Question: Topic: Gerald Early&#39

  • Home
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Reading
  • Listening
  • Lessons
  • What’s New!

IELTS Writing Questions

These IELTS writing questions are examples of essay questions given in the IELTS exam for Task 2.

The IELTS essay topics have been divided into common IELTS writing topics and many have model answers.

This way you can easily see and understand the kind of areas of knowledge you will need to know about in order to help you do well in the test.

Some of the IELTS writing questions could of course be in more than one topic area.


A growing number of people feel that animals should not be exploited by people and that they should have the same rights as humans, while others argue that humans must employ animals to satisfy their various needs, including uses for food and research.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Model Answer

Blood sports have become a hot topic for debate in recent years. As society develops it is increasingly seen as an uncivilized activity and cruel to the helpless animals that are killed. All blood sports should be banned.

Discuss the main arguments for this statement and give your own opinion.

Examine the arguments in favour of and against animal experiments, and come to a conclusion on this issue.

Model Answer

Culture and Traditions

Government investment in the arts, such as music and theatre, is a waste of money. Governments must invest this money in public services instead.

To what extent do you agree with this statement?

Model Answer

It is inevitable that as technology advances, traditional cultures will be lost. It seems that we cannot have these two things together.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

There are many types of music in the world today. Why do we need music? Is the traditional music of a country more important and should it be preserved or is international music that is heard everywhere nowadays more useful to a society?

Many old buildings protected by law are part of a nation’s history. Some people think they should be knocked down and replaced by news ones.

How important is it to maintain old buildings?

Should history stand in the way of progress?

Model Answer


Some people believe the aim of university education is to help graduates get better jobs. Others believe there are much wider benefits of university education for both individuals and society.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Model Answer

Education is not a luxury, but a basic human right and as such should be free for everyone irrespective of personal wealth.

Do you agree or disagree?

Some people think that children’s free time must include educational activities otherwise they will waste their time.

What is your opinion?

Formal examinations are the only effective way to assess a student’s performance. Continual assessment such as course work and projects is not a satisfactory way to do this.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?

Best Selling Writing eBook

Do you need more help to write a great essay for IELTS?

If so, check out our best-selling Step-by-step Guide to Writing a Task 2 Essay  


Developed countries have created many environmental problems in the World, particularly in their contribution to global warming.

Why is global warming a problem?

What can be done to reduce the dangers of global warming?

In order to solve traffic problems, governments should tax private car owners heavily and use the money to improve public transportation.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of such a solution?

Model Answer

Global warming is one of the most serious issues that the world is facing today.

What are the causes of global warming and what measures can governments and individuals take to tackle the issue?

Model Answer

Logging of the rain forests is a serious problem and it may lead to the extinction of animal life and human life.

To what extent to you agree of disagree?

Overpopulation of urban areas has led to numerous problems.

Identify one or two serious ones and suggest ways that governments and individuals can tackle these problems.

Model Answer

Health, Fitness and Diet

Currently there is a trend towards the use of alternative forms of medicine. However, at best these methods are ineffective, and at worst they may be dangerous.

To what extent do you agree with this statement?

Model Answer

The percentage of overweight children in western society has increased by almost 20% in the last ten years.

Discuss the causes and effects of this disturbing trend.

Model Answer

Eating a balanced diet is the most important factor for a healthy life.

To what extent do you agree?

Do the dangers derived from the use of chemicals in food production and preservation outweigh the advantages?

Model Answer

Many of the medical problems that people are experiencing in today’s world are due to the fact that we have a very sedentary lifestyle.

To what extent to you agree?

Stress is now a major problem in many countries around the world.

What are some of the factors in modern society that cause this stress, and how can we reduce it? 

Model Answer


Some of the methods used in advertising are unethical and unacceptable in today’s society.

To what extent do you agree with this view?

Model Answer

Are famous people treated unfairly by the media? Should they be given more privacy, or is the price of their fame an invasion into their private lives?

These days, we are seeing an increasing amount of violence on television, and this is having a negative impact on children’s behaviour.

Do you agree or disagree?

Families and Children

Nowadays, families are not as close as in the past and a lot of people have become used to this. 

Explain the reasons for this and discuss any possible effects it may have on society.

There is an increasing trend around the world to have a small family rather than a large family.

What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of having a small family rather than a large family? 

Crime and the Law

Smoking not only harms the smoker, but also those who are nearby. Therefore, smoking should be banned in public places.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Model Answer

Some people think that the best way to reduce crime is to give longer prison sentences. Others, however, believe there are better alternative ways of reducing crime.

