Listening Part 1

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

1   You hear a man talking to his friend about his choice of career.

      What does he say?

      A   He wishes his current job was more exciting.

      B   He has plans to change his profession.

      C   He regrets not following his dream.

2   You hear a woman talking about being a student at university.

      Why did she study French?

      A   because her parents wanted her to

      B   because she had enjoyed her visit to the country

      C   because she wanted to become a translator

3   You hear a man talking about acupressure.

      Which of the following does he say acupressure can do?

      A   relieve headaches

      B   change people’s mood

      C   prevent colds

4   You hear an actress talking about her new role.

      What character is she playing?

      A   a bank manager

      B   a mother

      C   a taxi driver

5   You hear two students talking about remembering new vocabulary.

      What do they agree about?

      A   The memorisation technique is boring.

      B   The association technique is time-consuming.

      C   The picture technique is effective.

6   You hear the captain of a plane talking to his passengers.

      Which city are they closest to at the moment?

      A   Brussels

      B   Rotterdam

      C   Amsterdam

7   You hear a woman talking about taking up dancing as a hobby.

      How does she feel about it now?

      A   surprised by the progress she’s already made

      B   very upset by her obvious lack of skill

      C   motivated to improve her ability

8   You hear a man and a woman talking about an author’s latest work.

      What does the woman think is a masterpiece?

      A   the author’s collection of short stories

      B   the author’s latest novel

      C   the author’s latest film script

Answer & Audioscript

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


1   You hear a man talking to his friend about his choice of career.

A:   What would have been your dream job if you hadn’t become an accountant?

B:   I’d have been a professional musician. I grew up playing the cello and I loved performing. I couldn’t think of a more rewarding job when I was at college.

A:   So, why didn’t you follow your instinct?

B:   It was hugely competitive trying to get a place in one of the big orchestras – and to me, if I couldn’t play with the best, there was no point. It’s not that I think I made the wrong decision, though I wouldn’t mind doing something a bit more inspiring. Re-training is so expensive though, and what I do its rewards.

2   You hear a woman talking about being a student at university.

It’s odd looking back on the formative experiences of your life. My decision to study French at university was based purely on the fact that I’d been on a school trip to Paris when I was a kid, and I was absolutely enchanted by the city. I’d never previously intended to study French, or become a translator or use the language for work. In fact, my parents were keen for me to follow in my father’s footsteps and study economics. But they’re proud of my language abilities now, and can see it was the right thing for me to do.

3   You hear a man talking about acupressure.

Acupressure is an ancient Chinese healing method that involves applying pressure to certain parts of the body to relieve pain. It relaxes muscular tension and balances the vital forces of the body. Acupressure can relief from head, neck and shoulder aches, promote healing, and some people say it can even stop you catching colds – though I can’t say there’s any scientific evidence for that as far as I know. I’ll be happy to demonstrate a few techniques in a moment. I just need a couple of volunteers. Thank you, please come and sit here while I …

4   You hear an actress talking about her new role.

Oh, I think it’ll be brilliant playing Marsha! It’s a fantastic character part, it really is! You see, my son in the play robs a bank, and the funny part about the whole thing is that his wife is the manager of the bank. He doesn’t realise it at first because she’s only just been promoted, and she wanted it to be a surprise for him, so she was going to tell him that night. But then he goes in, robs the place and has a taxi waiting for him to get him away from the scene! It’s a comedy of course, and I can’t wait for the opening night.

5   You hear two students talking about remembering new vocabulary.

A:   That was a useful class. I’ve always struggled to remember new words in German.

B:   The association technique made a lot of sense – where you write down words you know with similar meanings.

A:   It takes ages though.

B:   Well, that’s a fair point. I still think I’d prefer it to memorisation – just repeating a word until it sticks – totally uninteresting.

A:   I’ve never minded that, but what I found most helpful was the picture technique – where you relate the sound of the new word to something you know in your own language and think of a picture to represent it.

B:   That wouldn’t work for me – I don’t have a good enough imagination!

