CAE Reading and Use of English Part 8
You are going to read an article about the Royal Society, a British scientific institution. For questions 47-56, choose from the sections of the article (A-E). The sections may be chosen more than once.
In which section of the article are the following mentioned?
47 a belief that a certain development has been of particular use to scientists
48 the variety of ways in which the Royal Society encourages people who are not scientists to consider scientific issues
49 a rapid reaction to research being made public
50 a particular development that requires urgent action to improve it
51 a resource for information on past scientific discoveries
52 a lack of understanding of scientific matters among people in general
53 a system that the Royal Society introduced
54 the fact that scientists do not always reach firm conclusions
55 a problem that is not limited to the world of science
56 the belief that certain things that are possible are not desirable
The unstoppable spirit of inquiry
The president of the Royal Society, Martin Rees, celebrates the long history of one of Britain’s greatest institutions.
The Royal Society began in 1660. From the beginning, the wide dissemination of scientific ideas was deemed important. The Society started to publish Philosophical Transaction, the first scientific journal, which continues to this day. The Society’s journals pioneered what is still the accepted procedure whereby scientific ideas are subject to peer review – criticised, refined and codified into ‘public knowledge’. Over the centuries, they published Isaac Newton’s researches on light, Benjamin Franklin’s experiments on lightning, Volta’s first battery and many of the triumphs of twentieth century science. Those who want to celebrate this glorious history should visit the Royal Society’s archives via our Trailblazing website.
The founders of the Society enjoyed speculation, but they were also intensely engaged with the problems of their era, such as improvements to timekeeping and navigation. After 350 years, our horizons have expanded, but the same engagement is imperative in the 21st century. Knowledge has advanced hugely, but it must be deployed for the benefit of the ever-growing population of our planet, all empowered by ever more powerful technology. The silicon chip was perhaps the most transformative single invention of the past century; it has allowed miniaturisation and spawned the worldwide reach of mobile phones and the internet. It was physicists who developed the World Wide Web and, though it impacts us all, scientists have benefited especially.
Traditional journals survive as guarantors of quality, but they are supplemented by a blogosphere of widely varying quality. The latter cries out for an informal system of quality control. The internet levels the playing fields between researchers in major centres and those in relative isolation. It has transformed the way science is communicated and debated. In 2002, three young Indian mathematicians invented a faster scheme for factoring large numbers -something that would be crucial for code-breaking. They posted their results on the web. Within a day, 20,000 people had downloaded the work, which was the topic of hastily convened discussions in many centres of mathematical research around the world. The internet also allows new styles of research. For example, in the old days, astronomical research was stored on delicate photographic plates; these were not easily accessible and tiresome to analyse. Now such data (and large datasets in genetics and particle physics) can be accessed and downloaded anywhere. Experiments and natural events can be followed in real-time.
We recently asked our members what they saw as the most important questions facing us in the years ahead and we are holding discussion meetings on the ‘Top Ten’. Whatever breakthroughs are in store, we can be sure of one thing: the widening gulf between what science enables us to do and what it’s prudent or ethical actually to do. In respect of certain developments, regulation will be called for, on ethical as well as prudential grounds. The way science is applied is a matter not just for scientists. All citizens need to address these questions. Public decisions should be made, after the widest possible discussion, in the light of the best scientific evidence available. That is one of the key roles of the Society. Whether it is the work of our Science Policy Centre, our journals, our discussion meetings, our work in education or our public events, we must be at the heart of helping policy-makers and citizens make informed decisions.
Our science isn’t dogma. Its assertions are sometimes tentative, sometimes compelling; noisy controversy doesn’t always connote balanced arguments; risks are never absolutely zero, even if they are hugely outweighed by potential benefits. In promoting an informed debate, the media are crucial. When reporting a scientific controversy, the aim should be neither to exaggerate risks and uncertainties, nor to gloss over them. This is indeed a challenge, particularly when institutional, political or commercial pressures distort the debate. Scientists often bemoan the public’s weak grasp of science — without some ‘feel’ for the issues, public debate can’t get beyond sloganising. But they protest too much: there are other issues where public debate is, to an equally disquieting degree, inhibited by ignorance. The Royal Society aims to sustain Britain’s traditional strength in science, but also to ensure that wherever science impacts on people’s lives, it is openly debated.