Discuss both views and give your opinion.

Model Answer

Levels of youth crime are increasing rapidly in most cities around the world.

What are the reasons for this, and suggest some solutions.

Model Answer

Smokers have rights too, so they should be allowed to smoke in public places.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?


In the last 20 years there have been significant developments in the field of information technology (IT), for example the World Wide Web and communication by email. However, future developments in IT are likely to have more negative effects than positive.

To what extent do you agree with this view?

Model Answer

People use computers when they work or go banking, but some argue that it will make people isolated and decrease their social skills.

To what extent do you agree with this viewpoint?

Some people think that computers are more of a hindrance than a help in today’s society. Others believe that they are such indispensable tools that they would not be able to live or work without them.

Discuss both opinions and give your opinion.

Nowadays many people have access to computers on a wide basis and a large number of children play computer games.

What are the negative and positive impacts of playing computer games and what can be done to minimize the bad effects?

Model Answer

Do you think that modern technology, such as the internet and computers will ever replace the book or the written word as the main source of information?


Genetic engineering is an important issue in modern society. Some people think that it will improve people’s lives in many ways. Others feel that it may be a threat to life on earth.

Discuss both opinions and give your opinion?

As people live longer and longer, the idea of cloning human beings in order to provide spare parts is becoming a reality. The idea horrifies most people, yet it is no longer mere science fiction.

To what extent do you agree with such a procedure?

Have you any reservations?

Model Answer

  1. Home

  2.  ›

  3. Writing Task 2

  4.  ›

  5. Essay Questions



New! Comments

Any questions or comments about this page or about IELTS?

Post your comment here.

site search by
Follow @ieltsbuddy

  • Home
  • What’s New
  • IELTS Information


  • Task 1 Lessons
  • Task 2 Lessons
  • Reading Lessons
  • Speaking Lessons
  • Listening Lessons
  • Grammar Lessons
  • Vocabulary Lessons


  • IELTS Practice Tests


  • Sample Graphs
  • Sample Essays
  • Sample Speaking
  • Sample Letters


  • IELTS buddy eBooks
  • IELTS Scores
  • Score Calculator
  • IELTS Forum
  • Free Downloads
  • IELTS Quizzes
  • IELTS Books
  • Videos
  • Useful Links


  • IELTS Life Skills Test


  • Contact Us


  • Task 1 & 2 eBook

[ ? ]Subscribe To This Site
  • follow us in feedly
  • Add to My Yahoo!

Recent Articles



  • follow us in feedly

  • Add to My Yahoo!

  1. IELTS Essay – Improving Living Standards

    Oct 08, 18 05:59 AM

    Could you please comment on the essay below? Thanks in advance! Many countries aim to improve their living standard by economic development, but some

    Read More

  2. IELTS Bar Chart – Travellers using three major airports

    Oct 08, 18 05:54 AM

    Please tell me my band and mistake I did and how to improve band score. *** Depicted here is a chart which delineates about the number of travelers in

    Read More

  3. IELTS Listening Practice Test Section 4

    Sep 24, 18 05:36 AM

    In this IELTS Listening Practice Test Section 4 you will hear a speaker giving advice to students on using the university library. Section 4 is the most difficult part of the listening test, so this t…

    Read More


















































Important pages

IELTS Writing
IELTS Speaking
IELTS Listening  
IELTS Reading
All Lessons
Academic Task 1
Academic Task 2
Practice Tests

Connect with us

Follow @ieltsbuddy


site search by

Privacy Policy / Disclaimer

Copyright © 2018- IELTSbuddy All Rights Reserved

Skip to content Skip to site index

Lesson Plans

Subscribe Log In
Today’s Paper


Supported by

Student Opinion

401 Prompts for Argumentative Writing

Our list of writing prompts includes: Does technology make us more alone? And, is social media making us more narcissistic? CreditCreditJake Michaels for The New York Times

By Michael Gonchar

Of all the resources we publish on The Learning Network, perhaps it’s our vast collection of writing prompts that is our most widely used resource for teaching and learning with The Times.

This list of 401 prompts ( available here in PDF ) is now our third iteration of what originally started as 200 prompts for argumentative writing, and it’s intended as a companion resource to help teachers and students participate in our annual Student Editorial Contest .

So scroll through the hundreds of prompts below that touch on every aspect of contemporary life — from social media to sports, politics, gender issues and school — and see which ones most inspire you to take a stand. Each question comes from our daily Student Opinion feature, and each provides links to free Times resources for finding more information. And for even more in-depth student discussions on pressing issues like immigration , guns , climate change and race , please visit our fall 2016 Civil Conversation Challenge .

