READING PASSAGE 1
You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1-13 which are based on Reading Passage 1 below.
The Mozart Effect
Music has been used for centuries to heal the body. In the Ebers Papyrus (one of the earliest medical documents, circa 1550 BC), it was recorded that physicians chanted to heal the sick (Castleman, 1994). In various cultures, we have observed singing as part of healing rituals. In the world of Western medicine, however, using music in medicine lost popularity until the introduction of the radio. Researchers then started to notice that listening to music could have significant physical effects. Therapists noticed music could help calm anxiety, and researchers saw that listening to music, could cause a drop in blood pressure. In addition to these two areas, music has been used with cancer chemotherapy to reduce nausea, during surgery to reduce stress hormone production, during childbirth, and in stroke recovery (Castleman, 1994 and Westley, 1998). It has been shown to decrease pain as well as enhance the effectiveness of the immune system. In Japan, compilations of music are used as medication of sorts. For example, if you want to cure a headache or migraine, the album suggested is Mendelssohn’s “Spring Song”, Dvorak’s “Humoresque”, or part of George Gershwin’s “An American in Paris” (Campbell, 1998). Music is also being used to assist in learning, in a phenomenon called the Mozart Effect.
Frances H. Rauscher, PhD, first demonstrated the correlation between music and learning in an experiment in 1993. His experiment indicated that a 10-minute dose of Mozart could temporarily boost intelligence. Groups of students were given intelligence tests after listening to silence, relaxation tapes, or Mozart’s “Sonata for Two Pianos in D Major” for a short time. He found that after silence, the average IQ score was 110, and after the relaxation tapes, the score rose a point. After listening to Mozart’s music, however, the score jumped to 119 (Westley, 1998). Even students who did not like the music still had an increased score in the IQ test. Rauscher hypothesised that “listening to complex, non-repetitive music, like Mozart’s, may stimulate neural pathways that are important in thinking” (Castleman, 1994).
The same experiment was repeated on rats by Rauscher and Hong Hua Li from Stanford. Rats also demonstrated enhancement in their intelligence performance. These new studies indicate that rats that were exposed to Mozart’s showed “increased gene expression of BDNF (a neural growth factor), CREB (a learning and memory compound), and Synapsin I (a synaptic growth protein)” in the brain’s hippocampus, compared with rats in the control group, which heard only white noise (e.g. the whooshing sound of a V radio tuned between stations).
How exactly does the Mozart Effect work? Researchers are still trying to determine the actual mechanisms for the formation of these enhanced learning pathways. Neuroscientists suspect that music can actually help build and strengthen connections between neurons in the cerebral cortex in a process similar to what occurs in brain development despite its type. When a baby is born, certain connections have already been made – like connections for heartbeat and breathing. As new information is learned and motor skills develop, new neural connections are formed. Neurons that are not used will eventually die while those used repeatedly will form strong connections. Although a large number of these neural connections require experience, they must also occur within a certain time frame. For example, a child born with cataracts cannot develop connections within the visual cortex. If the cataracts are removed by surgery right away, the child’s vision develops normally. However, after the age of 2, if the cataracts are removed, the child will remain blind because those pathways cannot establish themselves.
Music seems to work in the same way. In October of 1997, researchers at the University of Konstanz in Germany found that music actually rewires neural circuits (Begley, 1996). Although some of these circuits are formed for physical skills needed to play an instrument, just listening to music strengthens connections used in higher-order thinking. Listening to music can then be thought of as “exercise” for the brain, improving concentration and enhancing intuition.
If you’re a little sceptical about the claims made by supporters of the Mozart Effect, you’re not alone. Many people accredit the advanced learning of some children who take music lessons to other personality traits, such as motivation and persistence, which are required in all types of learning. There have also been claims of that influencing the results of some experiments.
Furthermore, many people are critical of the role the media had in turning an isolated study into a trend for parents and music educators. After the Mozart Effect was published to the public, the sales of Mozart CDs stayed on the top of the hit list for three weeks. In an article by Michael Linton, he wrote that the research that began this phenomenon (the study by researchers at the University of California, Irvine) showed only a temporary boost in IQ, which was not significant enough to even last throughout the course of the experiment. Using music to influence intelligence was used in Confucian civilisation and Plato alluded to Pythagorean music when he described its ideal state in The Republic. In both of these examples, music did not cause any overwhelming changes, and the theory eventually died out. Linton also asks, “If Mozart’s music were able to improve health, why was Mozart himself so frequently sick? If listening to Mozart’s music increases intelligence and encourages spirituality, why aren’t the world’s smartest and most spiritual people Mozart specialists?” Linton raises an interesting point, if the Mozart Effect causes such significant changes, why isn’t there more documented evidence?
