Transcript | TOEFL listening practice test 2018 | Test 12

Transcript | TOEFL listening practice test 2018 | Test 12


Narrator: Listen to a conversation between a student and a university employee.

Student: Hi, I need to pick up the gym pass.

Employee: OK. I’ll need your name, year, and university ID.

Student: Here’s my ID card. And my name is Gina Kent, and I’m first year.

Employee: OK. Gina. I’ll type up the pass for you right away.

Student: Great! This is exciting. I can’t wait to get started.

Employee: Oh, this is a wonderful gym.

Student: That’s what everybody has been saying. Everyone is talking about the new pool, the new indoor course. But what I love is all the classes.

Employee: The classes…?

Student: Yes, like the swimming and tennis classes and everything.

Employee: Oh yeah, but this pass doesn’t entitle you to those.

Student: It doesn’t?

Employee: No, the classes fall into separate category.

Student: But, that’s my whole reason for getting a pass. I mean, I was planning to take a swimming class.

Employee:  But that’s not how it works. This pass gives you access to the gym and to all the equipment, into the pool and so forth. But not with team practicing, so you have to check the schedule.

Student: But what do I have to do if I want to take a class?

Employee: You have to: one, register; and two, pay the fee for the class.

Student: But that’s not fair.

Employee: Well, I think if you can think about it. You’ll see that it’s fair.

Student: But people who play sports in the gym… they don’t have to pay anything.

Employee: Yes, but they just come in, and play or swim on their own. But, taking a class—that is a different story, I mean, someone has to pay the instructor.

Student: So, if I want to enroll in a class.

Employee: Then you have to pay extra. The fee isn’t very high, but there’s a fee. So, what class did you say you want to take?

Student: Swimming…

Employee: OK. Swimming classes are thirty dollars a semester.

Student: I guess I could swing that. But I’m still not convinced it’s fair. So, do I pay you?

Employee:  Well, first, you need to talk to the instructor. They have to assess your level and steer you into the right class, you know, beginner, intermediate…

Student: You mean, I have to swim for them? Show them what I can do?

Employee: No, no, you just tell them a little bit about your experiences and skills, so they know what level you should be in.

Student: Oh, OK. So, I guess I’ll need an appointment.

Employee: And I can make that for you right now.

And I’ll tell up you about your gym ID card. You’ll need it to get into the building. Now about that appointment… how does Wednesday at three sounds?

Student: Fine…

Employee: OK. Then you’ll be meeting with Mark Guess. He’s a swimming instructor. He also coaches the swim team. And here, I’ve jotted it all down for you.

Student: Great! Thanks.


Narrator: Listen to a conversation between a student and a Professor.

Student: Hi professor, I guess you want to see me.

Professor: Hi Bill thanks for coming. I want to talk to you about …..

Student: Is there something wrong with my research paper?

Professor: No, not at all, in fact it’s very good. That’s why I want to talk to you.

Student: Oh, thanks

Professor: I think you know that the department is looking to hire a new professor, are you familiar with our hiring process.

Student: No, but what is that got to do with me.

Professor: Well, Bill, we have several qualified applicants for serious about and this part of this interview process

we have to meet with the committee of the professors and students in our department.

They also have to give a talk.

Student: You mean like a lecture?

Professor: Yes, like a sample lecture on one of their academic interests

Student: Oh, see you can see their teaching style

Professor: Exactly

Student: Hah…Make sense

Professor: So I’d like to know if you be willing to join us as the student’s representatives on the interview committee.

It’ll be a good experience for you. You could put it on your resume.

Student: Oh… better looks good for my graduate application, I guess, so, what do I have to do

Professor: The department’s secretary will give you a schedule of the applicant’s thesis

if you are free, we’d like you to attend our talks and then later you can give us your opinion.

Oh and we usually serve lunch and snacks depending on what time the talk is.

Student: Cool, that’s another good reason to do this. Um… when is the next talk?

Professor: We actually haven’t any yet, the first one is next Friday.

It’s 10 AM, then lunch, then the formal discussion with the applicant right after.

Student: Oh well, I’m free on Fridays if all the talks are on Fridays, I will be able to make all of them.

Professor: That’s great, now you should know this job candidate is interested in the lifecycle in the forest.

Student: That’s what my research about.

Professor: Yes, I know that’s why I feel necessary to point out that even though these applicants’ research interests were similar to yours;

we want you to tell us what you think about the teaching of all these applicants. Your perspective is as a student,

how the applicant teaches in the classroom that was important to us.

Student: I understand so how many applicants are there?