What’s your favorite question on this list? What questions should we ask, but haven’t yet? Tell us in the comments.

And visit our related list as well: 650 Prompts for Narrative and Personal Writing .


Social Media and Smartphones

1. Does Technology Make Us More Alone?
2. Is Social Media Making Us More Narcissistic?
3. Will Social Media Help or Hurt Your College and Career Goals?
4. Would You Consider Deleting Your Facebook Account?
5. Does Facebook Need a ‘Dislike’ Button?
6. Has Facebook Lost Its Edge?
7. Should What You Say on Facebook Be Grounds for Getting Fired?
8. Would You Be Willing to Pay for Facebook or Google in Exchange for Your Privacy?
9. Are Anonymous Social Media Networks Dangerous?
10. Should People Be Allowed to Obscure Their Identities Online?
11. Is Our Culture of Online Shaming Out of Control?
12. Is Snapchat a Revolutionary Form of Social Media?
13. Do Apps Help You or Just Waste Your Time?
14. Do You Spend Too Much Time on Smartphones Playing ‘Stupid Games’?
15. Is Pokémon Go a Positive Cultural Force? Or Is it Just Another Excuse for People to Stare at Their Phones?
16. Are Digital Photographs Too Plentiful to Be Meaningful?
17. Do You Worry We Are Filming Too Much?
18. How Many Text Messages Are Too Many?
19. Does Punctuation in Text Messages Matter?
20. Can a GIF Work Better Than Words?

Technology in Schools and the Future

21. Are the Web Filters at Your School Too Restrictive?
22. Does Technology in the Classroom Ever Get in the Way of Learning?
23. Should Tablet Computers Become the Primary Way Students Learn in Class?
24. Can Cellphones Be Educational Tools?
25. Should There Be More Educational Video Games in School?
26. Is Online Learning as Good as Face-to-Face Learning?
27. How Would You Feel About a Computer Grading Your Essays?
28. Do Machines Represent a Threat to Humans?
29. Are Self-Driving Vehicles the Wave of the Future?
30. Do You Think Recreational Drones Are Safe?
31. What Role Will Robots Play in Our Future?
32. Will Wearable Technology Ever Really Catch On?

Gender Issues

Should toys be more gender-neutral? CreditGretchen Ertl for The New York Times

33. Do Parents Have Different Hopes and Standards for Their Sons Than for Their Daughters?
34. Is School Designed More for Girls Than Boys?
35. Is Single-Sex Education Still Useful?
36. Is There Too Much Pressure on Girls to Have ‘Perfect’ Bodies?
37. How Much Pressure Do Boys Face to Have the Perfect Body?
38. What Does it Mean to Be ‘a Real Man’?
39. Do We Need to Teach Boys and Men to Be More Emotionally Honest?
40. Is It O.K. for Men and Boys to Comment on Women and Girls on the Street?
41. What Should We Do to Fight Sexual Violence Against Young Women?
42. Why Aren’t There More Girls in Leadership Roles?
43. Do Professional Women Need a ‘Girls’ Lounge’?
44. Why Aren’t More Girls Choosing to Pursue Careers in Math and Science?
45. Why Aren’t More Girls Pursuing Careers in Computing and Tech Fields?
46. Should Women Be Allowed to Fight on the Front Lines Alongside Men?
47. Now That Women Can Serve in All Combat Roles in the U.S. Military, Should They Also Be Required to Register for the Draft?
48. Do Female Athletes Get Short Shrift?
49. Should Sports Be Coed?
50. Do You Believe in Equal Rights for Women and Men?
51. Is It Harder Being a Girl?
52. Do We Need New Ways to Identify Gender and Sexuality?
53. Should Toys Be More Gender-Neutral?
54. Should There Be More Boy Dolls?
55. Should Transgender People Be Allowed to Use the Bathroom of Their Choice?
56. What Rules Should Apply to Transgender Athletes When They Compete?
57. Is It O.K. to Refuse to Serve Same-Sex Couples Based on Religious Beliefs?
58. Are Women Better at Compromising and Collaborating?
59. Do Boys Have Less Intense Friendships Than Girls?
60. Can a Boy Wear a Skirt to School?

Dating and Sex

61. Should Couples Live Together Before Marriage?
62. Is Dating a Thing of the Past?
63. Is Hookup Culture Leaving Your Generation Unhappy and Unprepared for Love?
64. Could Following These Directions Make You Fall in Love With a Stranger?
65. How Should Children Be Taught About Puberty and Sex?
66. Are Affirmative Consent Rules a Good Idea?
67. Should Birth Control Pills Be Available to Teenage Girls Without a Prescription?
68. Should the Morning-After Pill Be Sold Over the Counter to People Under 17?
69. How Big of a Problem Is Sexting?
70. How Should Educators and Legislators Deal With Minors Who ‘Sext’?
71. How Should Parents Address Internet Pornography?



