Listening 1

You will hear people talking in eight different situations. For questions 1-8, choose the best answer A, B or C.

1   You hear two people talking about their new boss.

      What do they agree about?

      A   She didn’t seem very confident at first.

      B   She doesn’t appear to enjoy her work.

      C   She probably won’t be easy to work for.

2   You hear a young man talking about his sports studies course.

      What does he say about it?

      A   The teaching is better than he’d expected.

      B   Some of the students should have chosen a different course.

      C   It will qualify him to teach a wide variety of sports.

3   You hear a woman talking about a trip to the theatre.

      What is she doing?

      A   expressing concern for someone on the trip

      B   regretting having gone on the trip

      C   criticising the way somebody behaved on the trip

4   You hear a lecturer discussing a scientific experiment with a student.

      What is the lecturer’s purpose?

      A   to show the student how to interpret the results

      B   to help the student make sure the results are accurate

      C   to explain to the student why the results were wrong

5   You hear a man talking about a novel he has read.

      What does he think about it?

      A   the plot is not predictable

      B   the characters are interesting

      C   the setting is unusual

6   You hear a student talking about a geography trip.

      How did she feel about it when she got home?

      A   Relieved that she’d been able to take part in all the activities.

      B   Pleased to have got to know so many people on her course.

      C   Disappointed because she’d learned less than she’d hoped to.

7   You hear two friends talking in an art gallery.

      What does the woman say about the exhibition?

      A   It will probably be a success with the public.

      B   It is similar to other ones she has seen recently.

      C   It has a surprisingly large number of paintings in it.

8   You hear a student talking about learning a new language.

      What does he say about it?

      A   He is finding it quite easy.

      B   He knows it will be useful.

      C   He thinks it should be compulsory.

Answer & Audioscript

1 B   2 C   3 A   4 C   5 D   6 A   7 B   8 D


1   You hear two people talking about their new boss.

A:   So, what do you think about our new boss then?

B:   Kelly? She seems alright.

A:   She didn’t look as if she was enjoying it much, though, did she? You have to love your work if you’re going to do it well, don’t you think?

B:   I don’t think she wasn’t enjoying it, I think she was just getting to grips with everything, you know. It isn’t easy, taking over a new team, and she did appear a bit shy, I suppose.

A:   I think that was it. We’ll soon find out what she’s really like, won’t we?

B:   Yeah, we will.

2   You hear a young man talking about his sports studies course.

Yes, I’m very pleased with the course! The teaching is excellent, as we’d been promised when I applied, and I’ve learned so much. I still have two years to go – I’m pleased about that, because I’m enjoying it so much. I’m also aware that there’s a lot more to cover – by the time we leave, we’ll all have specialised in one or two sports, but we’ll still officially be allowed to coach people in quite a range of others, too. I hadn’t expected to see people on the course who aren’t particularly sporty, but in fact what we study really is appropriate for everybody.

3   You hear a woman talking about a trip to the theatre.

I’d been looking forward to it for weeks. I love Shakespeare, you know. And this production had been given fantastic reviews. I thought I might regret going on this particular trip, though, because the woman next to me coughed all the way there on the bus, poor thing, and I thought she’d be doing that all the way through the play. But she must have had some very good throat sweets – I wish I’d found out what brand they were, actually – because she never coughed once when we were in the theatre. I must say I hope she was alright when she got home, because it was a rotten cold.

4   You hear a lecturer discussing a scientific experiment with a student.

A:   So how do you think the experiment went? Have you got plenty of results to work on?

B:   Yes, but some of them were a bit surprising so I think I’d better repeat it.

A:   Fair enough. In fact that’s exactly what I wanted to talk to you about. It’s a good idea to do that anyway, just to satisfy yourself that you’ve recorded everything properly.

B:   I think I have, but I’ll have another go. It won’t take long.

A:   Great – if the equipment isn’t set up exactly right, that can cause problems of course, but it all looks fine to me. I’ll come back when you’ve finished.

5   You hear a man talking about a novel he has read.

It’s not a bad book, I suppose. It’s about some people living in a fairly conventional community in the countryside – you know the sort of thing, it’s been done before. I did start to care what happened to them, though – the author really brought some quite complex personalities to life. The trouble is, I just knew what was going to happen all the way through the book, and I always find that a little disappointing in a novel. Having said that, it is quite entertaining, and I can recommend it as an enjoyable, relaxing read.

6   You hear a student talking about a geography trip.

A:   So how was your geography trip, then?

B:   Not too bad in the end, actually. I was happy to get home, but I also felt it had lived up to my expectations – certainly as far as the coursework we covered was concerned. I really feel I know what I’m doing now. The weather was disappointing, but it didn’t matter because they’d organised loads of things for us to do. And spending all that time with my classmates turned out to be a real bonus, too. I’ve made quite a few new friends – I needn’t have worried about the side of things at all.

7   You hear two friends talking in an art gallery.

A:   This is a good exhibition, isn’t it? It’s great to see so much all in one place like this.

B:   Yes, and the reviews I read said there was a lot to take in, so I knew there’d be plenty to look at. And they were right about another thing, too.