Professor: Let’s see, we have 4, all very good candidates, that we will be looking at over the next few weeks. It’s going to be a tough decision.

But it’ll be a good experience for you, especially if you’re going to graduate school.

Student: Thank you. It’ll be cool to do this. I’ll get the copy of the schedule from the secretary on my way out.

Professor: You’re welcome, seeing you in class this afternoon



Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a Biology Class. The class has been learning about birds.

Professor: Ok, today we are going to continue our discussion of the parenting behaviors of birds.

And we are going to start by talking about what are known as distraction displays.

Now if you were a bird and there was a predator around.

What are you going to do?

Well, for one thing you are going to try to attract as little attention as possible, right?

Because if the predator doesn’t know you are there, it is not going to try to eat you.

But sometimes certain species of birds do the exact opposite when the predator approaches they do their best to try to attract the attention of that predator.

Now why would they do that? Well, they do that to draw the predator away from their nests, away from their eggs or their young birds.

And the behaviors that the birds engaging in to distract predators are called distraction displays.

And there are a number of different kinds of distraction displays.

Most of the time, when birds are engaging in distraction displace

they are going to be pretending either that they have injury or that they’re ill or that they’re exhausted.

You know something that’ll make the predator thinks Hum… here is an easy meal.

One pretty common distraction display was called the broken wing display.

And in a broken wing display the bird spreads and drags the wings or its tail, and while it does that,

it slowly moves away from the nests so it really looks like a bird with a broken wing.

And these broken wing displays can be pretty convincing.

Another version of this kind of distraction display is where the birds create same impression of a mouse or some other small animals that running along the ground.

A good example of that kind of display is created by a bird called the purple sandpiper.

Now what’s the purple sandpiper does is when a predator approaches,

it drags its wings but not to give it the impression that its wings are broken but to create the illusion that it has a second pair of legs.

And then it raises its feathers, so it looks like it got a coat of fur.

And then it runs along the ground swirling left and right you know like running around a little rocks and sticks.

And as it goes along it makes a little squeezing noises.

So from a distance it really looks and sounds like a little animal running along the ground trying to get away.

Again to the predator, it looks like an easy meal.

Now what’s interesting is the birds have different levels of performance of these distraction displays.

They don’t give their top performance, their primetime performance every time.

What they do is they save their best performances they’re most conspicuous and most risky displays for the time just before the baby birds become able to take care of themselves.

And the time that way because that when that make the greatest investment in parenting their young.

So they are not going to put their best performance just after they laid their eggs because they have to invest that much more time and energy in parenting yet.

The top performance is going to come later.

Now you have some birds that are quiet mature, are quite capable almost as soon as they hatch.

In that case, the parent will put on the most conspicuous distractions displays just before the babies’ hatch because once the babies are hatch they can pretty much take care themselves,

and then you have others birds that helpless when have hatch.

In that case, the parents will save the best performance until just before the babies get their feathers.



Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in an Architecture Class.

Professor: Today, we are taking a little detour from the grand styles of public architecture we’ve been studying to look at residential architectures in the United States.

Since this is something we can all identify with, I think it will help us see the relationship between the function of a structure and its style or form.

This has been an ongoing theme in our discussion, and we will be getting back to it just a moment.

But before we get started, I want you to take a moment to think: does anyone know what the single most popular style for a house in the United States is today? Bob?

Student 1: “I bet it is the ranch-style house.”

Professor: “Well, in this area, probably. But aren’t we typical? Yes, Sue.”

Student 2: “How about the kind of house my grandparents live in? They call it a Cape Cod.

Professor: That’s the one. Here is a drawing of what we consider of a classic Cape Cod house.

These days, you see this style all over the United States.

But it first showed up in U.S. northeast, in the New England region, around the late1600s.

For those of you who don’t know the northeast costal region, Cape Cod is a peninsula, a narrow strip of land that jets out into the Atlantic,

and so many houses in this particular style were built on Cape Cod, that the name of the place became the name of the style.

Now why did the Cape Cod style house become so popular in the northeast?

Well, one reason is that it’s a great example of form following function.

We’ve talked about this design principle a lot about form following function. And what did we say it’s meant?

Someone give me an application of this principle.

What did this concept that form should follow function? How would it be applied to housing design?

Student 2: Well, if it means the design of the building, it should be based on the needs of people who use it.

Then, well, the architect has to be very practical to think about the people who actually be living in the house or working in the office building, whatever,

so for the architect, it’s all about users not about showing off how creative you can be.

Professor: Good, of course, for a Cape Cod house, it might be even more accurate to say that form also follows climate.

Who knows what the climate like on Cape Cod?

