BEST IELTS Academic Reading Test 7

BEST IELTS Academic Reading Test 7

BEST IELTS Academic Reading Test 7

Reading Passage 1

Coastal Archaeology of Britain

A. The recognition of the wealth and diversity of England’s coastal archaeology has been one of the most important developments of recent years. Some elements of this enormous resource have long been known. The so-called ‘submerged forests’ off the coasts of England, sometimes with clear evidence of human activity, had attracted the interest of antiquarians since at least the eighteenth century but serious and systematic attention has been given to the archaeological potential of the coast only since the early 1980s.

B. It is possible to trace a variety of causes for this concentration of effort and interest In the 1980s and 1990s scientific research into climate change and its environmental impact spilled over into a much broader public debate as awareness of these issues grew; the prospect of rising sea levels over the next century, and their impact on current coastal environments, has been a particular focus for concern. At the same time archaeologists were beginning to recognize that the destruction caused by natural processes of coastal erosion and by human activity was having an increasing impact on the archaeological resource of the coast.

C. The dominant process affecting the physical form of England in the post- glacial period has been the rise in the altitude of sea level relative to the land, as the glaciers melted and the landmass readjusted. The encroachment of the sea, the loss of huge areas of land now under the North Sea and the English Channel, and especially the loss of the land bridge between England and France, which finally made Britain an island, must have been immensely significant factors in the lives of our prehistoric ancestors. Yet the way in which prehistoric communities adjusted to these environmental changes has seldom been a major theme in discussions of the period. One factor contributing to this has been that, although the rise in relative sea level is comparatively well documented, we know little about the constant reconfiguration of the coastline. This was affected by many processes, mostly quiet, which have not yet been adequately researched. The detailed reconstruction of coastline histories and the changing environments available for human use will be an important theme for future research.

D. So great has been the rise in sea level and the consequent regression of the coast that much of the archaeological evidence now exposed in the coastal zone, whether being eroded or exposed as a buried land surface, is derived from what was originally terrestrial occupation. Its current location in the coastal zone is the product of later unrelated processes, and it can tell us little about past adaptations to the sea. Estimates of its significance will need to be made in the context of other related evidence from dry land sites. Nevertheless, its physical environment means that preservation is often excellent, for example in the case of the Neolithic structure excavated at the Stumble in Essex.

E. In some cases these buried land surfaces do contain evidence for human exploitation of what was a coastal environment, and elsewhere along the modem coast there is similar evidence. Where the evidence does relate to past human exploitation of the resources and the opportunities offered by the sea and the coast, it is both diverse and as yet little understood. We are not yet in a position to make even preliminary estimates of answers to such fundamental questions as the extent to which the sea and the coast affected human life in the past, what percentage of the population at any time lived within reach of the sea, or whether human settlements in coastal environments showed a distinct character from those inland.

F. The most striking evidence for use of the sea is in the form of boats, yet we still have much to learn about their production and use. Most of the known wrecks around our coast are not unexpectedly of post-medieval date, and offer an unparalleled opportunity for research which has as yet been little used. The prehistoric sewn-plank boats such as those from the Humber estuary and Dover all seem to belong to the second millennium BC; after this there is a gap in the record of a millennium, which cannot yet be explained, before boats reappear, but built using a very different technology. Boat building must have been an extremely important activity around much of our coast, yet we know almost nothing about it, Boats were some of the most complex artefacts produced by pre-modem societies, and further research on their production and use make an important contribution to our understanding of past attitudes to technology and technological change.

G. Boats needed landing places, yet here again our knowledge is very patchy In many cases the natural shores and beaches would have sufficed, leaving little or no archaeological trace, but especially in later periods, many ports and harbors, as well as smaller facilities such as quays, wharves, and jetties, were built. Despite a growth of interest in the waterfront archaeology of some of our more important Roman and medieval towns, very little attention has been paid to the multitude of smaller landing places. Redevelopment of harbor sites and other development and natural pressures along the coast are subjecting these important locations to unprecedented threats, yet few surveys of such sites have been undertaken.

