Essay Opinion Words

For and against essays

A "for and against" essay is a formal piece of writing in which a topic is considered from opposing points of view. You should present both sides in a fair way by discussing them objectively and in equal detail. A good essay of this type should consist of:

a) an introductory paragraph in which you clearly state the topic to be discussed, without giving your opinion;
b) a main body in which the points for and against along with your justifications, examples or reasons are presented in separate paragraphs; and
c) a closing paragraph in which you state your opinion or give a balanced consid¬eration of the topic.

Note: Opinion words (I think, I believe, In my opinion, etc.) can only be used in the closing paragraph where you give your opinion on the topic.

Points to consider

• Before you start writing your essay you should make a list of the points for and against.
• Each paragraph should start with a topic sentence which summarises the topic of the paragraph.
e.g. In addition, many people feel reading is a relaxing and worthwhile activity.
• Do not use informal style (e.g. short forms, colloquial language, etc.) or strong language to express your opinion (e.g. I know…, etc.). Express your opinion in a non-emotional way (e.g. It seems that, I therefore feel, etc.).
• Well-known quotations relevant to the topic you are writing about will make your composition more interesting. For example, if you are writing an essay on education, a quotation you may include is: "Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance." (Will Durant)
Note: Although these are "balanced" arguments, if you feel that either the for or against side is stronger and should be supported, this side should be presented in paragraphs 4 & 5, thus leading the reader to your conclusion.

Introduction

state topic (summary of the topic without giving your opinion)
Main Body

arguments for & justifi¬cations, examples, and/ or reasons

arguments against & justification, examples, and/or reasons
Conclusion

balanced consideration/ your opinion directly or indirectly

Go to Practical Exercises

Useful expressions and linking words/phrases
• To list points:
Firstly, First of all, In the first place, To begin/start with, Secondly, Thirdly, Finally
• To list advantages:
One/Another/A further/An additional (major) advantage of… is … The main/greatest/first advantage of… is …
• To list disadvantages:
One/Another/ A further/An additional (major) disadvantage/drawback of. The main/greatest/most serious/first disadvantage /drawback of… Another negative aspect of…
• To introduce points/arguments for or against:
One (very convincing) point/argument in favour of… / against, A further common criticism of… / It could be argued that…..
often claimed/suggested
It is widely argued maintained that…..
generally felt/believed/held

Some/many/most people/experts/scientist/skeptics/critics
claim/suggest/argue/feel that…
maintain/believe/point out/agree/hold that…
advocate (+ing/noun)/support the view that…
oppose the view that…
are in favour of/against…
are of the opinion that/convinced that…
are opposed to…

To add more points to the same topic:
in addition (to this), furthermore, moreover, besides, apart from, what is more, as well as, not to mention (the fact) that, also, not only … but also/as well, both … and, There is another side to the issue/question/argument of…
To make contrasting points:
on the other hand, however, still, yet, but, nonetheless, nevertheless, even so,
it may be said/argued/claimed that,…
others/many people oppose this viewpoint/strongly disagree…, claim/feel/believe this argument is incorrect/misguided
although, though, even though, while, whilst, whereas, despite/in spite of (the fact that), regardless of the fact that
Opponents of … argue/believe/claim that…
The fact that… contradicts the belief/idea that…
While it is true to say that…, in fact…
While/Although …, it cannot be denied that…

Useful expressions and linking words/phrases
• To introduce examples:
for example, for instance, such as, like, in particular, particularly, especially, This is (clearly) illustrated/shown by the fact that… One/A clear/striking/ typical example of (this)… The fact that…. shows/illustrates that…
• To emphasise a point:
clearly, obviously, it is obvious, naturally, of course, needless to say, indeed
• To express reality:
In fact, the fact (of the matter) is, actually, in practice, it is a fact that, in effect
• To make general statements:
as a (general) rule, generally, in general, on the whole, by and large, in most cases
• To make partially correct statements:
to a certain extent/degree, to some extent/degree, in a way/sense, this is partly true (but), to a limited extent, there is some truth in (this), in some cases, up to a point
• To explain/clarify a point:
in other words, that is to say, this/which means that
• To express cause: owing to, due to (the fact that), on account of, on the grounds that, given that, because, as, since
• To express effect: therefore, thus, as a result/consequence, consequently, so, for this reason, if… were to happen, … the effect/result would be…
• To express intention: to, so as to, in order to, so that, with the intention of (+ing)

