IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131


IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 ( Passage 1 Consecutive and Simultaneous Translation, Passage 2 Global Warming: Prevent poles from melting, Passage 3 Paper or computer? ) we prefer you to work offline, download the test paper, and blank answer sheet.

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For Answers Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Answers

Reading Passage 1

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1-13, which are based on the IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Reading Passage Consecutive and Simultaneous Translation below.

Consecutive and Simultaneous Translation

{A} When people are faced with a foreign-language barrier, the usual way around it is to find someone to interpret or translate for them. The term ‘translation’, is the neutral term used for all tasks where the meaning of expressions in one language (the source language) is turned into the meaning of another (the ‘target’ language), whether the medium is spoken, written, or signed. In specific professional contexts, however, a distinction is drawn between people who work with the spoken or signed language (interpreters), and those who work with the written language (translators). There are certain tasks that blur this distinction, as when source speeches turned into target writing. But usually the two roles are seen as quite distinct, and it is unusual to find one person who is equally happy with both occupations. Some writers on translation, indeed, consider the interpreting task to be more suitable for extrovert personalities, and the translating task for introverts.

{B} Interpreting is today widely known from its use in international political life. When senior ministers from different language backgrounds meet, the television record invariably shows a pair of interpreters hovering in the background. At major conferences, such as the United Nations General Assembly, the presence of headphones is a clear indication that a major linguistic exercise is taking place. In everyday circumstances, interpreters are frequently needed, especially in cosmopolitan societies formed by new reiterations of immigrants and Gastarbeiter. Often, the business of law courts, hospitals, local health clinics, classrooms, or industrial tribunals cannot be carried on without the presence of an interpreter. Given the importance and frequency of this task, therefore, it is remarkable that so little study has been made of what actually happens when interpreting takes place, and of how successful an exercise it is.

{C} There are two main kinds of oral translation – consecutive and simultaneous In consecutive translation the translating starts after the original speech or some part of it has been completed. Here the interpreter’s strategy and the final results depend, to a great extent on the length of the segment to be translated. If the segment is just a sentence or two the interpreter closely follows the original speech. As often as not, however, the interpreter is expected to translate a long speech which has lasted for scores of minutes or even longer. In this case he has to remember a great number of messages, and keep them in mind until he begins his translation. To make this possible the interpreter has to take notes of the original messages, various systems of notation having been suggested for the purpose. The study of, and practice in, such notation is the integral part of the interpreter’s training as are special exercises to develop his memory.

{D} Doubtless the recency of developments in the field partly explains this neglect. One procedure, consecutive interpreting, is very old — and presumably dates from the Tower of Babel! Here, the interpreter translates after the speaker has finished speaking. This approach is widely practiced in informal situations, as well as in committees and small conferences. In larger and more formal settings, however, it has been generally replaced by simultaneous interpreting — a recent development that arose from the availability of modern audiological equipment and the advent of increased international interaction following the Second World War.

{E} Of the two procedures, it is the second that has attracted most interest, because of the complexity of the task and the remarkable skills required. In no other context of human communication is anyone routinely required to listen and speak at the same time, preserving an exact semantic correspondence between the two modes. Moreover, there is invariably a delay of a few words between the stimulus and the response, because of the time it takes to assimilate what is being said in the source language and to translate it into an acceptable form in the target language. This ‘ear-voice span’ is usually about 2 or 3 seconds, but it may be as much as 10 seconds or so, if the text is complex. The brain has to remember what has just been said, attend to what is currently being said, and anticipate the construction of what is about to be said. As you start a sentence you are taking a leap in the dark, you are mortgaging your grammatical future; the original sentence may suddenly be turned in such a way that your translation of its end cannot easily be reconciled ( with your translation of its start. Great nimbleness is called for

{F} How it is all done is not at all clear. That it is done at all is a source of some wonder, given the often lengthy periods of interpreting required, the confined environment of an interpreting booth, the presence of background noise, and the awareness that major decisions may depend upon the accuracy of the work. Other considerations such as cultural background also make it aim to pay full attention to the backgrounds of the authors and the recipients and to take into account differences between source and target language.

