic knowledge of reading, writing and arithmetic, develop physical and intellectual growth

 

of children, teach social skills, interpersonal interaction and how to be a part of a peer group

 

21.CITY LIFE

PROS: gives us an opportunity to become familiar with different cultures, customs, traditions; has recreational facilities, cultural places, shopping opportunities; urban areas have higher standard of living (e.g. better health care systems, better sanitation services, more educational facilities, more job opportunities); life’s more attractive and vibrant CONS: air pollution, overcrowding, increased traffic jams, higher rate of crime, depression, tension and mental disorders, life is fast-paced, hectic, stressful and mechanical, not much of a community spirit

 

22.CLIMATE

EFFECTS: affects people’s daily routines, work patterns, leisure activities, sleeping habits, lifestyles, life expectancy, health conditions, the type of agricultural products, eating and drinking habits, our character types and moods, the natural environment, vegetation types, soil formation, animal life, livestock, natural resources, migration patterns, building styles and materials due to the specific needs of people, the economic development of an area; there is a link between climate and population distribution

 

23.COMPUTER GAMES

PROS: have many educational benefits such as they help children develop problem-solving and analytical skills (e.g. drawing conclusions, seeking alternatives, making predictions), increase cognitive skills and encourage practical experience, encourage creativity, initiatives and mental power; teach and reinforce academic subjects (e.g. some computer games enhance mathematical skills); are entertaining; teach children how to be a team player (as they offer a multiplayer function) CONS: encourage violent tendencies (e.g. aggression, antisocial behaviour, recklessness), show graphic fight scenes, language tends to be violent, decrease interaction and social skills, can cause psychological and mental problems (tension), take up much of children’s leisure time

 

24.COMPUTERISATION

 

PROS: speed, accuracy, adaptability, compatibility, high memory capabilities, ability to perform complex tasks (e.g. performing mathematical, logical and statistical operations), important for storing, presenting and processing data, designing and modelling simulated operations and controlling machinery; contribute to higher output, offer many features (e.g. the Internet, e-mail)

CONS: we are becoming increasingly dependent on computers; downsizing of industries (which leads to dismissal of workers, higher unemployment rates), damage of office community, jobs become more mechanical and soulless, diminished rapport with people, the privacy of humans can be invaded, made life more complicated and stressful

 

25.COUNTRYSIDE

PROS: gives us an opportunity to enjoy views of areas, get peace and quiet far from urban stress, get away from the hustle and bustle of city life; many cultural areas; the greenness of nature is spectacular; provides many outdoor activities (e.g. swimming, fishing, hiking); low cost of living; people are friendlier than city dwellers; a strong sense of unity; crime rate is low

CONS: isolation, shortage or lack of educational facilities (e.g. fewer universities), shortage or lack of medical facilities (e.g. fewer hospitals), shortage or lack of recreational and cultural facilities; not much privacy (as everyone knows one another); low level of income, low-paced and uneventful life

 

26.CRIME

CAUSES: personality disorders and deficiencies, poor parenting, family breakdowns, lack of a proper family life, lack of decent housing, poor education, educational problems, drug and alcohol abuse, prolonged unemployment, financial problems, social injustice and inequality, relaxation of criminal laws, lack of law enforcement

SOLUTIONS: cultural measures, e.g. programmes intended to strengthen family values and re-educate offenders; economic measures, e.g. providing job opportunities, raising public welfare, increasing income levels; crime deterrent measures, e.g. adopting stricter laws and punishment-oriented approaches (prison should serve four functions: isolation, punishment, rehabilitation and deterrence); social factors, e.g.

 

eliminate any kind of discrimination, provide equal opportunities for all people (which requires a long-term plan and social participation)

 

27.CULTURAL HERITAGE

ROLE: contributes to greater cultural cohesion of communities, plays a major role in providing a legacy for future generations, promotes a sense of national and regional identity, plays a key role in shaping our environment, contributes to the attractiveness of our environment, contributes to the transmission of culture, reflects the history, customs and social values of our past generations, has a key role in attracting tourists

 

28.CULTURE

COMPONENTS: thoughts, feelings, attitudes, unwritten rules, history, folklore, literature, art, music, learned beliefs, customs, shared values, traditions and norms of people who are unified by race, language, nationality, religion and common beliefs

ROLE OF CULTURE: to enrich national identity, promote national integration, strengthen understanding among ethnic groups, ensure social stability, transmit accepted values

 

29.CULTURE SHOCK

SYMPTOMS: feelings of uncertainty, homesickness, extreme sadness, acute nostalgia, loneliness, depression, withdrawal, a sense of disorientation, moodiness, frustration, emotional and physical discomfort SOLUTIONS: learn as much as you can about your host country before you arrive, learn the rules of social conduct, history and the language of the host country, immerse yourself in the new culture, get accustomed with your immediate surroundings, establish a routine as soon as possible, include physical activity into your routine, stay busy and get involved in activities that you enjoy, develop a hobby, join a club, meet people who share similar interests, find a friend to be a ‘cultural informant’ in order to gain a proper perspective on people’s culture

 

30.DIET

EFFECTS: helps you enhance your overall health, increase your energy level, improve your immune system, reduce the risk of health problems

 

(e.g. high blood pressure and diabetes)

SUGGESTIONS TO ACHIEVE A HEALTHY DIET: eat the right kinds of food (wholesome meals), avoid overeating, eat the right amount of food at each meal, eat several meals to prevent hunger, cut down on salt and sugar, choose healthier cooking methods (e.g. steaming, poaching, baking, stir-frying), measure what you eat and then analyse your food records (this helps maintain normal body weight), make sure you provide enough calories and all the necessary daily nutrients

FOOD PYRAMID: is a basic guide which gives information about food and nutrition, helps us follow a healthy balanced diet; each group is equally important and plays a unique role in health (if any piece is removed, the pyramid will be incomplete)

 

31.DISABILITY

HOW TO HELP PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES:

Civic and community access facilities: to support the disabled through greater access to public places, e.g. wide exit doors, reserved car parks and telephone ramps

Medical services: purchasing medical equipment, nursing and day care, health seminars and counselling

Employment opportunities: to empower the disabled to gain access to appropriate work opportunities by providing vocational programmes and supporting them to enter and maintain in the labour market

Educational assistance: to empower the disabled to acquire knowledge and build capabilities that enable them to choose a quality life that they desire by providing educational opportunities