6   You hear the captain of a plane talking to his passengers.

Good evening ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. I hope you’re enjoying the flight. We’ll shortly start making our descent into Brussels, where we’ll refuel before continuing with the next leg of our journey. The skies are lovely and clear this evening which means that in a few minutes’ time you’ll be able to see the lights of the port of Rotterdam over to your right if you look out of the window. The bright lights you can currently see to your left are in Amsterdam. No doubt many of you have already enjoyed visiting the city. So, please sit back and enjoy the rest of the flight.

7   You hear a woman talking about taking up dancing as a hobby.

I’ve just started dancing – something I never thought I’d do in a million years! But there’ve been so many of these dance series on TV, I just thought it might be worth a go. The Latin dances are the ones that really appeal to me, so I booked myself onto a course of salsa lessons. The first class didn’t go quite as expected. For some reason, I just thought I’d be a natural, which turned out to be pretty far from the truth. I’ve got two left feet and my coordination was terrible! I came away feeling slightly disappointed but I’m determined to do better next time. Watch this space!

8   You hear a man and a woman talking about an author’s latest work.

A:   Nick, have you read that new book by Zach Park – you know, that brilliant science-fiction writer? I think it really deserves to be called a masterpiece.

B:   You mean Green Apples? Yes, I have read it, actually, and I enjoyed it a lot. I’m a big fan of Zach Park. I’ve read all his novels and collections of short stories, and I think this is his best novel so far. Do you know he’s also written several film scripts, including The Track and All About You?

A:   It doesn’t surprise me. He’s extremely talented.

Listening Part 2

You will hear part of a careers talk by a nurse called Anne England. For questions 9-18, complete the sentences with a word or short phrase.

Being a nurse

Anne was inspired to become a nurse when she heard her (9) ………………………… talking about the job.

Anne’s teachers told her she would need to improve her (10) ………………………… a bit if she wanted to be a good nurse.

Anne hadn’t expected to go to so many (11) ………………………… when she was a student.

Anne’s (12) ………………………… helped her with some of her student projects.

Anne found learning how to (13) ………………………… people safely was particularly useful.

When Anne got her first job, she had to go to work by (14) ………………………… every day.

Anne didn’t enjoy having to do a lot of (15) ………………………… .

People say Anne is much more (16) ………………………… than she used to be.

One of Anne’s patients gave her a (17) ………………………… which she always wears.

If Anne wasn’t a nurse, she would like to be an (18) ………………………… .

Answer & Audioscript

9 cousin

10 maths / Maths / mathematics / Mathematics

11 parties   12 friends

13 lift   14 bike / bicycle

15 paperwork   16 confident

17 bracelet   18 air hostess


Hello everybody, my name’s Anne England. Thanks for turning up to listen to me talk about my career as a nurse this evening. I hope that some of you will decide to take up nursing in the future, because it really is a fantastic job. First of all, I’ll tell you a little bit about how I got started.

I had no idea what I wanted to do, at least that was the case until I was about 14 when I was listening to a family conversation – I was supposed to be doing my homework, but my sister and I always left the door open so we could hear our parents chatting next door. Anyway, my cousin was talking to my dad, and telling him all about how much she enjoyed her work – she was a nurse in a busy hospital – and I thought: yeah, that’s exactly what I’d like to do!

When I told my teachers that’s what I’d decided, they were very encouraging. But they did say that although I was pretty good at school, and always got good marks in English and biology, I’d have to get a little better at maths or I wouldn’t be able to do the job well.

I must say being a student nurse involved a great deal of hard work, and lots of late nights staying up to do my coursework, but I’d known it would be like that. What was a surprise, though, was that there were so many parties, too!

But we did have to study plenty of different subjects – there are so many things that are relevant to nursing, and we covered most of them on our course. Some of the projects we had to do were really demanding, and there were a lot of them. I couldn’t have done them all without my friends – some of them gave me a hand when I was stuck and I’ll always be grateful for that. My teachers always insisted on everything being handed in on time.

