IELTS Writing Task 2 – The main purpose of public libraries is to provide books and they shouldn’t


The main purpose of public libraries is to provide books and they shouldn’t waste their limited resources and space on providing expensive hi-tech media such as computer software, videos and DVDs.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?


You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

You should write at least 250 words.


IELTS Writing Task 2/ IELTS Essay Sample

Sample Answer 1:

Since centuries libraries are in the service of man. These libraries are the repositories of
never ending knowledge known as books. Some people opine that libraries should only
provide books and not other hi-tech media such as computer software, videos and DVDs. I,
however, believe that such hi-tech media should not be treated as a rival to books. Rather, it
should serve as a complementary role.

Because of technology, books are now being converted into disc forms such as CDs and
DVDs. Even the availability of books in the form of electronic media on NET is putting in
danger the importance of the libraries. Moreover, a person can sit comfortably in his study
as the availability of reference books in the form of CDs and DVDs makes him reluctant to
leave his study for library.

However, one should keep in mind that a person goes to a library not only to search and get
information from books but also to sit and study there. The ambience and the peaceful and
scholarly atmosphere of the library help one to concentrate more on one’s work and study.
Thus, libraries will never become redundant. They will always be there to indicate the
presence of a well-read and educated society.

Another important point is that it is very difficult to always read books from the computer
monitor. Traditional books can be issued from the library and read in the comfort of your
bed. Hi-tech media can be accessed only by those who are computer literate. The access to
such media can be affected by power cuts and network failures. Moreover, in a traditional
library you are guided by the librarians if you need any help in searching for the book.

To put it in a nutshell, I pen down saying that advancement should be welcomed in every
field but the importance of the libraries for their fundamental role cannot be put aside. This
tendency will add more crowns of success to the importance of libraries.

Sample Answer 2:
It is a fact that public libraries are present in almost all cities across the globe, due to its emerging needs. In addition to rending and selling books, most of the libraries have digital media like software, videos and DVDs. I refute that on top of providing books, libraries should not provide latest media to the users. This can be proven by analyzing how libraries can attract youths as well as have advanced effect, by having the option of lending latest technological media.

Firstly, by providing latest media in libraries, a lot of youngsters will be interested in coming to library, as they are very comfortable with using the latest technology. For example, consider the software which helps in learning a language. For the young people who are comfortable in using computers can learn the language within very less time, as the software acts as a very good guide. If the same task has to be accomplished by a book, people would find it very difficult as there is no feedback. Thus, it is obvious that by lending latest technology in libraries, can be advantageous.

Secondly, high technological media can give advance effect as it can be played on the appropriate gadget. For instance, a DVD player has an option to stream the video and it can have the appropriate sound effect. Moreover, it has an option to start, stop and move forward or backward at any time. Books cannot have any additional effect. Hence, it is clear why lending latest technological media in library is worth.
The present era is the blessing of technology and these technological advancements should be embraced as many ways as possible. We are not talking about replacing books by using technological advancement, rather we are talking about adding the benefits that the technology can offer in a library where more people would come and get better facility and learning environment. Hence, spending money for technological benefits in a library is never a waste of money.By analyzing how lending latest technological media in libraries can help more youngsters attracted as well as can have special effects, it is considered that libraries must provide updated media. It is predicted that the government will give financial support to the libraries to have latest media.

Model Answer 3:

The main purpose of public libraries were to give access of books to communities and should not look into having technological items such as computer softwares, videos or DVDs in libraries due to limited support. However, I disagree with the public libraries focusing on only providing hardcopy books as technological items can also provide useful information to the community.

There are manifold points to shore up my views. First and foremost, the advancement of technology today has been a norm and necessity for our society. The use of computer and other gadgets has highly been promoted to ease our daily routine especially for students and teenagers. For examples, study by Acer International showed that 95% of college students owns a computer and uses it for basic research for their assignment and thesis. It simplify the search of information and resources for the students rather than going thru hardcopy books which in turn utilizes a huge amount of time. The search can be done with a click of a button and access thru the world wide web.

