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IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample 27 – Should museums and art galleries be free of charge for the general public

Present a written argument to an educated reader with no specialist knowledge of the following topic: 

Should museums and art galleries be free of charge for the general public, or should a charge, even a voluntary charge, be levied for admittance?

Discuss this issue, and give your opinion.

You should write at least 250 words.

Model Answer 1:
People have argued about the entrance fee to museums and art galleries. Some people believe that it should be free of charged for the public, while others think that there should be an entrance fee. The following essay will explain  these contradictory opinions in details, but in my point of view, I do believe that there should be levied for admittance.

For a number of reasons, many people believe that the public should not be charged with any kind of fee when they enter museums or art galleries. Firstly, these sites have been funded by the government through taxes that were paid by residents. When museums and art galleries charge entrance fees, it means that people are paying double charges. Secondly, although these places contain historical and artistic artefacts but these places are not popular and attractive places. When these museums and galleries charge some fees, it is predicted that there will be fewer people who will visit these places.

On the other hand, another group of people think that the public should be charged with either voluntary or admittance fees when they visit a museum or an art gallery. These people believe that by charging visitors with a certain amount of fees, it educates them to appreciate the value of history and arts. Besides that, these fees can be used to reduce subsidies that have been given by the government. The fund could be relocated by the government for other important matters such as education, public health or transportations.

In conclusion, people often debate about the entrance fee of museums or art galleries. Several people think that there should not be any charges for visitors, while others disagree. I personally believe that there should proportionate charges for people when they enter the museum or an art gallery, as the fund could be used to cover the operational expense of these places, and reduce the subsidy from the government.

Written by  – Darwin Lesmana )

Model Answer 2:
One very complex issue in today’s world is the funding of museums and art galleries. There is an argument that they should be free to the general public and funded by governments, but there is also a case for saying that they should charge an entrance fee like other attractions. In this essay, I am going to examine both sides of this issue.

Those who argue that museums should be free typically make one of two arguments. The first argument is that institutions like museums are a public service and therefore there should be free access to the man in the street. If for example there was a charge only the wealthy could afford to enjoy works of art. The second argument is that if they did levy a charge, fewer people would go to museums. This would be serious as they are educational institutions and standards would fall.

In contrast, there is only one major argument on the other side of the debate. This is that both museums and art galleries need to charge an entrance fee if they are to survive in the modern world. Governments do not have sufficient funds to subsidise all such institutions and there are other priorities for public money. Therefore these galleries and museums need to charge their customers not only to survive but to update their exhibitions and make new purchases. By way of illustration, the Tate Modern in London could not have been founded without revenue from admissions.

My personal position is that there is no clear answer to this question as there are such strong arguments on both sides. Perhaps it is possible for some museums and galleries to charge fees and for others not to.

This model answer can be followed  as an example of a very good answer. However, please note that this is just one example out of many possible approaches.)

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