Go to Practical Exercises on the Use of linking words and phrases

Useful expressions and linking words/phrases: Conclusion expressing balanced considerations/opinion indirectly
In conclusion,
On balance,
All things considered,
Taking everything into account/consideration,
To conclude,
To sum up,
All in all,
Finally/Lastly,

……………………. it can be said/claimed that …
……………………. it seems/appears that…
……………………. it would seem that…
……………………. it is likely/unlikely/possible/foreseeable that …
……………………. it is clear/obvious that…
…………………….. there is no/little doubt that …
…………………….. it is true to say that …
…………………….. although it must be said that …
……………………. it may be concluded/said that …

Useful expressions and linking words/phrases: Conclusion expressing opinion directly
In conclusion,
On balance,
All things considered,
Taking everything into account/consideration,
To conclude,
To sum up,
All in all,

…………………………… it is my belief/opinion that …
………………………….. I (firmly) believe/feel/think that …
…………………………… I am convinced that …
…………………………… I am inclined to believe that …
…………………………… I (do not) agree that/with …

NOTE

  1. A for and against essay can end in a balanced consideration in which you restate that there are points for and against the topic using appropriate expressions given above.
  2. Alternatevely, it can end by expressing an opinion, in which case you state, directly or indirectly, that you are either in favour of or against the topic, using appropriate expressions given above.

Go to conclusion expressing opinion directly/indirectly

9 Read the conclusions below and say whether they express a balanced consideration, or the writer's opinion directly/indirectly.
1 To conclude, although it must be said that a sense of responsibility is one of the most important qualities which can be instilled in young people, it should not be forgotten that there are other, equally important qualities.
2 For the above-mentioned reasons, therefore, I firmly believe that if people are taught a keen sense of responsibility towards themselves and others, then they will have the best possible start in life. The way I see it, taking full responsibility for one's own actions is central to leading an honest life.
3 To sum up, it would seem that, once young people know how to take responsibility for their actions, they are better equipped to learn about life. While there are other important qualities, a highly-developed sense of responsibility provides the ideal foun¬dation for personal development.
4 On balance, it seems that a sense of responsibility has a role to play in a young person's development. Never¬theless, when placed alongside other human qualities, such as honesty and integrity, it is by no means the most useful.

10 Read the main body of the for and against essay below on the topic: "Discuss the view that advertising promotes excessive consumerism." Then read the beginnings and endings and say which of the techniques on p. 56 has been used in each one. Finally, replace the bold type words or phrases in the main body with ones similar in meaning.

Beginning…
1. Whether it is on TV, radio or hoardings at the side of the road, advertisements have become a part of our lives, advertising simply a means of informing the public or does it encourage consumers to purchase products they do not really need?
2. Advertising is a powerful and persuasive medium. You may feel this is an intrusion in your daily life, and resent the pressure on you to spend money. Others, however, enjoy the variety which this highly creative industry brings to everyday life.
3. Advertising is an effective way of selling new products, and many people argue that its effectiveness brainwashes us into unnecessary spending. Others, however, disagree. As Jeremy Tunstall says, "Advertising can't sell any product can only help to sell a product the people want to buy."