Should parents let their children play football?
CreditJames Estrin/The New York Times

72. Should High Schools Drop Football Because Too Many Players Are Getting Injured?
73. Should Parents Let Their Children Play Football?
74. If Football Is So Dangerous to Players, Should We Be Watching It?
75. Are Some Youth Sports Too Intense?
76. Should There Be Stricter Rules About How Coaches Treat Their Players?
77. Is Cheerleading a Sport?
78. Should Cheerleading Be an Olympic Sport?
79. Has Baseball Lost Its Cool?
80. Do Sports Teams Have a Responsibility to Hold Players to a Standard for Their Personal Conduct?
81. Should Athletes Who Dope Have to Forfeit Their Titles and Medals?
82. How Big a Deal Is It That an N.B.A. Player Came Out as Gay?
83. Should Women’s Basketball Lower the Rims?
84. Should College Football Players Get Paid?
85. Is ‘Redskins’ an Offensive Name for a Team?
86. Is It Offensive for Sports Teams to Use Native American Names and Mascots?
87. Do Fans Put Too Much Pressure on Their Favorite Professional Athletes?
88. How Much Should Fans Be Allowed to Distract Opposing Teams?
89. Does a Championship Game Always Need to Have a Winner (and a Loser)?
90. Should Sports Betting Be Legal Everywhere?
91. Are Some Extreme Sports Too Extreme?
92. How Young Is Too Young to Climb Mount Everest?
93. Should Colleges Fund Wellness Programs Instead of Sports?
94. Where Should Colleges and Sports Teams Draw the Line in Selling Naming Rights?

TV, Movies and Video Games


Does reality TV promote dangerous stereotypes? CreditMTV

95. Does Reality TV Promote Dangerous Stereotypes?
96. Do TV Shows Like ‘16 and Pregnant’ Promote or Discourage Teenage Pregnancy?
97. Does TV Capture the Diversity of America Yet?
98. Is TV Too White?
99. What Makes a Good TV Show Finale?
100. Why Do We Like to Watch Rich People on TV and in the Movies?
101. Does Live Theater Offer Something You Just Can’t Get Watching Movies or TV?
102. What — if Anything — Does the Current Hollywood Film Industry Lack?
103. What Makes a Good Commercial?
104. Why Did a Cheerios Ad Attract So Many Angry Comments Online?
105. Should Video Games Be Considered a Sport?
106. Should Stores Sell Violent Video Games to Minors?
107. Do Violent Video Games Make People More Violent in Real Life?
108. When Should You Feel Guilty for Killing Zombies?
109. Can a Video Game Be a Work of Art?
110. What Game Would You Like to Redesign?
111. How Sexist Is the Gaming World?

Music, Literature and Art

112. What Current Musicians Do You Think Will Stand the Test of Time?
113. What Artists or Bands of Today Are Destined for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?
114. What Musician, Actor or Author Should Be a Superstar, but Hasn’t Quite Made It Yet?
115. What Artists Do You Consider ‘Sellouts’?
116. How Much Can an Artist Borrow From Earlier Musicians Before It Becomes Stealing?
117. Who Does Hip-Hop Belong To?
118. What Can You Predict About the Future of the Music Industry?
119. Will Musical Training Make You More Successful?
120. Are Paper Books Better Than E-Books?
121. Does Reading a Book Count More Than Listening to One?
122. To What Writer Would You Award a Prize?
123. Who Are the Characters That Authors Should Be Writing About?
124. Are Shortened Versions of Classic Adult Literature Right for Young Children?
125. Do You Prefer Your Children’s Book Characters Obedient or Contrary?
126. Do We Still Need Libraries?
127. Do We Need More Diverse Superheroes?
128. What Is a Hero?
129. Can Graffiti Ever Be Considered Art?
130. Do We Need Art in Our Lives?
131. Is It Possible to Separate Art From the Artist Who Created It?
132. Should Society Support Artists and Others Pursuing Creative Works?
133. Should Displays of Art Be Welcome in All Public Spaces?
134. Does Pop Culture Deserve Serious Study?

