IELTS Listening Practice Test 23

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

Man: Smart Electricals. Mike speaking. How may I help you today?
Woman: Ah, good morning. I’m calling to complain about an item I recently purchased from your company. I’m not happy with it.
Man: Oh, I’m really sorry to hear that. I’ll take you through the company’s complaints procedure. I’ll need to retrieve your files from our records so that we can discuss the problem properly and find a solution. I’ll need to take some details from you first. Is that okay?
Woman: Okay, but I don’t have a lot of time. Will it take long?
Man: Not long, madam. Can I first take your name?
Woman: Yes. it’s Susan Yorke. Y-O-R-K-E.
Man: Okay. Can I have the address, please?
Woman: Yes. it’s Flat 1,25 Alpine Avenue – that’s A-L-P-I-N-E Avenue. [1] Harchester. The postcode is HA6 5LD.
Man: Okay, next, could you give me your telephone number? Preferably one that we can call you on during normal working hours.
Woman: Well, the home one is 01734 525268 but you’re only likely to catch me on that number in the evenings. I usually have my mobile phone with me during the day, though.
Man: Its probably best to take that number, then.
Woman: All right, my mobile number is 0781 2-double-3 452.
Man: And do you have the order reference number on you, by any chance?
Woman: Well, I have the receipt that the camera came with in front of me.
Man: Ah, good.
Woman: Which number is it? Its a bit confusing…
Man: It should be the 7 digit number on the top left corner of your invoice.
Woman: Let me have a look. I need my glasses…Found it. Its D-M-X-8-double 4-3. [2]
Man: Thanks. Now, when did you purchase the item?
Woman: Well, the camera was delivered last Monday, on the first of February. I ordered it online about two weeks before that but I can’t remember the exact date.
Man: If you have another look on the invoice receipt, the date should be there.
Woman: Oh yes. Here it is. January the fifteenth.
Man: Okay, I’ll make a note of that. So, the item is a digital camera?
Woman: Yes. Its the Aqua Powershot model in silver. [3]
Man: Thank you. Did you take out any kind of insurance when you bought it?
Woman: Well no, it was on special offer. I didn’t need to pay any extra for the insurance because it came with a special Four Star policy. [4]
Man: Well, it means you’re fully covered for at least another three years. Right, what is the problem?
Woman: Yes. The first thing is that it came with one memory card in the box when there were supposed to be two. [5]
Man: Oh, dear. I’m terribly sorry about that. It must have been an oversight in the packing department. I can do something about that straightaway and get one sent out to you.
Woman: Well, that’s not the only thing. I bought it as a present for my niece because she loves swimming. It said on the website that it was waterproof. But when she took it on holiday and tried to use it under water, it got ruined because water got into the lens. You can imagine how disappointed my niece was. [6]
Man: I certainly can. Were those the only problems?
Woman: No. There was one other thing. It came with a case to protect it. When I opened the box to take the case out, I saw that it had a big scratch on it. [7]
Man: Were really sorry about that. I can offer to have the camera repaired for you. In the event that it can’t be repaired, we’ll send you a replacement.
Woman: Erm, I don’t think so. [8] Seeing as it was faulty in the first place, I wouldn’t want another one. I think I’d rather have my money back. Can I get a refund? [9]
Man: Yes. Of course. If you send it back to Customer Services, I’ll make sure it’s dealt with.
Woman: Thank you very much. [10]

IELTS Listening Section 2

Guide: Male guide: Welcome to Bestley Castle. It’s nice to see so many of you here today. Before we go in, I’d like to tell you some information about the castle, the things to see and do and the facilities available to you in the grounds. We’ll do our best to make this a truly memorable visit.

Now. the castle grounds are quite big, and we don’t want you to get lost, so I’m going to give you an idea of the layout. At the moment we are at the entrance, and immediately to our left is the tourist information office. [11] Go here if you need any questions answered. They’ll be happy to help. And, of course, behind the tourist office is the car park where the coach dropped you off and it’ll also pick you up from the same spot, at 5 p.m. today. [12] In front of us are the water gardens. If you stroll through you’ll get to the North Bridge, which is the entrance to Bestley Castle. Take your time and enjoy looking around the castle. There is a lot of history steeped in those walls. As you leave the castle via the South Bridge, you’ll be greeted with the sight of roaming deer. During the day, there will be scheduled feeding opportunities where visitors can get involved. However, we do request that you do not feed the deer outside these times. To the right of the deer park is the castle museum and behind that is our award-winning restaurant. [13] It’s a relatively new addition to the castle grounds but is fast gaining a reputation for its food. Alternatively, you can choose to dine in the picnic area on the other side of the deci paik. [14] It’s perfect fur the family as it’s next to the kid’s play area and home-made ice-cream hut. We hope that on your way out, you’ll pop into the gift shop by the exit for something to remember us by. [15]

Admission to the grounds is free for all. That includes the museum, gardens and picnic area. There is an admission fee for the castle, which is £6.50 for adults [16-18], with a 10% discount for students and retired people. Children under the age of 16 pay half adult price and under-8s go in free.

