Written May 3, 2008


A List of the Part 3 'Compare Questions' from this Website (P. 1)



When I wrote the questions shown on this page, back in 2006, I began most of them with the word, "Compare". However, sometime in 2007 I began fewer of these questions that way because I realized that good examiners would be trying to encourage discussion in Part 3, and beginning questions with the word, "Compare" does not sound like a discussion-style question - it sounds more like a Part 1 question than a Part 3 question. In other words, most of the Part 3 questions do not really begin with the word, "Compare". but the meaning of the question is as shown.


Part 2 Topic Number

Part 3 Topic


 1 Emails
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of emails, compared to handwritten letters?
 2 Decision making & young people (or children)
  • Are children influenced in the same way by parents and by grandparents?
 4 Leisure time
  • Compare the way old people and young people spend their leisure time.
 5 Money & work
  • Can you give me some examples of how different jobs have different salaries? (Give both high-paying & low-paying examples)
  • In China, do men and women receive the same pay for doing the same work?
 12 Places for public Use
  • Compare public facilities (such as parks) in China today to those of the past.
 13 Housing
  • Compare old houses and modern houses. Which do people prefer to live in? (Why?)
  • How has housing in China changed, (e.g., compared to your parents’ time)?
  • Compare housing in Chinese cities and housing in villages.
  • Do young people and old people like to live in the same kind of place?
 13 Old buildings
  • Do old people and young people in China have the same attitudes towards old buildings?
 14 Reading in China
  • Compare books and magazines. (How are they similar and how are they different?)
  • Compare newspapers and novels. What different kinds of information can can we get from these two?
  • Compare people’s reading habits (or tastes) today to those of the past.
  • Compare reading and watching TV.
  • Compare internet reading materials (such as news and opinion) to traditional media (TV, radio, newspapers) content. *
  • Do people with different reading levels all buy the same kinds of reading materials?
  • Do young people and old people like to read the same kind of materials? (Why?)
  • Do men and women like to read the same kinds of things? 
 15 Diet
  • Is the food that people eat today in China different to the food that people used to eat in the past? (If yes, in what ways has it changed?)
 16 Furniture design
  • Compare office furniture and home furniture. (Of these), which type of furniture do you prefer? (Why?)
  • Compare furniture that is for public use with furniture that is for (private) home use.
 16 Housing
  • What different kinds of housing are there in China?
 17 Skills training
  • Compare the importance of practical skills and academic skills. (advantages & disadvantages of each)
 17 Children/young people and practical skills
  • Do children learn things (practical skills) in the same way that adults do?
 17 Mature education
  • Do you think that the study methods are the same for school students and adults attending adult education classes?
 18 Education
  • Compare the value of knowledge gained from books (and classes) to knowledge gained from practical experience in the workplace.
 19 Leisure time
  • Compare how adults spend their leisure time with how children spend their leisure time.
  • Compare the way men spend their leisure time and the way women spend their leisure time.
  • Compare the role of women in society today to their role several generations age.
  • Do old and young people like to do the same things? (Why?/Why not? What do both groups like to do?)
 19 Children & free time
  • Do city children and rural children do the same kinds of things in their free time?
 20 Walking and health
  • Do you think that playing sport is better for your health than walking? (Why?/Why not?) (= Compare walking and playing sport.)
  • Compare the amount of walking that rural people, such as farmers do with the amount of walking that city people do.
 21 Learning English
  • Compare studying English in China to studying English in an English-speaking country.
  • How do you think studying Chinese as a foreign language is different to studying English as a foreign language?
 21 Language and cultural diversity
  • Compare the future popularity of Chinese and English as foreign languages to study.
  • Compare the culture of China to that of the West.  
 22 Personal relations at work
  • In China, how do people at work view other people in the same workplace? For example, is everyone considered to be equal in status?
 24 City life & country life
  • Compare city life and country life in China.
  • Are relations with neighbours the same in the city and in the countryside?
  • (As above) Compare interpersonal relations in the city and in the countryside.
  • As above) Do people in the city make newcomers feel welcome? Compare this to country people.
