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 two travel agents talking about the holidays people choose.

      What do they agree about?

      A   People like travelling in groups.

      B   Good accommodation is important.

      C   Cities are the most popular places to visit.

2   You hear a writer talking about his job.

      What does he say about it?

      A   It is the perfect job for him.

      B   It is not as difficult as people think.

      C   It is the only thing he ever wanted to do.

3   You hear two people talking about a TV programme they both watched.

      What sort of TV programme was it?

      A   a travel documentary

      B   a comedy series

      C   a sports programme

4   You hear a woman talking about her first day working as a restaurant chef.

      How does she feel now?

      A   anxious about her performance

      B   irritated with her colleagues

      C   worried about her job prospects

5   You hear two members of local government talking about a park.

      What does the man say about it?

      A   It is very well looked after.

      B   It is pleasant to sit in.

      C   It is a good place to see wildlife.

6   You hear a decorator talking to his colleague about moving some furniture.

      What is he doing?

      A   requesting help from his colleague

      B   agreeing with his colleague’s suggestion

      C   giving his colleague advice on something

7   You hear two chemistry students talking about their course.

      What is the woman’s opinion of it?

      A   It is taught in an interesting way.

      B   All the topics are thoroughly covered.

      C   They are being well prepared for future jobs.

8   You hear a student talking about the room she rents.

      According to the woman, the room is

      A   too small for all her things.

      B   too noisy in the evenings.

      C   too expensive for her.

Answer & Audioscript

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


1   You hear two travel agents talking about the holidays people choose.

A:   It’s interesting to see what holidays people choose, isn’t it?

B:   Yes – they tend to love all the coach tours and trips where they can be with lots of other people all the time.

A:   You’ve been finding that, maybe, but I can’t say I have.

B:   Well they certainly appreciate staying in nice hotels at a reasonable price.

A:   Can’t argue with that, but you can do that travelling alone, can’t you? I’ve noticed more people are looking for trips to major cities.

B:   I’ve been dealing with people looking for something a bit different – usually involving beaches!

2   You hear a writer talking about his job.

People often assume that being a novelist is something you do because that’s what you’ve always dreamt of doing, and in many cases that’s absolutely true. In mine, though, it was more of a process of trying out a few different things first, then finding myself having a go at writing something. And I knew almost immediately it was exactly the right thing for me as a career. The books I’ve written so far are by no means perfect, but that’s hardly surprising. When people say it must be tough to be a writer, I tell them they’re wrong: it’s a whole lot worse than tough!

3   You hear two people talking about a TV programme they both watched.

A:   Did you watch that programme on Channel 4 last night?

B:   Yeah! And those shots of penguins in Antarctica – weren’t they funny!

A:   Yeah, when they were speeding through the water, then leaping out when they got to the edge of the ice – it was brilliant!

B:   And then they slid down those icy slopes, or just fell over!

A:   That really made me laugh. They’re so fit and fast when they’re swimming – they’d easily beat the best Olympic swimmers – and then so clumsy on land! But that was the point, wasn’t it? To show how world-class swimmers can learn from animals – in the water, at least.

4   You hear a woman talking about her first day working as a restaurant chef.

I can’t say my first day went very well. I know it wasn’t my fault at all, and I did my best. And I don’t blame anyone else in the kitchen, in fact. We were all working as fast as we could and the restaurant was absolutely full. There were also some staff off sick and we just couldn’t keep up with the orders. Of course I’m a bit concerned about that, even though the manager told me not to be and that it was just bad luck. But I can’t help it because after all, chefs are supposed to be able to deal with things like that.

5   You hear two members of local government talking about a park.

A:   Have you read that report on Chester Park?

B:   I have, lots of people say it’s a great place for a walk after work.

A:   That’s good.

B:   One thing they mention is that it’s all a bit overgrown, so people who like their parks neat and tidy aren’t keen! But as a result, it’s full of birds that you wouldn’t find elsewhere in the city.

A:   It sounds perfect, sitting under a tree on a park bench …

B:   Well there were lots of complaints about the benches being old and broken, I’m afraid.

