FCE Listening Practice Test 28

Answer Keys

Part 1
1. B
2. B
3. C
4. A
5. B
6. C
7. B
8. A
Part 2
9. newspaper
10. readers
11. a/1 million
12. fishing
13. 4/four
14. market
15. children
16. six/6 percent/per cent/%
17. sixty/60
18. channels
Part 3
19. C
20. E
21. D
22. A
23. F
Part 4
24. A
25. A
26. A
27. B
28. C
29. C
30. B

Tapescript

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

Part 1

Question 1
Optician: OK, so tell me… when you’re driving and you stop to read something – for example a map, or some directions – would you need to take your glasses off?
Man: Yes – I can’t read with them on. They hurt my eyes if I try to focus close-up with them on.
Optician: What about watching TV?
Man: Oh, no, I wear them only when I think it would be dangerous not to wear them… in the car, you know… [1]

Question 2
And this is the Book Room, named after the superb collection of old books you can see filling the shelves. Amazing, aren’t they? This is a room which holds many secrets, such as these strange paintings on the ceiling. Who painted them? Do they mean anything? Perhaps we’ll never know. And look at this – if I press this bookcase here… and here (door opening)… yes! It opens a secret door to a hidden bedroom! Come through this way… the furniture in here is 16th century… It’s believed that Mary Queen of Scots slept in this very bed in 1568! [2]

Question 3
Woman: Well, it’s like this, doctor. I’ve been having headaches, and I take tablets but they don’t help. And I’ve been seeing things again…
Doctor: What do you mean, Mrs Murphy?
Woman: Well, things in front of my eyes – spots and stars… It’s driving me mad… and my heart beats too quickly. Can’t you give me tablets for that? I… I just know there’s something wrong…
Doctor: Calm down, Mrs Murphy… Have you changed your glasses recently?
Woman: Well, not for quite a long time – five years or more, I think-,
Doctor: Well, then, may I suggest you get your eyes tested? In any case, I’ll have to give your heart a quick check, and take your blood pressure as well… [3]

Question 4
I don’t know, you young people never seem to eat properly these days. A cup of coffee in the morning, a sandwich for lunch, and then your big meal in the evening. It’s just not right… your poor bodies can’t cope – they have to work all night trying to digest the food you’ve just eaten. What a waste of energy. No, in my day, we were always told, “breakfast like a king” – that way it sets you up for the rest of the day and starts you off right… [4]

Question 5
Well, for a start, I wanted to go to the mountains – clean air, rock climbing, great views, that’s the sort of thing I like. But my friends wanted sun, sea and sand, so we ended up taking a two-week package tour to the Caribbean. Now the island we were on, Antigua… well, it was OK, you know, sunny, nice beach and all that. But the hotel – my goodness! I tell you, it was terrible! But the last straw was on the second night there, when I had my bag snatched. I lost all my money! Just as well I’d left my passport and tickets at the hotel… but after that I’d had enough and I took the first flight home. [5]

Question 6
And now for tomorrow’s weather. Partly cloudy in the morning for London and the south-east, but overcast by midday with rain in the afternoon. Temperatures will range from 11-19°C. There’ll also be rain in the north, which will quickly spread to the rest of the country. Rain will be very heavy in some areas by late afternoon, especially in western and central England, and there will be strong winds over most of mainland Britain. [6]

Question 7
Hello. This is the lost property office. There’s no one here to take your call at present, but if you’ve lost something please listen carefully to the following message. If you’ve lost valuables such as jewellery, cash or credit cards, you’ll need to contact your nearest police station as soon as possible to make a statement. [7] In the case of a credit card, you should also contact your bank immediately. For any other items, please call in at our office between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. Thank you.

