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  • The Economic Importance Of Coral Reefs, Nature Or Nurture?, Telepathy – IELTS Reading Answers
The Economic Importance Of Coral Reefs, Nature Or Nurture?, Telepathy - IELTS Reading Answers
The Economic Importance Of Coral Reefs, Nature Or Nurture?, Telepathy – IELTS Reading Answers

The Economic Importance Of Coral Reefs, Nature Or Nurture?, Telepathy – IELTS Reading Answers

Reading Passage 1

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1- 13, which are based on Reading Passage 1 below.

The Economic Importance Of Coral Reefs

A. A lot of people around the world are dependent, or partly dependent, on coral reefs for their livelihoods. They often live adjacent to the reef, and their livelihood revolves around the direct extraction, processing and sale of reef resources such as shell fish and seaweeds. In addition, their homes are sheltered by the reef from wave action.

B. Reef flats and shallow reef lagoons are accessible on foot, without the need for a boat, and so allow women, children and the elderly to engage directly in manual harvesting, or ‘reef-gleaning’. This is a significant factor distinguishing reef-based fisheries from near-shore sea fisheries. Near-shore fisheries are typically the domain of adult males, in particular where they involve the use of boats, with women and children restricted mainly to shore-based activities. However, in a coral-reef fishery the physical accessibility of the reef opens up opportunities for direct participation by women, and consequently increases their independence and the importance of their role in the community. It also provides a place for children to play, and to acquire important skills and knowledge for later in life. For example, in the South West Island of Tobi, in the Pacific Ocean, young boys use simple hand lines with a loop and bait at the end to develop the art of fishing on the reef. Similarly, in the Surin Islands of Thailand, young Moken boys spend much of their time playing, swimming and diving in shallow reef lagoons, and in doing so build crucial skills for their future daily subsistence.

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C. Secondary occupations, such as fish processing and marketing activities, are often dominated by women, and offer an important survival strategy for households with access to few other physical assets (such as boats and gear), for elderly women, widows, or the wives of infirm men. On Ulithi Atoll in the western Pacific, women have a distinct role and rights in the distribution of fish catches. This is because the canoes, made from mahogany logs from nearby Yap Island, are obtained through the exchange of cloth made by the women of Ulithi. Small-scale reef fisheries support the involvement of local women traders and their involvement can give them greater control over the household income, and in negotiating for loans or credit. Thus their role is not only important in providing income for their families, it also underpins the economy of the local village.

D. Poor people with little access to land, labour and financial resources are particularly reliant on exploiting natural resources, and consequently, they are vulnerable to seasonal changes in the availability of those resources. The diversity of coral reef fisheries, combined with their physical accessibility and the protection they provide against bad weather, make them relatively stable compared with other fisheries, or land-based agricultural production.

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E. In many places, the reef may even act as a resource bank, used as a means of saving food for future times of need. In Manus, Papua New Guinea, giant clams are collected and held in walled enclosures on the reef, until they are needed during periods of rough weather. In Palau, sea cucumbers are seldom eaten during good weather in an effort to conserve their populations for months during which rough weather prohibits good fishing.

F. Coral reef resources also act as a buffer against seasonal lows in other sectors, particularly agriculture. For example, in coastal communities in northern Mozambique, reef harvests provide key sources of food and cash when agricultural production is low, with the peak in fisheries production coinciding with the period of lowest agricultural stocks. In Papua New Guinea, while agriculture is the primary means of food production, a large proportion of the coastal population engage in sporadic subsistence fishing.

G. In many coral-reef areas, tourism is one of the main industries bringing employment, and in many cases is promoted to provide alternatives to fisheries-based livelihoods, and to ensure that local reef resources are conserved. In the Caribbean alone, tours based on scuba-diving have attracted 20 million people in one year. The upgrading of roads and communications associated with the expansion of tourism may also bring benefits to local communities. However, plans for development must be considered carefully. The ability of the poorer members of the community to access the benefits of tourism is far from guaranteed, and requires development guided by social, cultural and environmental principles. There is growing recognition that sustainability is a key requirement, as encompassed in small-scale eco-tourism activities, for instance.

H. Where tourism development has not been carefully planned, and the needs and priorities of the local community have not been properly recognised, conflict has sometimes arisen between tourism and local, small-scale fishers.

Questions 1-7

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1?
In boxes 1-7 on your answer sheet, write –
TRUE if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this
1. In most places, coral-reef gleaning is normally carried out by men.
2. Involvement in coral-reef-based occupations raises the status of women.
3. Coral reefs provide valuable learning opportunities for young children.
4. The women of Ulithi Atoll have some control over how fish catches are shared out.
5. Boats for use by the inhabitants of Ulithi are constructed on Yap Island.
6. In coral reef fisheries, only male traders can apply for finance.
7. Coral reefs provide a less constant source of income than near-shore seas.