A:   Oh well, we can easily sort that out!

6   You hear a decorator talking to his colleague about moving some furniture.

I’m going to decorate the living room today, and if I need your help, I’ll ask, of course, but I think I can manage to move most of the furniture out on my own. It shouldn’t take long and none of it’s that heavy. If I were thirty years younger, like you, it would be even easier, but I’ll be fine. But I will take your advice on one thing, and it’s nice of you to think of it – I’ll leave the piano where it is, as it’s so heavy, and just cover it while I do the decorating. You’ve got plenty to do yourself, I know.

7   You hear two chemistry students talking about their course.

A:   So what do you think about the course so far, then?

B:   Not bad at all. It’s a bit dull at times, but it’s all pretty useful, I think.

A:   Absolutely.

B:   I mean, once we’ve qualified, and we’re employed in a lab, or wherever, what we’ve been taught here will mean we really do know what we’re doing.

A:   Right. There are some things, though, which I’d hoped we might look at in a bit more depth.

B:   Yeah, but I suppose they have to make sure we have all the basics, and then we can specialise later on, in the final part of the course.

A:   That’s true.

8   You hear a student talking about the room she rents.

The good thing about the room I rent is that it’s only ten minutes away on foot from the university campus, so I always get to lectures on time. The downside is that during the day there’s lots of traffic in the street below, so I have to have the window closed so that it’s quiet enough for me to work. But it’s fine in the evenings. It’s certainly not spacious, though, so I’ve had to leave some of the stuff I wanted to bring at my parents’. There’s plenty of room there. And of course, I wish the rent was a bit lower – but it’s manageable.

Listening Part 2

You will hear a woman talking to new students about the university music society. For questions 9-18, complete the sentences with a word or short phrase.

University music society

The society was started by music (9) ………………………… 50 years ago.

To join the (10) …………………………, simply turn up at a practice session.

Everyone is invited to attend the talk on (11) ………………………… this evening.

There will be a jazz performance in the (12) ………………………… Hall next Wednesday.

The society’s next social event is a (13) ………………………… .

The theme for the composer competition is (14) ………………………… this year.

Membership of the society includes free (15) ………………………… to concerts around the country.

The music practice rooms’ (16) ………………………… as currently being restored.

Society members also do things in the local area, such as giving concerts in (17) ………………………… .

The weekly (18) ………………………… is a good way of finding out about society events.

Answer & Audioscript

9 tutors   10 choir   11 violins

12 Union   13 dinner   14 poetry

15 transport   16 ceilings

17 hospitals   18 newsletter


Hi everybody! I’m delighted to see so many of you here today for my introductory talk about the university music society. The society was originally set up fifty years ago by a group of tutors in the music department, and is open to anyone at the university who’d like to join. They ran it themselves for the first ten years, and then handed over the organisation of the society to students, and it has stayed that way ever since.

We’re extremely proud of all our different groups, from the small chamber ensembles to the swing band. If you want to join the orchestra, there are auditions at the beginning of every term, and everyone’s welcome to come along and try out for a place. And if you’re interested in being part of the choir, our largest group, all you need do is come along when we’re practising and if you like what we’re doing, then you’re in!

We invite experts from all over the world to give talks on various different subjects throughout the year – we’ve had speakers telling us about pianos through the ages, and how to make trumpets. The first one of term is this evening, and it’s all about violins. It promises to be very interesting, so I hope you can come along, even if flutes are really more your thing!

And next Wednesday, you’ll have a chance to hear our jazz group playing in a concert. Do you remember where the Kings Hall is, where you had your first-year welcome talk yesterday? Well, the concert will be in the slightly smaller Union Hall, just opposite. It’s where a lot of our concerts take place.

We also have an active social programme, with events sometimes only loosely connected to music. They’re a great way of getting to know other members in an informal, relaxed setting. We have a quiz every couple of months, which is very popular, but coming up this month before the next one, there’s a dinner, so you can get to know both new and more long-standing members of the society.

