This page contains the Issue topics for the Analytical Writing section of the GRE? revised General Test. When you take the test, you will be presented with one Issue topic from this pool. Each Issue topic consists of an issue statement or statements followed by specific task instructions that tell you how to respond to the issue. The wording of some topics in the test might vary slightly from what is presented here. Also, because there may be multiple versions of some topics with similar or identical wording but with different task instructions, it is very important to read your test topic and its specific task directions carefully and respond to the wording as it appears in the actual test.
1 As people rely more and more on technology to solve problems, the ability of humans to think for themselves will surely deteriorate.
2 To understand the most important characteristics of a society, one must study its major cities.
3 Educational institutions have a responsibility to dissuade students from pursuing fields of study in which they are unlikely to succeed.
4 Scandals are useful because they focus our attention on problems in ways that no speaker or reformer ever could.
5 Claim: Governments must ensure that their major cities receive the financial support they need in order to thrive.
Reason: It is primarily in cities that a nation's cultural traditions are preserved and generated.
6 A nation should require all of its students to study the same national curriculum until they enter college.
7 Some people believe that government funding of the arts is necessary to ensure that the arts can flourish and be available to all people. Others believe that government funding of the arts threatens the integrity of the arts.
8 Claim: In any field—business, politics, education, government—those in power should step down after five years.
Reason: The surest path to success for any enterprise is revitalization through new leadership.
9 In any field of endeavor, it is impossible to make a significant contribution without first being strongly influenced by past achievements within that field.
10 Nations should pass laws to preserve any remaining wilderness areas in their natural state, even if these areas could be developed for economic gain.
11 People's behavior is largely determined by forces not of their own making.
12 Governments should offer a free university education to any student who has been admitted to a university but who cannot afford the tuition.
13 Universities should require every student to take a variety of courses outside the student's field of study.
14 A nation should require all of its students to study the same national curriculum until they enter college.
15 Educational institutions should actively encourage their students to choose fields of study that will prepare them for lucrative careers.
16 Some people believe that in order to be effective, political leaders must yield to public opinion and abandon principle for the sake of compromise. Others believe that the most essential quality of an effective leader is the ability to remain consistently committed to particular principles and objectives.
17 Formal education tends to restrain our minds and spirits rather than set them free.
18 The well-being of a society is enhanced when many of its people question authority.
19 Governments should focus on solving the immediate problems of today rather than on trying to solve the anticipated problems of the future.
20 Some people believe that college students should consider only their own talents and interests when choosing a field of study. Others believe that college students should base their choice of a field of study on the availability of jobs in that field.
21 Laws should be flexible enough to take account of various circumstances, times, and places.
22 Claim: The best way to understand the character of a society is to examine the character of the men and women that the society chooses as its heroes or its role models. Reason: Heroes and role models reveal a society's highest ideals.
23 Governments should place few, if any, restrictions on scientific research and development.
24 The best way to teach is to praise positive actions and ignore negative ones.
25 Governments should offer college and university education free of charge to all students.
26 The luxuries and conveniences of contemporary life prevent people from developing into truly strong and independent individuals.
27 In any field of inquiry, the beginner is more likely than the expert to make important contributions.
28 The surest indicator of a great nation is represented not by the achievements of its rulers, artists, or scientists, but by the general welfare of its people.
29 The best way to teach—whether as an educator, employer, or parent—is to praise positive actions and ignore negative ones.
30 Teachers' salaries should be based on their students' academic performance.
31 Society should make efforts to save endangered species only if the potential extinction of those species is the result of human activities.
32 College students should base their choice of a field of study on the availability of jobs in that field.
33 As we acquire more knowledge, things do not become more comprehensible, but more complex and mysterious.
34 In any situation, progress requires discussion among people who have contrasting points of view.
35 Educational institutions should dissuade students from pursuing fields of study in which they are unlikely to succeed.
36 Governments should not fund any scientific research whose consequences are unclear.
37 Society should identify those children who have special talents and provide training for them at an early age to develop their talents.
38 It is primarily through our identification with social groups that we define ourselves.
39 College students should be encouraged to pursue subjects that interest them rather than the courses that seem most likely to lead to jobs.
40 Claim: When planning courses, educators should take into account the interests and suggestions of their students.
Reason: Students are more motivated to learn when they are interested in what they are studying.
41 The greatness of individuals can be decided only by those who live after them, not by their contemporaries.
42 Students should always question what they are taught instead of accepting it passively.
43 The increasingly rapid pace of life today causes more problems than it solves.
44 Claim: It is no longer possible for a society to regard any living man or woman as a hero.
Reason: The reputation of anyone who is subjected to media scrutiny will eventually be diminished.
45 Competition for high grades seriously limits the quality of learning at all levels of education.
46 Universities should require every student to take a variety of courses outside the student's field of study.
47 Educators should find out what students want included in the curriculum and then offer it to them.
48 Educators should teach facts only after their students have studied the ideas, trends, and concepts that help explain those facts.
49 Claim: We can usually learn much more from people whose views we share than from those whose views contradict our own.
Reason: Disagreement can cause stress and inhibit learning.
50 Government officials should rely on their own judgment rather than unquestioningly carry out the will of the people they serve.
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