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MostafaMostafa Joined: 04/29/2018
it took me an hour to write this essay although I should finish it within only 30 minutes :( 

“The perceived greatness of any political leader has more to do with the challenges faced by that leader than with any of his or her inherent skills and abilities.”


I’m of the proponents of the idea that great leader must be qualified enough to lead an entire nation. A leader is required to have both the potential and expertise needed for such an important position, adding to that innate skills and talents would be a plus. History can reveal many prominent examples fro us: Abraham Lincoln, Anwar El-Sadat, Nilson Mandela, Martin Luther King and many others...

Let us consider at the beginning the most wonderful story of the American statesman, Abraham Lincoln, who faced grueling challenges at his period like the Civil War in the 1860s and his opposition to the Slavery’s extension. However, he proved to be a shrewd and savvy leader. I do believe that if Lincoln didn’t have these natural skills combined with the profound experience acquired throughout his life journey, he couldn’t be able to achieve this outstanding success of Union victory and Human equality. 

The second great example is the Nobel Peace Prize winner and former Egyptian president, Anwar El-Sadat. He faced significant events early in his life ranging from being arrested and jailed, escaping the prison, being a member of the Free Officers who overthrew the Egyptian King and other substantial events that shaped his way of thinking and handling different situations. In 1973 he led a great victory to reclaim the occupied peninsula of Siani after the failure of the Egyptian peace initiative from Israel. After retrieving the territory of Sinai and ending the war, he signed a peace treaty and was dubbed as the “founding father of peace and stability in the region”. No doubt that, without the challenges of War and great decisions Sadat made, he won’t be that great remembered president. Not to mention his astuteness and eloquent soft speech would be remiss.

Another Nobel Peace Prize winner is Dr. Nelson Mnadela who served as the first black president for South Africa after more than three decades incarcerated for holding thoughts against governmental racial segregation and human inequalities. Spending more than twenty-seven years in jail didn’t break his spirit or change his beliefs that people are born to live a life full of harmony and equality. He was a powerful example of redemption not only for his nation but for the entire world.

On the other hand, there are many leaders who are renowned for having surpassing skills but, eventually didn’t manage to benefit their societies. The current Egyptian president is a compelling example of that, he couldn’t reach an agreement to the dispute over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam which threatens water supply to the Egyptian people. what may you expect from such a leader who failed to tackle a serious issue like this?  

Finally, while it may now be clear that great leaders are those who can handle difficult circumstances efficiently and effectively based on cumulative expertise, it should also be apparent that innate skills are a great influence for helping them accomplishing that greatness. the historical examples of Lincoln, Sadat, and Mandela bear this out.   






  • Jonathan EvansJonathan Evans PowerScore Staff Joined: 10/31/2016
    Hi, Mostafa!

    Thanks for joining us here! You're off to an excellent start. Let's talk about what's going right and where you have room for improvement. Here are some of your strengths:

    • Your essay is reasonably well focused and organized. 
    • The reader can follow your train of thought.
    • You develop your position with relevant examples.
    • You display competence with the conventions of written English.
    • The length of your essay is good. 
    • You vary your language and use transition words.
    • Your conclusion is strong in that it reiterates the strength of your essay.
    Here are some areas for improvement:

    • Your thesis is somewhat vague. You have grasped the thesis but have not sufficiently "defined" it to explain exactly what your position is. For example, for the topic above, be very clear about what the two possible positions are. Then, choose a side and back it up with your examples. The two positions here would be either 1) perceived greatness of political leaders has more to do with the challenges faces than inherent greatness or 2) perceived greatness has more to do with innate greatness than specific challenges. 
    • Choose one of these positions and remain completely focused on defending it. As you write, always think about how you are tying in your example to your thesis. 
    • You lose some of this focus in your essay. By the time we're talking about Sisi and Mandela, I'm not exactly sure how they relate to your thesis anymore. Don't leave it up to the reader to fill in the blanks. 
    • Lead off with your strongest example. Lincoln is a somewhat pedestrian (ordinary) example. Sadat is much stronger. In addition, you clearly have a deeper breadth of knowledge about Sadat. Play to this strength. Set a clear thesis and then impress the reader with your first body paragraph about Sadat. Once you have established that you have a command of the subject, you can move into Mandela, Lincoln, or Sisi. 
    • You lose focus occasionally in your writing and have some run-on sentences.
    Overall, this is a strong first effort. In accordance with ETS's scoring rubric ( ) this would be a 3.5.

    Continue to practice perhaps with a time limit of an hour. Feel free to submit another essay here, and I will give you more feedback. 

    I also encourage you to read this blog post ( I wrote about the issue essay a couple weeks ago. Start an "example journal." Once you have more examples in the bag, your writing should speed up and your confidence improve. In addition, continue to practice. You will notice improvement in your writing just by doing more writing. I look forward to your reply.
  • MostafaMostafa Joined: 04/29/2018
    Oh, I really can't find enough words to thank you.
    I got your point, will read your article right now and will keep practicing more and more and by tomorrow maximum will post a new issue essay. 
    thanks a lot. 
  • MostafaMostafa Joined: 04/29/2018
    Excuse me , I can't understand what do you mean by  "You can repeat this template for multiple topics to create a bank of examples, ready to use. Equipped with five or six such topics, you should be on your way to writing a vivid and compelling Issue Essay." concerning this paragraph? 

    Overview: The French Presidential Election of 2017 was a referendum on the political status quo and played out a longstanding dynamic in French politics: a three-way struggle between the socialists, the center-right, and far-right nationalists. The contest last year pitted leftist upstart Hamon against the scandal-plagued center-right Fillon and the firebrand nationalist Le Pen, daughter of iconic National Front leader Jean-Marie Le Pen. Faced with low favorability and a weak government, the current president Hollande declined to run for reelection, but his potential center left successor Valls fell to Hamon in the primaries, in some respects mirroring the dynamic between former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his successor in the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn. In the end, a centrist ticket led by Emmanuel Macron defied expectations to defeat the established parties and establish a new coalition.

  • Jonathan EvansJonathan Evans PowerScore Staff Joined: 10/31/2016
    Hey Mostafa. What I mean here is find a topic you know something about. For instance, I chose the French election of last year. Then make a page in your journal on which you jot down everything you know about that topic. Repeat this process for five or six (or more) different example ideas. For instance, I could have pages about:

    • Jazz pianist Cecil Taylor
    • French film director Claude Chabrol
    • Hall of Fame baseball player Mickey Mantle
    • Hassan al-Banna and the Society of the Muslim Brothers
    • German novelist Thomas Mann
    • British mathematician Alan Turing
    • The 2018 NBA playoffs
    Make different pages about different topics you know about or are interested in. Then, when you are brainstorming before you write your essay, think about how some of these topics might work for examples.
  • MostafaMostafa Joined: 04/29/2018
    Hey Mr. Jonathan. I'll try to apply your precious advice within the remaining time  (my exam at the end of this month :( )
    I've posted another issue essay and look forward to hearing back from you. 
    Thanks a lot. 

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