IELTS Listening Practice Test 9

IELTS Listening Practice Test 9

Tapescripts

The part of the text containing the answer is underlined with the question number given in square brackets []. If you still struggle with IELTS Listening tests, please refer to IELTS Listening tips.

IELTS Listening Section 1

Recorded message: Thank you for calling Millennium Office Supplies. If you would like to place an order, please press one. Your call has been placed in a queue. A customer service operator will be with you shortly.
Woman: Gina speaking. How can I help you?
Man: Oh, hello – I’d like to order some stationery, please.
Woman: And who am I speaking to?
Man: John Carter.
Woman: Right – can I just confirm your account number and the name of your company, John?
Man: Sure! The account number is 6-9-2-4 double 1 [1]
Woman: Six nine two four one one. Right, and you’re from ‘Rainbow Computers?’
Man: No. The company is Rainbow Communications [2].
Woman: Oh, OK, I’ll just fix that on the system communications. And what would you like to order, John?
Man: Envelopes. We need a box of A4 – that is, normal size envelopes.
Woman: White, yellow or vanilla?
Man: We’ll have the plain white please [3] – but the ones with the little windows.
Woman: OK. One box – A4 – white – just the one box, was it?
Man: Uhm, on second thoughts make that two boxes [4]. We go through heaps of envelopes. As a matter of interest. Are they made from recycled paper?
Woman: No. You can’t get white recycled paper. The recycled ones are grey and they’re more expensive actually.
Man: Right – we’ll stick to white then.
Woman: Something else, John?
Man: Yes, we need some coloured photocopy paper. What colours do you have?
Woman: We’ve got purple, light blue, blue, light green – whatever you want, pretty much. There are 500 sheets to the pack.
Man: Let’s see… we’re going to need a lot of blue paper for our new price lists so can you give us ten packs [6], please. Make sure it’s the light blue though [5].
Woman: Ten packs of the light blue. Anything else that we can help you with?
Man: Let me think, what else do we need? I’m sure there was something else.
Woman: Pens, paper clips, fax paper, computer supplies, office furniture?
Man: Oh, yes! We need floppy disks [7] – do you have those nice coloured ones?
Woman: Yes, but they’re a bit more expensive than the black ones.
Man: That’s alright. I’m not paying, anyway!
Woman: Right. Floppy disks. And what about diaries for next year? We’ve got them in stock already and it’s a good idea to order early.
Man: No — I think we’re alright for diaries but something we do need is one of those big wall calendars — you know, one that shows the whole year at a glance. Do you stock those?
Woman: We certainly do.
Man: OK – can you include a wall calendar then [8], with the other stuff. Just make sure it’s got the whole year on the one side.
Woman: Sure – and do you have a copy of our new catalogue ?
Man: No, I don’t, but could you send one [9]?
Woman: Yes! I’ll pop one in with the order. You’ll find it a lot easier to remember what you need if you have our catalogue in front of you next time.
Man: Yes, good idea. And when can you deliver this?
Woman: Should be with you tomorrow morning.
Man: Can you make sure that it’s not after 11:30 AM [10] because I have to go out at 12 there’s only myself here on Fridays.
Woman: Fine – I’ll make a note on the delivery docket that they should deliver before half past eleven [10]. Thanks very much.
Man: Thanks.

IELTS Listening Section 2

Announcer: And now for some information on local events and activities. A couple of announcements for art-lovers and budding artists alike. First, a new collection of artwork is going on show to the public next month in the form of an artists’ exhibition. The exhibition will include many different types of art, over 100 different pieces, by 58 artists from the local area. It’s being held at the Royal Museum [11] which – for those of you who are unfamiliar with the area – is located opposite the library in West Street, right on the corner. The actual address is number 1, Queen’s Park Road [12] – it isn’t difficult to find. The exhibition will run for 9 weeks and will begin on the 6th of October and continue until the 10th December [13]. So there’s plenty of time for you to go along and have a look and I’m sure that will be worth doing.