One of the main arguments for advertising is that it generates wealth for a country. That is to say, taxes paid on goods sold, help governments to pay for essential services such as education and health care. Moreover, the number of jobs created for pro¬ducing, marketing and servicing these goods helps to reduce the unemployment problem, which is also a great advantage for a country's economy.
What is more, advertising raises money for a huge number of sporting events and artistic perfor¬mances which would otherwise not be held. Without sponsorship from companies who advertise their products, these events would disappear due to lack of funding. In other words, although consumerism is promoted through advertising, it is beneficial to both the consumer and society.
On the other hand, advertisements can cause people to be dissatisfied with what they already have, and make them want more. Being exposed again and again to products which one cannot afford produces frustration and dissatisfaction. Further more, not all parents are in a position to afford the goods which their children see advertised and want to possess. This often leads to feelings of inadequacy, especially among the less well-off.
In addition to this, advertising creates materialism and causes people to place too much importance or material goods. The fact that people are prepared to work long hours, or even turn to crime in order to gain the goods on offer, shows that advertising persuade; people to go to great lengths to keep the same standard of living as those they see around them. It is a fact, though, that neither crime nor the stress caused by overwork can benefit society.

Endings….
A To sum up, it is true to say that advertising does provide some benefits. However, do you not agree that the drawbacks of a greedy, materialistic society far outweigh the advantages, and we need to be careful that we do not lose sight of what is most important - a spirit of co-operation rather than competition?

B To conclude, it must be said that, while advertising may create jealousy and inequality in society, without it v would lose a valuable source of revenue which is used for the benefit of the majority. What would our lives be like without advertisements?
C In conclusion, I believe that advertising exists to generate wealth by encouraging people to spend unnecessarily. It fosters greed and breeds dissatisfaction while distracting us from focusing on more vital things. As Marion Harper Jr said, "Advertising is found in societies which have passed the point of satisfying the basic animal needs."

11 Read the four topic sentences below and match each with the corre-sponding paragraph. Does each topic sentence adequately summarise the argument it presents? What would a suitable introduction and con¬clusion be for this essay?

"Living in a foreign country cannot be better man living in your own.” Discuss.

a Furthermore, people who move to a foreign country may be regarded with suspicion and treated unfairly.
b On the other hand, living abroad can be a way to escape a variety of problems presented in one's country of birth.
c. One argument in favour of saying in one`s native country is that the problems of adapting to a new way of life cannot always be overcome.
d. Finally, it may be said that by living in a foreign country, people are able to establish a greater understanding between nations.

1. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
The fact of the matter is that, even in cases where the language is the same, there are other changes, such as cultural differences, which an out¬sider might find difficult to adjust to. Even the weather can force some people to return to their country of origin. For example, take an Inuit and an Amazonian Indian. They would almost certainly find it impossi¬ble to adapt to the extreme climates of each other's native homes.

2. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

In countries with a large number of immigrants there are often social problems, and immigrants stand out as being "different" and even in¬ferior. As a consequence, the host country may react in a variety of ways, from open hostility and racism to depriving the immigrants of the right to equal pay.

3. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

For example, war, political or religious intolerance, and natural ca¬tastrophes are among the reasons for people seeking a new home in a foreign land. In such cases, people are often able to start a new life abroad with greater freedom and a higher standard of living.

4. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

That is to say, by working and living among foreigners, some of the bar¬riers between countries can be broken down, helping to create a more peaceful world. Needless to say, better diplomatic relations would be of benefit to all.

12 Which of the following are arguments in favour and which are arguments against the topic: "School plays a more important role than die family in shaping one's personality." Discuss. Suggest examples/justification for each argument. Finally, write the composition in about 350 words.

1. Moreover, so much of the school day is devoted to competition and prepa¬ration for examinations that there is little time left for personality develop¬ment.
2. On the other hand, most children have a closer relationship with their parents than with their teachers.
3. An additional argument in support of school is that young people are exposed to a wide variety of subjects.
4. One point in favour of the role of schools is that it is at school where chil¬dren first learn to socialise.
5. Furthermore, children usually spend five years of their lives at home before they even go to school.
6. What is more, the average child spends as many as eight hours a day in school.

PLANNING & ORGANISATION
• There is an alternative paragraph plan you may use when writing for and against essays. When following this plan you present both an argument in favour and the opposing viewpoint in the same paragraph.
In such essays the arguments for and against must be equal in number.