H. One of the most important revelations of recent research has been the extent of industrial activity along the coast. Fishing and salt production are among the better documented activities, but even here our knowledge is patchy Many forms of fishing will eave little archaeological trace, and one of the surprises of recent survey has been the extent of past investment in facilities for procuring fish and shellfish. Elaborate wooden fish weirs, often of considerable extent and responsive to aerial photography in shallow water, have been identified in areas such as Essex and the Severn estuary. The production of salt, especially in the late Iron Age and early Roman periods, has been recognized for some time, especially in the Thames estuary and around the Solent and Poole Harbor, but the reasons for the decline of that industry and the nature of later coastal salt working are much less well understood. Other industries were also located along the coast, either because the raw materials outcropped there or for ease of working and transport: mineral resources such as sand, gravel, stone, coal, ironstone, and alum were all exploited. These industries are poorly documented, but their mains are sometimes extensive and striking.

I. Some appreciation of the variety and importance of the archaeological remains preserved in the coastal zone, albeit only in preliminary form, can thus be gained from recent work, but the complexity of the problem of managing that resource is also being realised. The problem arises not only from the scale and variety of the archaeological remains, but also from two other sources: the very varied natural and human threats to the resource, and the complex web of organisations with authority over, or interests in, the coastal zone. Human threats include the redevelopment of historic towns and old dockland areas, and the increased importance of the coast for the leisure and tourism industries, resulting in pressure for the increased provision of facilities such as marinas. The larger size of ferries has also caused an increase in the damage caused by their wash to fragile deposits in the intertidal zone. The most significant natural threat is the predicted rise in sea level over the next century especially in the south and east of England. Its impact on archaeology is not easy to predict, and though it is likely to be highly localised, it will be at a scale much larger than that of most archaeological sites. Thus protecting one site may simply result in transposing the threat to a point further along the coast. The management of the archaeological remains will have to be considered in a much longer time scale and a much wider geographical scale than is common in the case of dry land sites, and this will pose a serious challenge for archaeologists.

Questions 1-3

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

Write your answers in boxes 1-3 on your answer sheet.

1. What has caused public interest in coastal archaeology in recent years?

A. Golds and jewelleries in the ships that have submerged

B. The rising awareness of climate change

C. Forests under the sea

D. Technological advance in the field of sea research

2. What does the passage say about the evidence of boats?

A. We have a good knowledge of how boats were made and what boats were for prehistorically

B. Most of the boats discovered were found in harbors

C. The use of boats had not been recorded for a thousand years

D. The way to build boats has remained unchanged throughout human history

3. What can be discovered from the air?

A. Salt mines

B. Shellfish

C. Ironstones

D. Fisheries

Questions 4-10

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1? In boxes 4-10 on your answer sheet, write

TRUE – if the statement agrees with the information

FALSE – if the statement contradicts the information

NOT GIVEN – if the information is not given in the passage

4. England lost much of its land after the ice-age due to the rising sea level.

5. The coastline of England has changed periodically.

6. Coastal archaeological evidence may be well-protected by sea water.

7. The design of boats used by pre-modem people was very simple.

8. Similar boats were also discovered in many other European countries

9. There are few documents relating to mineral exploitation.

10. Large passenger boats are causing increasing damage to the seashore.

Questions 11-13

Choose THREE letters A-G Write your answer in boxes 11-13 on your answer sheet

Which THREE of the following statements are mentioned in the passage?

A. Our prehistoric ancestors adjusted to the environmental change caused by the rising sea level by moving to higher lands.

B. It is difficult to understand how many people lived close to the sea.

C. Human settlements in coastal environment were different from those inland.

D. Our knowledge of boat evidence is limited.

E. The prehistoric boats were built mainly for collecting sand from the river.

F. Human development threatens the archaeological remains.

G. The reason for the decline of salt industry was the shortage of laborers.

Reading Passage 2:-

Smell and Memory


Why does the scent of a fragrance or the mustiness of an old trunk trigger such powerful memories of childhood? New research has the answer, writes Alexandra Witze.

A. You probably pay more attention to a newspaper with your eyes than with your nose. But lift the paper to your nostrils and inhale. The smell of newsprint might carry you back to your childhood, when your parents perused the paper on Sunday mornings. Or maybe some other smell takes you back- the scent of your mother’s perfume, the pungency of a driftwood campfire. Specific odours can spark a flood of reminiscences. Psychologists call it the “Proustian phenomenon “,after French novelist Marcel Proust. Near the beginning of the masterpiece In Search of Lost Time, Proust’s narrator dunks a madeleine cookie into a cup of tea – and the scent and taste unleash a torrent of childhood memories for 3000 pages.

