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This is a sample IELTS essay. You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you can write an essay like this if it takes you one hour — you need to do it in about 40 minutes. In some countries, young people are encouraged to work or travel for a year between finishing high school and starting university studies. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages for young people who decide to do this.
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience. Write at least 250 words. This time off provides a break after many years of formal study. Some students use this time to travel around the world, others volunteer and still others begin working. The idea behind each of these activities is to do something hands-on and refreshing, which enables young people to learn more about themselves and their place in the world around them. The benefits of taking a year off are plentiful.