{G} Research projects have now begun to look at these factors – to determine, for example, how far successful interpreting is affected by poor listening conditions or the speed at which the source language is spoken. It seems that an input speed of between 100 and 120 words per minute is a comfortable rate for interpreting, with an upper limit of around 200 w.p.m. But even small increases in speed can dramatically affect the accuracy of output. In one controlled study, when speeds were gradually increased in a series of stages from 95 to 164 w.p.m., the ear-voice span also increased with each stage, and the amount correctly interpreted showed a clear decline. Also, as the translating load increases, not only are there more errors of commission (mistranslations, cases of vagueness replacing precision), there are also more errors of omission, as words and segments of meaning are filtered out. These are important findings, given the need for accuracy in international communication. What is needed is a more detailed identification of the problem areas, and of the strategies speakers, listeners, and interpreters use to solve them. There is an urgent need to expand what has so far been one of the most neglected fields of communication research. 

Questions 1-5 

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D. 

Write your answers in boxes 1-5 on your answer sheet.

Question 1 In which way does author state translation at the beginning of the passage?

(A) abstract and concrete meaning 

(B) general and specific meaning 

(C) several examples of translation’s meaning 

(D) different meaning in various profession

Question 2 Application of headphone in a UN conference tells us that:

(A) TV show is being conducted 

(B) radio program is on the air 

(C) two sides are debating 

(D) language practice is in the process

Question 3 In the passage, what is the author’s purpose in citing the Tower of Babel?

(A) interpreting secret is stored in the Tower 

(B) interpreter emerged exactly from time of Tower of Babel 

(C) consecutive interpreting has a long history 

(D) consecutive interpreting should be abandoned

Question 4 About simultaneous interpreting, which of the following is TRUE?

(A) it is an old and disposable interpretation method 

(B) it doesn’t need outstanding professional ability 

(C) it relies on professional equipment 

(D) it takes less than two seconds ear-voice span

Question 5 In consecutive translation, if the section is longer than expected, what would an interpreter most probably do?

(A) he or she has to remember some parts ahead 

(B) he or she has to break them down first 

(C) he or she has to respond as quickly as possible 

(D) he or she has to remember all parts ahead

Questions 6-9 IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131


Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of Reading Passage, using no more than two words or a number from the Reading Passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 6-9 on your answer sheet.

The cycle from ear to voice normally lasts about………6…….., which depends on the sophistication of paper, for example, it could go up to ………7……..sometimes. When experts took close research on affecting elements, they found appropriate speaking speed is somehow among ……..8………. w.p.m. In a specific experiment, the accuracy of interpretation dropped while the ear-voice span speed increased between 95 to 164 w.p.m. However, the maximum speed was about ……….9……….W.p.m.

Questions 10-13

Choose FOUR correct letters. Write your answers in boxes 10-13 on your answer sheet.

Which FOUR of the following are the factors that affect interpreting? 

(A) mastery in structure and grammar of sentence in the script 

(B) speed of incoming sound source

(C) noisy of background 

(D) emotional states of interpreter 

(E) culture of different backgrounds 

(F) understanding the significance of being precise 

(G) upper volume limit of speakers

Reading Passage 2

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 14-26, which are based on the IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Reading Passage global warming: Prevent poles from melting below.

global warming: Prevent poles from melting

{A} Such is our dependence on fossil fuels, and such is the volume of carbon dioxide we have already released into the atmosphere, that most climate scientists agree that significant global warming is now inevitable – the best we can hope to do is keep it at a reasonable level, and even that is going to be an uphill task. At present, the only serious option on the table for doing this is cutting back on our carbon emissions, but while a few countries are making major strides in this regard, the majority are having great difficulty even stemming the rate of increase, let alone reversing it. Consequently, an increasing number of scientists are beginning to explore the alternatives. They all fall under the banner of geoengineering – generally defined as the intentional large-scale manipulation of the environment.

{B} Geoengineering has been shown to work, at least on a small, localised scale, for decades. May Day parades in Moscow have taken place under clear blue skies, aircraft having deposited dry ice, silver iodide and cement powder to disperse clouds. Many of the schemes now suggested look to do the opposite, and reduce the amount of sunlight reaching the planet. One scheme focuses on achieving a general cooling of the Earth and involves the concept of releasing aerosol sprays into the stratosphere above the Arctic to create clouds of sulphur dioxide, which would, in turn, lead to a global dimming. The idea is modelled on historical volcanic explosions, such as that of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines in 1991; which led to a short-term cooling of global temperatures by 0.5°C. The aerosols could be delivered by artillery, high-flying aircraft or balloons.

