Виталий Лобанов




You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic: In today's job market it is far more important to have practical skills than theoretical knowledge. In the future, job applicants may not need any formal qualifications. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your  own knowledge or experience. Write at least 250 words.

Model answer
Practical skills are very important and it could be argued that they are as important as academic qualifications when it comes to getting a job. Nevertheless, it is unlikely that academic qualifications will ever become unnecessary.
There are certain manual jobs such as cleaning and labouring where formal qualifications are less important. Employers in these industries are more likely to employ people with a good working knowledge of the job and what it entails. However, even in these jobs it is important for people to have a minimum level of education, especially if they want to rise above the lowest working level. How can a person without good writing and mathematical skills balance a budget or manage staff? How can such a person make informed decisions about which products to use or safety issues in the workplace?
Having said this, a student graduating from university with the highest level of qualifications, but limited practical skills, still has a great deal to learn. None of us would expect or want a doctor without many years of practical experience and training to perform an essential operation. Students from all disciplines need to understand that entering the job market with a degree in management, for example, does not automatically qualify them for a managerial role.
Clearly, education is important in teaching the theoretical side of any profession. This theoretical knowledge forms an important basis for practical skills which are also essential. In truth neither one nor the other is dispensable when it comes to getting a good job.
(255 words)

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