There are many spectacular events throughout the year, and for most of them there’s also an admission fee. As these events are in high demand, it’s a good idea to book well in advance. Some of the exciting events planned for this year are the summer medieval festival, where you can watch old-fashioned knights and experience a feast in the halls of the castle, as if you were a guest of King Henry VIII himself. There are several concerts planned this year too, including a rock concert, at an admission price of £10 per person [16-18], and a special jazz concert, which is free to the public. I’m sure you’ll agree that all tastes and ages will be satisfied. One scary but extremely popular event is the annual haunted castle event at the end of October, where the castle comes alive at night. Why don’t you come along, if you’re brave enough? Another sight to see is the fantastic firework display on November 5th, and the cost of that includes refreshments [16-18].

We also have a long tradition of raising money for charity. The charity event held every year on the first day of May [19] will, this year, be an archery contest. Entrance is free but donations are certainly welcome. This year we’ll be collecting money on behalf of a charity for elderly people, Age Concern. [20]

Just in case you can’t remember all of that, you can pick up a leaflet showing the timetable and prices for all events from the tourist information desk. You can also go online to get this information from our website.

IELTS Listening Section 3

Paul: Hi, Joe. Hi, Isabel.
Joe: Hi, Paul.
Isabel: Oh, hi, Paul. I’ve heard you’ve been stressing out about your presentation on art.
Paul: I am.
Joe: Are you still going to talk about the different types of art?
Paul: Yes. Well, I was planning to. but there’s so much stuff on the subject that I’m finding it difficult to put it all into one short presentation. [21]
Isabel: Ha. I usually have the opposite problem. There’s nothing worse than going blank, forgetting your words, in front of a group of people.
Paul: Well, the problem is that I don’t know how to organise what I want to say in the presentation. [21]
Joe: Well, you know everything there is to know about the subject. It’s just a question of selecting what you want to talk about.
Paul: Well, there’s a lot to discuss about the different periods in art.
Isabel: That’s a good way to start. Then you can bring in how specific types of art were popular in each period.
Paul: Yes, like how sculpture was popular in the classical period and paintings were popular in the Renaissance period.
Isabel: And how now, a wide variety of media are used to create modern art.
Joe: As long as you keep it concise, because it’s a large area. There are so many periods and movements in art and you don’t want to just list them one by one.
Isabel: I agree. An explanation of the movements and periods in art wouldn’t be too long. [22]
Paul: You’re right. I need to just pick out some key points; just mention the periods quickly, so that I can move on to the real topic of the presentation.
Joe: Yes, the variety of art, like sculpture, paintings, installations…
Isabel: I have an idea. Why don’t you prepare a timeline to show to the class? That would be a nice visual and it would focus your ideas so you don’t get too side-tracked.
Paul: Great idea. It would certainly cut down on time. [23]
Isabel: Right then. Where are we? You’ll begin with a very short introduction to the historical periods of art. Then you’ll talk about popular types of art within these periods. That’s sorted. Maybe, you could also mention some key works of art in each period, like the Venus de Milo statue or The Scream by Edvard Munch, and give some interesting facts on them?
Paul: That’s not a bad idea because it does give people a frame of reference when I talk about specific kinds of art. [24] After giving a historical context, I should really talk about different forms of art, shouldn’t I?
Joe: Yes, you should.
Isabel: After that, you can conclude with a question on what is considered to be art. Now, that would be really interesting.
Paul: Yes, comparing the traditional views of art with modern views.
Isabel: Exactly.
Paul: I think I’ll have a collection of pictures, including famous pieces of art from classic to modern, projected on the wall, like the Mona Lisa and some pop art, and ask people whether they think it’s art or not.
Joe: Showing some famous works and asking what art is would certainly lead to discussion in the room. People’s appreciation of art is so subjective and it comes down to taste.
Paul: That’s what I’m hoping for – some disagreement to liven up the presentation. [25]
Isabel: And you could stick in some really controversial ones like graffiti and modern art installations in between pieces of art that are universally accepted, like the work of the Renaissance painters.
Joe: Sounds good to me. I have to say. I really don’t understand some modern art myself. There was one recently that was just a pile of rubbish. It doesn’t require much skill to create, docs it? And what does it mean? There’s no point to it.
Isabel: Actually, Joe, I like some modern art. It makes you look at the world in a different way. Artists now have the freedom to express themselves completely. [26]
Joe: Yes, but there is an idea now that anything can be art.
Paul: I’ve heard of paintings being sold for large sums of money which have been done by small children and animals.
Joe: Now that’s ridiculous!
Isabel: Oh, you could find one of those paintings and put it in your presentation, couldn’t you, Paul? That would really be interesting.
Joe: Well, Paul, what do you think?
Paul: I like it. Just thinking. I’ll need to do some more research to find pictures for the slide show.
Isabel: Yes, we can help you, can’t we, Joe?
Joe: Of, course. If you go to the fine art section of the library, I’m sure you’ll find everything you need. [27] Just ask the staff and they’ll give you access to a slide bank of hundreds of famous works of art. [28] And if you still can’t find what you’re looking for, use the library computers to go online. [29] There are lots of images on the internet. Of course, you’ll need to use a search engine like Google, but it’s dead easy. [30]
Paul: Thanks, guys. I’m feeling much clearer about the project. Your ideas have been really useful. I think I should end with a quote of some kind by a famous artist, what do you think?
Joe: That’s a good idea. Now lets go to the library and see what they have.

