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2007-03-19 17:11沪江论坛


  Directions: In this section you will read several passages. Each one is followed by several questions about it. You are to choose ONE best answer, (A), (B), (C) or (D), to each question. Answer all the questions following each passage on the basis of what is stated or implied in that passage and write the letter of the answer you have chosen in the corresponding space in your ANSWER BOOKLET.

  Questions 1-5

  Pupils at GCSE are to be allowed to abandon learning traditional "hard" science, including the meaning of the periodic table, in favour of"soft" science such as the benefits of genetic engineering and healthy eating. The statutory requirement for pupils to learn a science subject will be watered down under a new curriculum introduced next year. There will be no compulsion to master the periodic table——the basis of chemistry——nor basic scientific laws that have informed the work of all the great scientists such as Newton and Einstein. The changes, which the government believes will make science more "relevant" to the 21st century, have been attacked by scientists as a "dumbing down" of the subject. In June the government had to announce financial incentives to tackle a shortage of science teachers. Academics have estimated that a fifth of science lessons are taught by teacherswho are not adequately qualified.

  Most children now study for the double-award science GCSE, which embraces elements of biology, chemistry and physics. This GCSE will be scrapped and ministers have agreed that from next year all 14-year-olds will be required to learn about the general benefits and risks of contemporary scientific developments, in a new science GCSE. A harder science GCSE will also be introduced as an optional course. One expert involved in devising the new system believes it will halve the number of state school pupils studying "hard" science. Independent schools and more talented pupils in the state sector are likely to shun the new papers in favour of the GCSEs in the individual science disciplines of physics, chemistry and biology. These will continue to require pupils to achieve an understanding of scientific principles.

  The new exams were devised after proposals by academics at King's College London,who told ministers that science lessons were often "dull and boring" and required pupils to recall too many facts. Their report said: "Contemporary analyses of the labour market suggest that our future society will need a larger number of individuals with a broader understanding of science both for their work and to enable them to participate as citizens in a democratic society."

  However, Professor Colin Blakemore, chief executive of the Medical Research Council, warned that reducing the "hard" science taught in schools would create problems. "I can understand the government's motives," he said. "There is a crisis of public confidence in science which is reducing the progress of policy on such issues as nuclear energy and stem cell research. But sixth-formers are already arriving at university without the depth of knowledge required." Others endorse the new approach. Results at North Chadderton upper school in Oldham——~3ne of 80 schools piloting the new "softer" GCSE, named 21st Century Science——have improved. Martyn Overy, the head of science, said: "The proportion getting higher grades in science went up from 60% to 75%. The course kept their interest, had more project work and was more relevam."

  As part of their course, the pupils studied what kind of food they needed to keep fit and healthy. Critics say it is only marginally more demanding than following the advice of Nigella Lawson, the television chef who promotes the benefits of eating proper meals instead of snacking from the fridge. Some science teachers are skeptical. Mo Afzai, head of science at the independent Warwick school, said: "These changes will widen the gap between independent and state schools. Even the GCSE that is designed for those going on to A-level science is not as comprehensive as the test it replaces." John Holman, director of the National Science Learning Centre at York University, who advised the government on the content of the new system, said: "The new exam is not dumbing down. The study of how science works is more of a challenge than rote learning."


  Out                             In

  Periodic table               The drugs debate

  Ionic equations             Slimming issues

  Structure of the atom    Smoking and health

  Bovle's law                   IVF treatment

  Ohm's law                    Nuclear controversy

  1. The phrase "watered down" in the sentence "The statutory requirement for pupils to learn a science subject will be watered down under a new curriculum introduced next year." (para. 1) can best be replaced by which of the following?

  (A) removed completely (B) reduced much in force

  (C) revised greatly (D) reinforced to a certain extent

  2. Which of the following is NOT true according to the passage?

  (A) The government had to use financial incentives to attract more science teachers.

  (B) Some of the secondary school science teachers are not adequately qualified.

  (C) The new science GCSE will include the benefits and risks of contemporary scientific developments.

  (D) A harder science GCSE will also be introduced as a compulsory course.

  3. What is Professor Blakemore's opinion about the new requirement of science GCSE?

  (A) He fully appreciates the government's motives in revising GCSE science courses.

  (B) He holds that most students entering university have mastered enough science knowledge as needed.