The “trendiness’’ of the Mozart Effect may have died out somewhat, but there are still strong supporters (and opponents) of the claims made in 1993. Since that initial experiment, there has not been a surge of supporting evidence. However, many parents, after playing classical music while pregnant or when their children are young, will swear by the Mozart Effect. A classmate of mine once told me that listening to classical music while studying will help with memorisation. If we approach this controversy from a scientific aspect, although there has been some evidence that music does increase brain activity, actual improvements in learning and memory have not been adequately demonstrated.
Reading Passage 1 has eight paragraphs A-H.
Which paragraph contains the following information?
Write the correct letter A-H in boxes 1-5 on your answer sheet.
1 A description of how music affects the brain development of infants
2 Public’s first reaction to the discovery of the Mozart Effect
3 The description of Rauscher’s original experiment
4 The description of using music for healing in other countries
5 Other qualities needed in all learning
Complete the summary below.
Choose NO MORE THAN ONE WORD from the passage for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 6-8 on your answer sheet.
During the experiment conducted by Frances Rauscher, subjects were exposed to the music for a 6 _______ period of time before they were tested. And Rauscher believes the enhancement in their performance is related to the 7 _______, non-repetitive nature of Mozart’s music. Later, a similar experiment was also repeated on 8 _______.
Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1?
In boxes 9-13 on your answer sheet, write
TRUE if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this
9 All kinds of music can enhance one’s brain performance to somewhat extent.
10 There is no neural connection made when a baby is born.
11 There are very few who question the Mozart Effect.
12 Michael Linton conducted extensive research on Mozart’s life.
13 There is not enough evidence in support of the Mozart Effect today.
READING PASSAGE 2
You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 14-27 which are based on Reading Passage 2 below.
Over the years, most people acquire a repertoire of skills for coping with a range of frightening situations. Scientists are addressing this problem by identifying specific brain processes that regulate fear and its associated behaviors. Despite the availability of noninvasive imaging techniques, such information is still extremely difficult to obtain in humans. Hence, they have turned the attention to another primate, the rhesus monkey. These animals undergo many of the same physiological and psychological developmental stages that humans do, but in a more compressed time span. As they gained more insight into the nature and operation of neural circuits that modulate fear in monkeys, it should be possible to pinpoint the brain processes that cause inordinate anxiety in people and to devise new therapies to counteract it.
For 20 years, Ned Kalin, a psychiatrist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has studied fear in people and monkeys. He explained that monkeys have a palette of fearful, or defensive, behaviors that are controlled by different brain mechanisms. Each winter, Kalin and colleagues Steven Shelton and John Berard study a free-living colony of primates called Rhesus macaques on a 38-acre islet called Cayo Santiago of the coast of Puerto Rico. Over the years, they noticed that the monkeys responded differently to different threats.
Working in a lab back in Madison, Kalin and Shelton put young macaques through three tests, and saw three adaptive fearful responses: when left alone for 10 minutes, most of the monkeys started cooing to attract their mother’s attention. Being separated from mother terrifies infant primates, so this is a smart, adaptive reaction. When a human intruder entered the room and looked away from the monkey, most of the animals skulked toward the back of their cage and froze. Such freezing minimizes the chance of being detected and gives the animal time to figure out what to do. When a person stared expressionless at the monkey, the animal started a kind of “defensive aggression” reaction, with deep barking, bared teeth, and rattling the cage. Staring, Kalin notes, can be very threatening, since it can signify that a predator has located you or that another member of your species is trying to dominate you.
So far, so good. But why did some monkeys freeze for a few seconds, and others for minutes at a time? Why did 5 percent of the preadolescent monkeys freeze when they were stared at, while 95 percent got aggressive? To further define these types of fearful behavior, Kalin gave small amounts of drugs to the monkeys. He found that opiates inhibited the cooing for the mother, which made sense since opiates made naturally by the body are known to affect attachment behavior, but not the aggressive barking. Anti-anxiety drugs like diazepam, or valium, had little or no affect on cooing, but it did decrease barking and freezing.
What does all this mean for people plagued by fear and anxiety disorders? For one thing, that fearful responses combine several elements; fear is not one single thing. For another, the problem is not simply having too much emotion, Kalin says, but of having the wrong one, or being unable to hit the “off” switch. “People in the past have conceptualized problems of emotions as being overly intense responses. But we find animals that are unable to turn off a specific reaction, or which express the wrong reaction”.
Based on earlier observations in humans, the scientists knew that humans carry two versions of the gene, long and short. Some people have two long versions (L/L), but the people with one of each (S/L) are known to experience a higher incidence of social anxiety and other behaviors. Scientists from Duke University Medical Center conducted three experiments with male monkeys that had been genotyped for the S/L or L/L variants to learn how genetic variation might influence their responses to social rewards and punishments. They found that monkeys with one copy of the short gene spent less time gazing at images of the face and eyes of other monkeys, were less likely to engage in risk-taking behavior, and less likely to want to view a picture of a high-status male. “For both human and non-human primates, faces and eyes are rich source of social information, and it’s well established that humans tend to direct visual attention to faces, especially the eye region”, Platt said. “Rhesus monkeys live in highly despotic societies, and convey social rank information by making threats and showing dominant and submissive behaviors”.