Introduction
Paragraph 1
State topic (summary of topic without stating your opinion)
Main Body
Paragraph 2
first argument for & against
Paragraph 3*
second argument for & against
Conclusion
Final Paragraph
give balanced consideration/ your opinion expressed directly/indirectly

  • You may include more paragraph in the main body if you wish to include more points

13 "Greater freedom does not necessarily lead to greater happiness” Discuss.
Read the model and say which argu¬ments have been presented in each paragraph. Do the topic sentences clearly summarise the content of each paragraph? Finally, underline all the useful expressions and linking words or phrases and replace them with ones similar in meaning.

Over the years, mankind has recognised the need for personal and social freedom, and this is perhaps one of the m important social advancements ever made. However, whether it has led to increased personal happiness is highly debatable; many people would argue that greater freedom has led to increased social disorder and personal dissatisfaction.
Firstly, it is true that people are now more at liberty to choose how to live their lives. For example, in the Western world at least, the choice of where to live, what career to pursue and which religion to follow has never been greater. In addition to this people have more leisure time in which to enjoy a wider range of recreational activities. On the other hand, it r be argued that this increased freedom can lead people to take things for granted and expect too much from life. As an example of this, the greater choice of material goods available has resulted in people quickly growing bored with t possessions. Consequently, no sooner have they acquired something new than they tire of it. They find short-term happiness in material goods and entertainment, but boredom and frustration soon send them looking for fresh distractions.
Secondly, social and moral attitudes have become less rigid. This has allowed for a greater variety of lifestyles and n freedom in human relations. This is illustrated by the fact that pupils and teachers now treat each other as equals, and parent-child relationships are now much more relaxed. Nevertheless, some people believe that this increase in free has resulted in the escalation of social problems. They argue that the current lack of discipline has given rise to a breakdown in the traditional family and the decay in educational standards as well as the rise in juvenile delinquency. Thus, it may be said that society is becoming more and more dangerous because of the very fact that people are more open-minded than they were in the past.
To conclude, there is evidence both to support and refute the view that greater freedom does not necessarily le: greater happiness. On the one hand, people have more opportunities to raise their standard of living. On the other hand, the many examples of protests, strikes and criminal activities which are a feature of modern society are a sign that, although people may be free, they are not necessarily happier.

14 Read the following arguments and match each argument in favour of using animals for entertainment with the corresponding argument against. Then, following the paragraph plan (the second one), say which arguments you would include in each paragraph. Finally, write a clear topic sentence for each paragraph.

Arguments for using animals for entertainment.

1. Zoos can be educational and also help to increase the numbers of endan-gered species through controlled breeding programmes.
2. Animals used in television programmes, advertisements and films are very appealing and attract large audiences.
3. Circus animals are loved, well-treated and only perform for short periods.
4. Racing animals have a very short working life and are well-treated throughout.

Arguments against using animals for entertainment.

a Animals are forced to perform unnatural acts for the pleasure of the pub¬lic.
b Keeping animals in cages so the public can see them is unnecessary because documentaries produced today take away the need for such places.
c With new technology and special effects, there is no need to use live ani¬mals as realistic models can be used instead.
d Racing animals have gruelling training schedules and are often placed in unnecessary danger.

DISCUSS and WRITE

The discussion clock
• When considering a topic you may refer to the discussion clock, which will help you think of ideas when planning your essay.
• Referring to the discussion clock is a useful “brainstorming” technique, as it helps you examine a topic from various viewpoints and decide on ideas/points to include in your essay.
• Keep in mind that a topic may not relate to all the aspects presented in the discussion clock.
• Remember that for each viewpoint you have thought of, there is usually an opposing argument. Think of the opposing arguments when planning your essay.

12-psycholoical
1-religious
2-scientific
3-artistic
4-economic
5-educational
6-social
7-political
8-moral
9-historical
10-health
11-personal

15 Read the following composition topic and answer the questions below.
"Should countries encourage tourism?" Discuss.
• What are the two sides of the question?
• Which of the following arguments are for and which against?

