Listen to the recording and choose the best answer to each question. To make this practice more like the real test, cover the questions and answers during each conversation.

Questions 1 through 2. Listen to a conversation between a student and a professor.

M: Professor Park?

W: Hello, Tony. How can I help you?

M: Professor Park, I have a problem. My father had to have surgery, and I have to go to Oklahoma. I don’t know how long I’ll be gone. I was wondering if I could take an Incomplete for your class.

W: I’m so sorry to hear about your father. Of course you can take a grade of Incomplete. It means you would
have six weeks to make up the term paper and the final exam. There is also a form that you need to fill out that I have to sign.

M: I’ve got the form right here.

W: Oh, then why don’t we take care of it right now?

  1. Why does the student go to see his professor?
  2. What is required for an Incomplete?

    Questions 3 through 5. Listen to part of a conversation that takes place in the student services office of a university.
    M: Excuse me, I’m looking for Janice.
    W: I’m Janice. What can I do for you?
    M: The cashier in the cafeteria sent me here. I’d like to change my meal plan.
    W: What plan do you have now?
    M: Two meals a day, breakfast and dinner. But I have an early morning class three days a week, and I don’t
    have time to eat breakfast in the cafeteria.
    W: What, no breakfast? That’s not good!
    M: Oh, I still eat! We take turns bringing doughnuts or bagels to have at the break.
    W: Glad to hear it. So … uh … what you have now is Plan B. And what did you want to do?
    M: Well, I was thinking of switching to dinner only, if I can do that, and get a refund for the breakfast I don’t
    eat.
    W: Do you know about Plan C?
    M: Plan C?
    W: It’s for lunch and dinner, and costs only $20 more than Plan B.
    M: Oh, really? Hmm. That sounds like a good deal.
  3. What is the purpose of the conversation?
  4. Why does the woman say this:
    “What, no breakfast? That’s not good!”
  5. Why does the woman tell the man about Plan C?

    Questions 6 through 7. Listen to a conversation between a student and a professor.
    W: Professor Curtis, may I ask you something?
    M: Of course.
    W: My daughter was sick yesterday, and I had to stay home with her. I was wondering—could I make up
    the quiz?
    M: I usually don’t do that for quizzes, only for tests.
    W: But I’m concerned this will affect my grade. I need to do well in this class.
    M: Then I’ve got an idea. If you want to show me what you’ve learned, give me a one–page report,
    summarizing the most important thing you got out of the chapter.
    W: Oh, I can do that. That’s even better than a quiz. Thank you, Professor Curtis.
  6. Why does the student speak to the professor?
  7. What does the professor suggest the student do?

    Questions 8 through 10. Listen to a telephone conversation between two graduate students.
    W: Hello.
    M: Leona? This is Jaspar.
    W: Hi! I’ve been waiting for you to call. Could you get Dr. Bryant for next week?
    M: Dr. Bryant is on sabbatical, but Professor Slocum says he’d be happy to visit our class.
    W: I don’t know Professor Slocum.
    M: He’s an expert on the natural history of the region and has written several books on the topic. I think he’ll be an excellent addition to our seminar.
    W: Good work, Jaspar! This assignment to invite a guest speaker has turned out to be harder than I thought.
    M: But it’s a great assignment, and besides, everyone has to do it. Look at all the professional contacts we’re
    making!
    W: You’re right, it’s very useful. Thanks, again, and I’ll see you tomorrow!
  8. What are the speakers mainly discussing?
  9. Why does the man say this:
    “He’s an expert on the natural history of the region and has written several books on the topic. I think he’ll be an excellent addition to our seminar.”
  10. What is the man’s opinion of the assignment?

Questions 1 through 2. Listen to part of a discussion in a writing class.

M: You probably noticed in your reading for this week that all the stories involved cases of miscommunication between people. You probably also noticed that a lot of this miscommunication was due to cultural differences. This is all good stuff, and so I thought it would be a good idea if this week’s journal theme were along the same lines. What I’d like you to do is think and write about a time when you—or someone you know—experienced some type of miscommunication. It could be any kind of
problem in conveying or in understanding a … Yes?