Student 1: Cold in the winter…

Student 2: And whenever I visit my grandparents, it’s really wet.

It’s usually either raining or snowing or foggy and windy, too. I guess because it’s so exposed to the ocean?

Professor: That’s right. So take another look at this drawing, and you can image how this design might be particularly helpful in that kind of climate.

Notice how the house is fairly low to the ground. This relatively low compact structure helps the house withstand the strong winds blowing off the ocean.

And look at the slope of the roof, the steep angle helps keep off all that rain and snow that accumulates in the winter.

Another thing, Cape Cod houses usually face south to take advantage of the sun’s warm through the windows.

That’s helpful in winter. Now what can you tell me about the chimney, about its location.

Student 2: Well, it’s in the middle. Because, does that have something to do with heating the houses?

I mean since the heat never has to travel very far.

Student 1: That means you can heat the house more efficiently, right?

Professor: Exactly, now see how the house has very little exterior decoration, that’s also typical of early Cape Cod houses.

The wind was one reason, nothing sticking out might blow away in the harsh weather, but there was probably another reason,

not related to the climate, more reflection of a rural New England society back then,

you see Cape Cod houses were not built in the big cities, where all the rich people lived back then.

These were the modest dwellings the people who built them simply couldn’t afford lots of expensive decorated details.

But that was more than just matter of money. In these rural areas, people depended on each other for survival.

Neighbors had to help and supported each other in the difficult environment, so you didn’t want to appear to be showing off.

You wanted to avoid anything that might set you apart from your neighbors, the same people you might need to help you someday.

So all these help to create an attitude of conformity in the community,

and you can see why a modest, a very plain style would become so widely imitated throughout rural New England.

Student 2: It is plain, but you know it’s nice looking.

Professor: Good point, and in fact it’s precisely that as aesthetic appeal, the…the purity, the nearly perfect proportion of the houses…

that’s another reason for the cape cod enduring popularity even in the places where the climate was so mild, it’s functional design doesn’t matter.


Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in an environmental science class.

Professor: When land gets develop for human use, the landscape changes.

We don’t see as many types of vegetation, trees, grasses and so forth. This in turn leads to other losses: the loss of animal that once lived there.

Err…but these are the obvious changes, but there are also less obvious changes like the climate.

One interesting case of this…of…of changes in the local land use causing changes in climate, specifically the temperature is in Florida.

Now what comes to mind when you think of the state of Florida?

Student A: Sunshine, beaches.

Student B: Warm weather, oranges…

Professor: Yes, exactly. Florida has long had a great citric industry; large growth of oranges, lemons and the like.

Florida’s winter is very mild; the temperature doesn’t often get below freezing. But there are some areas in Florida that do freeze.

So in the early 1900s, farmers moved even further south in Florida, to areas that were even less likely to freeze.

Obviously, freezing temperatures are danger to the crops. A bad barrier of cold weather, a long spell of frosts could ruin a farm and the entire crop, anyway,

before these citric growers moved south, much of the land in south Florida, was what we called wetlands.

Wetlands are areas of marshy, swampy land, areas where water covers the soil, or is present either at or near the surface of the soil for large part of the year.

Wetlands have their own unique ecosystem, with plants and animals with special an interesting adaptation.

Very exciting, but it’s not what we are talking about today. Emm…where was I?

Student A: Farmers moved south?

Professor: Oh, yes. Farmers moved south. But the land was not suitable for farming.

You can’t grow orange in wetland, so farmers had to transform the wetlands into lands suitable for farming.

To do that, you have to drain the water from the land, move the water elsewhere, and divert to the water sources such as rivers.

Hundreds of miles of drainage canals were built in the wetlands. Now these areas, the new areas the farmers moved to, used to be warm and unlikely to freeze,

however, recently the area has become susceptible to freezes. And we are trying to understand why.

Student B: Is it some global temperature change or weather pattern like El Ni? o or something?

Professor: Well, there are two theories. One idea is as you suggested that major weather patterns, something like El Ni?o, are responsible.

But the other idea and this is the one that I personally subscribe to, is of the changes in the temperature pattern had been brought about by the loss of wetlands.

Student B: Well, how would the loss of wetlands make a difference?

Professor: Well, think about what we’ve been studying so far. We discussed the impact of landscapes on temperature, right?

What affects does the body of water have on an area?

Student A: Oh, yeah. Bodies of water tend to absorb the heat during the day, and then they release the heat at night.

Professor: Yes, exactly. What you just said is what I want you all to understand.

Bodies of water release heat and moisture back into the environment.

So places near large bodies of water are generally milder, err…slightly warmer than those without water.

