I need assessment of my writing skill

Hello. I do my best in preparing to the TOEFL. Today I timed myself. Please, anybody who can assess me, I’d like to listen to your feedback.

Independent Task:

“When people succeed, it is because of hard work. Luck has nothing to do with success.” Do you agree or disagree with the quotation above? Use specific reasons and examples to explain your position.

My response:

Success happens sometimes unexpectedly and sometimes after long endeavors and tryouts. Some can believe that people succeed only by luck whereas others may think that only through hard working one can be successful. Although people may think that one’s prominent results depend on luck and coincidence, in my opinion, people get successful and acclaimed according to their merits.

It’s said that success comes only to prepared minds. And I highly support this statement as we have such cases in science. In the world of Big science there are many examples which prove the notion of being prepared for success. For example, L. Pasteur, working with samples of bacteria in his laboratory, found out ways of preventing spoilage of products and invented one of the first antibiotics just by accident. But we should bear in mind that in order to do this, he had to work under it for much time.

Yet, it’s widely recognized that success may not even come to the one, if he/she doesn’t do anything for it. And I agree with this as well. Say, one can dream about career in cinema but, to become an actor, one has to go and start doing things such as reading and training. Likewise he/she has to search for opportunities to act in movies. For instance, these opportunities might be a casting or volunteering. Without such things success may not be possible at all.

In summary, I believe that one who wants to succeed in his/her life has to do great job endeavoring and finding ways to succeed. And as Peter the Great said, “Water doesn’t come under laying stone”. This is a good metaphor for that one should thoughtfully and hard do everything to achieve his/her goals.

TOEFL listening lectures: Why is Carlos Finlay significant?

Hi Trololo, I think your structure is a lot better in this essay. Your introduction is prett good. I had a little trouble differentiating your two reasons though - if you included a brief summary of the reasons in your thesis statement it might make them more clear. Your writing did not seem as natural in this essay though. Your grammar is ok, but you have several sentences with sound awkward or unclear. Could you explain that final quote to me? It doesn’t seem to make sense at all. Overall, I would rate this essay a 3.5 out of 5.

I saw in another post that you would like to study in the US. Do you have any idea of what you want to study or where you want to apply?

You said: “if you included a brief summary of the reasons in your thesis statement it might make them more clear”
I see that I have problem with thesis statement but as I know, the thesis statement shouldn’t point out any reasons. What it should point out is whether my stance or the topic which is supposed to be discussed. For example, if I’m asked to compare/contrast two ideas I could declare it in my thesis statement.

I said: “Water doesn’t come under laying stone” Virtually It means that if the stone lays and nobody moves it water can’t come under that stone. In Russian language you can interpret it as in order to make something happen, you need to do something. If somebody lays nothing can happen. I guess, such idiomatic constructions shouldn’t be used on the test.

Yes, I’d like to study in the US. What I’m going to study is (are?), probably, Communication or Social Psychology. But I have to have working experience for that since my degree in Biotechnology. I chose several universities, some of them are University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Curry College, The University of Chicago, Columbia University. I know that they are the best in Communication Studies.

I don’t think there are really any rules set in stone for what a thesis statement must include. Even on a TOEFL essay, some variety in them is permissible. In my opinion though, a clearly defined thesis statement with clearly diliminated reasons can provide a strong framework for the entire essay and give the reader a helpful “roadmap” to guide him through the various arguments of the essay. Usually when I find an essay too vague or unclear, I find the same faults in the thesis statement. This article seems to give a good overview of constructing an effective thesis statement: faculty.ncwc.edu/lakirby/English … Thesis.htm Keep in mind that although this webpage says you can put the thesis anywhere, the TOEFL graders are looking for it to be at the end of your introduction.

I think sayings and proverbs are a great idea, even ones from foreign languages, but if they are not easily decipherable in English it is better to explain them.

Ok. Thanks. Your help is valuable to me. Well I’ll work at my thesis statements.