1 C — While. The word here is used in the meaning of ‘in contrast with something’. The book is not as good as a visit, but it is still worth reading.
2 B — done. ‘To do a job’ is a common collocation in English
3 A — getting. Another collocation, ‘to get up close and personal’ means to get to know something well and thoroughly.
4 B — come. ‘To come close’ — almost to reach something or to become very similar to.
Japanese cars nowadays come very close to German ones in terms of build quality.
5 B— point. A plus point is an advantage, a good or positive aspect of something. Another plus point of learning abroad is experiencing life away from your parents.
6 B — succeeds. ‘Succeed’ is the only verb here than collocates with the ‘in’ preposition.
7 C — merely. ‘Merely’ is used as a synonym for ‘simply’ or ‘just’.
8 D — source. A commonly used set phrase is ‘a source of inspiration’.
9 which/that. It should be clear that ‘Ping-Ping and Whiff-Whaff’ are the names that imitated the sound. So we use which/that preposition to refer to them.
10 made. A passive voice is used so the verb has to be used in its third form.
11 became. The word here means that ping-pong have made people crazy about the game.
12 being. Another passive construction.
13 By. ‘Had already acquired…’ helps to understand that this sentence is about certain point in time.
14 though/although. Despite the game development, many people still saw it as a simple game for entertainment. Though/although are used in the meaning of ‘in spite of/despite’.
15 rather. ‘Than’ that immediately follows the gap is the clue that we should use ‘rather’. ‘Rather than’ is used to show preference.
I normally prefer to go outside rather than sit home.
16 against. ‘Warn against something’ means to inform that it shouldn’t be done.
17 behaviour. A noun is needed here. Make sure you spell the word with the letter ‘u’ as it is the correct British spelling
18 significant. The following noun clearly implies that an adjective should be used here.
19 ridiculous. Another word that is easy to spell wrong. Adverb+adjective pair.
20 numerous/innumerable. The context implies that many studies confirmed the idea that dancing is good for your mood and happiness in general. Note that ‘many’ is incorrect as it is not directly a word-form of ‘number’. ‘Innumerable’ doesn’t fit either because it doesn’t sound scientific, and the whole text is exactly that.
21 effective. Note that ‘efficient’ isn’t right as this word means ‘performing at best possible way with the least amount of energy consumed’ and dancing definitely takes more energy in comparison with mimic or gesticulating, the more-widely accepted forms of non-verbal communication.
22 depression. The word ‘cure’ is a cue to the negative meaning of the word, most likely some sort of illness or state.
23 relationships. The reason we use plural form here is because ‘relationship’ in singular normally takes an indefinite article.
24 enabling. ‘To enable’ means to make something possible, to give right to do something.
25 has taken over the management. ‘To take over’ means to take control of something owned or controlled by other person.
26 no account must this door ever. ‘On no account’ is another way to say ‘never’. Also note the use of inversion.
27 on the recommendation of. To make more sense of this sentence, image there’s an omitted verb, e.g. ‘based on the recommendation… ‘.
28 occurred to us that. ‘To occur to smb’ means ‘to dawn on smb’, ‘to come to realisation’.
29 it made no difference to Kevin. You can’t say ‘it did not make any difference to Kevin’ only because of the word limit, otherwise it would have been a more obvious choice.
30 I might/would be able to make. It is important to understand the right collocating verb for ‘visit’. ‘Pay a visit’ is used when talking about people rather than places.
31 C. Last sentence of the first paragraph mentions that the article on the same subject was read by 30 million people. The article and the book share the same topic and therefore many people are interested in it. Answer A is not mentioned — it is the article, not the book that had been read by 30 million people. Answer B is not mentioned either — the series is dedicated to the idea of different approach to business, not solely to animal behaviour. There is no mention of Answer D at all.