  (C) He argues that reducing the requirement for "hard" science in schools will lead to more problems.

  (D) He thinks that lack of public confidence in science will not affect the progress of science policy.

  4. The results at North Chadderton upper school piloting the new "softer" GCSE have shown that ____

  (A) the new "softer" GCSE has proved quite successful

  (B) the science examination is much easier than the previous ones

  (C) the new course is most relevant to students' daily life

  (D) most students have achieved average grades in science

  5. When the critics cite the example of television chef Nigella Lawson in their comment, their purpose is

  (A) to advise students to get rid of snacking from the fridge

  (B) to compare that new "softer" GCSE with the television show of cooking

  (C) to show that the new course is not more difficult to follow than the chef's advice

  (D) to illustrate the significance and benefits of eating proper meals

  Questions 6-10

  Andrew Motion, the poet laureate, and Lord Smith, the former culture secretary, have launched a campaign to stem the flow of famous writers' archives being sold to universities in America. They are leading a 15-strong group of eminent literary figures demanding tax breaks, government funding and lottery cash to help British institutions match the bids of their rich American rivals. The campaign comes amid fears that the papers of Salman Rushdie, Zadie Smith and Kazuo Ishiguro, author of The Remains of the Day, may go abroad. All three are understood to have been approached recently by agents acting for institutions in America.

  In recent years British authors whose papers have been sold abroad include the novelists Peter Ackroyd, Julian Barnes and Malcolm Bradbury and the playwrights David Hare and Tom Stoddard. The works of JM Barrie, the writer of Peter Pan, Graham Greene,  D.H. Lawrence and Evelyn Waugh are already held abroad. In 1997, a year before his death, Ted Hughes, the late poet laureate, sold his archive for about ~500,000 to Emory University 'in Atlanta.While taxpayers may be happy to fund purchases of famous paintings so that they remain in the country and be put on show, it is less clear what the immediate benefit would be in paying for authors' archives to be kept here.

  Adrian Sanders, a Liberal Democrat member of the Commons culture select committee, said public money should be spent on "more pressing" projects. "The fact that archives such as this go abroad is, I'm afraid, the reality of the world," he said, "We have many artifacts in the UK that belong to other cultures." The campaign argues, however, that valuable research sources are being lost. Foreign institutions sometimes charge for access to the material and, as the authors retain copyright, the papers cannot be made available on the internet.

  "This is about our cultural heritage as well as the obvious research opportunities, said Motion, whose campaign group includes Michael Hohoyd, the biographer and former president of the Royal Society of Literature, and Richard Ovenden, keeper of special collections at Oxford University. They are calling for the culture secretary to be given the authority to delay the export of items considered a significant part of the national heritage to enable British institutions to put together bids. The campaigners want an increase in direct grants and the removal of Vat from unbound papers, which increases the cost of purchases in this country.

  Smith, who was culture secretary from 1997-2001, said: "It won't cost the Treasury an arm and a leg——we're talking pennies, really." The campaigners say American universities are targeting young British writers and offering between ~50,000 and ~300,000 for their of notebooks, manuscripts and letters. Joan Winterkorn, a broker who negotiated the sale of the papers of Laurence Olivier and the writers Kenneth Tynan and Peter Nichols to the British Library, said the cream of British archive material will continue to be "up for grabs" unless the tax laws are changed.  "American universities are increasingly creating a working relationship with younger and younger writers, so this is not something that is going to go away," she said.

  It is understood that an academic from one American institution was flown to London this month with a specific brief to "hobble" ishiguro at the Booker prize dinner in London. Ishiguro, 50, who was nominated for his novel Never Let Me Go and who won the Booker in 1989 for The Remains of the Day, has not yet made a decision, according to his spokeswoman. She said he had been approached by a number of US universities. Arnold Wesker, best known for his plays Roots and Chips with Everything, sold three tons of letters, manuscripts and papers to an American university in 2000. "1 was offered a derisory £60,000 from the British Library and ~100,000 from the University of Texas at Austin——there was no contest," said Wesker, 73. "1 would much sooner have had my work here in London but the gap was too large …… it is a shame."