Parenting and Childhood


Should children be allowed to wear whatever they want? CreditAnastasia Vasilakis

135. At What Age Should Children Be Allowed to Go Places Without Adult Supervision?
136. How Much Freedom Should Parents Give Their Children?
137. Should Children Be Allowed to Wear Whatever They Want?
138. How Should Parents Discipline Their Kids?
139. When Does Discipline Become Child Abuse?
140. Should Parents Bribe Their Children?
141. Should Parents Make Their Children Clean Their Room?
142. Do We Give Children Too Many Trophies?
143. Is Modern Culture Ruining Childhood?
144. Are Adults Hurting Young Children by Pushing Them to Achieve?
145. How, and by Whom, Should Children Be Taught Appropriate Behavior?
146. Are ‘Dark’ Movies O.K. for Kids?
147. When Does a Halloween Costume Cross the Line?
148. Should Halloween Costumes Portray Only ‘Positive Images’?
149. Are Parents Violating Their Children’s Privacy When They Share Photos and Videos of Them Online?
150. Should Children Be Allowed to Compete on TV?
151. How Young Is Too Young for an iPhone?
152. Should Parents Limit How Much Time Children Spend on Tech Devices?
153. Who Should Be Able to See Students’ Records?

Being a Teenager

154. When Do You Become an Adult?
155. When Should You Be Able to Buy Cigarettes, Drink Alcohol, Vote, Drive and Fight in Wars?
156. When You Are Old Enough to Vote, Will You?
157. If Teenagers Are Such Bad Drivers, Should They Be Allowed to Drive?
158. What Can Older People Learn From Your Generation?
159. Does Your Generation Have Too Much Self-Esteem?
160. Is Your Generation More Self-Centered Than Earlier Generations?
161. Is Your Generation Really ‘Postracial’?
162. Do ‘Shame and Blame’ Work to Change Teenage Behavior?
163. Do ‘Saggy Pants’ Mean Disrespect?
164. Do You Think Teenagers Can Make a Difference in the World?
165. Is Teenage ‘Voluntourism’ Wrong?
166. Is Prom Worth It?
167. Is Prom Just an Excuse to Drink?



Do teachers assign too much homework? CreditAlex Federowicz for The New York Times

168. Do Teachers Assign Too Much Homework?
169. Are High School Students Being Worked Too Hard?
170. Does Your Homework Help You Learn?
171. What Are You Really Learning at School?
172. Does Class Size Matter?
173. What Makes a Good Teacher?
174. Should Schools Strive for Racial Diversity Among Teachers?
175. Do We Need a Better Way to Teach Math?
176. Does Gym Help Students Perform Better in All Their Classes?
177. Should Reading and Math Be Taught in Gym Class Too?
178. Should Kindergarten Be More About Play or Literacy?
179. What Are the Best Ways to Learn About History?
180. What Is the Right Amount of Group Work in School?
181. What Do You Think of Grouping Students by Ability in Schools?
182. How Important Is Arts Education?
183. Should Schools Be Teaching, and Evaluating, Social-Emotional Skills Like ‘Grit’?
184. Should Schools Teach Children How to Cook?
185. Do Schools Provide Students With Enough Opportunities to Be Creative?
186. Is Shakespeare Too Hard?
187. Should High Schools Do More to Prepare You for Careers?
188. How Much Does It Matter to You Which High School You Attend?
189. Would You Rather Attend a Public or a Private High School?
190. Are Small Schools More Effective Than Large Schools?
191. Would You Want to Be Home-Schooled?
192. Should Home-Schoolers Be Allowed to Play Public School Sports?
193. Does the Way Your Classroom Is Decorated Affect Your Learning?
194. Should All Children Be Able to Go to Preschool?
195. Should All Students Get Equal Space in a Yearbook?
196. Should School Newspapers Be Subject to Prior Review?

School Rules, Discipline and Bullying

197. Are School Dress Codes a Good Idea?
198. How Does Your School Deal With Students Who Misbehave?
199. What Role Should the Police Have in Schools?
200. What Are the Best Teaching Methods for Getting Students to Behave Well in Class?
201. Should Schools Be Allowed to Use Corporal Punishment?
202. Is Cheating Getting Worse?
203. Should Schools Put Tracking Devices in Students’ ID Cards?
204. Should Middle School Students Be Drug Tested?
205. Should Students Be Barred From Taking Cellphones to School?
206. How Big a Problem Is Bullying or Cyberbullying in Your School or Community?
207. How Should Schools Address Bullying?
208. How Should Schools Address Cyberbullying?
209. What Should the Punishment Be for Acts of Cyberbullying?
210. When Do Pranks Cross the Line to Become Bullying?
211. How Should Schools Respond to Hazing Incidents?