{C} Instead of concentrating on global cooling, other schemes look specifically at reversing the melting at the poles. One idea is to bolster an ice cap by spraying it with water. Using pumps to carry water from below the sea ice, the spray would come out as snow or ice particles, producing thicker sea ice with a higher albedo (the ratio of sunlight reflected from a surface) to reflect summer radiation. Scientists have also scrutinised whether it is possible to block iceflow in Greenland with cables which have been reinforced, preventing icebergs from moving into the sea. Veli Albert Kallio, a Finnish scientist, says that such an idea is impractical, because the force of the ice would ultimately snap the cables and rapidly release a large quantity of frozen ice into the sea. However, Kallio believes that the sort of cables used in suspension bridges could potentially be used to divert, rather than halt, the southward movement of ice from Spitsbergen. It would stop the ice moving south, and local currents would see them float northwards’ he says.

{D} A number of geoengineering ideas are currently being examined in the Russian Arctic. These include planting millions of birch trees: the thinking, according to Kallio, is that their white bark would increase the amount of reflected sunlight. The loss of their leaves in winter would also enable the snow to reflect radiation. In contrast, the native evergreen pines tend to shade the snow and absorb radiation. Using ice-breaking vessels to deliberately break up and scatter coastal sea ice in both Arctic and Antarctic waters in their respective autumns, and diverting Russian rivers to increase cold-water flow to ice-forming areas, could also be used to slow down warming, Kallio says. ‘You would need the wind to blow the right way, but in the right conditions, by letting ice float free and head north, you would enhance ice growth.’

{E} But will such ideas ever be implemented? The major counter-arguments to geoengineering schemes are, first, that they are a ‘cop-out’ that allow us to continue living the way we do, rather than reducing carbon emissions; and, second, even if they do work, would the side- effects outweigh the advantages? Then there’s the daunting prospect of upkeep and repair of any scheme as well as the consequences of a technical failure. ‘I think all of us agree that if we were to end geoengineering on a given day, then the planet would return to its pre-engineered condition very rapidly, and probably within 10 to 20 years’ says Dr Phil Rasch, chief scientist for climate change at the US-based Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. That’s certainly something to worry about. I would consider geoengineering as a strategy to employ only while we manage the conversion to a non-fossil- fuel economy. ‘The risk with geoengineering projects is that you can “overshoot”,’ says Dr Dan Lunt, from the University of Bristol. ‘You may bring global temperatures back to pre-industrial levels, but the risk is that the poles will still be warmer than they should be and the tropics will be cooler than before industrialization.’

{F} The main reason why geoengineering is countenanced by the mainstream scientific community is that most researchers have little faith in the ability of politicians to agree – and then bring in – the necessary carbon cuts. Even leading Conservation organisations believe the subject is worth exploring. As Dr Martin Sommerkorn, a climate change advisor says. But human-induced climate change has brought humanity to a position where it is important not to exclude thinking thoroughly about this topic and its possibilities despite the potential drawbacks. If, over the coming years, science tells us about an ever-increased climate sensitivity of the planet – and this isn’t unrealistic – then we may be best served by not having to start our thinking from scratch.’

Questions 14-18 IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131

Reading Passage 2 has six paragraphs, A-F

Which paragraph contains the following information? 

Write the correct letter, A-F, in boxes 14-18 on your answer sheet You may use any letter more than once.

(14) the existence of geoengineering projects distracting from the real task of changing the way we live 

(15) circumstances in which geoengineering has demonstrated success 

(16) Frustrating maintenance problems associated with geoengineering projects 

(17) support for geoengineering being due to a lack of confidence in governments 

(18) more success in fighting climate change in some parts of the world than others

Questions 19-23 

Complete the summary below. 

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 19-23 on your answer sheet.

Geoengineering projects

A range of geoengineering ideas has been put forward, which aim either to prevent the melting of the ice caps or to stop the general rise in global temperatures. One scheme to discourage the melting of ice and snow involves introducing ……19……. to the Arctic because of their colour. The build-up of ice could be encouraged by dispersing ice along the coasts using special ships and changing the direction of some …..20……. but this scheme is dependent on certain weather conditions. Another way of increasing the amount of ice involves using………21…… to bring water to the surface. A scheme to stop ice moving would apply ……..22………. But this method is more likely to be successful in preventing the ice from travelling in one direction rather than stopping it altogether. A suggestion for cooling global temperatures is based on what has happened in the past after ……..23…… and it involves creating clouds of gas.