And what I, another think is that the loss of the wetlands has created the situation where the local temperatures in the area are not slightly different,

slightly colder than they were 100 years ago, before the wetland were drained.

Student B: Emma…do we know what the temperature was like back then?

Professor: Well, we were able to estimate this. We have data about South Florida’s current landscape, emm…the plant cover.

And we were able to reconstruct data about the landscape prior to 1900.

Then we enter those data, information about what the landscape look like before and after the wetlands were drained. We enter the data into a computer weather model.

This model can predict temperatures. And when all the data were entered, an overall cooling trend was predicted by the model.

Student B: How much colder does it get now?

Professor: Well, actually the model shows a drop of only a few degrees Celsius. But this is enough to cause dramatic damage to crops.

If temperatures over night are already very close to the freezing point, then this drop of just a few degrees can take the temperature below freezing.

And freezing causes frosts, which kill crops. These damaging frosts wouldn’t happen if the wetlands were still inexistence,

just as the tiny temperature difference can have major consequences.


Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a Business Class.

Professor: Let’s get started. Um, last time we were talking about the need for advertising.

Now, let’s look at how you can successfully call attention to the service or product you want to sell.

To succeed, you’ve got to develop a systematic approach. If you don’t come up with a system,

um, a plan, you risk **decisions that waste money, or even drive away potential customers. But what does a systematic advertising plan look like?

Well, it covers what we call — the ‘Four Ms’.

The ‘Four Ms’: Market, Media, Money, Message.

All are important areas to focus on when creating your advertising plan. We will look at them one by one.

The First step is to look at your Market, that’s the people who might become customers, buyers of your service or product.

You need to know all about your possible customers:

Who are they? What age group are they? What do they like, or dislike? How do they shop? So, you got that?

A market is a group of potential customers.

Next, Media… Obviously the major media are television, radio, newspapers, magazines, um, billboards, and so forth.

There are all avenues of communication.

And you need to figure out: Which media you should advertise through? Which media will reach your intended audience — your market?

So, you do research, trying to determine which media will reach the most potential customers for the lowest cost.

For instance, if you have a product, that we’ll say teachers would like, then teachers are your market.

So you ask yourself: What magazines do the majority of teachers read?

What TV programs do teachers watch? Do teachers listen to much radio?

At what times of the day? Say, now your research turns up two magazines that teachers read.

And it also shows that the majority of teachers – say ages twenty to thirty – read the magazine about classroom activities.

While most teachers older than that read the other magazine, the one about, oh, let’s say-‘Educational Psychology’.

You think your product will appeal most to teachers aged twenty to thirty,

so you decide to put your advertisement in their favor magazine, the one about classroom activities.

You don’t waste money advertising in the ‘Educational Psychology’ magazine, you know the one that the younger teachers generally don’t read.

And since you’re reaching the majority of the teachers in your target age group, you’re probably spending your money well, which bring us to the third M — Money.

You have an advertising budget to spend, but how do you to spend it wisely. Again, research is the key.

Good research gives you facts, facts that can help you decide, well, as we already mentioned, decide the right market to target, and the best media to use.

But also: When to advertise? or…or how to get the best rates?

Like, may be you’re advertising Sport equipment, and you have been spending most of your budget during the holiday season when people buy gifts for each other.

Now, in theory, that would seem a great time to advertise, but may be a research shows you’re wrong,

that the customers who buy sports equipment tend not to give it as a holiday gift, but want to use it themselves.

In that case, advertising during a different season of the year might give you better results.

And, um, may be it even lower, non-holiday rates, so you actually save money.

But you need to get the facts; facts that come from good research to be certain and know for sure that you’re getting your money’s worth.

OK, finally, there is your message: What you want to say about your product? Why buying it will make the customer’s life easier, or safer or better somehow.

Whatever the message is, make sure you get it right.

Let me give you an example of not getting it right, Ha…ha…ha… you are going to love this one:

There was this Soup Shop, the soup was really tasty, but there weren’t a lot of customers.

The owner thought that may be if they give something away for free with each purchase, then more people would come buy soup.

So they got some cheap socks, and they advertise to give a pair away with each bowl of soup.

But, then even fewer people came to the restaurant.

Well, you can imagine why. People started to associate the soup with feet; they began to imagine the soup smelled like feet.

The advertising massage, soup means free socks, was a bad choice; it was a waste of money. And worse, it caused the loss of customers.

Now, I want everyone to get into small groups and come up with some examples, not of good advertising messages, but of truly disastrous ones.

Think of real examples and make them up, and talk about the reasons those messages are unsuccessful. And then we’ll get back together and share.