W: But isn’t this the same topic as last week? I mean, I feel I’ve already written a lot about it. I had to do
something like this in two of my other classes too. Can’t we write about something else for a change?

M: What did you have in mind?

W: I mean, I’m getting tired of writing about my life. And I don’t feel qualified to write about any of my
friends’ problems.

M: Then why not focus on someone you don’t know personally? For example, a scene in a movie or a
television show.

W: Oh. I can do that?

M: Of course. What’s important is your awareness of—that you can recognize instances of miscommunication.

  1. What is the main purpose of the discussion?
  2. What is the woman’s attitude toward the assignment?

    Questions 3 through 6. Listen to part of a talk in a United States history class. The professor is talking about economics in colonial New England.
    W: We know that in colonial New England, the Native Americans—compared to the European colonists—
    had a far greater knowledge of what resources in the environment could be eaten or made useful. Native Americans used a wide range of resources for economic subsistence, and these resources were simply used by the family that acquired them. Only a few resources were accumulated for the purpose of showing a person’s social status—for example, shells, furs, and ornaments of the hunt.
    M: Excuse me, Dr. Singer, but did they … um … did the Native Americans have a concept of wealth?
    W: The Native Americans believed a person’s status came more from kinship and personal alliances than
    from stores of wealth. Their definition of “need” was what they needed to survive. So if they had food, clothing, and shelter, they considered themselves wealthy. For the European colonists, on the other hand, resources in the environment were seen more as
    commodities, as goods that could be exchanged in markets. European economies measured commodities in terms of money values—abstract equivalencies that could be accumulated and could function as indicators of wealth and social status. So, for the colonists, “need” was defined by the markets that bought New England goods. So the Europeans perceived few resources in New England ecosystems,
    but they saw many commodities—fur, fish, timber—which could be sold in the marketplace for profit.
  3. What is the main purpose of the talk?
  4. What does the professor say about the Native Americans’ use of resources?
  5. Listen again to part of the discussion. Then answer the question.
    “Excuse me, Dr. Singer, but did they … um … did the Native Americans have a concept of wealth?”
    “The Native Americans believed a person’s status came more from kinship and personal alliances than from stores of wealth. Their definition of “need” was what they needed to survive. So if they had food, clothing, and shelter, they considered themselves wealthy.”
    Why does the professor say this:
    “So if they had food, clothing, and shelter, they considered themselves wealthy.”
  6. Why does the professor say this:
    “So the Europeans perceived few resources in New England ecosystems, but they saw many commodities—fur, fish, timber—which could be sold in the marketplace for profit.”

    Questions 7 through 10. Listen to part of a talk in an anthropology class. The professor is discussing culture.

M: What would human life be without culture? It’s impossible for us to imagine what we’d be like
without language, without art or religion or technology. Over hundreds of thousands of years of evolution, these aspects of our cultures have become as much a part of us as our anatomy and physiology. We have a lot in common with the people around us. In fact, the number of ideas we have in common with nearby people is very large. A complete list of shared ideas—for example, ideas we share with our own—the people around us—this list would include our ideas about what’s right and wrong, what’s beautiful and ugly, and so on … also our ideas about food, work, love, marriage—every aspect of our lives—even our rules about how to behave toward strangers, friends, animals, and the earth. Think of a particular group of people—any group—say, for example, college students. If you could take all the ideas and behaviors, all the tools and technology, all the things that college students share as a result of being in contact with each other, you’d have what anthropologists call student culture.

W: So, what you’re saying is culture is sort of like a club. College students are a club. It’s because our experience is … like, we go to class, we do homework, we have our computers and cell phones, we hang out with other students. Sometimes we forget what the outside world is like. This is why—that’s what we have in common with other students—it’s why our culture makes us feel like part of a club, right?