Besides that, the establishment of libraries are to provide knowledge and resources for local communities. Having easier access can encourage and help train people on the use of technology for some that is unable to afford this luxury. By doing this, equal basic knowledge of use is easily accessible by all levels. For instances, public libraries in Australia provide access to computer, music album and DVDs for public to have proof to be a great success to train elderly in computer knowledge such as basic access to news and journals online. Furthermore, multifarious original music albums and DVDs available for loan indirectly also benefits the local music and filming industry to reduce piracy videos and illegal downloads.

In conclusion, public libraries need to work to provide accessibility to communities as technological gadgets has now become a norm which we cannot live without.


Sample Answer 4:
Over the past few years the advances in high-tech media have started to change many aspects of our lives. Some people think that the public libraries should offer the unlimited access to software, videos and DVDs; while others hold that it is only a waste of money. I tend to agree that public libraries need to be equipped with special high-tech media devices.

The first point to note is that people are more interested in using technical equipment rather than old-fashioned methods of searching certain information. As the 21 century continues to unfold, people give preference to using new innovations. A telling example is a student preferring utilizing database search engine instead of ordinary library catalogue. For many people, including students, which are always in rush with this option is very advantageous. They find book catalogues useless and time-consuming.

Despite what has been discussed, the benefits of books ca not be denied. It is an individual choice whether to select books in spite of software. It is undoubtedly all users have different personal characteristics; one might express willingness to read a book in a cozy arm-chair in the library hall. It is a better way of preventing eyesight deterioration as well. Moreover some people are not confident computer users. They might be able to work on computers only under librarian’s assistance.

One could draw the conclusion that high-tech media has certainly affected our lives. Public libraries should give access to both: books and the software. It is up to person whatever her or she finds more practical and comfortable to utilize.


Model Answer 5:

In a traditional sense, libraries are places with a large collection of books. However, the digital age has given today’s libraries new means of storing and retrieving information on media other than the printed pages. CD – ROMs, videos and DVDs are widely used in public libraries, and they serve both the libraries and the readers.

Opponents of high – tech library would argue that multimedia facilities are expensive. This may be true to some extent because a DVD player is often more expensive than a bookshelf. However, with immense storage capacity, these new high – tech media can actually save the most valuable resource – space. A computer disc 12 cm in diameter can store a whole encyclopedia Britannica which, in printed volumes, would occupy a complete shelf section.

Furthermore, magnetic and digital media can store information much longer than traditional means. It takes great care to protect books from moisture, fire or human damage, and a book in a library serves readers for only a few hundred years. However, digital files, easily duplicated and restored, can perhaps last forever.

Finally, visiting a library with multiple media access is much more interesting. Multi – media resources offer readers a dynamic combination of images, sounds and videos. A reader can actually hear Martin Luther King crying out “I have a dream”, or roam about the world with an interactive atlas.


Model Answer 6:
With the proliferation of high-tech media, some people hold that the public libraries would be rendered obsolete if they do not offer software, videos or DVDs to their users while other assert it’s only a waste of limited resources and the libraries should offer books only.

High-tech media is, in many ways, indeed superior to the books in terms of entertainment, attraction, and functionality. For instance, videos and DVDs function as a visual means to assist people to have a first-hand experience even though those people have not physically visited or seen the objects which are introduced in the books. Also, despite the audio-visual equipment would be prohibitive to install, the capital cost would be lowered by appealing to a sizable number of users.

More importantly, software could assist the library goers to access the Internet to update their knowledge on a daily basis; in contrast, books typically take multiple months to be published, which in turn render their contents outdated to some extent. In addition, upon learning that the computer literacy has become an essential skill recently, public libraries should take on the responsibility to educate its users how to operate a computer.

Furthermore, it is a common practice for most public libraries to share their resources via the Internet. In this way, even if one book of interest cannot be found in one library, the borrower still could locate the book from other libraries and then request the librarians to transfer the book to that particular library.

In conclusion, public libraries would benefit in multiple ways if they are equipped with the high-tech media.

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(Collected; Source: Internet)