Tuesday, February 26, 2019

B2 Sample Writing 11 (Letter - Alcohol Consumption Age Limit)


The following sample letter has been written so that exam candidates for a B2 level English examination (FCE now called First for Schools, ECCE, IELTS - 5.5 / 6.0, MSU-CELC, ESB, LRN) can get some ideas about how to organize and argue their writing. 

First take a look at how to use the sample essays and letters that appear on this blog by reading the following post:

What do I do with the sample writing found on this blog?

Remember: such topics can also be used to start class discussions, so teachers might also want to read on to get ideas about a class activity they could set up to improve students' oral skills.

This particular question has been taken from an ECCE textbook which means that the rubric contains an introductory situation and then the question itself. The length of the sample letter that follows is approximately what examiners would expect to be completed in half an hour's time.

Note: When you write a letter or essay, you don't have to agree entirely with the arguments you put forward. Write what is easier to defend with explanations or examples. 

Here's the rubric: 

International News Agency

Many European government leaders met last week to discuss the problem of alcohol consumption around the world. They discussed increasing the legal age limits for purchasing alcohol. They did not agree, however, on what this age should be. Some countries oppose the idea, stressing that people need to learn to be responsible. Others support the plans. Voice your opinion before the March 8th vote.

What age do you think someone should be before they are allowed to purchase alcohol? Write a letter to the editor of International News Agency voicing your opinion about whether the government should increase the age limit for alcohol consumption. Support your opinion with examples. Start your letter, “Dear Editor.”

Sample Letter

Dear Editor,

                   Having read your article in the International News Agency, I feel I have to express my opinion on the topic of alcohol consumption in teenagers and more specifically the age limit.

                   At the moment in Greece, the age limit to buy and drink alcohol is 17. In my view this age limit should increase to 18 and the reasons for this are obvious. First of all, if a teenager is considered mature enough in my country to drive and vote at 18, why should they be allowed to do anything that can harm their health and safety of others sooner? It seems illogical to admit a teenager is mature at 17 when it comes to alcohol, but not when it is time to vote or drive. We need to be consistent.

                   Secondly, youngsters continue to grow until 18 years of age, so for the sake of their health, the government should set that age as the limit to start a potentially dangerous habit that affects both mind and body.

                   To sum up, maturity and the health of young adults must be the two factors that determine the age at which teenagers should be allowed to purchase and consume alcohol. Having to wait one year longer until they reach 18 is not asking for too much, anyway.

          Yours faithfully,

                             Cindy Marsden

For more sample letters or essays, click on the image below.


Useful B2-level exam posts can be found here:


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