  • Compare the availability of services such as education, health services and transportation in cities and the countryside.
  • Is the natural environment the same in the city and in the countryside?
  • Is the housing in the city and the countryside the same?
  • Are relations with neighbours the same in the city and in the countryside?
 24 Tourism
  • Compare tourism today in China to, say, thirty years ago.
 25 Seasons/Climate
  • Is the climate the same all over China?
  • How does the climate of a place affect the kind of buildings that are built there?  = How does the climate affect the building design? (For example, are the buildings in North China the same as those in South China?)
  • Do you think the climate of a place has an effect on the personality of the people who live in that place? (For example, do people from places that have warm winters have the same kind of personalities as people from places that have cold winters?) 
  • What is the favourite season of children (or young people)?
  • Do adults have the same favourite season?
 27 Government
  • Compare the differences between local and national government in China, in terms of how they are managed.
  • What should be the responsibilities of  local government and what should be the responsibilities of local government?
 31 Fictional characters
  • Compare (the importance of) children's stories today and children's stories in the past.
  • Compare the reading materials that adults like with the reading materials that children like.
  • Do high school (middle school) students like the same kinds of stories as young children?
  • Compare the characters in stories that children like with story characters that adults like?
  • Do you think the roles these actors play are the same as their real lives? --> Do you think the roles these actors play are the same as their real lives?
  • Do girls and boys like the same kind of heroes in stories, films etc?
 31 Children & TV
  • Compare reading books and watching TV.
 32 Travel destinations
  • Compare the types of travel destinations that people your age choose and the destinations that people your parents' age choose.
 33 Photography
  • Compare photos taken by professional photographers and typical family photos.
 34 Old people in China
  • Do old people in China today have different living situations compared to old people many years ago?
  • Today, (and in the future), there are more and more old people compared to the past. How has this changed life in China?
  • Do older men like to do the same things as older women?
 35 School facilities
  • Compare the facilities that rural schools have with the facilities that city schools have.
  • Compare the ideal school facilities for, say, 5-year-old children and ideal facilities for teenagers.
  • Compare the buildings and facilities in a primary school (or a high school) with the buildings and facilities in a university.
 36 Teachers and facilities
  • If China could afford it, do you more money should be spent on teachers or on facilities? (= Which is more important? or Which most needs improvement?)
  • (As above) Compare the importance of facilities and equipment with the importance of good teachers.
 37 Small business
  • What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of small businesses compared to large companies?
  • Compare small shops with big (international) department stores and supermarkets.
 39 The protection of wild animals
  • Do you think that the protection of wildlife can ever be in conflict with economic development? (= Is it possible to have both economic development and wildlife protection at the same time?)
 40 Children & families
  • Compare the advantages and disadvantages (for children?) of large families and small families?  
 41 Radio
  • Compare the impact of local radio stations with that of national radio stations.
  • Compare listening to the radio to watching TV. (What are the differences and advantages of each?) 
  • Compare radio and TV as a source of news.
  • Do young people and old people like listening to to same kind of radio programs?
 42 Children's leisure time
  • Compare how men (or boys) usually spend their leisure time with how women (or girls) usually spend their leisure time.
 44 Visiting in China
  • Is the way people visit other people in China today different to the way people used to visit each other in the past? (E.g., is it easier today to visit others?)
 45 Houses
  • Compare the houses in the Chinese countryside and those in the cities.
  • How have houses in your hometown changed in recent years?
  • (As above) How are houses (or apartments) today different to those of the past?

 45 Children's development
  • Compare the leisure-time activities of children when you were a child with the leisure activities of children today.
  • How are the attitudes of today's parents towards their children different to attitudes of parents in the past?
  • How are the behaviour patterns of children different to those of teenagers (or adults)?
 45 Family structure
  • Is the composition of the typical Chinese family today different to that of a few years ago? (How?)

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