What will you see there? Well, amongst the items on display will be some exciting pieces of modern jewellery, furniture, ceramics, metal work [14] and sculpture. To give you some examples, local artist Kate Maine will be there to discuss her collection of pots and bowls that she has made to resemble garden vegetables. They’re the sort of thing that would brighten up any dining table, and range from things like yellow cabbage-shaped bowls to round tomato-­shaped teapots [15 – note that the word ‘vegetable’ is not mentioned, but cabbage and tomato are both vegetables]. Prize-winner Cynthia Course will also be there to talk about her silver jewellery, all of which she produced using ideas from the rural setting of her country home. Some of her rings are quite extraordinary and have beautiful coloured stones [16] in them. Or if you prefer sculpture, there’s plenty of that too. Take, for example, Susan Cup’s sculpture of 25 pairs of white paper shoes [17]. It sounds easy, but believe me it looks incredible! All of these items along with many others will be on sale-throughout the exhibition period.

As part of the exhibition, there will be a series of demonstrations called ‘Face to Face’ [18 — remember to capitalise the answer — it is a name of an exhibition] which will take place every Sunday afternoon during the exhibition and these will provide an opportunity for you to meet the artists.

The second set of activities are for those who would prefer to indulge in some artwork themselves, the Artist’s Conservatory are holding a series of courses over the autumn period. The courses cover all media and include subjects such as Chinese brush painting, pencil drawing [19] and silk painting. All the tutors are experienced artists, course sizes are kept to a minimum of 15 and there will be plenty of individual assistance.

All the sessions offer excellent value for money and the opportunity to relax in a delightful rural setting. Fees are very reasonable and include the use of an excellent studio and access to the art shop which you will find sells everything from paper to CDs and they also include the provision of all materials [20]. For more information on dates, cost and availability you should get in touch with the programme coordinator on 4592 839584 or go direct to the website…

IELTS Listening Section 3

Interviewer: Alison Sharp has spent much of her life researching bears and in particular bears in danger of extinction. She is the author of a recent book on bears and we welcome her to the studio today.
Alison: Thank you. Delighted to be here.
Interviewer: First of all, can you give us a quick overview of the history of the bear family?
Alison: Well, the bears we know today actually have as their ancestors bears which have been evolving for some 40 million years [21]. We have fossils of the earliest ‘true bear’ — and it’s important to emphasise this because some creatures are called bears but are not.
Interviewer: Such as koalas for instance.
Alison: Yes — exactly. Fossils of the true bear show a small dog-size animal with characteristics that show a blending of dog and bear traits.
Interviewer: So the general belief is that dogs and bears were of the same family? [22]
Alison: Yes, that’s the theory [22]. And then we see the arrival of the early Cave Bear. We know from cave drawings that Neanderthal man used to worship this bear and at the same time fear it.
Interviewer: Understandable perhaps.
Alison: Yes, but they need not have worried because the Cave Bear only ate plants [23]. In fact the Cave Bear survived two Ice Ages but then became extinct.
Interviewer: So how many bears can we find today and are any of them in danger of extinction?
Alison: Well I’ll answer your first question first. There are eight species of bear in all; among them the American Black Bear and the Brown Bear — from which evolved the newest species of bear – the Polar Bear.
Interviewer: So how old is the Polar Bear [24]?
Alison: Oh, he’s a relative newcomer – just 20,000 years old [24].
Interviewer: And could you tell us a little about them? Which is the largest bear, for instance ?
Alison: Well, the largest bear existing today is either the Polar Bear or the Brown Bear.
Interviewer: Right! Don’t we know?
Alison: Well, it depends which criteria you use. The Polar Bear is the heaviest; the male weighs up to 1,500 pounds but his narrow body actually makes him look smaller than the much more robust Brown Bear.
Interviewer: So the Brown Bear appears the biggest [25].
Alison: Yes [25].
Interviewer: And the smallest?
Alison: Well, the Sun Bear is the smallest of the eight species [26]. They only weigh between 60 and 145 pounds.
Interviewer: That makes him a comparative junior!
Alison: Yes. And then next we have the so-called Giant Panda, but that’s a small bear too, comparatively speaking.
Interviewer: And are all bears meat eaters?
Alison: No, not at all. In fact the Giant Panda is almost entirely herbivorous living on a diet of 30 types of bamboo [27].
Interviewer: Oh, yes of course. Panda’s are famous for that.
Alison: And another interesting bear is the Sloth Bear which eats insects [28], particularly termites. He can turn his mouth into a tube and suck the insects out of their nests.
Interviewer: So going back to my second question… are bears really in danger of extinction?
Alison: Yes indeed, they are — the Sun Bear in particular as they’ve been hunted almost out of existence. And the habitat of the Panda is also being reduced on a daily basis.
Interviewer: Can anything be done to reduce the threat to these endangered species? I know for instance that it’s very hard to breed bears in captivity.
Alison: Yes, well, I think that by raising people’s awareness generally we can reduce conflict between humans and animals, to stop the slaughter in parts of the world where bears are still hunted [29] — supposedly in self-defense or to protect livestock, but often quite unnecessarily. And we can also encourage governments to preserve the natural environment of the bear rather than allow the areas where they live to be systematically destroyed in the name of progress.
Interviewer: Yes, of course.
Alison: And in addition to these global efforts, all profits from the sale of my book will go towards the United Nations Bear Protection program [30].