Narrator: Listen to a conversation between a student and a professor.

Student: So Professor Tibets, your notes said that you want to see me about my heavy-weight paper.

I have to say that grade wasn’t what I was expecting. I thought I’d done a pretty good job.

Professor: Oh, you did. But do you really want to settle for pretty good when you can do something very good?

Student: You think it can be very good?

Professor: Absolutely!

Student: Would that mean you’d…I could get a better grade?

Professor: Oh, sorry! It’s not for your grade. It’s…I think you could learn a lot by revising it.

Student: You mean, rewrite the whole thing? I really swamped. There’re deadlines wherever I turn and… and I don’t really know how much time I could give it.

Professor: Well, it is a busy time, with spring break coming up next week.

It’s your call. But I think with all a little extra effort, you could really turn this into a fine essay.

Student: No… yeah…I mean, after I read your comments, I…I can see how it tries to do too much.

Professor: Yeah. It’s just too ambitious for the scope of the assignment.

Student: So I should cut out the historical part?

Professor: Yes. I would just stick to the topic. Anything unrelated to the use of nature EMITRY has no place in the paper.

All that tangential material just distracted from the main argument.

Student: Yeah, I never know how much to include. You know…where to draw the line?

Professor: Tell me about it! All writers struggled without one.

But it’s something you can learn. That will become more clear with practice. But I think if you just cut out the…elm…

Student: The stuff about history, but if I cut out those sections, won’t it be too short?

Professor: Well, better a short well-structured paper than a long paper that poorly-structured and wanders off topic.

Student: So all I have to do is to leave those sections?

Professor: Well, not so fast. After you cut out those sections, you’ll have to go back and revise the rest, to see how it all fits together.

And of course, you’ll have to revise the introduction too, to accurately describe what you do in the body of the paper.

But that shouldn’t be too difficult. Just remember to keep the discussion focused. Do you think you can get it to me by noon tomorrow?

Student: Wow…emm…I have so much…er…but I’ll try.

Professor: OK, good! Do try! But if you can’t, well, sure for after spring break, OK?





Narrator: Listen to a conversation between a student and a Department Secretary.

Student: Hi. Miss Andrics.

Secretary: Hi Bret, how are you?

Student: I’m fine; except I have a question about my paycheck.

Secretary: Sure. What’ up?

Student: Well it’s already been several weeks at the end of the semester my check was supposed to go directly into my bank account but there haven’t been any deposits.

Secretary: That’s odd.

Student: Yea, I thought graduate teaching a system for automatically put on the payroll at the beginning of the semester.

Secretary: They are. Let’s see did you complete all the forms for the payroll?

Student: I filled in whatever they sent me, and I returned like the end of August.

Secretary: Hum, well, you definitely should have been paid by now. At least two pay periods have passed since then

Student: I asked the bank and they didn’t know anything. Who should I talk to about this, payroll?

Secretary: I’m going to contact them for you. There was a problem in processing some of the graduate students’ payroll paper work.

‘Cause their computer program crashed after all the information was processed. And some people’s information couldn’t be retrieved.

Student: Hum. But why didn’t any one let me know?

Secretary: I don’t know how they work over there, ’cause they couldn’t even figure out whose information was missing.

And this isn’t the first time, seems like something like this happens every semester.

Student: So how do I find out if my information was lost?

Secretary: I will contact them tomorrow morning to see if you’re in the system. But you’re probably not.

Student: What then will let me to do?

Secretary: Sorry but you will need to fill out those forms again and then I will fax them over the payroll office.

Student: And then what… Well, what I really need to know is how long till I get the money, I’m already a month behind my bills and my tuitions due soon.

Secretary: That’ll get you into the system the same day they receive your paper works. So if you do that tomorrow, you’ll get paid next Friday.

Student: That’s a long time from now. Will that pay checking include all the money I am owed?

Secretary: It should. I will double check with the payroll department.

Student: And another thing, Is there any way I could get paid sooner, I have been teaching all these weeks…

Secretary: I know that’s not fair but I don’t think they can do anything; all the checks are computed automatically in the system. They can’t just write checks.

Student: But there is another one to make mistakes. They’ve never told me!

Woman: I understand how you feel and if I were you, I’d be upset too. I’ll tell you what: when I call them,

I will explain the situation and ask them if there is any way you can be paid sooner. But I have to tell you that base on past experiences you shouldn’t count on it.

Student: (Sigh) I understand thanks. I know it’s’ not your fault and that you’re doing everything you can.

Secretary: Well, what I CAN do is make sure that your first check for total amount the university owes you.

