Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books


You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Present a written argument or case to an educated reader with no specialist knowledge.

Write about the following topic:

It is often cited that “Not everything that is learned is contained in books”. According to many, we learn most of the things from our own experience while others believe that books are our main source of knowledge. Compare and contrast knowledge gained from experience with knowledge gained from books. In your opinion, which source is more important? Why?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Sample Answer:

In today’s world, the debate over whether knowledge gained from experience is more valuable than knowledge gained from books is a topic of much discussion. While some argue that practical experience is the best teacher, others believe that books are the primary source of knowledge. In my opinion, both sources of knowledge are important, but they serve different purposes and complement each other in the pursuit of learning.

Experience is an invaluable teacher as it allows individuals to apply theoretical knowledge in real-life situations. Through experience, we gain practical skills, problem-solving abilities, and a deeper understanding of how things work. For example, a chef may have learned about different cooking techniques from books, but it is through experience in the kitchen that they truly master their craft. Similarly, a doctor may have acquired medical knowledge from textbooks, but it is their experience with patients that hones their diagnostic skills.

On the other hand, books are a rich source of information and provide a structured way of learning. They offer a wealth of knowledge accumulated over centuries, covering a wide range of subjects. Books allow us to learn from the experiences and insights of others, providing us with a broader understanding of the world. For instance, history books enable us to learn from the mistakes and successes of the past, while scientific literature allows us to understand complex concepts and theories.

In my view, both experience and books are essential for acquiring knowledge. While experience provides us with practical skills and a deeper understanding of the world, books offer us a wealth of information and the wisdom of those who have come before us. They complement each other, with experience enriching the knowledge gained from books and vice versa.

In conclusion, both experience and books are valuable sources of knowledge, each serving a unique purpose in the learning process. Rather than prioritizing one over the other, we should recognize the importance of both and strive to integrate them into our pursuit of knowledge. By doing so, we can gain a comprehensive understanding of the world around us and continue to learn and grow throughout our lives.

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