Questions 24-26

Look at the following people (Questions 24-26) and the list of opinions below. Match each person with the correct opinion, A-E. 

Write the correct letter, A-E, in boxes 24-26 on your answer sheet.

(24) Phil Rasch

(25) Dan Lunt

(26) Martin Sommerkorn

(A) List of opinions The problems of geoengineering shouldn’t mean that ideas are not seriously considered. 

(B) Some geoengineering projects are more likely to succeed than others.

(C) Geoengineering only offers short-term relief. 

(D) A positive outcome of geoengineering may have a negative consequence elsewhere. 

(E) Most geoengineering projects aren’t clear in what they are aiming at.

Reading Passage 3

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 27-40, which are based on the IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Reading Passage Paper or Computer? below.

Paper or Computer?

{A} Computer technology was supposed to replace paper. But that hasn’t happened. Every country in the Western world uses more paper today, on a per-capita basis, than it did ten years ago. The consumption of uncoated free-sheet paper, for instance — the most common kind of office paper — rose almost fifteen per cent in the United States between 1995 and 2000. This is generally taken as evidence of how hard it is to eradicate old, wasteful habits and of how stubbornly resistant we are to the efficiencies offered by computerization. A number of cognitive psychologists and ergonomics experts, however, don’t agree. Paper has persisted, they argue, for very good reasons: when it comes to performing certain kinds of cognitive tasks, paper has many advantages over computers. The dismay people feel at the sight of a messy desk — or the spectacle of air-traffic controllers tracking flights through notes scribbled on paper strips — arises from a fundamental confusion about the role that paper plays in our lives.

{B} The case for paper is made most eloquently in “The Myth of the Paperless Office”, by two social scientists, Abigail Sellen and Richard Harper. They begin their book with an account of a study they conducted at the International Monetary Fund, in Washington, D.C. Economists at the I.M.F. spend most of their time writing reports on complicated economic questions, work that would seem to be perfectly suited to sitting in front of a computer. Nonetheless, the I.M.F. is awash in paper, and Sellen and Harper wanted to find out why. Their answer is that the business of writing reports — at least at the I.M.F. — is an intensely collaborative process, involving the professional judgments and contributions of many people. The economists bring drafts of reports to conference rooms, spread out the relevant pages, and negotiate changes with one other. They go back to their offices and jot down comments in the margin, taking advantage of the freedom offered by the informality of the handwritten note. Then they deliver the annotated draft to the author in person, taking him, page by page, through the suggested changes. At the end of the process, the author spreads out all the pages with comments on his desk and starts to enter them on the computer — moving the pages around as he works, organizing and reorganizing, saving and discarding.

{C} Without paper, this kind of collaborative and iterative work process would be much more difficult. According to Sellen and Harper, paper has a unique set of “affordances” — that is, qualities that permit specific kinds of uses. Paper is tangible: we can pick up a document, flip through it, read little bits here and there, and quickly get a sense of it. Paper is spatially flexible, meaning that we can spread it out and arrange it in the way that suits us best. And it’s tailorable: we can easily annotate it, and scribble on it as we read, without altering the original text. Digital documents, of course, have their own affordances. They can be easily searched, shared, stored, accessed remotely, and linked to other relevant material. But they lack the affordances that really matter to a group of people working together on a report. Sellen and Harper write:

{D} Paper enables a certain kind of thinking. Picture, for instance, the top of your desk. Chances are that you have a keyboard and a computer screen off to one side, and a clear space roughly eighteen inches square in front of your chair. What covers the rest of the desktop is probably piles — piles of papers, journals, magazines, binders, postcards, videotapes, and all the other artifacts of the knowledge economy. The piles look like a mess, but they aren’t. When a group at Apple Computer studied piling behavior several years ago, they found that even the most disorderly piles usually make perfect sense to the piler, and that office workers could hold forth in great detail about the precise history and meaning of their piles. The pile closest to the cleared, eighteen-inch-square working area, for example, generally represents the most urgent business, and within that pile the most important document of all is likely to be at the top. Piles are living, breathing archives. Over time, they get broken down and resorted, sometimes chronologically and sometimes thematically and sometimes chronologically and thematically; clues about certain documents may be physically embedded in the file by, say, stacking a certain piece of paper at an angle or inserting dividers into the stack.

