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READING PASSAGE 1

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1-13 which are based on Reading Passage 1 below.

The “Extinct” Grass in Britain

A

The British grass interrupted brome was said to be extinct, just like the Dodo. Called interrupted brome because of its gappy seed-head, this unprepossessing grass was found nowhere else in the world, Gardening experts from the Victorian lira were first to record it. In the early 20th century, it grew far and wide across southern England. But it quickly vanished and by 1972 was nowhere to be found. Even the seeds stored at the Cambridge University Botanic Garden as an insurance policy were dead, having been mistakenly kept at room temperature. Fans of the glass were devastated.

B

However, reports of its decline were not entirely correct. Interrupted brome has enjoyed a revival, one that’s not due to science. Because of the work of one gardening enthusiast, interrupted brome is thriving as a pot plant. The relaunching into the wild of Britain’s almost extinct plant has excited conservationists everywhere

C

Originally, Philip Smith didn’t know that he had the very unusual grass at his own home. When he heard about the grass becoming extinct, he wanted to do something surprising. He attended a meeting of the British Botanical Society in Manchester in 1979, and seized His opporlunity. He said that it was so disappointing to hear about the demise of the interrupted brome. “What a pity we didn’t research it further!” he added. Then. all of a sudden he displayed his pots with so called “extinct grass” lot all to see.

D

Smith had kept the seeds from the last stronghold of the grass, Pamisford in 1963. It was then when the grass stalled to disappear from the wild. Smith cultivated the grass, year after year. Ultimately, it was his curiosity in the plant that saved it. not scientific or technological projects that

E

For now, the bromes future is guaranteed. The seeds front Smith’s plants have beet, securely stored in the cutting edge facilities of Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst Place in Sussex. And living plants thrive at the botanic gardens at Kew, Edinburgh and Cambridge. This year, seeds are also saved at sites all across the country and the grass now nourishes at several public gardens too.

F

The grass will now be reintroduced to the British countryside. As a part of the Species Recovery Project, the organisation English Nature will re-introduce interrupted brome into the agricultural landscape, provided willing farmers are found. Alas, the grass is neither beautiful not practical. it is undoubtedly a weed, a weed that nobody cares for these days. The brome wax probably never widespread enough to annoy farmers and today, no one would appreciate its productivity or nutritious qualities. As a grass, it leaves a lot to be desited by agriculturalists.

G

Smith’s research has attempted to answer the question of where the grass came from. His research points to mutations from other weedy grasses as the most likely source. So close is the relationship that interrupted brome was originally deemed to he a mere variety of soil brome by the great Victorian taxonomist Professor Hackel. A botanist from the 19th century, Druce. had taken notes on the grass and convinced his peers that the grass deserved its own status as a species. Despite Druce growing up in poverty and his self-taught profession, he became the leading botanist of his time.

H

Where the grass came from may be clear, but the timing of its birth may be tougher to find out. A clue lies in its penchant for growing as a weed in fields shared with a fodder crop, in particular nitrogen-fixing legumes such as sainfoin, lucerne or clover. According to agricultural historian Joan Thirsk. the humble sainfoin and its company were first noticed in Britain in the early 17th century. Seeds brought in from the Continent were sown in pastures to feed horses and other livestock. However, back then, only a few enthusiastic gentlemen were willing to use the new crops for their prized horses.

I

Not before too long though, the need to feed the parliamentary armies in Scotland, England and behind was more pressing than ever. farmers were forced to produce more bread, cheese and beer. And by 1650 the legumes were increasingly introduced into arable rotations, to serve as green nature to boost grain yields. A bestseller of its day, Nathaniel Fiennes’s Sainfoin Improved, published in 1671, helped to spread the word. With the advent of sainfoin, clover and lucerne. Britain’s very own rogue grass had suddenly at rivet.

