autumnsoliloquy90: (straight through the heart)
[personal profile] autumnsoliloquy90
TOEFL Vol 2 Official Practice Test #1

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Technology has made children less creative than they were in the past.

Nowadays, technology is often demonised as this pandora's box that has since then been robbing children of their carefree childhoods and turning them into passive consumers instead of active thinkers. While the negative consequences of technological advances have been thoroughly documented in studies and popular media, there is no basis for the claim that the age of technology that we live in today has created a new generation of children whose capacity for innovation and creative thinking pales in comparison to those that came before them. In fact, I believe that technology has indeed enhanced the creative process for the younger generation through various ways.

Modern technology has provided children all over the world at an unprecedented scale better access to education, international discussions and current affairs through the Internet and the invention of recent devices like smartphones. This has given young people the opportunity and encouraged their interest in sharing ideas with one another, and collaborating with one another regardless of location, time and borders, in solving the world's problems. For example, a teenage girl from Sierra Leone has started a hashtag which became popular overnight on Twitter, to encourage Pan-African discussions among her contemporaries in other African states, to discuss solutions to the continent's major challenges. Moreover, online courses like Coursera and EdX have provided young people the platform to study courses from renowned universities all over the world, which would otherwise not have been accessible to them due to barriers like costs and distance. Through these courses, even young people from developing countries were able to set up their own websites for their start-up businesses at a cost-effective manner. Hence, it is clear that technology has empowered young people to be more creative in their search for solutions, that would rival the tenacity of the generations before them.

Furthermore, the rise of apps (application programs) in recent years has actually encouraged young people to put their creative skills into practice, by developing tools that would aid people in various situations. Young people have invented apps ranging from tools to help disabled people navigate their daily lives safely, to study tools that make learning subjects easier through proven mnemonic aids and learning strategies. The fast development of technology in recent decades has also provided the foundation for young innovators to base their creative solutions on. A 12-year-old boy was able to develop a cheaper alternative to orthodontic braces by utilising current advancements in 3D printing to create the molds for his teeth to correct their alignment gradually. These show that technology has not made young people less creative than youths of the previous generations -- on the contrary, youths of today are able to maximise their privilege of living in this progressive era where modern technology provides the conducive environment for creative thinking.

In conclusion, I disagree with the notion that technology has disadvantaged children in terms of their creativity, compared to the children of the past. Contrary to popular belief about technology's pernicious effects on children, modern technology has undoubtedly been a great driving force in fostering the youth's creativity and innovation.

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December 2016

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