Supportive services: accommodation support, retirement pension, and disability insurance benefits, financial incentives, such as tax rebates could be offered to smaller companies who hire disabled workers

 

32.DISTANCE LEARNING

PROS: learning can be personalised and customised to meet the learner’s needs; a great way to study at a personal speed and intensity without waiting for the slower pace of the average classroom (you don’t need to keep up with he pace of the group); educational materials can be easily downloaded; more flexible deadlines; flexibility to study in any locations; no time spent commuting to classes; flexibility for those with

 

irregular work schedules; you set your own time; accessibility for those with restricted mobility (e.g. the disabled and the elderly); flexibility for those with family responsibilities (e.g. parents with young children at home); lower tuition fees

CONS: lower quality of education compared with ‘on-campus education’; not many aspects of a true campus or traditional classrooms (e.g. no research or lab facilities); time involved to learn how to use the system or software; lag time between students’ input and teachers’ feedback, occasional technology problems, lack of socialisation; lack of teamwork and contact between peers; academic honesty of online students; assessment difficulties

 

33.DIVORCE

CAUSES: lack of understanding and tolerance, personality differences, selfishness, weak commitment to lifelong marriage, inter parental conflicts, interference of parents, financial reasons, prolonged marital conflicts, lack of communication, grown-up problems, failed expectations, unmet needs, inadequate preparation for marriage, drug addiction

EFFECTS: psychological traumas (e.g. anxiety, tension, depression and feelings of guilt for both parties involved); destroys family unit; weakens society; causes financial difficulties; children face emotional problems and are more likely to have marital problems and choose unstable partners; causes psychological difficulties and damages the emotional development of children

SUGGESTIONS TO REDUCE DIVORCE: premarital counselling, marriage education, stronger divorce laws to preserve the integrity of marriage and safeguard family relationship

 

34.DOPING

EFFECTS: against the athletic spirit, ethical principles, sport values and fair play; gives an unfair advantage over the rivals; is hazardous to the physical and mental health of athletes; hurts the public faith; destroys the spirit of a healthy competition (sportsmanship); damages the credibility and reputation of sporting achievements; tarnishes reputation of athletes SOLUTIONS: to promote cultural measures; more educational programmes to enlighten the athletes about the consequences associated

 

with consuming doping; doping test should be carried out at all official competitions; heavier penalties and long-term suspensions; stricter laws

 

 

35.EDUCATION

ROLE: to provide people with sufficient knowledge of skills in reading, writing and arithmetic; prepare us for life by providing relevant knowledge, skills, attitudes and ideas for more fulfilling, productive and satisfying lives; direct children’s growth emotionally; nurture children to become good citizens; develop personalities and intellectual skills; enhance interpersonal relationships; expand knowledge; develop critical thinking skills; sharpen, broaden and deepen the mind; provide us with real-life experiences; familiarize individuals with the norms and values of society; increase social mobility

CURRICULUM: school curricula should be more concerned with the needs of the society; should enhance employment prospects by proving life skills; should offer essential knowledge that makes connections to real life; more practical courses should be included; lessons should be learner-friendly; should balance the theoretical and practical aspects of the course; content should be designed to help students achieve their future goals

FEATURES OF A GOOD UNIVERSITY: being recognised by professional bodies, providing students with high quality education, having qualified teaching staff, creating a supportive and stimulating atmosphere, offering modern and accessible facilities and services (e.g. athletic facilities, career counselling services)

 

36.ENERGY

ENERGY EFFICIENCY: energy saving programmes contribute to the economic growth, sustainable development, higher productivity, revenue creation, expense reduction, the improvement of the environment

 

37.ENVIRONMENT

ALARMING FACTS: air pollution, water pollution from industrial emissions, illegal dumping, waste disposal, overfishing, radioactive contamination, noise pollution, deforestation

 

EFFECTS: health problems, food crisis, poor water quality, loss of biological diversity, endangered marine life, erosion and soil degradation, desertification, depletion of the ozone layer

HOW TO PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT: impose stricter environmental standards; enforce related laws; establish protective zones of natural scenery; phase out indiscriminate logging (forests are valuable sources); increase public awareness; apply renewable materials and energy; use environmentally-friendly alternatives to control fossil emissions and other sources of greenhouse gases; apply efficient waste disposal systems that include waste treatment, recycling, disposal facilities, waste collection and designing sanitary landfills

 

38.FAME

PROS: allows your opinions to be heard; you can be the role model or even the superhero of many people; having admirers, supporters and fans can be enticing and satisfying; can bring you respect, status and popularity; you would have power, influence and probably wealth CONS: brings nothing but misery; can ruin your personal life and privacy; famous people are bothered by photographers and the press (which causes insecurity); causes confusion of identity and disorientation; causes relationship problems; can ruin real friendships; doesn’t necessarily bring popularity

 

39.FAMILY

THE ROLE OF FAMILY: it is the most basic unit of any society; it is the source of identity, inspiration, love, affection, strength, comfort, security, support and encouragement; provides guidance and protection for its members; plays a key role in the emotional and behavioural development of children; plays a significant role in the development of adult achievements; its role is to nurture relationships, transfer the values and initiate the young into culture

 

40.FAMILY TIES

ROLE: family gatherings play an important role in nurturing family relationships; family togetherness helps family members solve their problems more easily; family ties build common interests and strengthen family relationships; develop interpersonal skills

 

SUGGESTIONS FOR FAMILY TIES: eating meals together whenever possible; helping family members with housework; attending their sports events or activities and giving positive feedback; watching a TV programme the whole family likes; having a family night out; exercising together; doing chores together; driving them whenever possible; sharing a hobby together; going on family holidays

 

41.FAMINE

CAUSES: droughts, earthquakes, poor weather and lack of rainfall; civil war, overpopulation, unfair distribution of resources, inadequate food production, low agricultural productivity, failure of harvest due to climatic conditions; lack of water resources leads to deforestation and ultimately results in famine

EFFECTS: poverty, starvation, malnutrition, mass death, extinction of animals, starvation of livestock, outbreaks of diseases (e.g. pestilence), mass migration (e.g. illegal immigration), economic failure and increase in requests for overseas food

HOW TO PREVENT IT: allocate financial assistance intended to support farmers (e.g. subsidies, grants, loans), develop agriculture-related technologies (e.g. mechanization of agriculture and irrigation systems), population control

 

