Learn how to write an essay that suggests reasons for and solutions to a problem.

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Reading text

In most universities there are more male students than female students on science courses. What is the reason for this? What could be done to balance out the numbers?

In higher education, science subjects are typically dominated by male students. This negatively impacts the world of work, as fewer females then go into the science, technology and engineering sectors. This essay will explore the reasons for the lack of gender diversity in science and suggest ways to create equal opportunities in this area.

The most likely reason for the imbalance is that society reinforces the idea that boys and girls have different interests and abilities. We see this from a very early age when little boys are given cars and Lego while girls get dolls. The former are encouraged to build things whereas the latter learn to care for others. Later on, we are told that girls are better at languages or boys have better spatial awareness. In fact, there is no evidence that biological differences between the sexes make one gender more talented than another at a particular subject. It is society, not nature, that tells us girls should favour arts and humanities and leave maths and physics to the boys.

Coupled with this is the lack of positive female role models youngsters see doing science-related jobs. Cartoons and stories often show the crazy scientist, genius inventor, or adventurous astronaut as a man. Furthermore, there is an unfortunate perception that scientists are geeky, have poor social skills or that their work is lonely and detached from the rest of the world. These are false stereotypes portrayed by the media, but they may mean that girls do not identify with scientists, and see science as an unappealing career path. If girls saw more positive female role models in science it would give them more confidence and a greater sense of belonging in those subjects.

Given these points, it is important to tackle this issue right from a child's early education. By the time young women are at university, it may already be too late to disprove the view that science is 'not for them'. Hence, for very young children gender-neutral play needs to be encouraged. As children get older, both the education system and the media must raise awareness of female achievements in the field of science, as well as exposing them to a more diverse set of characters in books and films. We need to find ways to show young girls that science is fun, interesting, and, most importantly, theirs too.

Tips

  1. Read the question carefully. If the question asks you to discuss the reasons for a problem and suggest solutions, make sure you do both.
  2. In your introduction, restate the question in your own words and say what your essay will do. This essay will outline the reasons for … and offer solutions to the problem.  
  3. Plan the paragraphs of your essay before you write. Start each paragraph with a topic sentence that summarises the main idea of the paragraph.
  4. Develop your position fully by extending your ideas and using examples to support your arguments. Use linking expressions like Coupled with, Furthermore, In fact and Given these points to show what is coming next.
  5. Try to use a wide range of vocabulary. Use natural-sounding collocations like equal opportunities and role model. Avoid repetition by using synonyms or words with similar meanings: girls, young women, femaleschildren, youngsters. You can also use the former and the latter to refer to things you have just mentioned.
  6. Build the conclusion from the ideas in the essay rather than introducing new ones.

Discussion

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Advanced: C1

Comments

I am wondering is there anyone here look at this essay's structure as I do?
- Introduction, first paragraph.
- Main idea (reason) 1, second paragraph: society reinforces the idea that boys and girls have different interests and abilities.
- Main idea (reason) 2, third paragraph: the lack of positive female role models
- Mai idea (solution) 3, fourth paragraph: it is important to tackle this issue right from a child's early education.
- No conclusion?
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Thank you,
Q.

In higher education in Russia, there are likely to be stereotypes about gender profession. Apparently, young men choose faculties in either engineering or computer programming domain. However, due to most women`s perspective, being an accountant is required by every local company.
The most likely reason for the limited preferences in the society is how popular job is as well as if it is really well-paid. As a matter of fact, youngsters are deeply influenced by parents being anxious about their child`s future. Nowadays, statistics provide us with convincing figures about such beneficial positions in the job market as accountants and engineers. Therefore adults`choice might be evidently dominant.
Coupled with this is a lack of variety of professions in local institutions. Apart from jobs mentioned above, teenagers, especially girls may apply for teaching foreign languages and linguistics faculty. However, boys have to study military subjects in any university in order to avoid serving in the army.
Given these points, it is important to tackle this issue right from a child's early education. Young parents should be strongly concerned about their baby`s development at an earlier age. Furthermore, if books or films about inspirational mail and female celebrities are offered to them, they will become goal-oriented from childhood. Both girls and boys should speculate about their future profession due to interests and inspiration, but the gender they belong to.

In some countries few people earn extremely high salaries. Some people think that this is good for country, while other believe that the government should control salaries and limit the amount people can earn. Can someone write essay on this topic.