 B. Now, this phenomenon is getting the scientific treatment. Neuroscientists Rachel Herz, a cognitive neuroscientist at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, have discovered, for instance, how sensory memories are shared across the brain, with different brain regions remembering the sights, smells, tastes and sounds of a particular experience. Meanwhile, psychologists have demonstrated that memories triggered by smells can be more emotional, as well as more detailed, than memories not related to smells. When you inhale, odour molecules set brain cells dancing within a region known as the amygdala,a part of the brain that helps control emotion. In contrast, the other senses, such as taste or touch, get routed through other parts of the brain before reaching the amygdala. The direct link between odours and the amygdala may help explain the emotional potency of smells. “There is this unique connection between the sense of smell and the part of the brain that processes emotion,” says Rachel Herz.

C. But the links don’t stop there. Like an octopus reaching its tentacles outward, the memory of smells affects other brain regions as well. In recent experiments, neuroscientists at University College London (UCL) asked 15 volunteers to look at pictures while smelling unrelated odours. For instance, the subjects might see a photo of a duck paired with the scent of a rose, and then be asked to create a story linking the two. Brain scans taken at the time revealed that the volunteers’ brains were particularly active in a region known as the olfactory cortex, which is known to be involved in processing smells. Five minutes later, the volunteers were shown the duck photo again, but without the rose smell. And in their brains, the olfactory cortex lit up again, the scientists reported recently. The fact that the olfactory cortex became active in the absence of the odour suggests that people’s sensory memory of events is spread across different brain regions. Imagine going on a seaside holiday, says UCL team leader, Jay Gottfried. The sight of the waves becomes stored in one area, whereas the crash of the surf goes elsewhere, and the smell of seaweed in yet another place. There could be advantages to having memories spread around the brain. “You can reawaken that memory from any one of the sensory triggers,” says Gottfried. “Maybe the smell of the sun lotion, or a particular sound from that day, or the sight of a rock formation.” Or – in the case of an early hunter and gatherer ( out on a plain – the sight of a lion might be trigger the urge to flee, rather than having to wait for the sound of its roar and the stench of its hide to kick in as well.

D. Remembered smells may also carry extra emotional baggage, says Herz. Her research suggests that memories triggered by odours are more emotional than memories triggered by other cues. In one recent study, Herz recruited five volunteers who had vivid memories associated with a particular perfume, such as opium for Women and Juniper Breeze from Bath and Body Works. She took images of the volunteers’ brains as they sniffed that perfume and an unrelated perfume without knowing which was which. (They were also shown photos of each perfume bottle.) Smelling the specified perfume activated the volunteer’s brains the most,particularly in the amygdala, and in a region called the hippocampus,which helps in memory formation. Herz published the work earlier this year in the journal Neuropsychological.

E. But she couldn’t be sure that the other senses wouldn’t also elicit a strong response. So in another study Herz compared smells with sounds and pictures. She had 70 people describe an emotional memory involving three items – popcorn, fresh-cut grass and a campfire. Then they compared the items through sights,sounds and smells. For instance, the person might see a picture of a lawnmower, then sniff the scent of grass and finally listen to the lawnmower’s sound. Memories triggered by smell were more evocative than memories triggered by either sights or sounds.

F. Odour-evoked memories may be not only more emotional, but more detailed as well. Working with colleague John Downes,psychologist Simon Chu of the University of Liverpool started researching odour and memory partly because of his grandmother’s stories about Chinese culture. As generations gathered to share oral histories, they would pass a small pot of spice or incense around; later, when they wanted to remember the story in as much detail as possible, they would pass the same smell around again. “It’s kind of fits with a lot of anecdotal evidence on how smells can be really good reminders of past experiences,” Chu says. And scientific research seems to bear out the anecdotes. In one experiment, Chu and Downes asked 42 volunteers to tell a life story, then tested to see whether odours such as coffee and cinnamon could help them remember more detail in the story. They could.

G. Despite such studies, not everyone is convinced that Proust can be scientifically analysed. In the June issue of Chemical Senses, Chu and Downes exchanged critiques with renowned perfumer and chemist J. Stephan Jellinek. Jellinek chided the Liverpool researchers for, among other things, presenting the smells and asking the volunteers to think of memories, rather than seeing what memories were spontaneously evoked by the odours. But there’s only so much science can do to test a phenomenon that’s inherently different for each person, Chu says. Meanwhile, Jellinek has also been collecting anecdotal accounts of Proustian experiences, hoping to find some there is a case to be made that surprise may be a major aspect of the Proust phenomenon,” he says. “That’s why people are so struck by these memories” No one knows whether Proust ever experienced such a transcendental moment. But his notions of memory, written as fiction nearly a century ago, continue to inspire scientists of today.