J

Although the credit for the discovery of interrupted brome goes to a Miss A. M. Barnard, who collected the first specimens at Odsey, Bedfordshire, in 1849, the grass had probably lurked undetected in the English countryside for at least a hundred years. Smith thinks the plant- the world’s version of the Dodo probably evolved in the late 17th or early 18th century, once sainfoin became established. Due mainly to the development of the motor car and subsequent decline of fodder crops for horses, the brome declined rapidly over the 20th century. Today, sainfoin has almost disappeared from the countryside, though occasionally its colourful flowers are spotted in lowland nature reserves. More recently artificial fertilizers have made legume rotations unnecessary

K

The close relationship with out-of-fashion crops spells trouble for those seeking to re-establish interrupted brome in today’s countryside. Much like the once common arable weeds, such as the corncockle, its seeds cannot survive long in the soil. Each spring, the brome relied on farmers to resow its seeds; in the days before weed killers and advanced seed sieves, an ample supply would have contaminated supplies of crop seed. However fragile seeds are not the brome’s only problem: this species is also unwilling to release its seeds as they ripen. According to Smith. The grass will struggle to survive even in optimal conditions. It would be very difficult to thrive amongst its more resilient competitors found in today’s improved agricultural landscape

L

Nonetheless, interrupted brome’s reluctance to thrive independently may have some benefits. Any farmer willing to foster this unique contribution to the world’s flora can rest assured that the grass will never become an invasive pest. Restoring interrupted brome to its rightful home could bring other benefits too, particularly if this strange species is granted recognition as a national treasure. Thanks to British farmers, interrupted brome was given the chance to evolve in the first place. Conservationists would like to see the grass grow once again in its natural habitat and perhaps, one day, seeing the grass become a badge of honour for a new generation of environmentally conscious farmers.

Questions 1-8

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1 ?
In boxes 1-8 on you answer sheet, write

TRUE                 if the statement is true

FALSE                if the statement is false

NOT GIVEN      if the information is not given in the passage

1. The name of interrupted brome came from the unprepossessing grass disappeared from places in the world for a period.

2. Interrupted brome seeds cannot sprout because they were kept accidentally at unsuitable temperature.

3. Philip Smith works at University of Manchester.

4. Kew Botanic Gardens will operate English Nature.

5. Interrupted brome grew unwantedly at the sides of sainfoin.

6. Legumes were used for feeding livestock and enriching the soil.

7. The spread of seeds of interrupted brome depends on the harvesting of the farmers.

8. Only the weed killers can stop interrupted brome from becoming an invasive pest.

Questions 9-13

Look at the following opinions or deeds (Questions 9-13) and the list of people below.
Match each opinion or deed with the correct person, A-F.

Write the correct letter, A-F, in boxes 9-13 on your answer sheet.

A          A. M. Barnard
B          Philip Smith
C          George Claridge Druce
D          Joan Thirsk
E          Professor Hackel
F          Nathaniel Fiennes

9     identified interrupted brome as another species of brome.

10   convinced others about the status of interrupted brome in the botanic world.

11   said that sainfoin was first found more than 300 years ago.

12   helped farmers know that sainfoin is useful for enriching the soil.

13   collected the first sample of interrupted brome.

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READING PASSAGE 2

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 14-26 which are based on Reading Passage 2 below. 

Implication of False Belief Experiments

A

A considerable amount of research since the mid 1980s has been concerned with what has been termed children’s theory of mind. This involves children’s ability to understand that people can have different beliefs and representations of the world– a capacity that is shown by four years of age. Furthermore, this ability appears to be absent in children with autism. The ability to work out that another person is thinking is clearly an important aspect of both cognitive and social development. Furthermore, one important explanation for autism is that children suffering from this condition do not have a theory of mind(TOM). Consequently, the development of children’s TOM has attracted considerable attention.

B

Wimmer and Perner devised a ‘false belief task’ to address this question. They used some toys to act out the following story. Maxi left some chocolate in a blue cupboard before he went out. When he was away his mother moved the chocolate to a green cupboard. Children were asked to predict where Maxi willlook for his chocolate when he returns. Most children under four years gave the incorrect answer, that Maxi will look in the green cupboard. Those over four years tended to give the correct answer, that Maxi will look in the blue cupboard. The incorrect answers indicated that the younger children did not understand that Maxi’s beliefs and representations no longer matched the actual state of the world, and they failed to appreciate that Maxi will act on the basis of his beliefs rather than the way that the world is actually organised.