  A source close to Rushdie, whose papers stretch back to the publication of his first novel, Grimus, in 1975, said he had received "scores" of approaches from America. The author, who now lives mainly in New York, said this weekend that he had "no immediate plans" to sell his archive. Were he to sell abroad, it is likely that there would be a public outcry given the amount of taxpayers' money spent on his protection following the Satanic Verses affair. Zadie Smith, the author of White Teeth, which won the Whitbread award in 2000, has also received "several approaches from buyers," according to a friend. The University of Texas at Austin spends an estimated ~3m a year on its collections. It specializes in British and lrish writers and includes the papers of George Bernard Shaw, James Joyce and Edith Sitwell among its possessions.

  6. When the Liberal Democrat Adrian Sanders says the fact that the British writers' archives ',go abroad" is "the reality of the world," (para. 3) he most probably implies that_______.

  (A) it is not well-grounded to use taxpayers' money to keep British writers' archives

  (B) the public money should be used to retain the manuscripts of these writers

  (C) the British have also bought these artifacts from artists from other countries

  (D) this kind of trading is quite normal and should not be surprising

  7. When the former culture secretary Smith said that "It won't cost the Treasury an arm and a leg——we're talking pennies, really." (para. 5) he was telling us that _______.

  (A) the Treasury should be fully responsible for the collection and maintenance of  such literary artifacts

  (B) the function of the Treasury will be like that of an arm and a leg

  (C) the Treasury should take strict and severe financial policies in dealing with the issue

  (D) the Treasury will not have any difficulty giving such funding and support

  8. Salman Rushdie, the author of the Satanic Verses,_______.

  (A) is the representative of British literary people

  (B) sold his papers including the publication of his first novel in 1975

  (C) was once protected with the taxpayers' money

  (D) mainly lives in New York as he is most welcome to American readers

  9. Which of the following is NOT true according to the passage?

  (A) The campaigning group consists of 15 famous literary people.

  (B) Foreign institutions regularly charge for access to the papers by British writers.

  (C) American universities have more funding to purchase the manuscripts from British writers.

  (D) People have different opinions towards using taxpayers's money to buy back the papers.

  10. Which of the following gives the main idea of the passage?

  (A) The price of British writers' manuscripts is on the rise.

  (B) The British literary people are competing with their American rivals.

  (C) American institutions are buying British writers' literary papers.

  (D) The British are trying to stop the flow of writers' archives to America.

  Questions 11-15

  Concrete is probably used more widely than any other substance except water, yet it remains largely unappreciated. "Some people view the 20th century as the atomic age, the space age, the computer age——but an argument can be made that it was the concrete age," says cement specialist Hendrik Van Oss. "lt's a miracle material." Indeed, more than a ton of concrete is produced each year for every man, woman and child on Earth. Yet concrete is generally ignored outside the engineering world, a victim of its own ubiquity and the industry's conservative pace of development. Now, thanks to environmental pressures and entrepreneurial innovation, a new generation of concretes is emerging. This high-tech assortment of concrete confections  promises to  be  stronger,  lighter,  and  more environmentally friendly than ever before.

  The concretes they will replace are, for the most part, strong and durable, but with limitations. Concrete is sound under compression but weak under tension. Steel rebars are used as reinforcement, but make recycling difficult when concrete breaks down-and break down it inevitably will. Cracks caused by stress grow larger over time, with water forcing them open and corroding the rebars within."When you put enough stress on it, concrete doesn't work like we want it to. We're asking too much of it now," says Mr. Van Oss. Concrete is also a climate-change villain. It is made by mixing water with an aggregate, such as sand or gravel, and cement. Cement is usually made by heating limestone and clay to over 2,500 degrees F. The resulting chemical reaction, along with fuel burned to heat the kiln, produces between 7% and 10% of global carbon-dioxide emissions.

  "When we have to repeatedly regenerate these materials because they're not durable, we release more emissions," says Victor Li, a civil and environmental engineering professor at the University of Michigan. Dr. Li has created a concrete suffused by synthetic fibers that make it stronger, more durable, and able to bend like a metal. Li's creation does not require reinforcement, a property shared by other concretes that use chemical additives called plasticizers to reduce the amount of water in their composition. Using less water makes concrete stronger, but until the development of plasticizers, it also made concrete sticky, dry, and hard to handle, says Christian Meyer, a civil engineering professor at Columbia University.