In a second experiment, the S/L monkeys were less willing to take risks after they were primed with the faces of high-status males. They more often chose a “safe” option of a fixed volume of juice, rather than the chance for a greater or lesser amount, the “risky” choice. Previous studies have found that inducing fear in human subjects makes them more risk-averse.
The final experiment was a pay-per-view set-up. The monkeys could have a juice reward paired with an image. The images were of high-status male faces, low-status male faces, or a gray square. The L/L monkeys actually had to be paid juice to view the dominant males, while the S/L monkeys gave up juice for a look at these faces.
Altogether, data showed that genetic variation does contribute to social reward and punishment in macaques, and thus shapes social behavior in both humans and rhesus macaques. This study confirms rhesus monkeys can serve as a model of what goes on in our brains, even in the case of social behavior.
Reading Passage 3 contains 9 paragraphs A –I.
Which paragraphs state the following information?
Write the appropriate letters A-I in boxes 14-18 on your answer sheet.
14 Classification of responses to fear.
15 Face of high-status males cause greater fear in the S/L monkey.
16 Facial expressions contain social information.
17 Fear is not a simple emotion.
18 Medicine does not work in some cases.
Choose words from the passage to answer the questions 19-22.
Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS for each answer.
19 What do humans and animals differ while they share the similar physiological and psychological developmental stages?
20 What reaction did the monkey start with when they were gazed at expressionless?
21 How many preadolescent monkeys became aggressive when they were facing domination from another member of their own species?
22 According to the passage, what determines social behavior in both humans and monkeys?
Complete the summary of the Great Eastern.
Choose NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from the passage for each answer.
In order to understand the brain processes that cause 23 _________ in people, and how genetic variation might influence social behavior, scientists first conducted three experiments to gain more insight into fear in monkeys. For both human and monkeys, 24 _________ can convey social information. It was found that monkeys with one copy of the short gene were less likely to look at the face of a 25 _________ and to take a risk. The monkey without a 26 _________ would sight on dominant males if they were rewarded, while the 27 _________ monkeys waived the reward.
You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 28-40 which are based on Reading Passage 3 below.
The Myth of the Five Senses
We see with our eyes and taste with our tongues. Ears are for hearing, skin is for feeling and noses are for smelling. Would anyone claim that ears can smell, or that tongues can see? As a matter of fact, yes. Paul Bach-y-Rita, a neuroscientist at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, believes that the senses are interchangeable; for instance, a tongue can be used for seeing. This “revolutionary” study actually stems from a relatively popular concept among scientists; that the brain is an accommodating organ. It will attempt to carry out the same function, even when part of it is damaged, by redirecting the function to another area of the brain. As opposed to previous mainstream scientists’ understanding that the brain is compartmentalized, it is now more acceptable that the individual “part” of the brain could be somewhat interchangeable.
Paul Bach-y-Rita’s experiments suggest that “we experience the five senses, but where the data comes from may not be so important”. In the article “Can You See With Your Tongue?” the journalist was blindfolded with a small video camera strapped to his forehead, connected to a long plastic strip which was inserted into his mouth. A laptop computer would convert the video’s image into a fewer number of pixels, and those pixels would travel through the plastic strip as electric current, reaching the grid of electrodes that was placed inside the man’s mouth. The scientist told the man that she would soon be rolling a ball towards his right side, left side, or center, and he would have to catch it. And as the journalist stated, “my eyes and ears have no way to tell where it’s going. That leaves my tongue… has more tactile nerve endings than any part of the body other than the lips”. The scientist rolled the ball and a “tingling” passed over the man’s tongue, and he reached out with his left hand and caught the ball.
If the brain can see a ball through a camera and a wet tongue, many new questions arise. What does this concept imply in terms of blindness and deafness? Rather than attempting to reserve these sensory disabilities through surgeries and hearing aids, should we be trying to circumvent them by using different receptors?4 Can we still trust in the idea of the five senses, or was it wrong to categorize our perception of the outside world so strictly?
In fact, the “five senses” may well be another story that should be discarded in lieu of new observation. Aside from the emerging possibility of interchanging a tongue and an eye, there is the highly accepted possibility that our original list of senses is incomplete. Many scientists would add at least these two senses to the list: the kinesthetic sense and the vestibular sense. The first is a sense of self, mostly in terms of limbs and their placement. For instance, I know where my right foot is without looking or feeling for it. It is something that my brain “knows”. This is said to be because of information sent to the brain by the muscles, implying that muscles should be added to the list of sensory organs. If more observations were to be collected on this subject, a more accommodating explanation could potentially be reached. Secondly, the vestibular sense is what most would consider a sense of balance.