Grading and Testing


Should students be able to grade their teachers? CreditStuart Goldenberg

212. Should Students Be Able to Grade Their Teachers?
213. How Well Do You Think Standardized Tests Measure Your Abilities?
214. How Seriously Should We Take Standardized Tests?
215. Do You Spend Too Much Time Preparing for Standardized Tests?
216. Should Schools Offer Cash Bonuses for Good Test Scores?
217. How Important Are Parent-Teacher Conferences?
218. Should Students Be Present at Parent-Teacher Conferences?
219. How Should Parents Handle a Bad Report Card?
220. Does Your School Hand Out Too Many A’s?
221. Do Girls Get Better Grades Than Boys in Your School?
222. Does Separating Boys and Girls Help Students Perform Better in School?
223. Why Do Boys Lag Behind Girls in Reading?
224. Should Discomfort Excuse Students From Having to Complete an Assignment?
225. Should Schools Give Students ‘Body’ Report Cards?

Time in School

226. Should Schools Cancel Summer Vacation?
227. Do Kids Need Recess?
228. Should the School Day Start Later?
229. Is Your School Day Too Short?
230. Do You Think a Longer School Calendar Is a Good Idea?
231. Should the Dropout Age Be Raised?
232. Should We Rethink How Long Students Spend in High School?
233. Should Students Be Allowed to Skip Senior Year of High School?
234. Should Kids Head to College Early?
235. Class Time + Substitute = Waste?
236. A Short Fall Break, but What Should We Call It?

College and Career


Does it matter where you go to college? CreditDaniel Acker/Bloomberg News

237. Should a College Education be Free?
238. Is College Overrated?
239. How Necessary Is a College Education?
240. Should Colleges Find a Better Way to Admit Students?
241. Should Colleges Use Admissions Criteria Other Than SAT Scores and Grades?
242. Do You Support Affirmative Action in College Admissions?
243. Are Early-Decision Programs Unfair? Should Colleges Do Away With Them?
244. What Criteria Should Be Used in Awarding Scholarships for College?
245. Should Engineers Pay Less for College Than English Majors?
246. Does It Matter Where You Go to College?
247. Do College Rankings Really Matter?
248. What Is the Perfect Number of College Applications to Send?
249. Do Fraternities Promote Misogyny?
250. Should Colleges Ban Fraternities?
251. Is a Sorority a Good Place for a Feminist?
252. Should Colleges Offer Degrees in Sports?
253. What Do You Want More From a Career: Happiness or Wealth?
254. Would You Quit if Your Values Did Not Match Your Employer’s?
255. Should Employers Be Able to Review Job Applicants’ SAT Scores?
256. Do You Worry Colleges or Employers Might Read Your Social Media Posts Someday?
257. Would You Rather Work From Home or in an Office?
258. Is ‘Doing Nothing’ a Good Use of Your Time?
259. Should All High School Students Be Able to Get a Summer Job if They Want One?

Health and Nutrition


Is smoking still a problem among teenagers?
CreditSpencer Platt/Getty Images

260. Should the Drinking Age Be Lowered?
261. Is Drinking and Driving Still a Problem for Teenagers?
262. Should the Legal Age to Purchase Tobacco Be Raised From 18 to 21?
263. Should E-Cigarettes Be Banned for Teenagers?
264. Is Smoking Still a Problem Among Teenagers?
265. Are Antismoking Ads Effective?
266. Should Marijuana Be Legal?
267. Should Students Be Required to Take Drug Tests?
268. Why Is Binge Drinking So Common Among Young People in the United States?
269. Should Universities Work to Curtail Student Drinking?
270. Should Distracted Driving Be Punished Like Drinking and Driving?
271. Should Texting While Driving Be Illegal in Every State?
272. How Should Schools Handle Unvaccinated Students?
273. Should Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal in Every State?
274. Should Terminally Ill Patients Be Allowed to Die on Their Own Terms?
275. Is School Lunch Really All That Bad?
276. Do You Think a Healthier School Lunch Program Is a Lost Cause?
277. Should French Fries and Pizza Sauce Count as Vegetables?
278. How Concerned Are You About Where Your Food Comes From?
279. Is It Ethical to Eat Meat?
280. Is Breakfast Really the Most Important Meal of the Day?
281. Do You Prefer Your Tacos ‘Authentic’ or ‘Appropriated’?
282. Should Sugary Drinks Be Taxed?
283. Should the Government Limit the Size of Sugary Drinks?
284. Should Teenagers Think Twice Before Downing Energy Drinks?
285. How Important Is It to Be Attractive in Our Society?
286. Are Models Too Skinny?
287. What Are Your Opinions on Cosmetic Surgery?
288. Do Photoshopped Images Make You Feel Bad About Your Own Looks?
289. Doctored Photos: O.K. or Not?
290. Should You Care About the Health and Safety of Those Making Your Clothing?