42.FASHION & CLOTHING

PROS: better appearance, industrial benefits (clothing, textile, cosmetics), mass production makes prices lower; provides employment; adds colours and beauty to life; provides us with more choices; shows us the lifestyle features of communities; is a means of self-expression CONS: can be against the values and norms of a community; most fashionable clothes are just eye-catching, flashy and poor in quality; purchased clothes often get discarded; not focused on warmth, comfort or durability; only intends to make profits (fashion slaves are exploited); new fashions impose unwanted costs (a burden to a family budget); a lot of time needs to be spent to keep up with fashion; influences people in a bad way when it comes to purchasing decisions or shopping habits (to persuade people to spend money on things they don’t need)

 

43.FEAR

 

CAUSES: ignorance, misinformation, uncertainty of the future, a series of events in childhood, unsolved issues from the past, having a traumatic experience, lack of confidence, illusion, psychological disorders, an unknown situation

EFFECTS: keeps you from making positive changes in your life; persuades you to set easier goals and do less than you are capable of; keeps you from asserting yourself; affects creativity and productivity; negatively impacts abilities and success; keeps you from taking risks; causes a number of behavioural problems (e.g. indecisiveness, hesitation, confusion); affects physical conditions (e.g. increased heart rate, high blood pressure); affects daily life, relationships and personal growth HOW TO OVERCOME FEAR: become aware of it, identify the ways you express fear, recognise the situations which trigger fear, use behavioural techniques to reduce fear and stress, analyse your fear and see how irrational they are, try not to obsess with fearful thoughts

 

44.FESTIVALS

ROLE: instill a sense of patriotism; promote a sense of national and cultural identity; encourage a feeling of community pride and unity; bring diverse groups of people together; preserve history, traditions, shared values and morals of a country; commemorate past events; revive local traditions; contribute to community participation; entertain and educate

 

45.FIELD TRIPS & EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

ROLE: provide students with numerous opportunities to interact with peers; complement the curriculum; provide outdoor learning opportunities; encourage teamwork, creativity, responsibility, life skills, interpersonal skills, self-improvement; educate and entertain; strengthen the interest areas of students; help working parents

 

46.FILM

FEATURES OF A GOOD FILM: a good scenario and plot, action, sequences, special effects, graphics, sound effects, professional crew (e.g. directors, producers, light and sound technicians, actors etc.); well- defined characters and clever dialogues; well-written; well-directed; enlightening, illuminating, educational, constructive, entertaining,

 

interesting, visually stunning; keeps viewers eager to see what happens next; provokes discussion; makes audiences inspired by its message; involves the viewer in the story (with both empathy and sympathy); can change viewer’s mood

 

47.FRIENDSHIP

QUALITIES OF A GOOD FRIEND(SHIP): honest, trustworthy, loyal, reliable, dependable, kind, affectionate, sympathetic, devoted, considerate, helpful, supportive, caring, selfless, consistent, encouraging, inspiring, tolerant, confidant, positive, open-minded, forward-looking, thoughtful, level-headed, well-humoured; respects your privacy; provides companionship and emotional support; stands by you when you are in trouble; is always open to new ideas; respects your opinion; never breaks confidence; accepts you totally with all your limitations and weaknesses

 

48.GENERATION GAP

CAUSES: difference in age, cultural norms, experiences, opinions, values and attitudes; new electronic technologies

EFFECTS: mistrust, communication breakdown and family problems SUGGESTIONS TO BRIDGE GENERATION GAP: public education, strengthen common points (e.g. counselling sessions); revive shared values

 

49.GLOBAL WARMING

CAUSES: increase of gases which trap the heat of the sun (e.g. CO2); natural changes in climatic patterns; excessive use of fossil fuels; emission of industrial pollutants and deforestation

EFFECTS: natural disasters (e.g. floods, droughts, blizzards, heat waves, wild fires, hurricanes, earthquakes); rising sea levels; reshaping shorelines; melting ice in the poles; retreating glaciers; increasing the spread of diseases

SOLUTIONS: impose and enforce tougher laws to reduce air pollution; develop energy efficiency programmes to limit carbon emission; develop environmentally-friendly alternatives (e.g. solar-powered cars); encourage green space development programmes (e.g. tree-planting

 

programmes); promote initiatives intended to heighten people’s awareness about this issue

 

50.GLOBALISATION

FOR: speed of transport for goods and people; increased liquidity of capital allows investors in developed countries to invest in developing countries; promotes economic growth; increased flow of communications allows information to be shared between individuals and corporations around the world; makes the nations more homogenous; promotes equality of opportunity; ties the world together; brings welfare and peace; promotes cultural cohesion

AGAINST: destroys local economies and small businesses; spreads a materialistic attitude (consumption as a path to prosperity); the greater risk of diseases transferred unintentionally between nations

 

51.GM (GENETICALLY MODIFIED) FOOD

FOR: better texture; increased nutritional value; better flavour and colour; more efficient use of land; longer shelf life; greater yield; reduced weeds; elimination of allergy-causing properties; easier shipment; greater resistance to environmental changes

AGAINST: we don’t know of the steps involved before GM food are made available for sale; haven’t been tested adequately for their safety; we don’t know enough about this science; altering genes could lead to unforeseen problems; potentially dangerous (may cause diseases); pests can be developed (DNA changes); ‘tampering with nature’ by mixing genes among species isn’t right; regulation and control standards vary from country to country (no international regulatory system)

 

52.HAPPINESS

DEFINITIONS: subjective, depending on the person’s mentality; ability to keep positive perspectives; ability to have a clear sense of purpose; satisfaction; being in good health; loving relationships; peaceful environments; philosophical view of life; world view; type of personality; success; delight; safety; to lead a happy life: ‘Do what you like and like what you do’

 

53.HIGH-RISE BUILDINGS

 

PROS: occupy only a small area of land; provide lots of floor space; contribute to the area’s vibrancy; withstand powerful earthquakes (designed and tested by computer simulations); higher standard of accommodation and convenience; contribute to the image of an area; national or regional symbol of the city; reflect the culture of society CONS: all look the same; ruin the distinguished features of cities; have no real character; ruin the view of natural features; cause a negative impact on the rural landscapes; spoil the overall appearance of skylines; make cities and lifestyles more heterogeneous; intensify social problems (e.g. noticeable class distinction); endanger the lives of people (safety standards may be sacrificed to profits)

 