M: Hmmm. In a way a culture is like a club—neighboring cultures might share the same ideas and rules, like neighboring clubs do. But the comparison doesn’t completely cut it. Think about it. A club has borders that we can define—but we run into trouble if we try to draw borders around a culture. Culture isn’t a thing. It’s an idea. Still—even though the idea of culture is problematic—some of us believe that by continuing to study cultures, we will eventually be able to explain the similarities and differencesamong us.

  1. What is the purpose of the talk?
  2. Why does the professor mention student culture?
  3. What is the woman’s attitude toward student culture?
  4. What does the professor think of comparing a culture to a club?

Questions 1 through 2. Listen to part of a talk in a business management class.

Management requires a great deal of energy and effort—more than most people care to make. One factor that affects managers and inhibits their capacity to provide leadership is stress. Stress has lots of causes—work overload, criticism from
workers—and can have negative health effects, including loss of sleep.

It’s a fact: managers have to deal with stress. Some handle it by making time to be by themselves. Most have some favorite place or pastime—a beach to walk on, maybe a stream to fish in, or a game to play with the kids. It’s important to
have some form of rest and relaxation—creating art, working with your hands, gardening, playing sports—the list goes on. Rest doesn’t always mean inactivity. For some people, exercise is rest.

  1. What is the main purpose of the talk?
  2. What is the professor’s opinion of rest?

    Questions 3 through 6. Listen to part of a lecture in a psychology class. The professor is talking about clinical psychology.
    In order to know how behavior patterns can be changed, the clinical psychologist has to know what causes the client to behave the way he or she does. Identifying the cause is called diagnosis. In diagnosis a psychologist uses two basic tools:
    interviews and psychological tests. Through interviews and tests, the psychologist tries to classify the problem to see if it falls into any known categories.
    A psychologist may also attempt to describe the client’s personality in terms of how he or she deals with life. For example, some people like to lead, and some prefer to follow the lead of others. Some people are active and outgoing, while others are quiet and reflective.
    In a diagnostic interview, the psychologist takes the client’s case history. This means learning how the client got along with parents, teachers, and friends, as well as how the person handled difficult situations in the past.
    Psychological testing is the other way that a psychologist tries to diagnose the client’s problems. Clinical psychologists have developed tests that can help them learn about a person’s intelligence and personality, as well as tests that show whether a person’s behavior or perception is influenced by emotions, disabilities, or other factors.
    Personality testing is useful in discovering how the client tries to adjust to life. Personality tests can reveal unconscious feelings the person is unable to talk about. This information can be important and could help shorten the length of treatment
    required.
  3. What is the purpose of the lecture?
  4. How do clinical psychologists diagnose a client’s problems?
  5. Why does the professor discuss taking a client’s case history?
  6. According to the professor, why are personality tests useful?

    Questions 7 through 10. A public health officer has been invited to speak to a biology class. She will be discussing bats. Listen to the beginning of the talk.
    Now that the warmer weather and longer days are here, we aren’t the only ones spending more time outdoors. This is an active time for bats as well. Migratory bats are now returning to the area, and young bats are starting to explore
    their environment. Young bats go off course, and this is when most people come into contact with them.
    Bats are a normal part of our environment and can even be a good thing. Bats help keep down the insect population, especially mosquitoes. Normal bat activity includes sleeping during the daytime and becoming active and flying around in
    search of food at night, starting at dusk. It’s unusual to see a bat during the day. Normal bats don’t fly around in the daytime, or lie or crawl on the ground, so if you encounter a bat like that, you should call the health department immediately.
    If you have bats in your attic or house, contact a pest control agency. They do not kill the bats, but make
    recommendations on how to get the bats out of your home. You’ll want to create a one–way valve from your house to outside so they can get out but can’t come in. To avoid having bats in your house altogether, find all possible entry points into the house and close them by caulking or screening the gap. Bats can squeeze through a gap of one–half inch.
    Bats are the most likely carriers of rabies in our area, and almost one hundred percent of rabies cases are fatal. Make sure your dogs and cats are vaccinated against rabies. If you should come in physical contact with a bat, it’s important to get in
    touch with the health department or a doctor immediately. If possible, catch the bat so it can be tested for rabies.
  7. What is the main purpose of the talk?
  8. Why does the speaker say this:
    “Bats help keep down the insect population, especially mosquitoes.”
  9. How can you prevent bats from entering your house?
  10. Why does the speaker recommend getting medical advice if you come in physical contact with a bat?