1. The desire to attract tourists to a certain area often encourages govern-ments to improve local facilities.
2. Over-development leads to ugly, crowded tourist spots and environ¬mental damage.
3. The impact of tourism may destroy the local way of life.
4. Many people claim that tourism is an important source of income.
5. A country's economy may become so dependent on tourism that it is weak¬ened.
6. Tourism allows people to experience other cultures.

• What aspects of the discussion clock do these arguments deal with?
• Can you think of any additional argu¬ments?
• Which paragraph plan would you fol¬low to write this essay?
• Which arguments would you include and in what order?
• Which techniques would you use to begin and end your essay?
• Which useful phrases and linking words could you use?

16 Now, using the information from your answers to the above questions, write the essay in about 350 words.

Works consulted
Taken from "Successful Writing Proficiency" by Virginia Evans

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In order to do well on the AP Spanish exam’sfree-response section, you must be able to write a persuasive essay based on three Spanish-language sources.

Are you up to the task?

After years of elementary, middle and high school Spanish, the time has come—you’re getting ready to tackle the AP Spanish exam.

You can conjugate any irregular verb you see. You’ve got conditionals down pat. And your vocabulary is out of this world.

But can you form a coherent argument… in Spanish?

Here we’ve put together a list of 40 vocabulary words that will come in handy for making and supporting arguments in your AP Spanish essays, and in any other piece of Spanish writing!
 

 

What’s the AP Spanish Free-response Section Like?

The free-response section of the exam is meant to test your ability to communicate with others in spoken and written Spanish.

There are two essays in the free-response section. The interpersonal essay asks you to respond to an email. The presentational essay tests how well you can draw information from Spanish-language sources, form an argument and write formally. This second essay is a little less straightforward, so we’ll walk you through it here.

So, how does it work?

The presentational essay is based on three sources. Two of them are written sources and one is an audio source.

These sources can be just about anything: Advertisements, articles, infographics, letters, maps, interviews, radio programs, podcasts and conversations are just some examples of the types of sources you may encounter.

You’ll have about 55 minutes to complete this particular essay. First, you’ll have six minutes to read the prompt and the two written sources, and then you’ll hear the audio source twice. Finally, you’ll have 40 minutes to plan and write your essay.

The essay is graded on the basis of Spanish language skills like reading, listening, writing and grammar—but it’s also based on your general ability to analyze the sources and make a strong, coherent argument.

How to Prepare for the Free-response Section

In many ways, preparing for the free-response section is the same as preparing for the rest of the AP exam.

It involves studying grammar and vocabulary, and it also means immersing yourself in the Spanish language as much as possible. The more exposure you have to Spanish-language sources leading up to the exam day, the easier it’ll be for you to understand and analyze the three sources you encounter in the presentational essay task.

Seeking out native Spanish sources is easy, and FluentU has got you covered. Here, you can find info on great news outlets, podcasts, YouTube channels and blogs—all in Spanish. Even following some Spanish Twitter feeds or listening to Spanish music can be a great way to work a little language practice into your day.

There are also some targeted ways to practice for the free-response section.

  • Do practice exams and read sample essays.The College Board has posted the full AP exams from the last several years. Try to read the sources and write the essay in the allotted 55 minutes. When you’re done, go back and slowly revise your essay for errors in grammar, spelling and logic. After that, you can also check out the grading rubric provided by the College Board and several sample persuasive essays. Try to compare your essay against the rubric and the samples to see how you can improve your writing.
  • Practice summarizing and analyzing Spanish-language sources. Remember all those great resources listed above? Well, it’s not enough to just read or listen to them. The whole point of the presentational essay is to measure your ability to summarize, synthesize and argue. So, after you read or listen to a Spanish-language source, take five minutes to summarize it—on paper. Identify the main argument, and then make a bulleted list of important points. Finally, write a few sentences summarizing your personal opinion.
  • Learn targeted vocabulary for talking about opinions and arguments. Is there anything more frustrating than knowing exactly what you want to say, but not having the vocabulary to say it? This article lists many crucial vocabulary words for expressing and supporting opinions in persuasive essays. Using these words and phrases will make your writing flow more smoothly—and they’ll allow you to argue with more credibility and style.