54.HISTORY

ROLE: enriches our understanding of ourselves; helps us learn about our origins, backgrounds, ideas, traditions and institutions that have shaped the development of our country; gives us a sense of connection with the past; brings people together and reminds us of the memories that we share; enables us to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past; is illuminating; allows us to understand and conclude how past human actions impact the present and the future; teaches us many lessons of life; helps us to think more logically and make informed judgements about current and future events; enlightens future generations

 

55.HOBBIES

BENEFITS OF HOBBIES: provide relief from stress; provide entertainment and relaxation; contribute to productive leisure time; provide educational opportunities to enhance life experience; increase problem-solving capabilities; build character; encourage social interaction; teach self-expression; boost creativity, confidence, accomplishment and discipline

 

56.HOLIDAY

OUTDOOR RECREATION: CAMPING, CLIMBING, HIKING,

PICNICKING: a way to renew and strengthen our relationships; encourage family bonding; build lifelong friendships; get close to nature; get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life; provide a chance to get peace and quiet; contribute to people’s overall well-being by

 

providing opportunities for physical fitness and stress reduction activities; give us a great chance to relax and have fun (enthusiasm for work is renewed after a break); can be educational (‘learn by doing’ approach); teach us how to adjust to new environments and various social situations; help us increase self-reliance, maturity, independence, leadership skills; help us develop team work skills; teach us how to take responsibility for others; encourage social connectedness; help us widen our horizons

TRAVELLING & SIGHTSEEING: show the importance of non-school education (as simple procedures like buying a train ticket or changing currency are mastered); help us familiarise ourselves with the highlights of different cities; give us opportunities to get familiar with places of interest, tourist attractions, landmarks, lifestyles and traditions of other cities; allow us to explore the diversity of different cultures ADVENTURE: excitement, danger, novelty, exploring, being exposed to an unknown outcome, thrills (that we cannot get in ordinary life), character and confidence building

EDUCATIONAL TOURS & EXCURSIONS: broaden the mind; promote the cross-cultural understanding among nations; learn about other people, history, lifestyles, cultures, customs and languages

1.HOME SCHOOLING

PROS: promotes family involvement and parental contribution; encourages transmission of parental values to children; allows parents to tailor the curriculum to their personal talents of their children (lessons can be efficiently customised to each child’s needs); allows a flexible schedule; allows to speed up or slow down the material in order to match their child’s developmental readiness in various subjects; children can spend more time in areas which interest them; students are more self- directed and have a greater depth of knowledge

CONS: prevents peer interaction; hinders social development of children; students are more likely to become unsociable; prevents children from being exposed to the ideas and beliefs of others

 

2.HOMELESSNESS

CAUSES: personal irresponsibility, family conflicts, family breakdown, health problems, psychological and mental diseases, drug abuse, poverty,

 

lack of adequate job skills, substandard wages, joblessness, lack of affordable housing, forced evictions, natural disasters

EFFECTS: social exclusion, deprivation of basic human needs, social isolation, health problems, psychological disorders, poor mental health, loss of confidence, unemployment

SOLUTIONS: supportive services, e.g. empowering the homeless to be financially independent by providing decent jobs and emergency assistance (housing subsidy policies, emergency shelters)

 

3.HOUSING

CAUSES OF HOUSING SHORTAGE: overpopulation, internal and external migration, lack of balance between supply and demand in housing market, shortage of existing houses

SUGGESTIONS TO PROTECT LOW-INCOME FAMILIES: affordable

rental houses and home ownership initiatives; schemes designed to provide grants and subsidised loans to assist people in meeting their housing needs; ‘mass construction programmes’ (to provide low-income families with affordable housing)

EFFECTS OF POOR HOUSING: long-term health problems (e.g. respiratory problems, rheumatic diseases); social isolation; poor performance (at school and work)

 

4.ILLITERACY

CAUSES: family poverty, overpopulation, inadequate educational facilities, low parental education, social exclusion

EFFECTS: low self-esteem, restricted social participation opportunities, irrational fear of new technologies, poor employment opportunities, high unemployment, increase in poverty

SOLUTIONS: eliminate poverty, provide free education for vulnerable and disadvantaged people, devise programmes in order to fight illiteracy (e.g. compulsory primary education)

 

5.INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS/CONFLICTS

CAUSES: collision of interests between workers and employers; poor pay and wage disputes; heavy physical work; lack of mutual respect; poor working conditions; long irregular working hours; inflexible hours; forced overtime; lack of insurance coverage; lack of job security; limited

 

career promotion; discrimination and inequalities; unfair dismissals and layoffs; redundancy payment problems; retirement issues; hazardous duties; lack of labour productivity; poor performance of workers; irresponsibility of workers who don’t follow the regulations; disruptive strikes; miscommunication; lack of holiday entitlements; lack of well- defined job descriptions; unclear roles; unreasonable expectations SOLUTIONS: encourage any creativity and self-development (e.g. providing reasonable financial assistance as a motivator); provide and facilitate a situation in which employees can upgrade their professional skills; provide a friendly work atmosphere with team-focused activities; consider workers’ welfare; respect workers’ rights; ensure the safety of workers; provide opportunities for growth; ensure greater protection against unfair dismissals

 

6.THE INTERNET

PROS: facilitates the flow and dissemination of information; has changed the quality and quantity of information; helps people gain access to all sort of information quickly; allows for interaction around the world at a relatively low cost; enables people to form communities in new and unique relationships (e.g. discussion forums, where people can easily communicate and share their ideas); provides many learning opportunities and research activities; the most important features of the Internet include e-mail, online conversation, information retrieval, e- commerce, online shopping, online learning and browsing the Internet for downloading different material

CONS: unsupervised children of the Internet (children are being inundated with dangerous information); lots of websites which promote immorality in society; ‘copy and paste academic assignments’; loss of privacy; the Internet addiction causes irregular sleeping patterns; can cause isolation; hacking, spam, viruses, cookies and credit card fraud

 

7.JOB

FEATURES OF A GOOD JOB: financially-rewarding (high-paid/high- earned); a reasonable level of salary is ensured; provides a sense of accomplishment; is emotionally fulfilling (job satisfaction); provides meaningful and challenging learning experiences to improve job skills; prospects for promotion; job security

 

QUALITIES OF A GOOD EMPLOYEE: creative, well-educated, well- trained, well-informed, well-adjusted, energetic, self-directed, highly responsible, efficient, well-organised, business like, personable, punctual, dependable, a self-starter, a good goal setter, flexible enough to carry out tasks outside of job description, respects the chain of commands, has a sense of loyalty, motivated