I learned lots of practical things too, of course, and we were taught physiotherapy, which I enjoyed. Actually, the thing that has helped me throughout my career has been knowing how to lift someone without hurting either them or myself. Anyway, I was lucky enough to get my first job in the teaching hospital where I’d trained, so at least I knew my way around. The pay was very low, though, and even though I lived five kilometres away, I couldn’t afford to go to work by bus or by tube, so I always had to use my bike, which was tough when it was raining!

I loved working there. My colleagues were lovely and it was all really interesting. I never minded dealing with difficult patients or having to work nights. What wasn’t so much fun was all the paperwork, though. I still don’t like that much!

Naturally, I’ve learnt an awful lot since those early days, and I’ve developed as a person, too, of course. People say I’ve always been very patient and kind – which is nice of them – but I’m very confident now compared to when I started.

I’ve looked after some wonderful people over the years, and it’s always such a good feeling when people get better and leave the ward smiling and happy. You know you’ve done a good job then. Patients often give me a hug and a kiss when they go, and I was even given this bracelet by a lady I looked after for six months. I wear it every day.

I think I have one of the best jobs in the world. I can’t imagine doing an office job – my sister’s an accountant and although she earns far more than I do, I think my job’s much more rewarding. One thing I could imagine doing, though, is being an air hostess – you have to look after people and always be cheerful, even when you’re feeling tired – and I’d get to do some travelling as well!

Listening Part 3

You will hear five short extracts in which people are talking about a journal or magazine they read regularly. For questions 19-23, choose from the list A-H what each speaker says. Use the letters only once. There are three extra letters which you do not need to use.

A   The fashion photography is excellent.

B   It provides an excellent news round-up.

C   It presents a variety of different views.

D   It features the best photographs.

E   It has good travel information.

F   It has information on things I buy.

G   It is both entertaining and informative.

H   It has the most up-to-date information about fashion.

19   Speaker 1

20   Speaker 2

21   Speaker 3

22   Speaker 4

23   Speaker 5

Answer & Audioscript

19 C   20 H   21 D   22 B   23 F


Speaker 1

I think it’s vital in this day and age to be well informed about current affairs, which of course isn’t difficult now the internet has developed into a news medium. But I also find it’s essential to know what intelligent people think about various issues, so you need to get a range of opinions, right across the political spectrum. That’s where Books for All is so good. It doesn’t just review books, you see, it has articles on all sorts of issues related to recent publications and I personally find it fascinating. I wouldn’t be without it!

Speaker 2

I write about style and fashion, and although I have my own ways of finding out what the big fashion houses are doing for the next season, I also want to know what consumers are thinking. I always read Clothes World because of what it tells me about people who buy fashion – about consumers. I think it must be the only magazine that has got articles about the latest trends by very professional fashion editors. That’s so important when you do a job like mine and it’s always the first thing I read.

Speaker 3

I’ve been taking the International Geographer for years now. It really is an excellent magazine, with lots of interesting articles about wildlife and the natural world in general. I think the pictures are always first rate. They must have the best photographers in the world working for them, and you can see the results. I spend ages looking at them, and it’s very inspiring for me – I just want to get out there and try and do the same sort of thing myself! I never quite manage it, though I’m sure I’ve improved since I first started.

Speaker 4

I’m a subscriber of the Finance Review, which is a weekly financial magazine. I’m an economist, and reading the Finance Review is the best way to keep up with the latest trends. The main reason I get the Finance Review, however, is that I don’t have time to read a more serious daily newspaper, so the summary it provides, especially of the news in general, is really invaluable for me. I commute to work on the train, and I always have a copy with me. That makes my journey far more interesting. I could download it, I know, but I still like old-fashioned printed paper!

Speaker 5

I take a monthly magazine called Railways for All, which keeps me informed about model railways, which is a great hobby of mine. I’m a collector of antique miniature railways, and I can always find information about auctions or model trains on sale. They also have articles comparing prices of different models and descriptions of new products available. It’s something I’ve done since I was a child, and I hope my children will enjoy it as much in the future – I’m keeping the magazines for them, because they’ll probably be collectors’ items eventually too.

Listening Part 4

You will hear a radio interview with a woman called Kay Stanley who is talking about a condition called dyslexia. For questions 24-30, choose the best answer A, B or C.