Student: That’ll be great! Thank you. I will be on campus about 10 tomorrow morning and I will come back to see you then.




Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a Biology Class.

Professor: As we learn more about the DNA in human cells and how it controls the growth and development of cells,

then maybe we can explain a very important observation, that when we try to grow most human cells in laboratory, they seem programmed to divide only a certain number of times before they die.

Now this differs with the type of cell. Some cells, like nerve cells, only divide seven to nine times in their total life.

Others, like skin cells, will divide many, many more times. But finally the cells stop renewing themselves and they die.

And in the cells of the human body itself, in the cells of every organ, of almost every type of tissues in the body, the same thing will happen eventually.

OK, you know that all of persons’ genetic information is contained on very long pieces of DNA called Chromosomes.

46 of them are in the human cells that’s23 pairs of these Chromosomes are of very lengths and sizes.

Now if you look at this rough drawing of one of them, one Chromosome is about to divide into two.

You see that it sort of looks like, well actually it’s much more complex than this but it reminds us a couple of springs linked together to coil up pieces of DNA.

And if you stretch them out you will find they contain certain genes, certain sequences of DNA that help to determine how the cells of the body will develop.

When researchers look really carefully at the DNA in Chromosomes though, they were amazed, we all were, to find that only a fraction of it, maybe 20-30%, converts into meaningful genetic information.

It’s incredible; at least it was to me. But if you took away all the DNA that codes for genes, you still have maybe 70% of the DNA left over. That’s the so-called JUNK DNA.

Though the word junk is used sort of townies cheek.

The assumption is that even these DNA doesn’t make up any of the genes it must serve some other purpose.

Anyway, if we examine these ends of these coils of DNA, we will find a sequence of DNA at each end of every human Chromosome, called a telomere.

Now a telomere is a highly repetitious and genetically meaningless sequence of DNA, what we were calling JUNK DNA.

But it does have any important purpose; it is sort of like the plastic tip on each end of shoelace.

It means not help you tie your shoe but that little plastic tip keeps the rest of the shoelace, the shoe string from unraveling into weak and useless threads.

Well, the telomere at the end of Chromosomes seems to do about the same thing— protect the genes the genetically functional parts of the Chromosome from being damaged.

Every time the Chromosome divides, every time one cell divides into two. Pieces of the ends of the Chromosome, the telomere, get broken off.

So after each division, the telomere gets shorter and one of the things that may happen after a while is that pieces of the genes themselves get broken off the Chromosomes.

So the Chromosome is now losing important genetically information and is no longer functional. But as long as the telomeres are at certain length they keep this from happening.

So it seems that, when the, by looking at the length of the telomeres on specific Chromosomes we can actually predict pretty much how long certain cells can successfully go on dividing.

Other some cells just seem to keep on dividing regardless which mean not be always a good thing if it gets out of control.

But when we analyze the cells chemically we find something very interesting, a chemical in them, and an enzyme called telomerase.

As bits of the telomere break off from the end of Chromosome, this chemical, this telomerase can rebuild it, can help resemble the protected DNA, the telomere that the Chromosome is lost.

Someday we may be able to take any cell and keep it alive functioning and reproducing itself essentially forever through the use of telomerase.

And in the future we may have virtually immortal nerve cells and immortal skin cells of whatever because of these chemical,

telomerase can keep the telomere on the ends of Chromosomes from getting any shorter.







Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a Business Class

Professor: Ok, as we’ve talked about a key aspect of running a successful business is knowing, um, getting a good sense of what the customer actually wants, and how they perceive your product.

So with that in mind, I want to describe a very simple method of researching customer preference,

and it is becoming increasingly common, it’s called—-MBWA—-which stands for managing by wandering around.

Now, MBWA, that’s not the most technical sounding name you’ve ever heard, but it describes the process pretty accurately. Here is how it works.

Basically, Um, the idea is that business owners or business managers just go out and actually talk to their customers,

and learn more about how well the business is serving their needs, and try to see what the customer experiences,

because that’s a great way to discover for yourself, how your product is perceived, what the strengths and weaknesses are, you know,

how to you can improved it that sort of thing, you know Dortans, they make soup and can vegetables and such.

Well, the head of the company, had Dortans’ topped executives walk around supermarkets, um, asking shoppers what they thought of Dortans’ soup,

and he use the data to make changes to the company’s product,

I mean, when Dortans of all the companies, embraces something as radical as MBWA, it really show you how popular the theory has become, yes, Lisa?

Student A: But this is dangerous to base decisions on information from a small sample of people? Is it large scale market research safer getting data on a lot of people?

