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英语专业八级听力迷你短文(2)

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2011-09-13 17:37  作者:  来源:恒星论坛  字号:T|T

  [00:29.13]In this section, you will hear a mini-lecture.

  [00:33.95]You will hear the lecture ONCE ONLY.

  [00:36.79]While listening, take notes on the important points.

  [00:41.16]Your notes will not be marked,

  [00:43.46]but you will need them to complete a gap-filling task after the mini-lecture.

  [00:49.04]When the lecture is over, you’ll be given two minutes to check your notes,

  [00:54.29]and another 10 minutes to complete the gap-filling task.

  [00:58.45]Now listen to the mini-lecture.

  [01:01.51]Today I’ll talk about the British educational system,

  [01:07.31]including the primary and secondary education and the higher education in Britain.

  [01:12.99]Meanwhile, I’ll try to make a comparison between the US and the UK higher education.

  [01:19.45]First, I’ll briefly introduce the primary and secondary education in Britain.

  [01:25.03]In England and Wales, students study in primary schools from age five until eleven.

  [01:31.59]They attend secondary school until age sixteen.

  [01:35.63]Before graduating, students usually take seven comprehensive exams,

  [01:41.21]called the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exams.

  [01:47.67]After passing the GCSE exams,

  [01:51.49]students choose to study two to four subjects intensely for the GCE Advanced Level exams,

  [02:00.03]called "A levels."

  [02:01.88]At eighteen, they enter higher education to focus on a particular subject, called a "course."

  [02:09.43]Now let’s move on to the higher education in Britain.

  [02:13.81]First I’ll talk about the general practices in England and Wales,

  [02:18.51]and then the general practices in Scotland.

  [02:21.47]In England and Wales,

  [02:23.76]prospective university students apply for places

  [02:27.37]through the Universities Central Council on Admissions (UCCA).

  [02:32.42]Students do not apply directly to the universities themselves.

  [02:37.12]Successful candidates are admitted directly into a specific degree "course."

  [02:43.25]A degree course normally takes three or four years to complete.

  [02:48.39]At most universities students study only one major subject.

  [02:54.08]Each course is structured with a fixed program of classes for the entire three years.

  [03:00.20]Increasingly, universities in the United Kingdom are offering classes on a modular basis,

  [03:08.29]which allows students to broaden their studies creating a more interdisciplinary program.

  [03:14.53]This modularization, however,

  [03:17.59]has not replaced the traditional British degree course with the American concept of credit accumulation.

  [03:24.70]In addition, there is generally a sharp distinction between the arts and sciences

  [03:31.05]and there is seldom any cross-over between the two.

  [03:34.55]At a British university, more emphasis is placed on independent,

  [03:40.89]self-directed study than in the United States.

  [03:44.06]Required texts and definite reading assignments are less common.

  [03:49.20]More typically, an extensive reading list covering all topics to be discussed

  [03:55.00]is distributed at the start of the course to be used for independent research.

  [04:00.36]British students typically consult a large number of sources from the library

  [04:05.94]rather than intensively studying a few books purchased by everyone taking a course.

  [04:12.28]In addition, students are required to write more essays and take fewer objective tests than at U.S.institutions.

  [04:21.83]Classes often take the following forms: lectures, which are sometimes completely optional;

  [04:28.72]tutorials,in which a small number of students meet with the lecturer;

  [04:33.32]and seminars, larger discussion classes often based upon seminar essays.

  [04:39.22]Unlike the U.S. system of regular testing in a course,

  [04:44.37]British students sit for final examinations that cover the full year's work

  [04:50.16]and determine the grades for the class.

  [04:52.68]With the growth of modularization,

  [04:56.18]however, there has also been an increase in the number and variety of modules offered on a semester basis.

  [05:03.73]In Scotland, there are a variety of tertiary level options available for students,

  [05:09.74]the most important of which are the colleges of further education,

  [05:14.00]the central institutions, teachers colleges and the universities.

  [05:18.60]The colleges of further education provide vocational and technical education,

  [05:24.40]and enroll more students than all other tertiary institutions combined.

  [05:29.87]Central institutions provide courses leading to the Higher National Diploma (HND),

  [05:36.10]bachelor's degrees and some specialized master's degrees.

  [05:41.57]These institutions do not have the authority to directly validate degrees

  [05:47.91]and tend to offer a narrower range of subjects than the universities.

  [05:53.05]Many have close ties to local businesses, offering cooperative work experiences

  [05:59.51]that provide students a period of practical training.

  [06:03.12]Scottish universities are quite distinct from their British counterparts.

  [06:09.24]In fact, they more closely resemble European or American universities.

  [06:14.93]The standard Scottish university degree is a four-year Honors degree (BA Hons).

  [06:23.57]Students are rarely admitted directly to a degree "course."

  [06:27.73]Usually they are admitted to a faculty or simply admitted to the university as a whole.

  [06:34.29]Scottish university students begin with a broad-based program during the first year

  [06:40.52]and choose a specialization after the second or even the third year.

  [06:45.66]Students may also elect to complete a three-year Ordinary degree.

  [06:51.35]This is a broad-based degree that (unlike in England) does not represent a "failed" Honors degree.

  [06:59.01]Next, let’s compare the US and the UK higher education from two aspects,

  [07:05.46]namely, grading and course levels.

  [07:08.09]First, about the Grading.

  [07:10.16]In the UK, assessment methods vary by institution and tend to reflect the UK teaching method and style.

  [07:18.47]Written examinations, which are held at the end of a year or, in some cases,

  [07:24.06]in the final undergraduate year only, are the most common form of study assessment.

  [07:30.07]There is no official method of equating British and American educational qualifications.

  [07:36.74]The educational systems are very different

  [07:40.25]and attempts to compare them must be done on a strictly provisional basis.

  [07:45.60]Many U.S. institutions have already developed systems of assessing their study abroad students

  [07:52.49]or equating British grades to U.S. grades.

  [07:55.88]Professors at UK institutions grade more strictly than their counterparts in the United States.

  [08:03.43]As a result, American students studying in the UK often perceive

  [08:09.45]that they have performed poorly in their classes, when they have not.

  [08:13.82]Grades are given as percentages rather than letter grades.

  [08:18.09]Forty percent is the minimum passing grade and high percentages are rarely awarded.

  [08:24.11]A grade of seventy percent or higher is considered "with distinction."

  [08:30.23]In general, percentages increase from forty rather than decrease from 100 percent,

  [08:37.23]as they do in the United States.

  [08:39.31]Second, about the Course Levels.

  [08:42.70]A typical British course load will vary from 3 to 6 modules or classes per term.

  [08:49.70]Most students take 4 to 5 modules per term.

  [08:54.73]The number of hours in class per week will vary by institution.

  [09:00.42]Students should note that general education or basic courses are not as common at UK universities

  [09:08.40]because they have already been covered at the GCSE level.

  [09:12.89]Many faculties assume that a student has a basic understanding of the concepts

  [09:19.12]that will be addressed in the course.

  [09:20.87]For this reason, it is common for third-year American students to take first-year and second-year courses

  [09:27.65]at a UK university.

  [09:29.51]With this, we’re coming to the end of today’s lecture.

  [09:34.65]Next time, we’ll talk about university degrees.

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