40 Persuasive Vocabulary Words for Writing Strong AP Spanish Essays

Agreeing and Disagreeing

Estoy de acuerdo/No estoy de acuerdo — I agree/I disagree

Estoy de acuerdo con lo que dice el autor. (I agree with what the author says.)

No estoy de acuerdo con la idea principal de la fuente número dos. (I disagree with the main idea of source number two.)

En mi opinión — In my opinion

En mi opinión, los jóvenes deberían comer más sano. (In my opinion, young people should eat healthier.)

La verdad es— The truth is

La verdad es que todavía hay mucha desigualdad en los Estados Unidos. (The truth is there is still a lot of inequality in the United States.)

Es verdad — It’s true

Es verdad que las redes sociales pueden ser peligrosas. (It’s true that social media can be dangerous.)

Es falso—It’s false

Hay gente que dice que las redes sociales son peligrosas, pero esto es falso. (There are people who say that social media is dangerous, but this is false.)

Me parece/No me parece—It seems to me/It doesn’t seem to me

Me parece bien que los niños asistan a colegios bilingües. (I think it’s a good idea that children attend bilingual schools.)

No me parece bien que los niños asistan a colegios bilingües. (I don’t think it’s a good idea that children attend bilingual schools.)

Remember that since me parece implies an opinion or emotion, you must conjugate the verb in the subjunctive tense.

(Yo) pienso que—I think that

Yo pienso que no hay nada más importante que la familia. (I think that there is nothing more important than family.)

(Yo) creo que — I believe that

Yo creo que todos los adolescentes deberían aprender a tocar un instrumento. (I believe that all adolescents should learn to play an instrument.)

Stating an Opinion

The following phrases all have the same structure: Es + adjective + que.

This structure is similar to the English “It’s [adjective] that…” and is great for expressing and supporting opinions in a strong and confident manner. Here are some phrases that are especially useful when making and defending claims in a persuasive essay:

Es evidente que—It’s evident that

Es claro que—It’s clear that

Es cierto que —It’s certain that

Es obvio que— It’s obvious that

Es importante que — It’s important that

Es necesario que— It’s necessary that

Es probable que—It’s probable that

Es dudoso que — It’s doubtful that

For some of these phrases, the verb following the word que must be conjugated in the indicative, while others require the subjunctive. A good rule of thumb is that when implying that something is certain, use the indicative. When expressing doubt or expressing some other emotion, use the subjunctive.

On this list, evidente, claro, cierto and obvio use indicative verbs, and importante, necesario, probable and dudoso use subjunctive verbs.

Es cierto que nuestro clima está cambiando. (It is certain that our climate is changing.)

Es importante que la gente sepa hablar más de un idioma. (It’s important that people know how to speak more than one language.)

Supporting an Opinion

These words will help you refer to your three sources, which contain information that will help you support your argument. This section also contains transition words to connect one part of your argument to the next.

Según— According to

Según el autor… (according to the author…)

La fuente —The source

Según la fuente numero 1… (According to source number one…)

El tema—The theme/topic

Esto es un tema muy importante. (This is a very important topic.)

Mostrar—To show

La fuente muestra la importancia de la diversidad. (The source shows the importance of diversity.)

Remember, mostrar is an o-ue stem-changing verb—pay attention to conjugation!

Demostrar—To demonstrate

La tabla demuestra que muchos jóvenes en España juegan al fútbol. (The table demonstrates that many youths in Spain play football.)

Demostrar is also an o-ue stem changing verb. Luckily for you, it follows the exact same conjugation rules as mostrar!

Indicar—To indicate

La tabla indica que hay muchas familias pobres en ese barrio. (The table indicates that there are many poor families in that neighborhood.)