Why were these two senses not included in our limited list? It might be the result of a lack of external symbolism. A nose or an eye is an obvious curiosity because of the question it generates: “What does this thing do?” But we have no limb or facial organ dedicated to balance or to kinesthetic awareness. On the other hand, if the vestibular sense and the kinesthetic senses occur solely in the brain, are they truly senses? Should experiences be labeled as senses without representation by an external organ? If one believes that the brain is the true sensory organ and the rest are simply interchangeable receptors, then yes, we should remain open to labeling many new “experiences” as “senses”. But, is there perhaps an overlying truth that directly relates the five senses to the human experience of life?
On way of gaining new insight is to explore the animal world of senses. Migrating animals, for example, are said to have a “sixth sense”, a term which alludes to all unexplainable phenomenon. In reality, what we call the sixth sense includes any number of unrelated senses that everyday humans do not possess and therefore know little about. Perhaps there is a sense of placement on the earth, similar to the kinesthetic sense of bodily placement, which helps animals return home. Perhaps it is simply a “sense of direction” that is more developed or more substantial than what human possess. Scientists have even conjectured that traces of magnetite, found in pigeons and monarch butterflies, could be used as a compass, enabling the animal to sense the magnetic fields of the earth. Those who use the term “mysterious sixth sense” rarely give details about which of these strange abilities they are referring to? The term relating to “past our understanding” is used in such a sweeping, general way that there is no one solid, falsifiable hypothesis. This term does not bring us closer to our understanding of the senses.
In addition to internal mysteries, many animals also possess external sensory organs which we do not. Fish, for instance, have an organ that runs along the sides of their bodies called the lateral-line system. It is made of tiny hair-like sensors that receive information about movements in the water. There is even the ability to distinguish between ordinary, background movement and strange movement that could signify a predator or another creature. This sense also helps the fish to “orient themselves within the current and the stream flow”. Interestingly, “land vertebrates… lost their lateral-line systems somewhere along the evolutionary path, all vertebrates started out with them…” Of course, we no longer consider this sense to be a human perception of life because we no longer possess the organ. But has the sense remained? Perhaps the feeling of being watched, of being followed on a dark sidewalk, is a dull shadow of the sense we used to possess. It is particularly noteworthy that this “feeling” of being followed is often referred to as “intuition”. How is intuition related to senses? In the same sense, how are emotions and senses the same?
New stories that could expand our categorical concepts of the senses are emerging constantly, but we seem to prefer holding onto the old concept of five senses. We would urge towards expanding that category numerically and conceptually. There is much to be explored in terms of the relation of sense and emotion, the utilizations and disabilities of the senses, and a vertebrate’s need for senses compared to other types of animals, in terms of participating in life. The interconnectedness of our senses within the brain and among the external organs is a concept worthy of more attention and exploration, and it will explored more easily when the old, rather arbitrary myth of the five senses is discarded.
Reading Passage 3 contains 8 paragraphs A-H.
Which paragraphs state the following information?
Write the appropriate letters A-H in boxes 28-32 on your answer sheet.
28 Practices of animal migration have helped expand our knowledge of the senses.
29 The subject caught the ball with the help of his tongue.
30 The brain knows where my right foot is without looking at it.
31 An example showing that people’s intuition may work.
32 Humans probably lost a kind of sensory organ during evolution.
Complete the summary below.
Choose your answer from the list below and write them in boxes 33-37 on your answer sheet.
NB There are more words than spaces so you will not use them all.
Many scientists believe that our 33 _________ list of senses lacks other important elements, like the sense of kinesthetic and vestibular. For the first itself, majority cases are about the 34 _________ of our arms and legs. For example, we can feel our feet without looking for them, due to the information link between brain and our 35 _________. For the vestibular sense, it would provide us with 36 _________. That these two senses are excluded from our list might be the result of a lack of external 37 _________.
initial placement sensory organs
limb entrain tongue
movement stability representation
dark muscles picture
Do the following statements agree with the claims of the writer in Reading Passage 3?
On your answer sheet please write
TRUE if the statement is true
FALSE if the statement is false
NOT GIVEN if the information is not given in the passage.
38 Senses are transposable just as the tongue can also be used to hear sounds.
39 Animals are considered to have senses other than the original five.
40 New stories and research have persuaded us to accept the conception of five senses.
6 short/ 10-minute
12 NOT GIVEN
19. time span
20. defensive aggression
21. 95 percent
22. genetic variation
23. inordinate anxiety
24. faces and eyes
25. high-status male
26. short gene
38. NOT GIVEN