Questions 1 through 5. Listen to part of a lecture in an anthropology class. The professor is discussing humor and laughter.

Being amused is a condition we’re all familiar with, but what exactly is a sense of humor? Well, it’s something verypersonal, and yet we communicate it to others by laughing. Laughter is a universal human expression. All normal human
beings can laugh. Children as young as one month old will laugh. People often laugh together, and people laugh louder and more frequently when other people around them are also laughing. Every comedian knows this, and research has confirmed it.

Physically, laughter is an involuntary tensing of the chest muscles, followed by a rapid inhalation and exhalation of breath—a mechanism that releases tension. For most people, a good laugh is welcome—and worth looking for—because it
brings pleasure and relief.

Human adults everywhere in the world enjoy making their children laugh. Adults make playful attacks on their children, tickling, teasing, and even pretending to bite them. Adults will throw small children up in the air and catch them again. This
causes the child to experience mild stress, but in a secure setting because the stress is carefully controlled by the parent. And when the child laughs, it’s a signal that he or she has successfully dealt with mild feelings of insecurity. This teaches the child about the shocks and fears that are part of human life, and which every human eventually has to deal with. This element of shock in an otherwise safe situation is a universal characteristic of situations where people laugh.

Our sense of humor allows us to tell stories about situations we haven’t experienced firsthand. We call these little stories “jokes.” We tell jokes to show our frustration with the society we live in, especially its … well, its rules. Social rules and conventions provide us with a range of situations that we can turn into humor. And the things we joke about—the conventions and rules we live by—are sort of tense areas in our society, they’re areas where we can see the need for change. Humor gives us the power to think about changing the rules. Making jokes and laughing are safe ways to change our social rules and conventions. Therefore, comedians—whether they know it or not—are agents of social change.

The ability to laugh is a vital part of being human. People who laugh together—or laugh at each other’s jokes—feel close to each other. Laughter creates a sense of connection. Humor can also help us deal with anxieties that we can’t escape.
Failure, fear, pain, and death—they’re all real to us, as they are to no other animal on Earth. And without a sense of humor, it would be difficult for us to live with everything we that know about the world.

  1. According to the professor, why do most people welcome laughter?
  2. Why does the professor say this:
    “Adults make playful attacks on their children, tickling, teasing, and even pretending to bite them. Adults will throw small children up in the air and catch them again.”
  3. Which of the following is a universal characteristic of situations where people laugh?
  4. Why does the professor talk about social rules andconventions?
  5. Listen again to part of the lecture. Then answer the question.
    “The ability to laugh is a vital part of being human. People who laugh together—or laugh at each other’s jokes—feel close to each other. Laughter creates a sense of connection. Humor can also help us deal with anxieties that we can’t escape. Failure, fear, pain, and death—they’re all real to us, as they are to no other animal on Earth. And without a sense of humor, it would be difficult for us to live with everything that we know about the world.”

Why does the professor say this:

“And without a sense of humor, it would be difficult for us to live with everything that we know about the world.”

Questions 1 through 5. Listen to a talk in a geology class.

Now that you know how sedimentary rocks are formed, the next step is to look at various shapes and learn to read them. On our next field trip, we’ll see several of the formations called mesas. This landform gets its name from its flat top. “Mesa”
means “table” in Spanish. The Spanish people who explored the area thought these flat–topped hills looked sort of like tables. A mesa is wider than it is high—kind of like a large table. We’ll also see a variety of other formations, such as buttes, spires, and pillars. All of these spectacular forms are the result of the erosion of rocks of differing hardness. Water erodes rocks both mechanically and chemically. The fast–moving water of rivers carries silt, gravel, and rock debris, and this scours the rock underneath. Slow–moving standing water also erodes when it enters tiny rock pores and dissolves the cements holding the rock together.