C

A simpler version of the Maxi task was devised by Baron-Cohen to take account of criticisms that younger children may have been affected by the complexity and too much information of the story in the task described above. For example, the child is shown two dolls, Sally and Anne, who have a basket and a box, respectively. Sally also has a marble, which she places in her basket,and then leaves to take a walk. While she is out of the room, Anne takes the marble from the basket, eventually putting it in the box. Sally returns,and child is then asked where Sally will look for the marble. The child passes the task if she answers that Sally will look in the basket, where she put the marble; the child fails the task if she answers that Sally will look in the box,where the child knows the marble is hidden, even though Sally cannot know, since she did not see it hidden there. In order to pass the task, the child must be able to understand that another’s mental representation of the situation is different from their own, and the child must be able to predict behavior based on that understanding. The results of research using false-belief tasks have been fairly consistent: most normally-developing children are unable to pass the tasks until around age four.

D

Leslie argues that, before 18 months, children treat the world in a literal way and rarely demonstrate pretence. He also argues that it is necessary for the cognitive system to distinguish between what is pretend and what is real. If children were not able to do this, they would not be able to distinguish between imagination and reality. Leslie suggested that this pretend play becomes possible because of the presence of a de-coupler that copies primary representations to secondary representations. For example, children, when pretending a banana is a telephone, would make a secondary representation of a banana. They would manipulate this representation and they would use their stored knowledge of ‘telephone’ to build on this pretence.

E

There is also evidence that social processes play a part in the development of TOM. Meins and her colleagues have found that what they term mind mindedness in maternal speech to six-month old infants is related to both security of attachment and to TOM abilities. Mind Mindedness involves speech that discusses infants’ feelings and explains their behaviour in terms of mental stages(e.g “you1 re feeling hungry”)

F

Lewis investigated older children living in extended families in Crete and Cyprus. They found that children who socially interact with more adults,who have more friends. And who have more older siblings tend to pass TOM tasks at a slightly earlier age than other children. Furthermore, because young children are more likely to talk about their thoughts and feelings with peers than with their mothers, peer interaction may provide a special impetus to the development of a TOM. A similar point has been made by Dunn, who argues that peer interaction is more likely to contain pretend play and that it is likely to be more challenging because other children, unlike adults, do not make large adaptations to the communicative needs of other children.

G

In addition, there has been concern that some aspects of the TOM approach underestimate children’s understanding of other people. After all,infants will point to objects apparently in an effort to change a person’s direction of gaze and interest; they can interact quite effectively with other people; they will express their ideas in opposition to the wishes of others; and they will show empathy for the feeling of others. Schatz studied the spontaneous speech of three-year-olds and found that these children used mental terms,and used them in circumstances where there was a contrast between, for example, not being sure where an object was located and finding it, or between pretending and reality. Thus the social abilities of children indicate that they are aware of the difference between mental states and external reality at ages younger than four.

H

A different explanation has been put forward by Harris. He proposed that children use ‘simulation’. This involves putting yourself in the other person’s position, and then trying to predict what the other person would do. Thus success on false belief tasks can be explained by children trying to imagine what they would do if they were a character in the stories, rather than children being able to appreciate the beliefs of other people. Such thinking about situations that do not exist involves what is termed counterfactual reasoning.

I

A different explanation has been put forward by Harris. He proposed that children use “simula­tion”. This involves putting yourself in the other person’s position, and then trying to predict what the other person would do. Thus, success on false belief tasks can be explained by children trying to imagine what they would do if they were a character in the stories, rather than children being able to appreciate the beliefs of other people. Such thinking about situations that do not exist involves what is termed counterfactual reasoning.

  

Questions 14-20

Look at the following statements (Questions 14-20) and the list of researchers below.
Match each statement with the correct researcher, A-G.
Write the correct letter. A-G. in boxes 14-20 on your answer sheet.

List of Researchers

A          Baron-Cohen
B          Meins
C          Wimmer and Pemer
D          Lewis E Dunn F Schatz G Harris
E          Dunn
F          Schatz
G         Harris

14   gave an alternative explanation that children may not be understanding other’s belief

15   found that children under certain age can tell difference between reality and mentality

16   conducted a well-known experiment and drew conclusion that young children were unable to comprehend the real state of the world

17   found that children who get along with adults often comparatively got through the test more easily

18   revised an easier experiment to rule out the possibility that children might be influenced by sophisticated reasoning

19   related social factor such as mother-child communication to capability act in TOM

20   explained children are less likely to tell something interactive to their mother than to their friends

 

Questions 21-26

Complete the summary below.
Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the passage for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 21-26 on your answer sheet. 