QUALITIES OF A GOOD EMPLOYER: understanding, reliable, open- minded, tolerant, responsive, approachable, considerate, positive, encouraging, supportive, treats all subordinates fairly, has high regards for his or her employees; always tries to promote good morale among the employees; always considers employees’ welfare and rights (e.g. providing decent benefits package and insurance coverage); protects the health and safety of his or her employees; tries to provide a friendly working atmosphere

QUALITIES OF A GOOD COLLEAGUE: helpful, supportive, understanding, co-operative, has a pleasant personality, easy to get along with, covers for you willingly when you can’t come or fall behind in your work

PROMOTION CRITERIA: education, competency, productivity, technical skills, innovation, analytical ability, seniority, experience, enthusiasm, energy level, flexibility, loyalty, integrity, expertise, creativity, initiative, determination, decisiveness, willpower, perseverance, diligence, leadership skills, interpersonal abilities, communication skills

 

 

8.JUVENILE DELIQUENCY

CAUSES:

Psychological problems: inferiority complexes, suppressed desires, personality disorders

Family-related factors: family dominance, inadequate family care, parental permissiveness, family neglect, lack of parental control, lack of a proper upbringing, family poverty

Educational factors: educational failure, truancy, school dropouts Peer-related factors: peer pressure, poor relationships with peers SOLUTIONS:

 

Supportive programmes: youth employment opportunities, after-school programmes, public recreation programmes, family support services, parent education, initiatives introduced to provide the youth with social skills, family involvement as a key component of school improvement Deterrent and prevention efforts: compulsory primary education, prevention of child abuse (e.g. child labour), prevention measures, enacting legislation to deter young people from committing crime

 

9.INTERNATIONAL LANGUAGE

FOR: For example: Esperanto is a very logical language, it has been designed to be easy; most roots are internationally understood; it has a productive system of word formation, the grammar is very regular. One international language: prevents language discrimination, no languages are advantaged (‘equality for everyone’); helps nations be closer; contributes to removing conflicts and wars; helps with tourism, business and science

AGAINST: For example: Esperanto is not of much use, the number of speakers is very limited; without history, culture, roots; can’t translate great literature into Esperanto; doesn’t evolve; lacks the technical vocabulary to make a suitable and modern language; isn’t easy to learn; artificial, unattractive and soulless

 

10.LAW

ROLE: provides correction; promotes equality, justice and fairness; ensures privacy, tranquillity, well-being and happiness; protects people from discrimination; ensures orderly public life; protects individuals’ rights; ensures the stability of society; maintains peace and discipline in the country; protects the safety and welfare of people; preserves community standards and morality; deters, prevents, punishes and encourages; settles private arguments and disputes among individuals and businesses; protects the rights of the citizens in various walks of life; protects citizens; punishes those who violate the laws; provides punishment for those who do not follow the established rules of conduct; safeguards the public from crimes and criminals; makes the society a safer place to live in

 

11.LIFE EXPECTANCY

 

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: genetic characteristics, personality type, regular exercise, sufficient physical activities, weight control, food quality, healthy diet, medical care, good use of nutritional supplements, adequate sleep, climatic conditions, family support, income levels, avoiding tobacco use

 

 

12.MARRIAGE

ROLE: provides a solid foundation for society; enriches family values; is the safest relationship for both men and women; prevents many social problems (e.g. sexual immorality); brings health benefits (e.g. fewer symptoms of depression, better physical and emotional health); has a positive effect on physiological functions of adults; allows for higher saving rates and greater life satisfaction; protects against the feeling of loneliness; allows us to grow in character

CRITERIA: should be based on mutual understanding, sympathy, affection, love, warmth, mutual tolerance, sacrifice and commitment; an ideal partner is honest, open-minded, outgoing, fun-loving, helpful, supportive, goal-oriented, assertive, reliable, dedicated, devoted, encouraging, understanding, patient, dignified, thoughtful and sympathetic

 

13.MASS MEDIA

ROLE: to educate, inform and entertain people; to portray social problems; to communicate and share information; to serve to build a healthy and progressive society; to help create community; to shape people’s opinions; to bring about a greater awareness; to form and reflect public opinions; to instill social values

 

14.MEMORY

CAUSES OF FORGETFULNESS: tiredness, concentration problems, stress and general anxiety, emotional problems, alcohol abuse; aging; Alzheimer’s disease; certain brain conditions (e.g. stroke)

MEMORY IMPROVEMENT TECHNIQUES: convince yourself that you have a good memory; avoid being negative; relax and don’t tire or put yourself under pressure to recall the information you want (a relaxed mind is able to recall the information in a better way); exercise daily

 

(regular exercise improves circulation and efficiency throughout the body and makes you more alert and relaxed); try meditation (‘mindfulness’ meditation allows for a better focus and better memory); sleep well (regular sleep patterns serve to give brain rest); keep your brain active by developing new mental skills (e.g. learning a new language, challenging your brain with puzzles and games); reduce stress; try to improve your observational skills; have vivid and memorable images (you remember things more easily if you visualise); repeat things you need to remember (the more time you hear, see or think about something, the more certainly you’ll remember it); group things to make it easier to remember; try categorising the individual things; organise your life (e.g. keep item that you frequently need in the same place every time)

 

15.MIGRATION

CAUSES: ‘push factors’: natural disasters (e.g. earthquakes), periodic or chronic food crisis, high population density, poverty, political unrest; ‘pull factors’: higher living standards in other countries, better labour market conditions, better income opportunities

PROS: makes the culture of the host country richer; creates a greater social diversity that can bring about increased understanding between people of different countries

CONS: is associated with many problems including cultural disputes, economic problems, income inequality, overcrowding, spread of diseases, unplanned city development, housing shortage; causes a huge burden on the social welfare of the host country; can damage the job market; threatens local culture and community cohesion

 

 

16.MODERN LIFE

PROS: has made our lives easier and more comfortable; new time-saving machines are being made to meet the specific needs of people; has brought about convenience; has reduced household chores; allows people to enjoy a higher standard of living

CONS: has made people of all ages less active which can lead to many health problems; is associated with psychological problems (e.g. depression, stress, anxiety, tension, psychological pressure and mental

 

disorders); too fast-paced, mechanical and stressful; brings materialistic outlook; results in environmental problems (e.g. air pollution); too competitive (people are constantly trying to have more and more)