Apoyar—To support

Estos datos apoyan la idea de que el clima está cambiando. (This data supports the idea that the climate is changing)

Por otra parte— On the other hand

Es importante que la economía crezca, pero por otra parte, tenemos que cuidar el medio ambiente. (It’s important that the economy grows, but on the other hand, we have to care for the environment.)

Por lo cual—For this reason/That’s why/Which is why

This phrase is used in the middle of a sentence to connect ideas.

La Amazonía tiene un alto nivel de biodiversidad, por lo cual la conservación de esta región debe ser una prioridad. (The Amazon has a high level of biodiversity, which is why the conservation of this region must be a priority.)

Además — Additionally

This word is usually seen at the beginning of a sentence, and it’s useful for transitioning from one idea or argument to another.

Además, es evidente que la tecnología nos ayuda mucho. (Additionally, it’s evident that technology helps us a lot.)

Sin embargo—However

This is another good transition word. In your essay, you may want to present an alternate argument and then explain why you disagree with it. Sin embargo is very helpful for this.

Obviamente, estudiar es muy importante. Sin embargo, es necesario que los adolescentes tengan tiempo para jugar con sus amigos. (Obviously, studying is very important. However, it’s necessary that teenagers have time to play with their friends.)

En comparación —In comparison

En comparación, la fuente número 2 indica que hay más obesidad en Estados Unidos que en España. (In comparison, source number 2 indicates that there is more obesity in the United States than in Spain.)

Al igual que —Just like

Al igual que en los años 40, hoy en día hay mucha gente que no quiere ayudar a los refugiados de guerra. (Just like in the 40s, today there are many people who don’t want to help war refugees.)

Tanto ________ como ________ — _________ as well as ___________

Fill in this phrase with two nouns to emphasize that you’re talking equally about two different things.

Tanto chicos como chicas deberían aprender a cocinar, limpiar, coser y cuidar a los bebés. (Boys as well as girls ought to learn how to cook, clean, sew and care for babies.)

Sino—But rather

Remember that Spanish has two translations for the English word “but.” The word sino is like the English phrase “but rather,” used to introduce an alternative.

Leer no es una pérdida de tiempo, sino una manera de aprender y de conocer otras culturas. (Reading isn’t a waste of time, but rather a way to learn and understand other cultures.)

Sin duda— Without a doubt

Sin duda, el cambio climático es el problema más grave que enfrenta nuestra planeta. (Without a doubt, climate change is the most serious problem that our planet faces.)

Aunque— Even though/Although

Aunque is followed by an indicative verb when the outcome is known, but a subjunctive verb when the outcome is speculative.

Aunque cuesta mucho dinero, tenemos que buscar una solución. (Even though it costs a lot of money, we have to search for a solution.)

Aunque cueste mucho dinero, tenemos que buscar una solución. (Even though it may cost a lot of money, we have to search for a solution.)

Concluding Your Essay

In your final paragraph, you’ll want to provide a summary of your main argument and your main supporting points. You can use the following helpful phrases:

En conclusión—In conclusion

En resumen—In summary

En fin—Finally

En conclusión,/En resumen,/En fin, las tres fuentes muestran que la contaminación del aire es un problema muy grave para todo el mundo. (In summary, the three sources show that air pollution is a very serious problem for the whole world.)

After summarizing your essay, you’ll want to re-state your main argument in a succinct, strongly-worded sentence. Start with these phrases:

Por estas razones—For these reasons

Por eso — That is why

Así que—Therefore

Entonces — So

Por estas razones,/Por eso,/Así que/Entonces, afirmo que los adolescentes no deberían usar las redes sociales. (For these reasons, I affirm that teenagers should not use social media.)

 

Learn and study these words—they’ll help you express yourself more fluidly in your AP Spanish essays.

But, of course, learning vocabulary is just one way to prepare for the free-response section.

Remember to expose yourself to as many Spanish-language sources as you can before test day, and don’t forget to think critically about those sources as you read them!

With practice, writing strong essays for the AP Spanish exam will be a breeze.

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