IELTS Listening Section 4

Man: Good evening and welcome to this month’s Observatory Club lecture. I’m Donald Mackie and I’m here to talk to you about the solar eclipse in history.

A thousand years ago, a total eclipse of the sun was a terrifying religious experience – but these days an eclipse is more likely to be viewed as a tourist attraction [31] than as a scientific or spiritual event. People will travel literally miles to be in the right place at the right time — to get the best view of their eclipse.

Well. What exactly causes a solar eclipse — when the world goes dark for a few minutes in the middle of the day? Scientifically speaking, the dark spot itself is easy to explain [32]: it is the shadow of the moon streaking across the earth. This happens every year or two, each time along a different and, to all intents and purposes, a seemingly random piece of the globe.

In the past people often interpreted an eclipse as a danger signal heralding disaster and in fact, the Chinese were so disturbed by these events that they included among their gods one whose job it was to prevent eclipses [33]. But whether or not you are superstitious or take a purely scientific view, our earthly eclipses are special in three ways.

Firstly, there can be no doubt that they are very beautiful. It’s as if a deep blue curtain had fallen over the daytime sky as the sun becomes a black void surrounded by the glow of its outer atmosphere.

But beyond this, total eclipses possess a second more compelling beauty in the eves of us scientists, for they offer a unique opportunity for research [34]. Only during an eclipse can we study the corona and other dim things that are normally lost in the sun’s glare.

And thirdly, they are rare. Even though an eclipse of the sun occurs somewhere on earth every year or two, if you sit in your garden and wait, it will take 375 years on average for one to come to you. If the moon were any larger, eclipses would become a monthly bore [35]: if it were smaller, they simply would not be possible.

The ancient Babylonian priests, who spent a fair bit of time staring at the sky, had already noted that there was an 18-year pattern in their recurrence but they didn’t have the mathematics to predict an eclipse accurately [36]. It was Edmund Halley, the English astronomer, who knew his maths well enough to predict the return of the comet which, incidentally bears his name, and in 1715 he became the first person to make an accurate eclipse prediction [37].

This brought eclipses firmly into the scientific domain and they have since allowed a number of important scientific discoveries to be made. For instance, in the eclipse of 1868 two scientists, Janssen and Lockyer, were observing the sun’s atmosphere and it was these observations that ultimately led to the discovery of a new element [38]. They named the element helium after the Greek god of the sun. This was a major find, because helium turned out to be the most common element in the universe after hydrogen. Another great triumph involved Mercury. I’ll just put that up on the board for you now. See — there’s Mercury — the planet closest to the Sun – then Venus, Earth, etc. For centuries, scientists had been unable to understand why Mercury appeared to rotate faster than it should. Some astronomers suggested that there might be an undiscovered planet causing this unusual orbit and even gave it the name ‘Vulcan’. During the eclipse of 1878, an American astronomer, James Watson, thought he had spotted this so-called ‘lost’ planet [39]. But, alas for him, he was later obliged to admit that he had been wrong about Vulcan and withdrew his claim.

Then Albert Einstein came on the scene. Einstein suggested that rather than being wrong about the number of planets, astronomers were actually wrong about gravity [40]. Einstein’s theory of relativity – for which he is so famous – disagreed with Newton’s law of gravity in just the right way to explain Mercury’s odd orbit. He also realised that a definitive test would be possible during the total eclipse of 1919 and this is indeed when his theory was finally proved correct.

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