Animals and Science


When is animal testing justified? CreditBrandon Wade/The Humane Society of the United States and Chimp Haven, via Associated Press

291. Should Farm Animals Have More Legal Protections?
292. Is It Ethical to Genetically Engineer Animals?
293. When Is Animal Testing Justified?
294. Should Certain Animals Have Some of the Same Legal Rights As People?
295. Do Gorillas Belong in Zoos?
296. Is It Unethical for a Zoo to Kill a Healthy Giraffe?
297. Should Circuses Be Animal Free?
298. Should You Go to Jail for Kicking a Cat?
299. Should You Feel Guilty About Killing Spiders, Ants or Other Bugs?
300. Should Emotional Support Animals Be Allowed on College Campuses?
301. How Concerned Are You About Climate Change?
302. How Should Nations and Individuals Address Climate Change?
303. If You Were President, What Would You Do About Climate Change?
304. Should Developers Be Allowed to Build in and Near the Grand Canyon?
305. Should Scientists Try to Help People Beat Old Age So We Can Live Longer Lives?
306. Given Unlimited Resources, What Scientific or Medical Problem Would You Investigate?
307. When Is It O.K. to Replace Human Limbs With Technology?
308. Should Fertilized Eggs Be Given Legal ‘Personhood’?
309. How Do You Think Dinosaurs Went Extinct?
310. Do You Think Life Exists — or Has Ever Existed — Somewhere Besides Earth?
311. Do You Believe in Intelligent Alien Life?
312. Will Humans Live on Mars Someday?
313. Would You Want to Be a Space Tourist?

Personal Character and Morality


Does achieving success always include being happy? CreditAdam Dean for The New York Times

314. Does Achieving Success Always Include Being Happy?
315. Can Money Buy You Happiness?
316. Does Buying and Accumulating More and More Stuff Make Us Happier?
317. Which Is More Important: Talent or Hard Work?
318. How Important Is Keeping Your Cool?
319. When Should You Compromise?
320. Are We Losing the Art of Listening?
321. Do People Complain Too Much?
322. Is ‘Be Yourself’ Bad Advice?
323. How Important Is Keeping a Clean House?
324. Does Keeping a Messy Desk Make People More Creative?
325. Do You Believe That Everything Happens for a Reason?
326. How Much Control Do You Think You Have Over Your Fate?
327. Can You Be Good Without God?
328. How Important Do You Think It Is to Marry Someone With the Same Religion?
329. Does Suffering Make Us Stronger and Lead to Success?
330. Do Bystanders Have a Responsibility to Intervene When There is Trouble?
331. When Is Looting Morally O.K.?
332. Can Kindness Become Cool?
333. Are Manners Important?
334. Have Curse Words Become So Common They Have Lost Their Shock Value?

Government and Leadership


When is the use of military force justified? CreditPatrick Chappatte

335. How Strong Is Your Faith in American Democracy?
336. Is America Headed in the Right Direction?
337. Is It Possible to Start Out Poor in This Country, Work Hard and Become Well-Off?
338. Should the United States Care That It’s Not No. 1?
339. How Should Opponents Receive the New President — With an Open Mind and Honor for the Office, or With Defiance and Rejection?
340. What Do You Think the Role of the First Lady — or First Spouse — Should Be Today?
341. Should Voting Be Mandatory?
342. Does Voting for a Third-Party Candidate Mean Throwing Away Your Vote?
343. If You Were Governor of Your State, How Would You Spend a Budget Surplus?
344. What Local Problems Do You Think Your Mayor Should Try to Solve?
345. Should Rich People Have to Pay More Taxes?
346. What Is More Important: Our Privacy or National Security?
347. When Is the Use of Military Force Justified?
348. When Should Countries Negotiate With Their Traditional Enemies?
349. Should the U.S. Be Spying on Its Friends?
350. What Responsibility Do We Have to Take In Refugees From Global Humanitarian Crises?
351. Should Countries Pay Ransoms to Free Hostages Held by Terrorists?
352. Should Millions of Undocumented Immigrants Be Allowed to Live in the U.S. Without Fear of Getting Deported?
353. Are Children of Illegal Immigrants Entitled to a Public Education?
354. Do We Need a Higher Minimum Wage?
355. What Do We Owe Our Veterans?
356. Do Leaders Have Moral Obligations?
357. Do Great Leaders Have to Be Outgoing?