In 1980s, research studies were designed to test the subject called Theory of Mind that if children have the ability to represent the reality. First experiments were carried out on this subject on a boy. And questions had been made on where the boy can find the location of the 21 …………………… . But it was accused that it had excessive 22 ………………………. So second modified experiment was can­ ducted involving two dolls, and most children passed the test at the age of 23…………………….. Then Lewis and Dunn researched 24 ……………………….. children in a certain place, and found children who have more interaction such as more con­versation with 25……………………. have better performance in the test, and peer interaction is 26………………………. because of consisting pretending elements.

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READING PASSAGE 3

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 27-40 which are based on Reading Passage 3 below.

What Do Babies Know?

As Daniel Haworth is settled into a high chair and wheeled behind a black screen, a sudden look of worry furrows his 9-month-old brow. His dark blue eyes dart left and right in search of the familiar reassurance of his mother’s face. She calls his name and makes soothing noises, but Daniel senses something unusual is happening. He sucks his fingers for comfort, but, finding no solace, his month crumples, his body stiffens, and he lets rip an almighty shriek of distress. This is the usual expression when babies are left alone or abandoned. Mom picks him up, reassures him, and two minutes later, a chortling and alert Daniel returns to the darkened booth behind the screen and submits himself to baby lab, a unit set up in 2005 at the University of Manchester in northwest England to investigate how babies think.

Watching infants piece life together, seeing their senses, emotions and motor skills take shape, is a source of mystery and endless fascination—at least to parents and developmental psychologists. We can decode their signals of distress or read a million messages into their first smile. But how much do we really know about what’s going on behind those wide, innocent eyes? How much of their understanding of and response to the world comes preloaded at birth? How much is built from scratch by experience? Such are the questions being explored at baby lab. Though the facility is just 18 months old and has tested only 100 infants, it’s already challenging current thinking on what babies know and how they come to know it.

Daniel is now engrossed in watching video clips of a red toy train on a circular track. The train disappears into a tunnel and emerges on the other side. A hidden device above the screen is tracking Daniel’s eyes as they follow the train and measuring the diametre of his pupils 50 times a second. As the child gets bored—or “habituated”, as psychologists call the process— his attention level steadily drops. But it picks up a little whenever some novelty is introduced. The train might be green, or it might be blue. And sometimes an impossible thing happens— the train goes into the tunnel one color and comes out another.

Variations of experiments like this one, examining infant attention, have been a standard tool of developmental psychology ever since the Swiss pioneer of the field, Jean Piaget, started experimenting on his children in the 1920s. Piaget’s work led him to conclude that infants younger than 9 months have no innate knowledge of how the world works or any sense of “object permanence” (that people and things still exist even when they’re not seen). Instead, babies must gradually construct this knowledge from experience. Piaget’s “constructivist” theories were massively influential on postwar educators and psychologist, but over the past 20 years or so they have been largely set aside by a new generation of “nativist” psychologists and cognitive scientists whose more sophisticated experiments led them to theorise that infants arrive already equipped with some knowledge of the physical world and even rudimentary programming for math and language. Baby lab director Sylvain Sirois has been putting these smart-baby theories through a rigorous set of tests. His conclusions so far tend to be more Piagetian: “Babies,” he says, “know nothing.”

What Sirois and his postgraduate assistant Lain Jackson are challenging is the interpretation of a variety of classic experiments begun in the mid-1980s in which babies were shown physical events that appeared to violate such basic concepts as gravity, solidity and contiguity. In one such experiment, by University of Illinois psychologist Renee Baillargeon, a hinged wooden panel appeared to pass right through a box. Baillargeon and M.I.T’s Elizabeth Spelke found that babies as young as 3 1/2 months would reliably look longer at the impossible event than at the normal one. Their conclusion: babies have enough built-in knowledge to recognise that something is wrong.

Sirois does not take issue with the way these experiments were conducted. “The methods are correct and replicable,” he says, “it’s the interpretation that’s the problem.” In a critical review to be published in the forthcoming issue of the European Journal of Developmental Psychology, he and Jackson pour cold water over recent experiments that claim to have observed innate or precocious social cognition skills in infants. His own experiments indicate that a baby’s fascination with physically impossible events merely reflects a response to stimuli that are novel. Data from the eye tracker and the measurement of the pupils (which widen in response to arousal or interest) show that impossible events involving familiar objects are no more interesting than possible events involving novel objects. In other words, when Daniel had seen the red train come out of the tunnel green a few times, he gets as bored as when it stays the same color. The mistake of previous research, says Sirois, has been to leap to the conclusion that infants can understand the concept of impossibility from the mere fact that they are able to perceive some novelty in it. “The real explanation is boring,” he says.