 

17.MUSIC

PROS: to increase cognitive abilities and activate your brain; to clear your mind; to release physical tension; to fill you with positive energy; to give a sense of peace; to alter your mood; to give you a positive outlook on life; can be used as treatment to cure various diseases (music therapy); can increase productivity; can be relaxing, calming, restful, inspiring

CONS: certain types of music can stimulate negative emotions (e.g. violence, aggression, rebellion, criminal behaviour, suicidal tendencies); some music can attract isolated and depressed youth and feed their feelings with despair and hostility; certain types of music can damage the hearing mechanism and nervous system

 

18.NATURAL DISASTERS

EXAMPLES: drought, earthquake, flood, forest fire, tidal wave, hurricane, cyclone, severe storm, landslide, volcanic eruption, overflowing of rivers and lakes

HOW TO DEAL WITH THEM: deliver relief supplies and vital first aid to victims (e.g. medical care, mass shelters, presence of trained emergency services and international rescue crews); enhance safety standards; increase anti-earthquake construction standards; ensure high standards of buildings (should be solidly built, well-structured, resistant); building materials should be based on quality and durability; public awareness-raising programmes (e.g. educate people how to face natural disasters); precautionary measures to enhance safety standards (prepare people for disasters); advance warning to predict natural disasters

 

19.NOISE POLLUTION

CAUSES: industrial operations, urban development activities (e.g. construction activities), transportation systems (e.g. air, road, rail traffic, car horns), car alarms, air conditioners

LONG-TERM EFFECTS: psychological and psychological health problems (e.g. hearing loss, sleeplessness, mental disorders, emotional

 

disturbances, long-term stress, aggression, distraction, tension, lost productivity, reduced efficiency)

SOLUTIONS: apply technical measures (e.g. plant trees along main roads, technical adjustments); changes in operation methods; reduce the noise at source to prevent its transmission; raise public awareness through various programmes (e.g. seminars intended to inform people about the effects of noise pollution); impose stricter laws

 

20.OBESITY

CAUSES: overeating, poor diet, bad eating habits (e.g. regular consumption of high-calorie foods and compulsive eating disorders), unhealthy lifestyles (e.g. excessive sleep, lack of exercise, inadequate physical activity, regular use of medications); genetics factors; hormonal, metabolic and physiological factors

EFFECTS: shorter life span; posture problems; sleep disorders; breathing problems; increased risk of diabetes; high blood pressure; high cholesterol; increased risk of heart attacks and heart failure; limited choice of clothing; feeling of embarrassment; negative impacts on social contacts; lower self-esteem; discrimination in job market

HOW TO PREVENT OBESITY: follow a balanced diet; choose healthier cooking methods (e.g. steaming, boiling); count the number of calories needed for a healthy diet; cut down on carbohydrates and sugar (e.g. limit sugary drinks); limit fat intake by avoiding deep fried foods; eat wholesome meals; increase physical activities; have a regular fitness programme; use medical weight loss therapies; prescribed medications

 

21.OVERPOPULATION

CAUSES: high birth rate, high immigration rate, decreased rate of mortality, availability of health services

EFFECTS: decline in life quality, unhygienic living conditions, housing shortage, higher land prices, higher rents, increased illiteracy, decline in education quality, lower quality of public services, decline in public health, higher rate of unemployment, lower wages, depletion of natural resources, deforestation, growth of urban sprawl, increased level of pollution, food and water shortage

HOW TO CONTROL POPULATION GROWTH: increase people’s awareness, apply family planning and counselling programmes; making

 

contraception available to the public; start initiatives to control birth rate (e.g. give special tax deduction for the couples who have only one or two children)

 

22.PARENTING

PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITIES: to provide a supportive environment for raising children; to take care of the physical and emotional needs of children; to provide children with love, guidance, inspiration and direction; to give children adequate freedom to build their own character; to help children learn social skills; to nurture their talents; to be consistent and not to discriminate against children

FAMILY UPBRINGING: contributes to the personality development and success of children; instills the necessary values to make the lives of children more sustainable; makes children well-adjusted, self-directed and self-made

 

23.PERSONALITY

COMPONENTS: genetic factors like inheritance, physical qualities, psychological features, appearance, natural features of temperament, natural talents, cognitive potentials, intellectual abilities; personal interests and preferences; life goals, values, personal beliefs, expectations, desires, tendencies, general attitudes; self-perception, life experiences, family size, family living conditions, education, social environment, social skills

HOW TO IMPROVE PERSONALITY: be interested in people; assume that people like you; admit your weaknesses; attend social gatherings; learn new things; associate with people who are successful and happy

 

24.PETS

PROS: act as companions for people who live alone; provide a link between humans and nature (e.g. dogs are useful for protection and serve as guides for the disabled, they can also help their owners exercise); keeping pets promotes a sense of caring and responsibility in children; help children develop responsible attitudes; give amusement to their owners

CONS: transmit contagious diseases and cause many health problems (e.g. allergies, asthma, skin irritations); they are expensive to keep (food,

 

medical treatment); communities carry costs of animals that have been abandoned by irresponsible owners; can cause serious distress to neighbours and residents (barking, attacking, biting, straying, etc.)

 

25.POVERTY

CAUSES: personal laziness, death in family, joblessness, lack of work effort, lack of work skills, low income, death of wage-earner, slow income growth, illiteracy, inadequate education, poor health, high cost of housing, divorce, natural disasters, lack of equal opportunities in society, unfair distribution of wealth, overpopulation, ineffective economic systems, limited employment opportunities

EFFECTS: poor health, early death even from preventable and treatable diseases, dangerous living conditions, hunger, poor nutrition, illiteracy, family separation, family conflicts, high rate of crime, mental and psychological problems, long-term stress, hopelessness, despair, diminished intellectual capabilities, school dropouts, child abuse SOLUTIONS: establish employment opportunities for low-income and disadvantages families; develop entrepreneurship schemes; increase assistance programmes for the needy and poverty-stricken families (e.g. welfare schemes and income support); ensure minimum level of health care services; support food distribution programmes to assist depressed areas; eradicate inequalities; improve economic growth by providing suitable opportunities for economic activities; population control (long- term solution)

 

26.PUBLIC TRANSPORT

ROLE: benefits: reduced pollution, personal safety, fewer number of accidents, less traffic congestion, environmentally-friendly, run with alternative forms of energy, cost-efficient (compared with private cars), makes communities more equal by providing different forms of transportation for the needy, creates a sense of community, brings commuters closer