Questions 14-18

Use the information in the passage to match the people (listed A-C) with opinions or deeds below. Write the appropriate letters A- C in boxes 14-18 on your answer sheet.

NB. You may use any letter more than once

A. Rachel Herz

B. Simon Chu

C. Jay Gottfried

14. Found pattern of different sensory memories stored in various zones of a brain.

15. Smell brings detailed event under a smell of certain substance.

16. Connection of smell and certain zones of brain is different with that of other senses.

17. Diverse locations of stored information help us keep away the hazard.

18. There is no necessary correlation between smell and processing zone of brain.

Questions 19-22

Choose the correct letter, A, BC or D.

Write your answers in boxes 19-22 on your answer sheet.

19. What does the experiment conducted by Herz show?

A. Women are more easily addicted to opium medicine

B. Smell is superior to other senses in connection to the brain

C. Smell is more important than other senses

D. Amygdala is part of brain that stores processes memory

20. What does the second experiment conducted by Herz suggest?

A. Result directly conflicts with the first one

B. Result of her first experiment is correct

C. Sights and sounds trigger memories at an equal level

D. Lawnmower is a perfect example in the experiment

21. What is the outcome of experiment conducted by Chu and Downes?

A. smell is the only functional under Chinese tradition

B. half of volunteers told detailed stories

C. smells of certain odours assist story tellers

D. odours of cinnamon is stronger than that of coffee

22. What is the comment of Jellinek to Chu and Downers in the issue of Chemical Senses:

A. Jellinek accused their experiment of being unscientific

B. Jellinek thought Liverpool is not a suitable place for experiment

C. Jellinek suggested that there was no further clue of what specific memories aroused

D. Jellinek stated that experiment could be remedied

Questions 23-26


Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of Reading Passage,

Using NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from the Reading Passage for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 23-26 on your answer sheet.

In the experiments conducted by UCL, participants were asked to look at a picture with a scent of a flower, then in the next stage, everyone would have to……………………… 23…………..for a connection.

A method called……………… 24…………. suggested that specific area of brain named……………. 25…………. were quite active. Then is another paralleled experiment about Chinese elders, storytellers could recall detailed anecdotes when smelling bowl of…………… 26……………… or incense around.

Reading Passage – 3


In the social sciences, it is often supposed that there can be no such
thing as a controlled experiment. Think again.

A. In the scientific pecking order, social scientists are usually looked down on by their peers in the natural sciences. Natural scientists do experiments to test their theories or, if they cannot, they try to look for natural phenomena that can act in lieu of experiments. Social scientists, it is widely thought, do not subject their own hypotheses to any such rigorous treatment. Worse, they peddle their untested hypotheses to governments and try to get them turned into policies.

B. Governments require sellers of new medicines to demonstrate their safety and effectiveness. The accepted gold standard of evidence is a randomised control trial, in which a new drug is compared with the best existing therapy (or with a placebo, if no treatment is available). Patients are assigned to one arm or the other of such a study at random, ensuring that the only difference between the two groups is the new treatment. The best studies also ensure that neither patient nor physician knows which patient is allocated to which therapy. Drug trials must also include enough patients to make it unlikely that chance alone may determine the result.

C. But few education programmes or social initiatives are evaluated in carefully conducted studies prior to their introduction. A case in point is the ‘whole-language’ approach to reading, which swept much of the English-speaking world in the 1970s and 1980s. The whole-language theory holds that children learn to read best by absorbing contextual clues from texts, not by breaking individual words into their component parts and reassembling them (a method known as phonics). Unfortunately, the educational theorists who pushed the whole-language notion so successfully did not wait for evidence from controlled randomised trials before advancing their claims. Had they done so, they might have concluded, as did an analysis of 52 randomised studies carried out by the US National Reading Panel in 2000, that effective reading instruction requires phonics.