  "The engineer would specify a certain strength, a certain amount of water——and as soon as a supervisor turned his back, it would go a bucket of water," says Dr. Meyer of the time before plasticizers. Making stronger concretes, says Li, allows less to be used, reducing waste and giving architects more freedom. "You can have such futuristic designs if you don't have to put rebar in there, or structural beams," says Van Oss. "You can have things shooting off into space at odd angles. Many possibilities are opened up."  A more directly "green" concrete has been developed by the Australian company TecEco. They add magnesium to their cement, forming a porous concrete that actually scrubs carbon dioxide from the air.

  "The planet's been through several episodes of global warming before, and nature put carbon away as coal, petroleum, and carbonate sediments," says TecEco manager John Harrison. "Now we're in charge, and we need to do the same. We can literally 'put away' carbon in our own built environment." Another modification to the built environment is the carbon fiber-reinforced concrete of Deborah Chung, a materials scientist at the State University of New York at Buffalo. By running an electrical current through concrete, Dr. Chung says, tiny deformations caused by minute pressures can be detected. "You can monitor room occupancy in real-time, controlling lighting, ventilation, and cooling in relation to how many people are there," says Chung.

  While experts agree that these new concrete will someday be widely used, the timetable is uncertain. Concrete companies are responsive to environmental concerns and are always looking to stretch the utility of their product, but the construction industry is slow to change. "When you start monkeying around with materials, the governing bodies, the building departments, are very cautious before they let you use an unproven material," Meyer says. In the next few decades, says Van Oss, building codes will change, opening the way for innovative materials. But while new concretes may be stronger and more durable, they are also more expensive——and whether the tendency of developers and the public to locus on short-term rather than long-term costs will also change is another matter.

  11. When cement specialist Hendrik Van Oss argues that 20th century can be viewed as the "concrete age", he most probably means that _

  (A) the traditional building material concrete is the only man-made miracle

  (B) concrete is indispensable in the development of modem construction industry

  (C) compared with other inventions, concrete is more practical and useful

  (D) concrete, as a building material, can be mixed with any other materials

  12. What does the author mean by saying that concrete is "a victim of its own ubiquity and the industry's conservative pace of development"(para.1)?

  (A) Concrete suffers from its own unique features as well as the slow development of building industry.

  (B) Concrete is not appreciated because of its dull color and other drawbacks, with little improvement as a building material.

  (C) Slow progress of building industry does harm to the application and popularity of concrete.

  (D) Concrete is ignored because it is conventional with little advance in its technology.

  13. According to the passage, concrete is also a "climate-change villain" mainly because

  (A) sand or gravel has to be used as an aggregate in the process of mixing

  (B) the materials which are used to make concrete are not durable

  (C) recycling of concrete is quite difficult when concrete breaks down

  (D) chemical reaction in manufacturing cement emits carbon-dioxide (world-wide)

  14. The new "green" concrete has all of the following advantages EXCEPT that ____

  (A) it will greatly reduce the cost of production and construction

  (B) it will become stronger, lighter and climate-friendly

  (C) it will give architects and builders more freedom in designing and construction

  (D) it will require little reinforcement in preparation

  15. When Van Oss says that "Whether the tendency of developers and the public to focus on short-term rather than long-term costs will also change is another matter", it probably shows that_______.

  (A) he has full confidence in the developers and the public in using new concrete

  (B) he is quite pessimistic about the future development of greener concrete

  (C) he is hostile to the attitudes of developers and the public

  (D) he feels that people should be patient to wait for the change of the public attitude

  Questions 16-20

  We live in an age when everyone is a critic. "Criticism" is all over the internet, in blogs and chat rooms, for everyone to access and add his two cents' worth on any subject, high or low. But if everyone is a critic, is that still criticism? Or are we heading toward the end of criticism? If all opinions are equally valid, there is no need for experts. Democracy works in life, but art is undemocratic. The result of this ultimately meaningless barrage is that more and more we are living in a profoundly——or shallowly——uncritical age.

  A critic, as T. S. Eliot famously observed, must be very intelligent. Now, can anybody assume that the invasion of cyberspace by opinion upon opinion is proof of great intelligence and constitutes informed criticism rather than uniformed artistic chaos. Of course, like any self-respecting critic, 1 have always encouraged my readers to think for themselves. They were to consider my positive or negative assessments, which I always tried to explain, a challenge to think along with me: here is my reasoning, follow it, then agree or disagree as you see fit. In an uncritical age, every pseudonymous chat-room chatterbox provides a snappy, self-confident judgment, without the process of arriving at it becoming clear to anyone, including the chatterer. Blogs, too, tend to be invitations to leap before a second look. Do the impassioned ramblings fed into a hungry blogosphere represent responses from anyone other than longheads?