24   The Stanley Trust

      A   helped Kay a lot when she was a child.

      B   was started by Kay to help other people with dyslexia.

      C   was founded by Kay’s father.

25   How did Kay’s parents first realise she had dyslexia?

      A   She didn’t know stories that other children could read.

      B   Her mother found her memorising audio books.

      C   She couldn’t spell words that other children knew.

26   What was Kay told by an expert on dyslexia?

      A   She has a milder form of the condition.

      B   She will be able to overcome her problems by reading.

      C   Spelling will always be a particular problem for her.

27   How does dyslexia affect the way people think?

      A   It can make people think more creatively.

      B   It prevents them from solving problems effectively.

      C   It makes it harder for them to follow logic.

28   What made Kay work hard to improve her reading?

      A   It was the only way she could study acting.

      B   She didn’t want people to think she was stupid.

      C   Her father encouraged her.

29   Kay feels that children with dyslexia should

      A   attend special schools.

      B   have special training to help them read.

      C   be treated like all other children at school.

30   How does Kay want to publicise the problem of dyslexia?

      A   by acting in a film about the subject

      B   by giving talks to parents of dyslexic children

      C   by setting a positive example

Answer & Audioscript

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


Interviewer:   Today I’m going to be talking to a successful young American singer, Kay Stanley, about a special aspect of her work – one that’s not very well known on this side of the Atlantic. And that’s the Stanley Trust. Kay, welcome to the programme. Would you start by explaining what the Stanley Trust is?

Key Stanley:   Sure. It’s basically an organisation set up by my father to help kids who have problems reading and writing – kids with dyslexia. I’m dyslexic myself, you see, and after I had been diagnosed, my dad realised there weren’t many organisations for dyslexic kids, and he decided to set one up himself a few years later.

Interviewer:   I believe one of the problems with dyslexia is that it isn’t diagnosed in many cases, or not early enough. Was this what happened with you?

Key Stanley:   I used to learn stories off by heart by playing the tapes of them over and over again, and then pretend to read them. In fact, I was so good at it that my mum only guessed there was something wrong when she caught me learning the stories like that! Then my parents got me examined by a doctor, and luckily, he knew something about dyslexia, so he sent me to an expert.

Interviewer:   And what did the expert say about your condition?

Key Stanley:   He said I’m pretty fortunate because my condition is less severe, compared to other people with dyslexia. Some people have a great deal of trouble spelling even the most simple, high-frequency words. Other people have difficulty reading very short notices and signs. Of course the experts see all sorts of people so they can build up a picture of the different effects it has.

Interviewer:   You must know quite a lot about it yourself by now?

Key Stanley:   I do, yes, but one of the problems with dyslexia is that even the specialists don’t really understand it. They know dyslexics think in a different way from other people. They often have distinctive talents and a creative imagination. But whether dyslexia has other effects on the brain or not, nobody really knows. Some people say you use a different sort of logic if you’re dyslexic, and it’s easier for you to solve problems, but of course it’s hard to test that.

Interviewer:   And once you were diagnosed, did you start to improve?

Key Stanley:   Not immediately. At first, I was too unhappy about the whole thing, and my parents felt frustrated and confused. I knew at an early age that I wanted to become a singer, and getting school qualifications was not a priority for me. In the end, I did work hard to improve my reading skills just to show my fellow students that I was every bit as clever as they were.

Interviewer:   Is it better for children with dyslexia to get special treatment?

Key Stanley:   It depends what you mean by that. I don’t think it’s a good idea to isolate them and put them in special schools, because that makes them feel awkward. On the other hand, they do need extra teaching in reading and writing, by teachers who understand the problem.

Interviewer:   And getting back to the Stanley Trust, how do you feel you can best help the Trust? Will you be giving speeches about dyslexia in public?

Key Stanley:   I doubt it. I think the public would get tired of someone like me talking about the subject all the time. It seems to me the best thing I can do is set a good example of how dyslexics can live a normal, happy life.

Interviewer:   Well, I wish you luck with that. And thank you for talking to us today.

Key Stanley:   Thank you.

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