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  Conversation 1

  Narrator

  Listen to a conversation between a student and an employee in the university’s

  career services office.

  Student

  Hi, do you have a minute?

  Employee

  Sure, how can I help you?

  Student

   新托福tpo听力文本

  I have a couple of questions about the career fair next week.

  Employee

  OK, shoot.

  Student

  Um …well, are seniors the only ones who can go? I mean, you know, they are finishing school this year and getting their degrees and everything. And, well, it seems like businesses would wanna talk to them and not first year students like me.

  Employee

  No, no, the career fair is opened to all our students and we encourage anyone who’s interested to go check it out.

  Student

  Well, that’s good to know.

  Employee

  You’ve seen the flyers and posters around campus, I assume.

  Student

  Sure, can’t miss them. I mean, they all say where and when the fair is, just not who should attend.

  Employee

  Actually they do, but it’s in the small print. Uh, we should probably make that part easier to reach, shouldn’t we? I’ll make a note of that right now. So, do you have any other questions?

  Student

  Yes, actually I do now. Um …since I’d only be going to familiarize myself with the process, you know, check it out, I was wondering if there is anything you recommend that I do to prepare.

  Employee

  That’s actually a very good question. Well, as you know, the career fair is generally an opportunity for local businesses to recruit new employees, and for soon-to-be graduates to have interviews with several companies they might be interested in working for. Now, in your case, even though you wouldn’t be looking for employment right now, it still wouldn’t hurt for you to prepare much like you would if you were looking for a job.

  Student

  You mean, like get my resume together and wear a suit?

  Employee

  That’s a given. I was thinking more along the lines of doing some research. The flyers and posters list all the businesses that are sending representatives to the career fair. Um …what’s your major urge you to have one yet?

  Student

  Well, I haven’t declared a major yet, but I’m strongly considering accounting. See, that’s part of the reason I wanna go to the fair, to help me decide if that’s what I really want to study.

  Employee

  That’s very wise. Well, I suggest that you get on the computer and learn more about the accounting companies in particular that would be attending. You can learn a lot about companies from their internet websites. Then prepare a list of questions.

  Student

  Questions, hmm… so, in a way, I’ll be interviewing them?

  Employee

  That’s one way of looking at it. Think about it for a second. What do you want to know about working for an accounting firm?

  Student

  Well, there is the job itself, and salary of course, and working conditions, I mean, would I have an office, or would I work in a big room with a zillion other employees, and…and maybe about opportunities for advancement.

  Employee

  See? Those’re all important things to know. After you do some research, you’ll be able to tailor your questions to the particular company you are talking to.

  Student

  Wow, I’m glad I came by here. So, it looks like I’ve got some work to do.

  Employee

  And if you plan on attending future career fairs, I recommend you sign up for one of our interview workshops.

  Student

  I’ll do that.

  Lecture 1

  Economics

  Narrator

  Listen to part of a lecture in an economics class.

  Professor

  Now when I mention the terms “boom and bust”, what is that going to mind?

  Student

  The dotcom crash of the ‘90s.

  Professor

  Ok. The boom in the late 1990s when all those new Internet companies sprung up and then sold for huge amounts of money. Then the bust around 2000…2001 when many of those same Internet companies went out of business. Of course, booms aren’t always followed by busts. We’ve certainly seen times when local economies expanded rapidly for a while and then went back to a normal pace of growth. But, there’s a type of rapid expansion, what might be called the hysterical or irrational boom that pretty much always leads to a bust. See, people often create and intensify a boom when they get carried away by some new industry that seems like it will make them lots of money fast. You’d think that by the 90s, people would have learned from the past. If they did, well, look at tulips.

  Student

  Tulips? You mean like the flower?

  Professor

  Exactly. For instance, do you have any idea where tulips are from? Originally I mean.

  Student

  Well, the Netherlands, right?

  Professor

  That’s what most people think, but no. They are not native to the Netherlands, or even Europe. Tulips actually hail from an area that Chinese call the Celestial Mountains in Central Asia. A very remote mountainous region. It was Turkish nomads who first discovered tulips and spread them slowly westward. Now, around the 16th century, Europeans were traveling to Istanbul and Turkey as merchants and diplomats. And the Turks often gave the Europeans tulip bulbs as gifts which they would carry home with them. For the Europeans, tulips were totally unheard of. Er…a great novelty. The first bulb to show up in the Netherlands, the merchant who received them roasted and ate them. He thought they were kind of onion. It turns out that the Netherlands was an ideal country for growing tulips. It had the right kind of sandy soil for one thing, but also, it was a wealthy nation with a growing economy, willing to spend lots of money on new exotic things. Plus, the Dutch had a history of gardening. Wealthy people would compete, spending enormous amounts of money to buy the rarest flowers for their gardens. Soon tulips were beginning to show up in different colors as growers tried to breed them specifically for colors which would make them even more valuable. But they were never completely sure what they would get. Some of the most priced tulips were white with purple stricks, or red with yellow stricks on the paddles, even a dark purple tulip that was very much priced. What happened then was a craze for these specialized tulips. We called that craze “tulip mania”. So, here we’ve got all the conditions for an irrational boom: a prospering economy, so more people had more disposable income-money to spend on luxuries, but they weren’t experienced at investing their new wealth. Then along comes a thrilling commodity. Sure the first specimens were just played right in tulips, but they could be bred into some extraordinary variations, like that dark purple tulip. And finally, you have an unregulated market place, no government constrains, where price could explode. And explode they did, starting in the 1630s. There was always much more demand for tulips than supply. Tulips didn’t bloom frequently like roses. Tulips bloomed once in the early spring. And that was it for the year. Eventually, specially-bred multi-colored tulips became so valuable, well, according to records, one tulip bulb was worth 24 tons of wheat, or thousand pounds of cheese. One particular tulip bulb was sold and exchanged for a small sheep. In other words, tulips were literally worth their weight in gold. As demand grew, people began selling promissory notes guaranteeing the future delivery of priced tulip bulbs. The buyers of these pieces of paper would resell the notes and mark up prices. These promissory notes kept changing hands from buyer to buyer until the tulip was ready for delivery. But it was all pure speculation because as I said, there was no way to know if the bulb was really going to produce the variety, the color that was promised. But that didn’t matter to the owner of the note. The owner only cared about having that piece of paper so it could be traded later at a profit. And people were borrowing, mortgaging their homes in many cases to obtain those bits of paper because they were sure they’d find an easy way to make money. So now, you’ve got all the ingredients for a huge bust. And bust it did, when one cold February morning in 1637, a group of bulb traders got together and discovered that suddenly there were no bidders. Nobody wanted to buy. Panic spread like wild fire and the tulip market collapsed totally.