D. To avoid the widespread adoption of misguided ideas, the sensible thing is to experiment first and make policy later. This is the idea behind a trial of restorative justice which is taking place in the English courts. The experiment will include criminals who plead guilty to robbery. Those who agree to participate will be assigned randomly either to sentencing as normal or to participation in a conference in which the offender comes face-to-face with his victim and discusses how he may make emotional and material restitution. The purpose of the trial is to assess whether such restorative justice limits re-offending. If it does, it might be adopted more widely.

E. The idea of experimental evidence is not quite as new to the social sciences as sneering natural scientists might believe. In fact, randomised trials and systematic reviews of evidence were introduced into the social sciences long before they became common in medicine. An apparent example of random allocation is a study carried out in 1927 of how to persuade people to vote in elections. And randomised trials in social work were begun in the 1930s and 1940s. But enthusiasm later waned. This loss of interest can be attributed, at least in part, to the fact that early experiments produced little evidence of positive outcomes. Others suggest that much of the opposition to experimental evaluation stems from a common philosophical malaise among social scientists, who doubt the validity of the natural sciences, and therefore reject the potential of knowledge derived from controlled experiments. A more pragmatic factor limiting the growth of evidence-based education and social services may be limitations on the funds available for research.

F. Nevertheless, some 11,000 experimental studies are known in the social sciences (compared with over 250,000 in the medical literature). Randomised trials have been used to evaluate the effectiveness of driver-education programmes, job training schemes, classroom size, psychological counselling for post-traumatic stress disorder and increased investment in public housing. And where they are carried out, they seem to have a healthy dampening effect on otherwise rosy interpretations of the observations.

G. The problem for policymakers is often not too few data, but what to make of multiple and conflicting studies. This is where a body called the Campbell Collaboration comes into its own. This independent non-profit organisation is designed to evaluate existing studies, in a process known as a systematic review. This means attempting to identify every relevant trial of a given question (including studies that have never been published), choosing the best ones using clearly defined criteria for quality, and combining the results in a statistically valid way. An equivalent body, the Cochrane Collaboration, has produced more than 1,004 such reviews in medical fields. The hope is that rigorous review standards will allow Campbell, like Cochrane, to become a trusted and authoritative source of information.

Questions 27-32

You should spend about 20 minutes on questions 27-40, which are based on Reading Passage 3.

Reading Passage has seven paragraphs AG.
Choose the correct heading for paragraphs BG from the list of headings below.

Write the correct number i-x in boxes 27-32 on your answer sheet.

List of Heading:

i. why some early social science methods lost popularity

ii. The cost implications of research

iii. Looking ahead to an unbiased assessment of research

iv. A range of social issues that have been usefully studied

v. An example of a poor decision that was made too quickly

vi. What happens when the figures are wrong?

vii. One area of research that is rigorously carried out

viii. The changing nature of medical trials

ix. An investigative study that may lead to a new system

x. Why some scientists’ theories are considered second-rate

Example: – Paragraph A  Answer:- x

27. Paragraph B

28. Paragraph C

29. Paragraph D

30. Paragraph E

31. Paragraph F

32. Paragraph G

Questions 33-36

Complete the summary below.

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 33-36 on your answer sheet.

Fighting Crime

Some criminals in England are agreeing to take part in a trial designed to help reduce their chances of 33………………… . The idea is that while one group of randomly selected criminals undergoes the usual 34…………………….. , the other group will discuss the possibility of making some repayment for the crime by meeting the 35…………………. . It is yet to be seen whether this system, known as 36…………….., will work.

Questions 37-40

Classify the following characteristics as relating to

A. Social Science

B. Medical Science

C. Both Social Science and Medical Science

D. Neither Social Science nor Medical Science

Write the correct letter A, B, C or D in boxes 37-40 on your answer sheet.

37. a tendency for negative results in early trials  

38. the desire to submit results for independent assessment  

39. the prioritisation of research areas to meet government needs  

40. the widespread use of studies that investigate the quality of new products  


1. B

2. C

3. D






9. TRUE 

10. TRUE

11. B

12. D 

13. F

14. A

15. B

16. A

17. C

18. C

19. D

20. B

21. C

22. C

23. create a story

24. brain scans

25. olfactory cortex

26. spice

27. vii

28. v

29. ix

30. i

31. iv

32. iii

33. Re-offering

34. Sentencing

35. victim

36. Restorative justice

37. A

38. C

39. D

40. B

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BEST IELTS Academic Reading Test 7

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