32 A. One but last sentence of paragraph two goes: “… his book is the first time anyone has laid out the science behind a management theory…”. The ‘science’ mentioned here is the evidence from Answer A. Answer B is wrong — even though the book is one from the series, the series is dedicated to business strategies, and only one book of the series focuses on animal behaviour.
33 C. Paragraph 3 stresses the promptness with which bees make decisions and contrasts it with managers of big companies that take a lot of time to come up with a decision, often not the optimal one. Even though some of the aspects of other answers are mentioned, they are only used here as details rather than the main purpose of the paragraph.
34 C. ‘Collaborate’ means ‘to work together’. Decision-making as a collaborative process is described in the middle of the paragraph — having a ballot (or a secret vote). Other answers are not mentioned in the paragraph.
35 D. The example of self-organising ants goes to show how freedom of decision-making is beneficial to a company. Answers B and C are not mentioned. The opposite of Answer A is stated — hierarchy ‘gets in the way’.
36 C. The only possible difficulty here is knowing the word ‘retain’, which means ‘keep, leave as’. The answer is easily found within the last but one paragraph.
37 D. Sentence 2 of Paragraph A goes ” … with hardly a thought as to what might endure to impress subsequent generations.”; Sentence 4, Paragraph D states the opposite: ” … people have bought and passed on to future generations, those works of art that seemed to embody the spirit of their age and would have lasting value.“
38 A. In the first sentences of both Paragraph A and C their authors agree that it is very difficult to predict and identify the potential value of a work of art.
39 D. Last sentence of Paragraph B states that the works of art can distort the perception of history, giving events of the past more importance than they actually deserve. The second half of Paragraph D is dedicated to importance of art in preserving the history and helping to understand the period it was made in.
40 C. Only the author of Paragraph C doubts the lasting artistic value of the works of the past.
41 E. This paragraph gives more detail of what is mentioned in the previous paragraph — how Kieron is engaged in drawing. ‘Each one’ can refer to either sketches or his own ‘touches’ — or alterations to the original pictures.
42 G. Last sentence of the preceding paragraph helps us here. The authors mention that seven-year-old boys don’t give advice to adults on terminology very often, and then Paragraph G explains the situation — “But then Kieron Williamson is not your average boy”. Last sentence of this paragraph goes “my seven-year-old could do better than that” and the following paragraph starts with “Kieron actually can …”.
4З B. “Standard seven-year-old boy stuff there” refers to playing football and going to school. This is the easiest anchor that could be used here.
44 D. World ‘melee’ is essential here to understand connection between the paragraphs. It means ‘a noisy fight, a brawl’ and is used figuratively to describe the situation of immense attention directed towards him.
45 F. “Kieron takes it back off me” helps to connect this paragraph with the previous one, where he hands the book to the narrator.
46 C. “Michelle Williamson is aware of this” helps to the establish connection with the previous paragraph. She then goes on to suggest how boy’s interests can change and develop as he gets older.
47 В. The development in question is World Wide Web, which is stated in the last sentence of the paragraph.
48 D. Science Policy Centre work, journals and discussion meetings are the ways that are meant to make the public more informed on the matters of science.
49 C. An example of young mathematicians from India that had posted result of their research and the rapid reaction to it are mentioned in the middle of this paragraph.
50 C. Sentence two of this paragraph: “The latter cries out for an informal system of quality control”. This sentence refers to the urgent need to regulate blogosphere that can be a source of all kinds of unconfirmed and even harmful data.
51 A. Last sentence of the paragraph mentions Trailblazing website which can be used to access data on scientific discoveries of the past.
52 E. Middle of this paragraph: “Scientists often bemoan the public’s weak grasp of science”
53 A. Middle of the paragraph describes a “procedure whereby scientific ideas are subject to peer review” that is still used.
54 E. First few sentences of this paragraph confirm that scientific knowledge and discoveries are not always conclusive and there are certain controversies connected to them.
55 E. Second part of the paragraph talks about involvement of media, politicians and institutions in certain scientific matters, so the issue is no longer purely scientific.
56 D. First part of the paragraph: “… the widening gulf between what science enables us to do and what it’s prudent or ethical actually to do”.