HOW TO DEVELOP AND IMPROVE PUBLIC TRANSPORT: make it

faster, more comfortable and more convenient (e.g. provide more bus lanes); devise programmes intended to encourage people to use public transport (e.g. free rides, discounts on passes); develop public

 

transportation services and infrastructures in urban and rural areas by allocating enough budgets to modernise the transport systems

 

27.RECYCLING

BENEFITS: more efficient use of natural resources (inorganic waste is separated from organic household refuse and used for future recycling); conservation of energy; reduced demand of new materials; prevention of pollution; safe disposal of hazardous materials; prevention of illegal dumping; less amount of garbage; reduced overhead and waste disposal costs; saving landfill space

 

28.SATELLITE

ROLE: earth observation purposes (mapping the topography and shape of the ocean’s surface); space exploration purposes (information obtained about other planets); traffic controlling, navigation, vehicle tracking and positioning; military purposes (e.g. military surveillance and detection); long distance communications and remote imaging (e.g. internet communications); distance and online learning (virtual universities); data relay (radio and television broadcasts); environmental applications (e.g. weather forecasts, meteorological observation, climate monitoring, volcanic eruption predictions, earthquake predictions, ocean temperatures, studying the ozone layer and the atmosphere, space explorations); telemedicine (delivery of health services via remote telecommunications)

 

29.SCHOOL & PARENTAL DISCIPLINE

GOALS OF SCHOOL DISCIPLINE: to teach students to behave in a way that is acceptable and contributes to academic achievement and educational success; to create a safe environment to learn in; to maintain effective learning conditions; to reinforce appropriate school behaviour; to instill self-discipline; to help students develop self-control; to strengthen children’s ability to cooperate with peers; to promote positive behaviour of self-respect, mutual respect, care and consideration EFFECTS OF PHYSICAL PUNISHMENT: antisocial behaviour (e.g. lying, stealing, cheating, bulling); aggression; feeling of hurt; resentment; violence; hate; humiliation; lower self-esteem; failure; frustration

 

 

30.SMOKING

CAUSES: personal tendencies; character flaw; peer pressure; poor family environment; family pressure; stress; lack of confidence; poor education; tobacco advertising increases the number of smokers

EFFECTS: bad breath; stained teeth; premature skin aging; respiratory problems (e.g. coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, asthma); health problems (e.g. higher risk of lung cancer, heart attack); expensive habit; leads to addiction; passive smoking is also harmful (why non-smokers should be bothered by the unhealthy lifestyle choices of smokers) HOW TO QUIT SMOKING: nicotine replacement therapy (e.g. nicotine gum, patches, inhalers, regular exercise); behaviour change therapies (e.g. replacing one habit with another, counselling sessions)

 

31.SPACE EXPLORATION

FOR: more efficient worldwide communications; the only help for overpopulation in the future; the only justifiable alternative with depleting natural resources; provides knowledge about the origin of the solar system; allows us to discover whether life exists anywhere else; serves the essential interests of most nations

AGAINST: imposes huge amount of cost; burdens tax payers; the allocated budget could be better spent on basic needs; there are more important social issues which need urgent attention like poverty, youth unemployment, pollution etc.; puts human life in danger

 

 

 

32.SPORT

PHYSICAL EFFECTS OF DOING SPORTS: healthy life, promotion of physical fitness; staying fit and in shape; to restore energy and vitality; to strengthen bones and muscles; to boost blood circulation; to develop a greater awareness of body; to improve body posture and flexibility; to improve immune system; to reduce the risk of heart attacks; to prevent diseases (e.g. obesity, high blood pressure)

MENTAL EFFECTS OF DOING SPORTS: to improve mental health; to build self-confidence; to enhance mental and emotional well-being; to lift your spirit; to clear your mind and keep your mind focused; to think

 

more positively; to give you a sense of accomplishment; to relieve stress; to control anxiety; to overcome long-term strains; to sharpen your memory; to increase concentration and mental power

EFFECTS OF MENTAL SPORTS (e.g. CHESS): memory development; logical thinking abilities; intellectual skills; creativity skills; analytical thinking skills; cognitive skills; problem solving skills; critical thinking abilities

EFFECTS OF INDIVIDUAL SPORTS: promote self-discipline and a sense of personal responsibility; allow lots of personal expression both physically and mentallyEFFECTS OF TEAM SPORTS: promote teamwork, interpersonal skills, coordination skills, social interaction skills, leadership abilities, communication skills, loyalty, interdependence, group unity, a sense of duty; develop friendship and social skills while enhancing self-esteem and health; promote self- control and self-discipline by abiding the rules of the game; teach us how to achieve a common goal and accept responsibility; teach us about dealing with success and failure

 

33.SPORTING EVENTS

ROLE: promote tourism (which in the long run can be streamlined into socio-economic development efforts of countries); provide fair and equal opportunities for all participants to compete; encourage interaction among cultures (international sporting events); deepen understanding and friendship among nations through competitions; promote a sense of cohesion and national identity; bring people of diverse cultures together; promote international cooperation; release people’s patriotic emotions in a safe way; provide many job opportunities; serve the interests of a large number of people; promote national pride in countries

 

34.SPORTSMANSHIP

ROLE: good sportsmanship is playing fair, following the rules of the game, respecting the judgement of referees and officials, treating opponents with respect, congratulating winners promptly and willingly, accepting the game’s outcome without complaints and excuses, talking courteously to everyone before, during and after games and events (including teammates, opponents, coaches, officials and spectators),

 

accepting the result of one’s actions gracefully; avoid blaming teammates for mistakes or poor team performance; avoid all acts of poor sportsmanship (e.g. trash talking, showboating, humiliating, taunting opponents); it promotes worldwide culture of peace and encourages teamwork, cooperation, tolerance, self-esteem and character development of participants

 

35.STRESS

CAUSES: acute stress: disorganization, hormonal imbalance, lack of confidence, physical surroundings, crammed schedule, poor time management, heavy workload, lack of understanding, unfamiliar situations (e.g. new technologies); chronic stress: work pressure, unsolved problems, powerlessness, dysfunctional family relationships, long-term relationship problems, long-term unemployment, poverty, financial problems