On a mesa, conditions are optimal for erosion. With enough time, even the durable top of a mesa will decrease in size. The sides of a mesa are often made of shale or softer sandstone. The slope of the sides will increase the water’s speed and force as it runs down. Freezing and thawing loosen the surface rock. Debris carried by the running water cuts away the softer surface rock. As the softer base of the mesa recedes, the edge of the top is weakened, and it eventually cracks, splits, and falls.

As a mesa is shrunk in size by water, it may be cut into smaller landforms. If these smaller remnants are at least as high as they are wide, they are called buttes. The great buttes we’ll see were all created by water rather than wind erosion. Further erosion can change a butte into a tower or spire. This is because the shaft of the spire is usually harder than the base on which it stands, and like a mesa or butte, it’s capped with a rim of even harder rock. The spires you’ll see were left standing after the sandstone around them eroded away. You can see why they’re also called chimneys. I mean, they sort of jut up from the sandstone floor.

Further erosion of the softer rock may reduce the spire to some interesting and really weird forms. We’ll see some hourglass–shaped rocks, mushroom–shaped rocks, and a sort of strangely eroded pillar. Over time, erosion finally topples these
rocks to the ground. They might remain there as boulders, or they might undergo further erosion that completely demolishes them so they disintegrate into pebbles. Finally, these pebbles end up as the sand we walk on as we explore the surface of the plateau.

  1. What is the main purpose of the talk?
  2. Why does the professor say this:
    “A mesa is wider than it is high—kind of like a large table. We’ll also see a variety of other formations, such as buttes, spires, and pillars.”
  3. What reasons are given for the erosion of a mesa?
  4. Listen again to part of the talk. Then answer the question.
    “The spires you’ll see were left standing after the sandstone around them eroded away. You can see why they’re also called chimneys. I mean, they sort of jut up from the sandstone floor.”

Why does the professor say this:

“I mean, they sort of jut up from the sandstone floor.”

  1. Listen again to part of the talk. Then answer the question.
    “Further erosion of the softer rock may reduce the spire to some interesting and really weird forms. We’ll see some hourglass–shaped rocks, mushroom–shaped rocks, and a sort of strangely eroded pillar. Over time, erosion finally topples these rocks to the ground. They might remain there as boulders, or they might undergo further erosion that completely demolishes them so they disintegrate into pebbles.”

Why does the professor say this:

“They might remain there as boulders, or they might undergo further erosion that completely demolishes them so they disintegrate into pebbles.”

Extension

1 Listen again to the conversations in Exercise 2.3.A above. With your classmates, discuss the meaning of the underlined expressions in the script below. In what other situations might these expressions be used?
take an incomplete I was wondering if I could take an incomplete for your class.
make up …you would have six weeks to make up the term paper….
take care of …why don’t we take care of it right now?
take turns We take turns bringing doughnuts or bagels to have at the break.
sounds like Oh, really? Hmm. That sounds like a good deal.
have to My daughter was sick yesterday, and I had to stay home with her.
get out of …the most important thing you got out of the chapter.
turn out This assignment… has turned out to be harder than I thought.
2 The conversations in Exercise 2.3.A above mention the following aspects of North American university life:
a grade of incomplete a meal plan a sabbatical
a term paper a make-up test a seminar
a final exam a one-page report a guest speaker
With your classmates, discuss whether these are part of university life in your country. Which of the items are present at the school where you are currently studying? 3 Listen again to the three discussions in Exercise 2.3.B above. Imagine that you are one of the students in each discussion. In your own words, write a brief summary of each discussion. The following expressions may be useful:
  • Today my professor talked about…
  • I asked…
  • We discussed…
  • What I wanted to know was…
  • Then she asked…
  • I made a comment about…
  • My professor explained how…
  • I described…

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