  新托福tpo听力文本

  So then I read the part about dialect accommodation. You know, the idea that people tend to adapt their speaking to make it closer to the speech of whomever they’re talking to, and I’m thinking, yeah, I do that when I talk with my roommates, and without even thinking about it or anything, you know.

  Professor

  OK, all right. Dialect accommodation is a more manageable sort of topic.

  Student

  So I was thinking like, I wonder just how much other people do the same thing. I mean, there are students here from all over the place. Does everyone change the way they talk to some degree depending on whom they are talking to?

  Professor

  You’d be surprised.

  Student

  So, anyway, my question is, do you think it’d be OK if I did a project like that for my term paper? You know, find students from different parts of the country, record them talking to each other in different combinations, report on how they accommodate their speech or not, that kind of thing?

  Professor

  Tell you what, Lisa, write me up a short proposal for this project, how you’re going to carry out the experiment and everything, a design plan. And I think this’ll work out just fine.

  Lecture 3

  Creative Writing

  Narrator

  Listen to part of a lecture in a creative writing class.

  Professor

  Alright everybody, the topic for today is, well, we’re gonna take a look at how to start creating the characters for the story you’re writing. One way of doing that is to come up with what’s called “a character sketch”, I don’t mean a sketch like a drawing, I guess that’s obvious. It’s um…it’s a…a sketch as a way of getting started on defining your characters’ personalities. To begin, how do we create fictional characters? We don’t just pull them from thin air, do we? I mean we don’t create them out of nothing. We base them, consciously or unconsciously, we base them on real people, or we blend several people’s traits, their attributes into one character. But when people think fiction, they may assume the characters come from the author’s imagination. But the writer’s imagination is influenced by… by real people, could be anyone, so, pay attention to the people you meet, someone in class, at the gym, that guy who is always sitting in the corner of the coffee house, um… your cousin, who’s always getting into dangerous situations. We’re pulling from reality, gathering bits and pieces of real people. You use these people, and the bits of behavior or characteristics as a starting point as you begin to sketch out your characters. Here is what you should think about doing first. When you begin to formulate a story, make a list of interesting people you know or have observed. Consider why they’re unique or annoying. Then make notes about their unusual or dominant attributes. As you create fictional characters, you’ll almost always combine characteristics from several different people on your list to form the identity and personality of just one character. Keeping this kind of character sketch can help you solidify your character’s personality, so that it remains consistent throughout your story. You need to define your characters, know their personalities so that you can have them acting in ways that are predictable, consistent with their personalities. Get to know them like a friend, you know your friends well enough to know how they’ll act in certain situations, right? Say you have three friends, their car runs out of gas on the highway. John gets upset. Mary remains calm. Teresa takes charge of handling the situation. And let’s say, both John and Mary defer to her leadership. They call you to explain what happen. And when John tells you he got mad, you’re not surprised, because he always gets frustrated when things go wrong. Then he tells you how Teresa took charge, calmed him down, assigned tasks for each person and got them on their way. Again, you’re not surprised. It’s exactly what you’d expect. Well, you need to know your characters, like you know your friends. If you know a lot about a person’s character, it’s easy to predict how they’ll behave. So if your character’s personalities are well defined, it will be easy for you as the writer to portray them realistically…er… believably, in any given situation. While writing character sketches, do think about details. Ask yourself questions, even if you don’t use the details in your story, um…what does each character like to eat, what setting does each prefer, the mountains, the city, what about educational background, their reactions to success or defeat, write it all down. But, here I need to warn you about a possible pitfall. Don’t make you character into a stereotype. Remember the reader needs to know how your character is different from other people who might fall in the same category. Maybe your character loves the mountains and has lived in a remote area for years. To make sure he is not a stereotype, ask yourself how he sees life differently from other people who live in that kind of setting. Be careful not to make him into the cliché of the “ragged mountain dweller”. Okay, now, I’ll throw out a little terminology. It’s easy stuff. Major characters are sometimes called “round characters”. Minor characters are sometimes called, well, just the opposite, “flat”. A round character is fully developed; a flat character isn’t, character development is fairly limited. The flat character tends to serve mainly as a motivating factor. For instance, you introduce a flat character who has experienced some sort of defeat. And then your round, your main character who loves success and loves to show off, comes and boasts about succeeding and jokes about the flat character’s defeat in front of others, humiliates the other guy. The flat character is introduced solely for the purpose of allowing the round character to show off.

  Lecture 4

  Earth Science

  Narrator

  Listen to part of a lecture in an earth science class.

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