Question 8
I was really pleased when we got the new copier. I mean, everyone in the office was. The old one was so slow and got so hot… So when I was told that the new one would do a hundred pages a minute and do colour copies as well, I was very excited. Of course, we had a few teething problems at first – the colour wasn’t quite right and the copies didn’t come out straight… but now my biggest complaint is that it’s so good that everyone in the company wants to use it! [8]

Part 2

Announcer: Every four years, the National Sports Commission does a survey on how the media cover women’s sport. This year’s report, released last month, shows that only 4% of newspaper stories are about women’s sport. [9] But why does women’s ?port get such a raw deal? Today I’m talking to Greg Hunter, the editor of Today’s Sport magazine. Hi, Greg.
Greg: Hello, Amanda. You know, people in the media don’t see a difference between men and women’s sport. In other words, we don’t say, oh this is a sports story about women so we won’t publish it. Usually, if we don’t publish, it’s because it’s a minority sport and very few people do it or very few readers have an interest in it. [10] It’s got nothing to do with whether the sport is being played by men or women.
Announcer: Well, Greg, I don’t know that you could really call netball, for example, a minority sport. I mean, the Netball Association estimates that every week over 1 million women in the UK play netball. [11] Is that a minority sport?
Greg: OK, a lot of people say that, and say that it’s not fair for women that we don’t write anything about netball in newspaper and magazines. But if you use that argument, then we’d be doing lots of articles about fishing and other big participation sports. [12] As I said, it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that it’s women. It’s not even about how many people play it. For us, it’s about how many people want to read about it.
Announcer: So what’s the ratio of male to female readers on your magazine?
Greg: About four men for every woman – and that’s up maybe 5% from two or three years ago. [13]
Announcer: Why don’t more women read your magazine? Do you think that a lot of women are turned off it because it is male oriented?
Greg: Oh, without a doubt, Amanda.
Announcer: And do you think women actually want a sports magazine aimed solely at women?
Greg: Absolutely. I think, uh… for sure. If we look at the sports magazines on the market at the moment, they’re definitely more for the male sporty person than the female sporty person. So I think, yeah, there’s a gap in the market for a sports magazine aimed at women who take sports seriously, and want to read about sport and learn more about sport, on all levels. [14]
Announcer: So, in your experience, what do women want out of a sports magazine?
Greg: I think women readers care more about the human side of stories. They like to know about what, what’s behind a sports person. For example, top female tennis players with children find life very difficult. [15] They have to travel all the time to international tournaments and that means they hardly ever see them. Whenever we run an article about this kind of thing, it’s very popular with our women readers.
Announcer: Moving away from magazines for a moment… The Sports Commission report also says that, in the last four years, television coverage of women’s sports has actually decreased. Women’s sports received only 6% of total TV time available for sport last year [16], compared to 9% four years ago. Why should that be?
Greg: OK, I have to admit that one of the reasons women receive little media coverage is that most sports reporting is done by men. I heard there are about 600 members of the Sports Journalist Association of Great Britain but only around 60 are women. [17] Perhaps if women were more involved in sports journalism there’d be better coverage of women’s sport. But anyway, there have been some improvements in how women’s sports are shown on TV.
Announcer: Really?
Greg: Yes, of course. For example, last year, the women’s football World Cup was shown on a number of TV channels. There are more sports channels than ever now, so a lot of big women’s events are getting shown. And in the future, it’ll be possible to see a lot of minority sports on cable or satellite channels. [18] So that’s progress…

Part 3

Speaker 1
It was risky at first, you know. I had been working for a big firm, on computers, but I wanted to do something on my own and I’ve always loved collecting old things, so I thought, why not try it? I had to learn to drive because you have to travel a lot, to sales and auctions – I never had a car before. What makes it really special is when someone brings in something incredibly rare, some antique they’ve had tucked away at home somewhere for years. I love the look on their faces when you say, “Yes, well, that old vase you have there is worth half a million pounds.” [19]

Speaker 2
You might think it’s exciting and glamorous and all that, but in fact I hardly ever get out of the place. I work pretty much alone, so there I sit in front of a computer, with customers in and out all the time and the phones ringing, and it does get tiring. Of course, the Internet’s a great help – I don’t have to go digging through brochures and calling airlines every two minutes like in the old days. It’s really so easy nowadays – I mean, anyone can read all about where they want to go and book online if they want to. [20]