Questions 8-13

Complete the notes below.
Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer.
How coral-reef-based resources protect people during difficult times

Coral reefs can provide

  • a resource bank, e.g. for keeping clams and 8 ………………….
  • a seasonal back-up, when 9 …………………. products are insufficient,e.g. in northern Mozambique.
  • a tourist attraction, e.g. 10 ………………… tours in the Caribbean.

Benefits for local people include:

  • The creation of jobs.
  • Improvements to roads and 11 ………………….

Important considerations:

  • Development must be based on appropriate principles.
  • Need for 12 ………………….
  • Poorly-planned development can create 13 …………………. with local fishers.

Also check: 

Reading Passage 2

Nature Or Nurture?

A. A few years ago, in one of the most fascinating and disturbing experiments in behavioural psychology, Stanley Milgram of Yale University tested 40 subjects from all walks of life for their willingness to obey instructions given by a ‘leader’ in a situation in which the subjects might feel a personal distaste for the actions they were called upon to perform. Specifically, Milgram told each volunteer ‘teacher-subject’ that the experiment was in the noble cause of education, and was designed to test whether or not punishing pupils for their mistakes would have a positive effect on the pupils’ ability to learn.

B. Milgram’s experimental set-up involved placing the teacher-subject before a panel of thirty switches with labels ranging from ’15 volts of electricity (slight shock)’ to ‘450 volts (danger – severe shock)’ in steps of 15 volts each. The teacher-subject was told that whenever the pupil gave the wrong answer to a question, a shock was to be administered, beginning at the lowest level and increasing in severity with each successive wrong answer. The supposed ‘pupil’ was, in reality, an actor hired by Milgram to simulate receiving the shocks by emitting a spectrum of groans, screams and writings together with an assortment of statements and expletives denouncing both the experiment and the experimenter. Milgram told the teacher-subject to ignore the reactions of the pupil, and to administer whatever level of shock was called for, as per the rule governing the experimental situation of the moment.

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C. As the experiment unfolded, the pupil would deliberately give the wrong answers to questions posed by the teacher, thereby bringing on various electrical punishments, even up to the danger level of 300 volts and beyond. Many of the teacher-subjects balked at administering the higher levels of punishment, and turned to Milgram with questioning looks and/or complaints about continuing the experiment. In these situations, Milgram calmly explained that the teacher-subject was to ignore the pupil’s cries for mercy and carry on with the experiment. If the subject was still reluctant to proceed, Milgram said that it was important for the sake of the experiment that the procedure be followed through to the end. His final argument was, ‘You have no other choice. You must go on.’ What Milgram was trying to discover was the number of teacher-subjects who would be willing to administer the highest levels of shock, even in the face of strong personal and moral revulsion against the rules and conditions of the experiment.

D. Prior to carrying out the experiment, Milgram explained his idea to a group of 39 psychiatrists and asked them to predict the average percentage of people in an ordinary population who would be willing to administer the highest shock level of 450 volts. The overwhelming consensus was that virtually ail the teacher-subjects would refuse to obey the experimenter. The psychiatrists felt that ‘most subjects would not go beyond 150 volts’ and they further anticipated that only four per cent would go up to 300 volts. Furthermore, they thought that only a lunatic fringe of about one in 1,000 would give the highest shock of 450 volts. Furthermore, they thought that only a lunatic cringe of about one in 1,000 would give the highest shock of 450 volts.

E. What were the actual results? Well, over 60 per cent of the teacher-subjects continued to obey Milgram up to the 450-volt limit! In repetitions of the experiment in other countries, the percentage of obedient teacher-subjects was even higher, reaching 85 per cent in one country. How can we possibly account for this vast discrepancy between what calm, rational, knowledgeable people predict in the comfort of their study and what pressured, flustered, but cooperative teachers’ actually do in the laboratory of real life?

F. One’s first inclination might be to argue that there must be some sort of built-in animal aggression instinct that was activated by the experiment, and that Milgram’s teacher-subjects were just following a genetic need to discharge this pent-up primal urge onto the pupil by administering the electrical shock. A modern hard-core sociobiologist might even go so far as to claim that this aggressive instinct evolved as an advantageous trait, having been of survival value to our ancestors in their struggle against the hardships of life on the plains and in the caves, ultimately finding its way into our genetic make-up as a remnant of our ancient animal ways.