{E} But why do we pile documents instead of filing them? Because piles represent the process of active, ongoing thinking. The psychologist Alison Kidd, whose research Sellen and Harper refer to extensively, argues that “knowledge workers” use the physical space of the desktop to hold “ideas which they cannot yet categorize or even decide how they might use.” The messy desk is not necessarily a sign of disorganization. It may be a sign of complexity: those who deal with many unresolved ideas simultaneously cannot sort and file the papers on their desks, because they haven’t yet sorted and filed the ideas in their head. Kidd writes that many of the people she talked to use the papers on their desks as contextual cues to “recover a complex set of threads without difficulty and delay” when they come in on a Monday morning, or after their work has been interrupted by a phone call. What we see when we look at the piles on our desks is, in a sense, the contents of our brains.

{F} This idea that paper facilitates a highly specialized cognitive and social process is a far cry from the way we have historically thought about the stuff. Paper first began to proliferate in the workplace in the late nineteenth century as part of the move toward “systematic management.” To cope with the complexity of the industrial economy, managers were instituting company-wide policies and demanding monthly, weekly, or even daily updates from their subordinates. Thus was born the monthly sales report, and the office manual and the internal company newsletter. The typewriter took off in the eighteen-eighties, making it possible to create documents in a fraction of the time it had previously taken, and that was followed closely by the advent of carbon paper, which meant that a typist could create ten copies of that document simultaneously. Paper was important not to facilitate creative collaboration and thought but as an instrument of control.

Questions 27-32 IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131

The IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 reading passage has seven paragraphs, A-G 

Choose the correct heading for paragraphs A-G from the list below. 

Write the correct number, i-xi, in boxes 27-32 on your answer sheet.

List of Headings 

(i) paper continued as a sharing or managing must

(ii) piles can be more inspiring rather than disorganizing 

(iii) Favorable situation that economists used paper pages 

(iv) overview of an unexpected situation: paper survived 

(V) comparison between efficiencies for using paper and using computer 

(vi) IMF’ paperless office seemed to be a waste of papers 

(vii) example of failure for avoidance of paper record 

(viii) There are advantages of using a paper in offices 

(ix) piles reflect certain characteristics in people’ thought 

(x) joy of having the paper square in front of computer

(27) paragraph A 

(28) paragraph B 

(29) paragraph C 

(30) paragraph D 

(31) paragraph E 

(32) paragraph G

Questions 33-36 Summary Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Reading Passage, using no more than three words from the Reading Passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 33-36 on your answer sheet.

Compared with digital documents, paper has several advantages. First it allows clerks to work in a …… 33……. way among colleagues. Next, paper is not like virtual digital versions, it’s …… 34…….. Finally, because it is …… 35……., notes or comments can be effortlessly added as related information. However, a shortcoming comes in the absence of convenience on a task which is for a ……36……….

Questions 37-40 IELTSFever Academic IELTS Reading Test 131

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D. 

Write your answers in boxes 37-40 on your answer sheet.

Question 37 What do economists from the IMF say about their way of writing documents?

(A) they note down their comments for freedom on the drafts 

(B) they finish all writing individually 

(C) they share ideas before the electronic version was made 

(D) they use an electronic version fully

Question 38 What is the implication of the “Piles” mentioned in the passage?

(A) they have underlying orders 

(B) they are necessarily a mess 

(C) they are in time sequence order

(D) they are in alphabetical order

Question 39 What does the manager believe in a sophisticated economy?

(A) recorded paper can be as a management tool 

(B) carbon paper should be compulsory 

(C) Teamwork is the most important

(D) the monthly report is the best way

Question 40 According to the end of this passage, what is the reason why the paper is not replaced by electronic vision?

(A) paper is inexpensive to buy 

(B) it contributed to management theories in western countries 

(C) people need time for changing their old habit 

(D) it is collaborative and functional for tasks implementation and management

For Answers Academic IELTS Reading Test 131 Answers

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