EFL Debate Topic – Smoking

This week’s debate topic is smoking and it’s legality in countries around the world. To prepare for a class on this topic, have a look at the post below, and it might also be a good idea to research the smoking laws and restrictions that exist in the country where you teach.

As with all of my debates, students should be encouraged to speak their mind about a topic and contribute to the discourse. They should use vocabulary that’s relevant to the topic, which I list at the bottom. If they are given a point of view to talk about which doesn’t reflect how they feel, it is often beneficial for them to be the ‘devil’s advocate’ and try to win the debate anyway.

Here are both sides of the argument and the points for and against, use these as guides for the students and encourage them to come up with their own.

Smoking should be banned completely

  1. Smoking causes serious health problems, and costs the health services millions.
  2. Secondary smoke can also be very dangerous, putting even non – smokers at risk of illness.
  3. Smokers sometimes leave their cigarette butts on the floor, which is unfriendly to the environment and causes litter.


People who wish to should be allowed to smoke whenever and wherever they like

  1. Alcohol also causes health problems, should that be prohibited too?
  2. People should be allowed to make their own decisions.
  3. A lot of governments around the world make a lot of money from the tax on tobacco imports.

Good Vocabulary

  • addiction
  • ash
  • ash tray
  • chain smoker
  • cigarette butt
  • filter
  • heavy smoker
  • legal age
  • light smoker
  • lung cancer
  • nicotine
  • non-smoker
  • non-smoking section
  • package
  • passive smoke
  • smoke
  • smoker
  • smoking section
  • tar
  • tax
  • vending machine


One thought on “EFL Debate Topic – Smoking

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