Guns, Prisons and the Justice System

358. What Are Some Answers to America’s Gun Violence?
359. How Should We Prevent Future Mass Shootings?
360. Would You Feel Safer With Armed Guards Patrolling Your School?
361. What Is Your Relationship With Guns?
362. Where Do You Stand on Unconcealed Handguns?
363. Should Guns Be Permitted on College Campuses?
364. Would Arming College Students Help Prevent Sexual Assaults on Campus?
365. What Should Be the Purpose of Prison?
366. Should Prisoners Be Given the Opportunity to Get an Education?
367. Should Felons Be Allowed to Vote After They Have Served Their Time?
368. Should the United States Stop Using the Death Penalty?
369. What Do You Think of the Police Tactic of Stop-and-Frisk?
370. When Should Juvenile Offenders Receive Life Sentences?
371. Do Rich People Get Off Easier When They Break the Law?
372. Should All Police Officers Wear Body Cameras?
373. Should Prostitution Be Legal?

Other Questions


Should single-use plastic shopping bags be banned? CreditNicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

374. Should the Private Lives of Famous People Be Off Limits?
375. Should We Be Privy to the Lives of Celebrities’ Children?
376. Do You Think Child Stars Have It Rough?
377. What Causes Should Philanthropic Groups Finance?
378. Should Charities Focus More on America?
379. Do Poor People ‘Have It Easy’?
380. Should We Think Twice Before Buying Online?
381. Is Amazon Becoming Too Powerful?
382. How Much Do You Trust Online Reviews?
383. Do You Shop at Locally Owned Businesses?
384. Would You Want a Bike Share Program for Your Community?
385. How Much Does Your Neighborhood Define Who You Are?
386. Should Companies Collect Information About You?
387. What Time Should Black Friday Sales Start?
388. How Long Is It O.K. to Linger in a Cafe or Restaurant?
389. Should Restaurants Do Away With Tipping?
390. Should Single-Use Plastic Shopping Bags Be Banned?
391. Do We Crank Up the A.C. Too High?
392. Should Everyone Learn at Least One Other Language?
393. What Are the Five Greatest Inventions of All Time?
394. Dressing Up Like Creepy Clowns: Freedom of Expression or Public Nuisance?
395. Would Life Be Better Without Time Zones?
396. What Words or Phrases Do You Think Are Overused?
397. What Words or Phrases Should Be Retired?
398. Do Laws That Ban Offensive Words Make the World a Better Place?
399. Should Newspapers Reprint Cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad That Some Deem Offensive?
400. Is It Wrong for a Newspaper to Publish a Front-Page Photo of a Man About to Die?
401. Are There Topics That Should Be Off Limits to Comedy?

Related Coverage

Over 1,000 Writing Prompts for Students


Writing Prompts

Doris Liou

Flying Girls With Capes

Cinco Puntos Press, Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing

What Students Are Saying About: Climate Change, Young Adult Novels and Snail Mail

Do You Ever Feel Lonely?

More in Lesson Plans

Bryan Thomas for The New York Times

Haunting Ideas: Halloween-Themed Teaching and Learning With The New York Times

Andrew Roberts

Seven Ways to Teach the Midterms With The New York Times

Erin Schaff for The New York Times

Wasted Ballots? A Lesson Exploring Why More Young People Don’t Vote, and What Students Can Do About It

Adam Higton

Come Together: A Thematic Collection of Times Articles, Essays, Maps and More About Creating Community

Holly Pickett for The New York Times

Freedom of Speech? A Lesson on Understanding the Protections and Limits of the First Amendment

Angela Weiss/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Gen Z, iGen, Memennials: A Lesson Plan on How This Generation Has Been Characterized and Why That Matters


  • Trapped by the ‘Walmart of Heroin’
  • Hurricane Michael’s Deadly Strike Leaves Florida Panhandle Reeling
  • This is 18 Around the World — Through Girls’ Eyes
  • Kanye West’s White House Rant Steals the Spotlight From Trump
  • Trump Attacks the Fed as Stocks Fall and the Midterms Loom
  • Opinion: Goodbye, Political Spin, Hello Blatant Lies
  • Matthew Shepard Will Be Interred at the Washington National Cathedral, 20 Years After His Death
  • Hurricane Michael: The Damage in Pictures
  • The Prince and the President: Khashoggi Case Raises Saudi-Turkey Tensions
  • Opinion: I Loved Kanye West and Hated Taylor Swift. Then 2018 Happened.