Professor: That’s a good question, and well I don’t want to pretend that W… MBWA is some sort of, um, replacement for other methods of customer research.

Now, the market research data definitely can give you a good idea of, um, of the big picture,

but MBWA is really useful kind of filling in the blanks, you know, getting a good underground sense of how you products you use, and how people need respond to them, and Yes,

the numbers of opinion you get is small so you do need to be careful,

but, good business managers will tell you that the big fear they have an.. .

and one of the most frequent problems they come across is well becoming out of touch with what their customers really want and need,

you know surveys and market research stuff like that, they can only tell you so much about what the customers actually want in their day-to-day lives.

Managing by wandering around on the other hand, that get you in there give you a good sense about what customers needs so.

So when use combination then, MBWA and market research were the powerful tools.

Oh, here is another example for you, um, see you executive for a clothing manufacture.

It was, um, Lken, Lken jeans you know, they went in work in the store for a few days, selling Lken’s cloths.

Now that give them a very different idea about their product, they saw how people responded to it;

they could go up to customers in the store asked questions about it, yes Mike?

Student B: Well, I would think that a lot of customers will be bothered by, you know,

if I’m shopping, I don’t know if I want some business representatives coming up to me and asking me questions,

it’s.. It’s like when I got phone call at home from marketing researchers, I just hang up them

Professor: Oh, well, it’s certainly true that well no one likes getting calls at home from market researchers or people like that,

but I will tell you something. Most customers have exact opposite reaction when they comes to MBWA.

Now, don’t ask me why, because I really have no idea, but the fact is that customers tend to respond really well to MBWA, which is the key reason for a success.

In fact, the techniques of MBWA works so well, they have actually been extended to all kinds of different contacts like politics for instance,

Um, a few years back, the major of Baltimore, Um.. I can guess its name is Shapher or something like that.

Anyway, he decided that the best way to serve the people of the city, of his city, was actually get out there in it and experience the things that they experienced, so he right around the city in,

you know, all parts of it, and he see all the prattles; he see how the trash was sometimes, um, not pickup but off side the street and then they go back to the office and they write these memos,

and these memos to stuff about the problems he had seen, and how they needed to be fixed, you know that sort of thing,

but the thing is he got all the information just by going around and seeing the different Baltimore neighborhoods and talking to the people in them,

and he called it— small politics, we’d call it MBWA, or just, playing good customer service.



Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in a music history class. The professor has been discussing Opera.

Professor: The word opera means work, actually it means works.

It’s the plural of the word opus from the Latin. And in Italian it refers in general to works of art.

Opera Lyric or lyric of opera refers to what we think of as opera, the musical drama.

Opera was commonplace in Italy for almost thousands of years before it became commercial as a venture.

And during those years, several things happened primarily linguistic or thematic and both involving secularization.

Musical drama started in the churches. It was an educational tool.

It was used primarily as a vehicle for teaching religion and was generally presented in the Latin, the language of the Christian Church which had considerable influence in Italy at that time.

But the language of everyday life was evolving in European at a certain point in the middle ages it was really only merchants,

Socratics and clergy who can deal with Latin.

The vast majority of the population used their own regional vernacular in all aspects to their lives.

And so in what is now Italy, operas quit being presented in Latin and started being presented in Italian.

And once that happened, the themes of the opera presentations also started to change.

And musical drama moved from the church to the plaza right outside the church. And the themes again, the themes changed.

And opera was no longer about teaching religion as it was about satire and about expressing the ideas of society your government without committing yourself to writing and risking imprisonment or persecution,

or what have you.

Opera, as we think of it, is of course a rather restive form.

It is the melodious drama of ancient Greek theater, the term ‘melodious drama’ being shortened eventually to ‘melodrama’ because operas frequently are melodramatic, not to say unrealistic.

And the group that put the first operas together that we have today even, were, they were…well…it was a group of men that included GalloLeo’s father Venchesil,

and they met in Florence he and a group of friends of the counts of the party and they formed what is called the Camarola DayirBardy.

And they took classical theater and reproduced it in the Renaissance’s time. This…uh…this produced some of the operas that we have today.

Now what happened in the following centuries is very simple. Opera originated in Italy but was not confined to Italy any more than the Italians were.

And so as the Italians migrated across Europe, they carried theater with them and opera specifically because it was an Italian form.

What happened is that the major divide in opera that endures today took place.

The French said opera auto-reflect the rhythm and Kevin of dramatic literature, bearing in mind that we are talking about the golden age in French literature.

And so the music was secondary, if you will, to the dramatic Kevin of language, to the way the rhythm of language was used to express feeling and used to add drama and of course as a result instead of arias or solos,

which would come to dominated Italian opera.

