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University Conversation Questions

Warm-up Question:
List as many universities as you can, in your country and abroad.

ESL Conversation Questions:

  1. Why do people go to university?
  2. Is it necessary to do further education after high school these days? What other options are there, besides education?
  3. What kind of post-high school education have you done?
  4. What was your favorite subject at university? Why did you like it?
  5. How did you choose which classes to take at university?
  6. Did you have a favorite professor? What did you like about them?
  7. How is the relationship between students and professors different from that between students and teachers at high school?
  8. How is university life different from high school life?
  9. Did you belong to any clubs at university? What kind of activities did you do with other club members?
  10. How important is the social aspect of university?
  11. What do you think about university rankings? What do they mean?
  12. Which is the most prestigious university in the world? Why is it so respected?
  13. Did you study hard in high school to get into your preferred university? Explain some of your study habits.
  14. How did you pick your major? Were you focused on a future career? Or did you have other priorities?
  15. How much is your current life or job related to what you studied in university?
  16. How much does it cost to attend university in your country? Is it affordable?
  17. Have you done post-graduate study? If not, would you consider doing it?
  18. Would you like to be a university professor? What are the pros and cons of that career?
  19. Does being highly educated mean someone is a good person?
  20. Some people return to university after they retire. What would you choose to study in that situation?


University Conversation Questions photo

School Conversation Questions

Warm-up Task:
With your conversation partners, make a list of the different subjects students study at school.

Vocabulary List

ESL Conversation Questions:

  1. When did you start school? Do you remember your first day?
  2. How far did you have to travel from home to school? How did you get to school?
  3. Did you enjoy school life? What did you like and dislike about it?
  4. Who was your favorite teacher? What do you remember about him or her?
  5. What was your favorite subject at school? Why?
  6. Did you have to wear a uniform to school? If so, what did yours look like?
  7. What are the pros and cons of uniforms for school kids?
  8. How many children were there in your class? What is the best number of students for a class?
  9. Did you go to any academies or receive any tutoring outside of your main school? Is extra education like that necessary?
  10. What did you and your classmates do during your lunch break?
  11. Was there bullying at your school? Did you have to deal with any bullies?
  12. Did you get a lot of homework? Do you think it helped you learn?
  13. How much sport did you do at school? Is sport important for school kids?
  14. Was art a significant part of your schooling?
  15. Did you learn any practical subjects like woodwork or cooking? What do you think about that kind of practical education?
  16. Were your schools single-sex or co-educational? Which style is better?
  17. Were you involved in any musical or theatrical performances at school? What memories of these events do you have?
  18. When students behaved badly, how were they punished at your school?
  19. What do you think about physical punishment? Is it effective?
  20. Did you ever skip school? What did you do instead of going to school?


School Conversation Questions photo

English Conversation Questions

Warm-up Question:
How long have you been studying English? How old were you when you first learned some English?

Vocabulary List

ESL Conversation Questions:

  1. Why do you study English?
  2. Do you enjoy speaking in a language that is not your mother tongue?
  3. How well do you speak English? Is it possible to learn to speak English like a native speaker does?
  4. What level of English would satisfy you? What learning goals do you have?
  5. How did you feel about English at school? How was it taught?
  6. Is English easier or more difficult to learn than other languages? Why do you think so?
  7. Do you speak any languages other than your native language and English? What do you like about those other languages?
  8. When it comes to English, what are your strengths and weaknesses? Choose from vocabulary, grammar, fluency, pronunciation, reading, listening, writing, and idioms. Which do you most want to improve? Why?
  9. Have you taken any standardized English tests such as TOEIC, TOEFL, or IELTS? Did studying for these tests help you to improve your English?
  10. English is widely spoken as a second language around the world. Why is this?
  11. Many native English speakers do not learn to speak other languages well. Should they? Why? What are the benefits of learning another language?
  12. Many languages have adopted English loanwords. Which words in your language are borrowed from English?
  13. Are there any words from your native language that are commonly used by native English speakers? What are they?
  14. Will technology eliminate the need to learn other languages? How?
  15. What study tips do you have for people who want to improve their English? What is the best way to improve quickly?
  16. Do you watch television shows in English to help improve your English skills? How effective is this method? What shows can you recommend?
  17. What is your favorite word in English? What do you like about it?
  18. Is it important to learn slang or swearwords in English? Why or why not?
  19. How do you feel when you speak with a native speaker of English?
  20. Will English be replaced as a global language? How long will this take? Which language will be the next global language?

English Conversation Questions photo

Education Conversation Questions

Warm-up Question:
Are you learning anything these days? If not, is there something you are interested in learning about?

ESL Conversation Questions:

  1. How important is education? Why?
  2. Does your country have a good education system? What are its strengths and weaknesses?
  3. Which countries are thought to have good education systems? Why are they considered good?
  4. Is education only for the young? What things should people learn as they get older?
  5. Henry Ford said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” Do you agree? Why?
  6. Do you enjoy learning new things? Give an example if you can.
  7. Does learning make you tired? Is it hard work?
  8. Have you ever considered becoming a teacher? Why are you or aren’t you suited for that job?
  9. What characteristics should a good teacher have?
  10. Who has taught you a lot in your life?
  11. Some people learn on their own. What things, if any, have you learned without teachers or formal education?
  12. Some people feel education damages originality and creativity. What do you think?
  13. How do you feel about tests and examinations? Are they necessary?
  14. What’s your learning style? Do you learn best by listening, reading, interaction, doing things, or by some other method?
  15. Do you prefer to spend time with people of a similar level of education to yourself? Why or why not?
  16. John Dewey said, “education is not a preparation for life, but is life itself”. What do you think he meant?