So how do babies bridge the gap between knowing squat and drawing triangles—a task Daniel’s sister Lois, 2 1/2, is happily tackling as she waits for her brother? “Babies have to learn everything, but as Piaget was saying, they start with a few primitive reflexes that get things going,” said Sirois. For example, hardwired in the brain is an instinct that draws a baby’s eyes to a human face. From brain imaging studies we also know that the brain has some sort of visual buffer that continues to represent objects after they have been removed—a lingering perception rather than conceptual understanding. So when babies encounter novel or unexpected events, Sirois explains, “there’s a mismatch between the buffer and the information they’re getting at that moment. And what you do when you’ve got a mismatch is you try to clear the buffer. And that takes attention.” So learning, says Sirois, is essentially the laborious business of resolving mismatches. “The thing is, you can do a lot of it with this wet sticky thing called a brain. It’s a fantastic, statistical-learning machine”. Daniel, exams ended, picks up a plastic tiger and, chewing thoughtfully upon its heat, smiles as if to agree.

 

Questions 27-32

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 3?
In boxes 27-32 on you answer sheet, write

TRUE                 if the statement is true

FALSE                if the statement is false

NOT GIVEN      if the information is not given in the passage

27   Baby’s behavior after being abandoned is not surprising.

28   Parents are over-estimating what babies know.

29   Only 100 experiments have been done but can prove the theories about what we know.

30   Piaget’s theory was rejected by parents in 1920s.

31   Sylvain Sirois’s conclusion on infant’s cognition is similar to Piaget’s.

32   Sylvain Sirois found serious flaws in the experimental designs by Baillargeon and Elizabeth Spelke.

 

Questions 33-37

Complete each sentence with the correct ending, A-E, below.
Write the correct letter, A-E, in boxes 33-37 on your answer sheet.

33   Jean Piaget thinks infants younger than 9 months won’t know something existing

34   Jean Piaget thinks babies only get the knowledge

35   Some cognitive scientists think babies have the mechanism to learn a language

36   Sylvain Sirois thinks that babies can reflect a response to stimuli that are novel

37   Sylvain Sirois thinks babies’ attention level will drop

A          before they are born.
B          before they learn from experience.
C          when they had seen the same thing for a while.
D          when facing the possible and impossible events.
E          when the previous things appear again in the lives.

 

Questions 38-40

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.
Write the correct letter in boxes 38-40 on your answer sheet.

38   What can we know about Daniel in the third paragraph?

A  Daniel’s attention level rose when he saw a blue train.

B  Kid’s attention fell when he was accustomed to the changes.

C  Child’s brain activity was monitored by a special equipment.

D  Size of the train changed when it came out of the tunnel.

39   What can we know from the writer in the fourth paragraph?

A  The theories about what baby knows changed over time.

B  Why the experiments that had been done before were rejected.

C  Infants have the innate knowledge to know the external environment.

D  Piaget’s “constructivist” theories were massively influential on parents.

40   What can we know from the argument of the experiment about the baby in the sixth paragraph?

A  Infants are attracted by various colours of the trains all the time.

B  Sylvain Sirois accuses misleading approaches of current experiments.

C  Sylvain Sirois indicates that only impossible events make children interested.

D  Sylvain Sirois suggests that novel things attract baby’s attention.

Passage 1

1. FALSE

2. TRUE

3. NOT GIVE

4. NOT GIVEN

5. FALSE

6. TRUE

7. FALSE

8. FALSE

9. E

10. C

11. D

12. F

13. A

Passage 2

14. G

15. F

16. C

17. D

18. A

19. B

20. E

21. chocolate

22. information

23. four

24. older

25. adults

26. challenging

Passage 3

27. TRUE

28. NOT GIVEN

29. FALSE

30. NOT GIVEN

31. TRUE

32. FALSE

33. B

34. E

35. A

36. D

37. C

38. B

39. A

40. D

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