IELTS Listening Section 4

Lecturer: Female lecturer: Good afternoon, everybody. Today, in the first lecture on anthropology, we’re going to look at languages and how they are disappearing fast and what effect that’s having. We hear so much in the news about the possible extinction of animal and plant species in the world, and it’s clearly a sad thing that one day certain animals will cease to exist. But how many of you are aware that the world’s languages are facing a similar threat? The Ethnologue, the leading authority on the world’s languages, has put together a list of every living language known to man. There are over 6,500, of which 6,000 have available population figures. Now, 109 million people speak just ten of these languages and they are the major languages of the world. At the opposite end of the scale, there are minority languages [31], which are only spoken by a few people, and that’s what this chart is illustrating. The number of languages is represented on the vertical axis [32], and the total number of languages that make up this group is an astounding 1,619. For each of these smaller language groups, the population range of speakers goes from 1 to 999. [33] Even more incredible is the fact that out of these small languages, over 200 of them have a speaker population ranging from just 1 to 9. Imagine only 9 people speaking your language in the whole world, or even only one or two people.

Out of the more than 6,000 languages spoken in the world today, experts believe that, by the end of this century, perhaps as many as half may have disappeared. Approximately one language dies every two weeks. This is an unprecedented situation. Never before in history has there been this rate of rapid decline.

Its very informative to think geographically and consider the question of where in the world this is happening. In total there are 516 languages that arc nearly extinct [34], where only a few members of the older generation survive. When they die, the language will die with them, lost forever. The majority of nearly extinct languages come from the Pacific and the Americas, which together make up 74% of the total. They are followed by Asia at 15% of languages under threat. [35] Around 9% of these languages are spoken in Africa, while Europe has the smallest percentage of languages that are nearly extinct – just 2%. [36]

Entire languages which have survived for centuries are disappearing as we speak, but why is this happening now? There are several reasons for the situation. Globalisation has made the world smaller and technology has made it easier for people separated by vast distances to communicate in a common language. [37] Minority languages have given way to the main languages of global communication like English. On a social level, speakers may feel the minority language to be old-fashioned and behind the times. They may even be slightly embarrassed to speak the language of their forefathers, preferring to identify themselves with an international language that represents improved economic status [38].

Now, some do argue that a reduction in the number of world languages is inevitable, and anything to ease communication between nations is a good thing and, granted, there is a point to be made there, but what arc the long-term implications of this? Consider this. Language, in both spoken and written form, is passed down through generations. It is the vehicle for all kinds of knowledge about the environment, local wildlife, plants, animals and ecosystems. These oral traditions die along with the language [39].

We can’t stop the changes that arc happening in the world but we can try to keep languages alive through language maintenance programmes and by documenting languages before they disappear, so they can be studied and maybe even resurrected in the future. It’s also important to remember that many people who speak threatened languages can neither read nor write. Helping them become literate goes a long way towards protecting the language. [40] Preserving a language is not easy but there have been exceptional cases where languages have been brought back to life. In Ireland, Irish Gaelic, once a dying language, is now spoken by 13% of the country’s population. We’ll go into what happened there in more detail in my second lecture.

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