The French relied on that what is the Italian called French Word 1 or French Word 2 in English. The lyrics were spoken, frequently to the accompany of a harpsichord.

The French said you really cannot talk about real people who lived in opera and they relied on mythology to give them their characters and their plots, mythology, the past old traditions,

the novels of chivalry or the epics of chivalry out of the middle Ages.

The Italian said, no this is a great historical tool and what a better way to educate the public about Neo or Attalla or any number of people than to put them into a play they can see and listen to.

The English appropriated opera after the French. Opera came late to England because all theaters, public theaters were closed, of course, during their civil war.

And it wasn’t until the restoration in 1660 that public theaters again opened and opera took off.

The English made a major adjustment to opera and exported what they had done to opera back to Italy.

So that you have this circle of musical influences, the Italians invented opera, the French adapted it, the English adopted it, and the Italians took it back.

It came to America late and was considered to elites for the general public. But Broadway musicals fulfilled a similar function for a great long while.

George Champon wrote about opera, “If an extraterrestrial being or two appear before us and say,

what is your society like, what is this Earth thing all about, you could do worse than take that creature to an opera.”

Because opera does, after all, begin with a man and a woman and any motion.



Narrator: Listen to part of a lecture in an environmental science class.

Professor: All right folks, let’s continue our discussion of alternative energy sources and move on to what’s probably the most well-known alternative energy source—solar energy.

The sun basically provides earth with virtually unlimited source of energy every day, but the problem has always been how do we tap this source of energy.

Can anyone think of why it’s so difficult to make use of solar energy?

Student A: Because it is hard to gather it?

Professor: That’s exactly it. Solar energy is everywhere, but it’s also quite diffused.

And the thing is the dream of solar energy is not a new one.

Humanity has been trying to use the sun’s light as a reliable source of energy for centuries.

And around the beginning of the 20th century there were actually some primitive solar water heaters on the consumer market.

But they didn’t sell very well. Any of you want to guess why?

Student A: Well, there were other energy choices like oil and natural gas, right?

Professor: Yeah. And for better or for worse, we chose to go down that path as a society.

When you consider economic factors, it’s easy to see why. But then in the1970s, there was an interest in solar energy again. Why do you think that happened?

Student B: Because oil and natural gas were…err…became scarce?

Professor: Well, not exactly. The amount of oil and natural gas in the earth was still plentiful,

but there were other reasons. It’s a political thing really and I’m gonna get into that now.

So what happened in the 1970s was oil and natural gas became very expensive very quickly,

and that spurred people to start looking into alternative forms of energy, solar energy probably being the most popular.

But then in the 80s, this trend reversed itself when the price of oil and natural gas went down.

Alright let’s shift our focus now to some of the technologies that have been invented to overcome the problem of gathering diffused solar energy.

The most basic solution is simply to carefully place windows in a building, so the sun shines into the building and then it’s absorbed and converted into heat.

Can anyone think of where this is most commonly used?

Student:  Greenhouses.

Professor: Yep, greenhouses where plants are kept warm and provided with sunlight because the walls of the building are made entirely of glass.

But we do also have more complex systems that are used for space heating and they fall into two categories, passive and active heating systems.

Passive systems take advantage of the location or design of a house.

For example, solar energy is gathered through large glass panels facing the sun.

The heat is then stored in water-filled tanks or concrete.

No mechanical devices are used in passive heating systems. They operate with little or no mechanical assistance.

With active systems, on the other hand, you collect the solar energy at one location,

and then you use pumps and fans to move heat from the collectors through a plumbing system to a tank,

where can be used to heat a home or to just provide hot water.

Student B: Excuse me professor, but I’ve got to ask, how can solar energy work at night or on cloudy days?

Professor: That’s…Well…that is a really good question.

As a matter of facts, science is still working on it, trying to find ways of enhancing energy storage techniques so that coming of night or cloudy days really wouldn’t matter.

That is the biggest drawback to solar energy. The problem of what do you do in cases where the sun’s light is weak or virtually non-present.

So the storage of solar energy, lots of solar energy, is a really important aspect.

Student A: Does that mean that solar energy can only be used on a small scale, like heating a home?

Professor: Well actually, there have been some attempts to build solar energy power plants.

The world’s largest solar plant is located in Cremer Junction California.

It can generate 194 megawatts of electric power, but that’s just a drop in the bucket.

Right now the utility companies are interested in increasing the capacity of Cremer Junction Plant,

but only time will tell if it will ever develop into a major source of power for that region, considering the economic and political factors involved.


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