  How has it come to this? We have all been bitten by television sound bytes that transmute into Internet sound b~es, proving that brevity can also be the soul of witlessness. So thoughtlessness multiplies. D~ not, however, think 1 advocate censorship, an altogether unacceptable form of criticism. What we need in this age of rampant uncritical criticism is the simplest and hardest thing to come by: a critical attitude. How could it be fostered?

  For starters, with the very thing discouraged by our print media: reading beyond the hectoring headlines and bold-type boxes embedded in reviews, providing a one-sentence summary that makes further reading unnecessary. With only slight exaggeration, we may say that words have been superseded by upward or downward pointing thumbs, self-destructively indulging a society used to instant self-gratification.

  Criticism is inevitably constricted by our multinational culture and by political correctness. As society grows more diverse, there are fewer and fewer universal points of reference between a critic and his or her readers. As for freedom of expression, Arthur Miller long ago complained about protests and pressures making the only safe subjects for a dramatist babies and the unemployed.

  My own experience is that over the years, print space for my reviews kept steadily shrinking, and the layouts themselves toadied to the whims of the graphic designer. In a jungle of oddball visuals, readers had difficulties finding my reviews. Simultaneously, our vocabulary went on a starvation diet. Where readers used to thank me for enlarging their vocabularies, more and more complaints were lodged about unwelcome trips to the dictionary, as if comparable to having to keep running to the toilet. Even my computer keeps questioning words 1 use, words that can be found in medium-size dictionaries. Can one give language lessons to a computer? What may be imperiled, more than criticism, is the word.

  I keep encountering people who think "critical" means carping or fault-finding, and nothing more. So it would seem that the critic's pen, once mightier than the sword, has been supplanted by the ax. Yet I have always maintained that the critic has three duties: to write as well as a novelist or playwright; to be a teacher, taking off from where the classroom, always prematurely, has stopped, and to be a thinker, looking beyond his specific subject at society, history, philosophy. Reduce him to a consumer guide, run his reviews on a Web site mixed in with the next-door neighbor's pontifications, and you condemn criticism to obsolescence. Still, one would like to think that the blog is not the enemy, and that readers seeking enlightenment could find it on the right blog——just as in the past one went looking through diverse publications for the congenial critic. But it remains up to the readers to learn how to discriminate.

  16. Which of the following expresses the author's reasoning when the author says that the "criticism" over the lnternet, in blogs and chat rooms is "uncritical'"?

  (A) If everyone is a critic, it is neither democracy nor criticism.

  (B) When people only choose to express their opinions pseudonymously, what they were doing is to assault the others simply by waving the "ax".

  (C) Real criticism should be expressed by giving the reasoning, the process of reasoning and letting the audience to reach their own conclusion.

  (D) All the critics should be self-respecting and should be well-informed before they give their criticisms.

  17. When the author concludes that "what may be imperiled, more than criticism, is the word"(para. 7), he possibly means that with the shrinking of print space, ____

  (A) words will be less meaningful and criticism much more shallower

  (B) language dictionaries will be much thinner and simpler

  (C) people will not be interested in using dictionaries to learn the vocabulary

  (D) human language will be greatly affected and even deteriorate

  18. When the author thinks that the critic has three duties of "novelist or playwright", "teacher" and "thinker"(para. 8), he probably means that a critic should be equipped with all of the following qualities EXCEPT________.

  (A) original thinking (B)enlightened instruction

  (C) philosophical insight (D) matter-of-fact attitude

  19. It can be concluded from the last paragraph that the author ____

  (A) encourages the readers to make independent judgment

  (B) fails to advise readers to seek enlightenment on any of the blogs

  (C) never thinks that blogs will share the similar features with traditional publications

  (D) probably agrees that the blog is the enemy

  20. Which of the following shows the author's attitude towards the coming of the "uncritical age"?

  (A) sympathetic and supportive. (B) critical and sarcastic.

  (C) optimistic and welcoming. (D) neutral and indifferent.

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