We have a competition every year for aspiring composers. It took us a bit of time choosing a theme this year – in the past we’ve covered topics from nature to dance – the committee finally agreed it would be poetry, so we’ll see how that goes!

There is a small annual charge for membership: fifteen pounds. But thanks to generous additional funding from the University Music Department, that not only includes free tickets to concerts here at the university, but also transport to concerts all over the country, offering members the chance to see some great performances. We always get good discounts on tickets to those.

The music department also funded work restoring the music practice room. The floors were all redone last year. You’ll see how great they look now – they were in quite a state before. And they’ve made a start on the ceilings, but we hope this work will be finished very soon.

The society doesn’t only do things that benefit the students here. We also promote music in the local community. Some of the things we do include going to local schools to give talks – which have led to schoolchildren then coming to attend concerts here at the university – as well as actually giving concerts, which is what we’ve done in local hospitals, and had lots of positive feedback, so we’ll be doing that again!

Keep up to date with all our goings-on by looking at our website. There’s a blog by a cellist that’s particularly funny and popular – check it out! And every week we upload a newsletter with all the information about what we’re doing and where.

Now, does anyone have any questions?

Listening Part 3

You will hear five short extracts in which people are talking about why they entered a young engineers’ competition. 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   I was told about it by a lecturer.

B   I think I could do very well.

C   I felt I needed a challenge.

D   I need publicity for my invention.

E   I want to meet people with similar interests.

F   I was encouraged to by someone I know.

G   I nearly won another competition.

H   I hope it will help me get a job.

19   Speaker 1

20   Speaker 2

21   Speaker 3

22   Speaker 4

23   Speaker 5

Answer & Audioscript

19 C   20 F   21 H   22 B   23 E


Speaker 1

I don’t expect to win the young engineers’ competition, but it’s been an interesting experience so far. I’ve always liked making things, and I’d had this idea for a while for a new type of battery charger. When I saw the advertisement for the competition, I’d actually been wondering what to do with myself during the summer holidays. All my friends were away and I couldn’t find a summer job so I thought: right, time to get on with it and stop just lazing around. I knew that if I didn’t do something that got me thinking and was a bit of an effort, I’d have just wasted the summer.

Speaker 2

I’ve entered other young engineers’ competitions in the past, and haven’t come anywhere near getting a prize. But it’s good fun and this time, a guy on my course who I get on well with said he was entering and that he hoped I would too. Our entries are very different – he’s got an idea for a navigation system and mine’s just a new kind of drinks bottle – so we’ll see how it goes! Our lecturer thinks it’s a great idea and has offered lots of advice and encouragement. I think all engineering students should enter a competition if they can – it really is an opportunity to develop your skills.

Speaker 3

I know a few people who’ve entered young engineers’ competitions, and some of them have even won prizes. One of my friends was even interviewed for a national newspaper when he won. I’m sure I won’t win anything myself, but I still think that doing something like this will impress potential employers. I’m trying to do all the right things to get my career off the ground. It’s also fun putting an idea into practice that so far I’ve only carried around in my head. I’ve only recently graduated from university, and it feels quite relaxing to do something fun like this after all the demanding work for my course.

Speaker 4

When I told one of my lecturers I’d entered the competition, he said it sounded very time-consuming but he’d back me. He also said he’d tell the other students on the course about it in case they wanted to enter as well. If there are a whole load of us there, it’ll be fun! I’m actually quite confident I might have a chance of getting a prize, which is why I entered, even though I’ve never done anything like this before. I’ve got this great idea for a new type of compact and easy-to-use ice cream maker, and I’ve really enjoyed working on it over the past few weeks.

Speaker 5

I saw an ad in the paper for the competition, and I contacted them straight away. I’d never heard of anything like that in our area before, and no one I know is into engineering. I’m hoping it will give me the chance to talk to people I have something in common with. I’m applying for university at the moment, so any practical experience I can get before going will help. Having to design something and develop it on my own is proving very interesting, and though I had a few doubts before, I’m absolutely sure that that engineering is the right course for me.

Listening Part 4

You will hear an interview with a man called Matt Brown, who has recently trained as a sailing instructor. For questions 24-30, choose the best answer A, B or C.