G. An alternative to this notion of genetic programming is to see the teacher-subjects’ actions as a result of the social environment under which the experiment was carried out. As Milgram himself pointed out, ‘Most subjects in the experiment see their behaviour in a larger context that is benevolent and useful to society – the pursuit of scientific truth. The psychological laboratory has a strong claim to legitimacy and evokes trust and confidence in those who perform there. An action such as shocking a victim, which in isolation appears evil, acquires a completely different meaning when placed in this setting.’

H. Thus, in this explanation the subject merges his unique personality and personal and moral code with that of larger institutional structures, surrendering individual properties like loyalty, self-sacrifice and discipline to the service of malevolent systems of authority.

I. Here we have two radically different explanations for why so many teacher-subjects were willing to forgo their sense of personal responsibility for the sake of an institutional authority figure. The problem for biologists, psychologists and anthropologists are to sort out which of these two polar explanations is more plausible. This, in essence, is the problem of modern sociobiology – to discover the degree to which hard-wired genetic programming dictates, or at least strongly biases, the interaction of animals and humans with their environment, that is, their behaviour. Put another way, sociobiology is concerned with elucidating the biological basis of all behaviour.

Questions 14-19

Reading Passage 2 has nine paragraphs, A-I.
Which paragraph contains the following information?
Write the correct letter A-I in boxes 14-19 on your answer sheet.
14. a biological explanation of the teacher-subjects’ behaviour
15. the explanation Milgram gave the teacher-subjects for the experiment
16. the identity of the pupils
17. the expected statistical outcome
18. the general aim of sociobiological study
19. the way Milgram persuaded the teacher-subjects to continue

Questions 20-22

Choose the correct letter A, B, C or D.
Write your answers in boxes 20-22 on your answer sheet.

20. The teacher-subjects were told that they were testing whether
A. a 450-volt shock was dangerous.
B. punishment helps learning.
C. the pupils were honest.
D. they were suited to teaching.

21. The teacher-subjects were instructed to
A. stop when a pupil asked them to.
B. denounce pupils who made mistakes.
C. reduce the shock level after a correct answer.
D. give punishment according to a rule.

22. Before the experiment took place the psychiatrists
A. believed that a shock of 150 volts was too dangerous.
B. failed to agree on how the teacher-subjects would respond to instructions.
C. underestimated the teacher-subjects’ willingness to comply with experimental procedure.
D. thought that many of the teacher-subjects would administer a shock of 450 volts.

Questions 23-26

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 2?
In boxes 23-26 on your answer sheet, write:
TRUE if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this

23. Several of the subjects were psychology students at Yale University.
24. Some people may believe that the teacher-subjects’ behaviour could be explained as a positive survival mechanism.
25. In a sociological explanation, personal values are more powerful than authority.
26. Milgram’s experiment solves an important question in sociobiology.

Reading Passage 3

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 27-40, which are based on Reading Passage 3 below:

Telepathy

Can human beings communicate by thought alone? For more than a century the issue of telepathy has divided the scientific community, and even today it still sparks bitter controversy among top academics.

A. Since the 1970s, parapsychologists at leading universities and research institutes around the world have risked the derision of sceptical colleagues by putting the various claims for telepathy to the test in dozens of rigorous scientific studies. The results and their implications are dividing even the researchers who uncovered them.

B. Some researchers say the results constitute compelling evidence that telepathy is genuine. Other parapsychologists believe the field is on the brink of collapse, having tried to produce definitive scientific proof and failed. Sceptics and advocates alike do concur on one issue, however, that the most impressive evidence so far has come from the so-called ‘ganzfeld’ experiments, a German term that means ‘whole field’. Reports of telepathic experiences had by people during meditation led parapsychologists to suspect that telepathy might involve ‘signals’ passing between people that were so faint that they were usually swamped by normal brain activity. In this case, such signals might be more easily detected by those experiencing meditation-like tranquillity in a relaxing ‘whole field’ of light, sound and warmth.

C. The ganzfeld experiment tries to recreate these conditions with participants sitting in soft reclining chairs in a sealed room, listening to relaxing sounds while their eyes are covered with special filters letting in only soft pink light. In early ganzfeld experiments, the telepathy test involved identification of a picture chosen from a random selection of four taken from a large image bank. The idea was that a person acting as a ‘sender’ would attempt to beam the image over to the ‘receiver’ relaxing in the sealed room. Once the session was over, this person was asked to identify which of the four images had been used. Random guessing would give a hit-rate of 25 per cent; if telepathy is real, however, the hit-rate would be higher. In 1982, the results from the first ganzfeld studies were analysed by one of its pioneers, the American parapsychologist Charles Honorton. They pointed to typical hit-rates of better than 30 per cent — a small effect, but one which statistical tests suggested could not be put down to chance.