Speaker 3
It’s a big responsibility, yeah. You have to make sure people get what they want out of their training or they might just give up. I tell them that they should look after themselves as carefully as they look after their car. Of course, I have to make sure the machines are in good order – you can have an accident if they aren’t – but my main job is to design training programmes for the customers. I really like helping them get into shape, you know, looking and feeling better… [21]

Speaker 4
Well, I never dreamt it would get so big. I started out with just a small collection, mostly old stuff I’d had for years. Fiction, poetry, biographies, cookery, travel – quite a lot of travel, because I went abroad a lot when I was younger. Then people started coming in to trade what they’d already read, and the business really took off. [22] Nowadays, I sell a lot over the Internet, too. They say television is killing reading, but I don’t think that’s true, not from the amount of orders we get.

Speaker 5
My dad started up the business. Of course it wasn’t the same then – it was just business machines, basic manual stuff – but then he decided to retire, and all the stuff in the place started to look out-of-date. I got interested in computers and all that – they were completely new then – and it grew from there. It’s a good business, but the technology is changing so fast it’s impossible to keep up. [23] And people – kids, you know – use these things from a really early age. Makes you wonder, when a twelve-year-old can set up a system faster than you can.

Part 4

IT: Hello, this is Compco Computer Solutions. How may I help you?
Farmer: Hello. My name is Farmer, William Farmer. I’m from Soft Bear Supplies. I, er, was wondering if you could give me some advice and a quote on a new IT system.
IT: I’m sure we can help you with that, Mr Farmer. Could you tell me a bit about your company?
Farmer: Well, we’re a manufacturing firm with about 50 staff. [24] We make teddy bears. We’re growing fast. We’ve just taken on 20 people and we’ll be employing another 30 people over the next six months or so.
IT: So what’s your problem?
Farmer: Well, with demand so huge, our current computer system just isn’t up to it. [25] Our Internet connection is slow, printing never works… and our computers are so old that they keep breaking down.
IT: What exactly are your main requirements?
Farmer: First of all, we need a computer network which is reliable. At the moment, we’re losing time – and therefore money, of course – every time a computer fails. On top of that, we’ve lost orders and even client addresses… [26]
IT: How many computers do you currently have?
Farmer: About 20. But ideally every employee would have one. We’d like to introduce an electronic diary and meeting system. And an automated system to track the hours people have worked. At the moment we have someone on the reception desk, you know, writing down what time employees arrive and leave. It’s embarrassing, really… [27]
IT: Not at all – you’d be surprised how many companies come to us with similar problems. Is there anything else?
Farmer: Well… with our existing computer system, the problems began after it had been installed. The company we bought it from just left us high and dry. When the printer failed they, uh, repeatedly ignored our calls, and since we have no computer people here we had all sorts of problems. [28] So – what sort of support do you offer?
IT: Don’t worry, Mr Farmer. We consider the aftersales service we provide to our customers to be the most important part of our business. We keep our clients happy, and they stay with us for years.
Farmer: Mm… to be honest, I did look up other computer companies on the Net. But I called you because… actually, I got a recommendation from a friend of mine who works at Finron Fish. Geoff Green’s his name. [29]
IT: Ah, yes! I remember Geoff. We’ve just upgraded their system with the latest dual core processors.
Farmer: Talking of upgrades, how long can we expect it to be before any new system is out of date? I’ve heard most new systems are out of date after only one year.
IT: Of course, technology moves very quickly, but the need to upgrade depends on your company’s requirements. Some companies don’t upgrade very often. Then they end up with the sort of problems you have! As a rule, most companies update their systems every couple of years. [30]
Farmer: Can you give me any idea of costs?
IT: We prefer not to do that over the phone. What we do is send out a consultant to your company to work out what’s best for you. After that, we’ll be able to give you a full quote within 24 hours.
Farmer: That’s terrific. If you can just hang on while I get my diary, I’ll see when I’m free…

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