24   Why did Matt decide to become a sailing instructor?

      A   He had wanted to do it since he was a child.

      B   It would allow him to pay for his studies.

      C   A friend of his recommended he should.

25   What does Matt say about choosing somewhere to train as a sailing instructor?

      A   It was difficult to find a place on a course.

      B   He was warned against going on certain courses.

      C   There were few courses he could afford.

26   What surprised Matt about the other people on his course?

      A   the ages they were

      B   the experience of sailing they had

      C   their enthusiasm for learning to sail

27   How did Matt react when he saw some dolphins?

      A   He took as many photographs as he could.

      B   He worried that they might cause problems.

      C   He tried to hide his excitement.

28   What does Matt say he missed after his course was over?

      A   learning something new every day

      B   being able to sail as often as he wanted

      C   being awake early enough to see the sun rise

29   Matt thinks that he will enjoy

      A   training other people to be instructors

      B   working with people with similar interests.

      C   teaching teenagers something useful.

30   What is Matt going to do next?

      A   do another course

      B   apply for a job

      C   go on holiday

Answer & Audioscript

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


Interviewer:   Today, we have in our studio Matt Brown, who recently trained as a sailing instructor.

Matt Brown:   Hi!

Interviewer:   First of all, what made you want to be a sailing instructor, Matt?

Matt Brown:   Well I’ve always loved the sea – we lived miles from the coast when I was a child, but had fantastic summer holidays by the seaside every year. I learned to sail with my brothers, but it never occurred to me when I was younger that I might actually teach anyone else to do it. Then a good mate of mine suggested I should consider becoming an instructor. While I was busy working in a restaurant last summer to finish paying my university fees, he’d been having a much better time doing just that.

Interviewer:   Was it hard for you to find somewhere to train?

Matt Brown:   Yes, harder than I’d expected. I searched for courses on the internet, though people advised me not to take the online course reviews too seriously. And although there was a wide range of courses at reasonable prices, a lot of the ones I liked the look of were full, so it took a while for me to sort it out.

Interviewer:   And did you like the other people on the course?

Matt Brown:   I’d been a bit nervous about meeting them, I suppose, but maybe that’s not particularly surprising! What was, though, was the different types of people doing the course with me, and how much they already knew. I’d realised they would mostly be older than me, and of course we were all very eager to learn, but I was very lucky to be in a group like that.

Interviewer:   How did the first day go?

Matt Brown:   It was fantastic: we saw a group of five dolphins hunting together. We were all in one boat, and suddenly they were coming straight towards us! Some people thought they might turn the boat over or something – I wasn’t concerned about that – I was just so amazed, and I don’t know why, but I did my best to look cook about it, as if it was the sort of thing I saw every day. Everyone else rushed for their cameras. I got mine out too but then just stood there, staring.

Interviewer:   What about the rest of the course?

Matt Brown:   It was very hard work indeed, but I learnt so much. After the course was over the thing I missed most wasn’t, I have to admit, the early mornings, though there were some memorable sunrises. It was never reaching the end of a day without acquiring at least one different skill. That was a tremendous feeling. Now I’m qualified, which is very satisfying. The school have even said I can come back and sail there whenever I want, which is great.

Interviewer:   What do you think you’ll enjoy about being a sailing instructor, Matt?

Matt Brown:   It will be great to teach very young children to sail – it gives kids so much confidence, I think. Then when they’re teenagers, you know, they’ll be able to do what I’m doing if they want. And also, it’ll be cool to have a job working alongside colleagues who like the same things as I do – not everyone can do their hobby as a job! Some people want to train other instructors, but I’m not sure that’s for me, really.

Interviewer:   And what’s next?

Matt Brown:   Well, I’d love to go on a sailing holiday now, but before I can afford that I need to put what I’ve learned into practice, and be paid for it this time! So that’s the plan and I’ve got a place in mind on the Mediterranean. They run the kind of courses I’d love to teach, so I’m going to contact them …

Interviewer:   Well good luck with it all, Matt.

Matt Brown:   Thanks.

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