D. The implication was that the ganzfeld method had revealed real evidence for telepathy. But there was a crucial flaw in this argument — one routinely overlooked in more conventional areas of science. Just because chance had been ruled out as an explanation did not prove telepathy must exist; there were many other ways of getting positive results. These ranged from ‘sensory leakage’ — where clues about the pictures accidentally reach the receiver — to outright fraud. In response, the researchers issued a review of all the ganzfeld studies done up to 1985 to show that 80 per cent had found statistically significant evidence. However, they also agreed that there were still too many problems in the experiments which could lead to positive results, and they drew up a list demanding new standards for future research.

E. After this, many researchers switched to autoganzfeld tests — an automated variant of the technique which used computers to perform many of the key tasks such as the random selection of images. By minimising human involvement, the idea was to minimise the risk of flawed results. In 1987, results from hundreds of autoganzfeld tests were studied by Honorton in a ‘meta-analysis’, a statistical technique for finding the overall results from a set of studies. Though less compelling than before, the outcome was still impressive.

F. Yet some parapsychologists remain disturbed by the lack of consistency between individual ganzfeld studies. Defenders of telepathy point out that demanding impressive evidence from every study ignores one basic statistical fact: it takes large samples to detect small effects. If, as current results suggest, telepathy produces hit-rates only marginally above the 25 per cent expected by chance, it’s unlikely to be detected by a typical ganzfeld study involving around 40 people: the group is just not big enough. Only when many studies are combined in a meta-analysis will the faint signal of telepathy really become apparent. And that is what researchers do seem to be finding.

G. What they are certainly not finding, however, is any change in attitude of mainstream scientists: most still totally reject the very idea of telepathy. The problem stems at least in part from the lack of any plausible mechanism for telepathy.

H. Various theories have been put forward, many focusing on esoteric ideas from theoretical physics. They include ‘quantum entanglement’, in which events affecting one group of atoms instantly affect another group, no matter how far apart they may be. While physicists have demonstrated entanglement with specially prepared atoms, no-one knows if it also exists between atoms making up human minds. Answering such questions would transform parapsychology. This has prompted some researchers to argue that the future lies not in collecting more evidence for telepathy, but in probing possible mechanisms. Some work has begun already, with researchers trying to identify people who are particularly successful in autoganzfeld trials. Early results show that creative and artistic people do much better than average: in one study at the University of Edinburgh, musicians achieved a hit-rate of 56 per cent. Perhaps more tests like these will eventually give the researchers the evidence they are seeking and strengthen the case for the existence of telepathy.

Questions 27-30

Complete each sentence with the correct ending, A —G, below.
Write the correct letter, A—G, in boxes 27-30 on your answer sheet.
27. Researchers with differing attitudes towards telepathy agree on
28. Reports of experiences during meditation indicated
29. Attitudes to parapsychology would alter drastically with
30. Recent autoganzfeld trials suggest that success rates will improve with

A the discovery of a mechanism for telepathy.

B the need to create a suitable environment for telepathy.

C their claims of a high success rate.

D a solution to the problem posed by random guessing.

E the significance of the ganzfeld experiments.

F a more careful selection of subjects.

G a need to keep altering conditions.

Questions 31-40

Complete the table below.
Choose NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from the passage for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 31-40 on your answer sheet.

Telepathy Experiments

Name/ Date Description Result Flaw
Ganzfeld studies

1982

Involved a person acting as a 31…………….. , who picked out one 32…………………… from a random selection of four, and a 33………………….. , who then tried to identify it. Hit-rates were higher than with random guessing. Positive results could be produced by factors such as 34……………………. Or 35………………..……
Autoganzfeld studies

1987

36…………………… were used for key tasks to limit the amount of 37……………………. in carrying out the tests. The results were then subjected to a 38 ………………………. The 39………………….. between different test results was put down to the fact that sample groups were not 40…………………… (as with most ganzfeld studies).

Answers

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Reading Passage 1 

1. FALSE
2. TRUE
3. TRUE
4. TRUE
5. NOT GIVEN
6. FALSE
7. FALSE
8. sea cucumbers
9. agricultural
10. scuba diving
11. communications
12. Sustainability
13. Conflict

Reading Passage 2

14. F
15. A
16. B
17. D
18. I
19. C
20. B
21. D
22. C
23. NOT Given
24. TRUE
25. FALSE
26. FALSE

Reading Passage 3

27. E
28. B
29. A
30. F
31. sender
32. picture/image
33. receiver
34 & 35. sensory leakage (or) (outright) fraud (IN EITHER ORDER)
36. computers
37. human involvement
38. meta-analysis
39. lack of consistency
40. big/ large enough

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