EFFECTS: mental symptoms: memory problems, difficulty in making decisions, inability to concentrate, poor judgements, confusion, repetitive thoughts, apathy, mental irritation, weaker performance; emotional symptoms: restlessness, depression, anxiety, tension, anger, resentment; physical symptoms: sleep disturbances, fatigue, rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, weight gain or loss, eating disorders, isolation from others, nervous habits (e.g. nail biting)

HOW TO RELIEVE OR COPE WITH STRESS: meet our spiritual needs: apply relaxation techniques (e.g. meditation); use medication; remove the stressor; give up unrealistic expectations; take a quick mental break; have proper nutrition; exercise regularly; rest sufficiently

 

36.SUCCESS

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: positive thinking, motivation, willpower, determination, stamina, self-improvement, interpersonal skills, social skills, confidence level, self-esteem, self-trust, diligence, seriousness, self-discipline, patience, experience, creativity, intelligence, calculated risks, careful planning, perseverance (it’s important to keep trying) DEFINITIONS: setting and achieving one’s personal goals; true peace of mind; having a good family life; a certain level of career advancement; academic achievement; having financial ability to afford

 

whatever needed; lack of confidence is a psychological barrier to success

 

37.TOURISM

PROS: promotes international understanding and cooperation among nations; is a significant source of revenue; provides job opportunities; encourages regional development; increases foreign exchange earnings; enhances higher standard of living for local communities

CONS: can cause environmental destruction, damage to ecosystem and serious forms of pollution; can cause cultural degradation (debase the host culture, displace locals); uses up natural resources; deprives the local population from their natural rights to use these resources

 

38.TRAFFIC

CAUSES: bad weather, poor signal timing, car accidents, inadequate roadway capacity, insufficient number of roads, substandard road conditions, increased number of cars (roads and transport services suffer when they are overused); urban sprawl and unplanned urban growth in large cities

HOW TO REDUCE TRAFFIC: apply automated traffic management systems; improve public transport systems; encourage people to use more public transport; provide carpooling facilities; establish car sharing schemes; ease traffic jams through radio reports; impose vehicle emission laws; introduce a regulatory system planned to limit the  number of cars on the roads (e.g. odd-even number plates policy); ban private cars from entering certain areas of the city; increase the number of roads; provide a safe network of walking and cycling routes

 

39.TV

PROS: a powerful tool to educate viewers around the world; provides people with inspiration, ideas and knowledge; holds families together; serves the particular interests of individuals and groups; a fast way to find out about the latest news from all over the world; the main source of information for most people; a convenient source of entertainment; affordable (compared with other means of entertainment); an important forum for discussing and putting forward various issues

 

CONS: can stop family members from communicating with each other; children spend too many hours passively watching TV; TV addiction can lead to poor academic performance and result in physical complications (e.g. obesity); makes children lose important social skills; passive TV watching damages sleep patterns; misinforms people (propaganda tool by some governments); shows lots of violence (which contributes to aggressive behaviour of the youth and consequently leads to social disorder)

 

40.UNEMPLOYMENT

CAUSES: high expectations of job seekers; low level of education; lack of job experience; personal laziness; unavailability of suitable jobs; inadequate vocational training; excessive unemployment benefits; overpopulation; lack of planned balance between the educational output and economic expansion; depressed and unstable economy can lead to high unemployment rate

EFFECTS: Individual effects: lower self-esteem, substantial loss of life satisfaction, financial problems, divorce and ruined families, increased participation in illegal activities, psychological disorders (e.g. hopelessness, apathy and depression); Social effects: poverty, higher crime rates, internal and external migration of labour; Economic effects: slowdown in economic growth, recession

SOLUTIONS: increase economic growth, improve job skills through education (e.g. offering training programmes for unskilled and low skilled workers); open the market to national and private investments; increase labour market flexibility; encourage entrepreneurship programmes for increasing employment opportunities

 

41.URBAN SPRAWL

CAUSES: unplanned city development, unlicensed construction, the growth of urban infrastructure, inefficient land use patterns, fragmented municipal governments, increased rural migrations, population growth EFFECTS: Environmental impact: loss of agricultural lands which leads to lower food production; degradation of water resources; inadequate sewage disposal systems; loss of natural vegetation; poor air quality; ugly suburban landscapes; destruction of wildlife habitats; Social impact: loss of community identity; loss of community spirit and values; marked

 

disparities in wealth between cities and suburbs; traffic congestion; longer community times; Economic impact: increased public costs; higher tax burdens; increased energy consumption; increased unemployment rate; urban infrastructure decline

 

42.VIOLENCE

CAUSES: social inequalities; lack of a proper upbringing; poor home life; psychological problems; behavioural problems; personal frustration; superiority and inferiority complexes; financial pressure; relaxation of criminal laws; lack of law enforcement; learned patterns of behaviour; teen parties and gangs; certain types of films can provoke violence SOLUTIONS: ensure equal opportunities in different aspects of social life; take preventive measures (e.g. impose certain laws to prevent violence); promote public education (e.g. educate people how to overcome their angry feelings)

 

43.WATER POLLUTION

CAUSES:        domestic       waste,       polluted       agricultural        runoff,                        industrial emission, washout of poisonous chemicals from dumps, leakage from disposal sites, inadequate sewage treatment, sewage discharge, soil erosion, excessive use of synthetic and inorganic substances in industries EFFECTS: endangers human life and natural ecosystems; destroys water quality; causes great loss in agriculture; is a threat to the underwater life; causes many life-threatening health problems (e.g. cholera, typhoid) SOLUTIONS: Preventive programmes: enact tougher laws; Supervisory role of authorities: sea dumping should be strictly prohibited; Technical measures: design efficient waste disposal systems to prevent water pollution (e.g. provide recycling and disposal facilities); Educational programmes: increase public awareness; offer programmes intended to encourage public participation

 

44.ZOO

FOR: built to conserve and protect animals that are threatened in their natural environment; provide quality care for animals; place a higher priority on animal welfare (e.g. veterinary and medical care ensure good physical conditions for animals); have careful breeding programmes; are educational; create basic research opportunities; provide communities


with an opportunity to observe rare and endangered species of animals in their natural behaviour; provide public entertainment; allow interaction between humans and animals; provide significant biological resources; create income (obtained money can be spent on environmental issues) AGAINST: are cruel and inhumane; humans have no right to interfere with the natural environment of animals; keeping animals captive causes suffering; lots of risks (e.g. animal diseases can be transferred, in case of an incident animals cannot escape); cause environmental problems.

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