A:   What’s that?

B:   There’s a lot here that all sorts of people will enjoy, I think. This kind of thing is very fashionable at the moment.

A:   Yeah, I suppose you’re right.

B:   I haven’t seen anything like this myself, though, so it’s great to be able to come here and see what they mean.

8   You hear a student talking about learning a new language.

I didn’t have to learn a new language as well as everything else I have to do on my course, but I thought it would be worth it. I’ll definitely need it at some stage, so I might as well get on with it now. I’m enjoying the challenge, actually. I’ve always found languages fairly straightforward, but this is a bit more complicated, what with all the different tenses and everything. I think people should always be able to choose, you know, whether they do something like this or not, because you really do have to be motivated if you’re going to make a success of it.

Listening 2

You will hear part of an interview with a language expert called Rod Chambers, who is talking about languages which are at risk of disappearing. For questions 24-30, choose the best answer A, B or C.

24   How did Rob become interested in saving endangered languages?

      A   He studied endangered languages during his time at university.

      B   He met a group of people whose language was endangered.

      C   He saw the effects of the issue on his own family.

25   When talking about why languages become extinct, Rod says that

      A   parents tend not to consider the language choices they make.

      B   people recognise the need to be able to communicate widely.

      C   some schools refuse to continue teaching minority languages.

26   What does Rob say about the ways in which languages can be saved?

      A   Some of the ideas are less helpful than others.

      B   Promoting a minority language is easier than people think.

      C   The methods won’t be successful without public support.

27   When talking about the importance of keeping languages alive, Rod says that

      A   languages can be compared to living creatures.

      B   there are more important global issues to deal with.

      C   the matter of culture loss isn’t taken seriously enough.

28   What does Rod say about working on his current project?

      A   He likes listening to people’s life stories.

      B   He prefers to focus on examples of natural speech.

      C   He doesn’t enjoy examining grammatical forms.

29   Rod says that data collected as part of language-saving projects can

      A   inform youngsters about their own family history.

      B   be used in teacher training courses.

      C   help a language come back into use.

30   What does Rod say listeners can do to help save languages?

      A   Encourage native speakers to use their language more.

      B   Attend foreign language classes in their local area.

      C   Approach experts to help on recording languages.

Answer & Audioscript

24 B   25 B   26 C   27 A   28 B   29 C   30 A


Interviewer:   Rod, you work in the field of saving endangered languages. What does that mean and how did you become involved in it?

Rod Chambers:   An endangered language is one at risk of disappearing – nobody’s learning it as a first language. I did a degree in communication – though decided against doing a course on the theme of endangered languages at that point. The issue had actually been staring me in the face my whole life – my grandparents speak a language with a limited population of speakers. Yet it was only when I visited an isolated community while I was travelling the world after university that I realised the importance of the matter. I could see that the younger people had moved away for work, so who would the language be passed on to?

Interviewer:   Why do languages stop being spoken?

Rod Chambers:   As technology’s spread, communication across the world has improved, and schools have focused on teaching international languages like English – rather than minority languages. It’s a pity but it’s understandable. People, such as those in the business world, are aware that they have to be able to speak to others in the global society, and parents may just stop using the minority language at home because they want their children to succeed in communicating in an international language.

Interviewer:   Is it possible to save a language?

Rod Chambers:   Yes – with a lot of determination from the whole community – including those who speak the majority language. Some simple measures can be taken. For example, putting up road signs or launching a local TV station in the minority language, or printing official literature in that language can help people recognise it as a part of their community. These options aren’t without their challenges – but there’s plenty that can be done, provided communities are willing.

Interviewer:   Is it really worth all that effort, though?

Rod Chambers:   Of course! It’s tempting to think there are greater concerns, such as saving our rainforests or protecting endangered animal species. In a way, though, these are quite similar to a minority language! A lot of identity and culture is bound up in a language – so if you lose a language, you risk losing what may be thousands of years’ worth of tradition and knowledge along with it.

Interviewer:   And you’re currently recording a language that’s becoming extinct?

Rod Chambers:   Right – there’re only a handful of speakers left and I’ve been recording some of them speaking the language. I focus on capturing as much natural language as possible, so I might get the person to talk about their childhood, for example. Questions about grammar can be difficult for interviewees to answer and not particularly helpful for me. Later, I listen carefully to the recordings and analyse the structures and vocabulary.

Interviewer:   What happens with the data you’ve collected?

Rod Chambers:   The material can be used as an important teaching tool. This means that current and future generations of children can listen to and learn about their ancestors’ language. In some cases languages are revived – brought back to life in other words – and taught as a second language in schools, which is an attempt to maintain that connection with the past.

Interviewer:   What can listeners do if they’re interested in language-saving projects?

Rod Chambers:   Several things. If your relatives or people in your local community speak an endangered language, persuade them to talk to you in it, so you can learn it and pass it on to your own children. Being surrounded by it will be enough without the need to ask for lessons. Or you can make your own recordings of people speaking and upload them onto an online database – don’t worry about doing any analysis – the experts will do that. That’s it really.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This