TOEFL IBT Listening Practice Test 13 Solution, Explanation & Transcripts

41. D

The professor says It was the promise of wealth that first drew European powers to look for a westward route to Asia; So, they began to search for a way around the northern edge of the continent, a Northwest Passage that would link the Atlantic to the Pacific. (2.2)

42. A

The professor’s purpose is to give examples of early Arctic explorers. The professor says The Englishman Martin Frobisher spent several years exploring what is now Canada and searching for wealth in the Arctic; In 1607, Henry Hudson began his exploration of the Canadian Arctic. (2.3)

43. B

The professor calls the Northwest Passage a deadly maze of sea ice, narrow straits, and oddly shaped islands. She also says The passage changes from year to year, and even from week to week. You can infer that ice makes the passage dangerous and unpredictable. (2.4)

44. C

The professor’s purpose is to illustrate changes in the ice covering the Arctic region. The ice is disappearing and getting thinner as a result of a temperature rise of 3 to 4 degrees. (2.3)

45. A, D

One possible consequence of an increase in shipping in the Northwest Passage is harm to wildlife: There are potential consequences to shipping in the passage. Ships could disrupt the polar bears and bowhead whales that live there. There could be an increase in the smuggling of polar bear hides and walrus tusks. Another possible consequence is a major oil spill: The biggest concern, however, is the threat of an oil spill from a supertanker. An oil spill would damage this pristine region and be extremely difficult to clean up. (2.2)

46. C

The speaker says These early houses of New England are the greatest single source of knowledge about domestic architecture of the seventeenth century, particularly about details of plan and construction. (2.2)

47. A

The speaker says In the porch, there was a steep staircase built up against a massive chimney; The staircase in the porch led to one large sleeping room upstairs. (2.2)

48. D

The speaker’s purpose is to explain how the two-room plan evolved from the one-room plan.

The speaker says The second house design was the two-room plan, which was simply the one-room plan with a parlor added at the other side of the chimney and porch. Then he explains how the parlor was actually built onto an older one-room house in early examples of the two-room design. In later examples, both rooms were built at the same time, showing the evolution of the design. (2.3)

49. A

The speaker says The added space was used as a kitchen. The cooking was done in a fireplace added to the back of the central chimney structure. (2.2)


Two-room plan: There were two stories, and each story had two rooms: …the two-room plan, which was simply the one-room plan with a parlor added…; Upstairs, there were two sleeping rooms….

Added lean-to plan: Extra rooms were built onto the back of the house: …the added lean-to plan, was the result of an addition at the back of the house…; The added space was used as a kitchen; There were two more rooms built on either side of the kitchen.

One-room plan: The house had one large space for cooking, dining, and living: The large main room was a combination living-dining-cooking room called the “hall.”

Added lean-to plan: A staircase led up from the kitchen to attic space for storage or sleeping: Above the kitchen, under the lean-to roof, there was attic space for storage or more sleeping rooms, which you reached by a staircase leading up from the kitchen. (2.5)

51. D

The speaker makes the statement because plan type may not reveal exactly when a house was built. He says that plan type is not a perfect indicator of the house s age. Since the one-room plan continued to be built throughout the seventeenth century, one cannot use plan type alone to determine exactly when a one-room house was built. (2.3)



Questions 1 through 5.

Listen to a conversation in a university library.

W:Excuse me. Could you please tell me if there are any study rooms here in the library?

M:Yes, um, most of the rooms have already been reserved, but I think we have a few left.

W:Do you mean I have to reserve it ahead of time?

M:Oh yes, and the sooner the better. The rooms on the third floor are already completely booked for the quarter.

W:Oh. Um … how does it work then—I mean how can I—do I just sign up here for the times I want?

M:Yeah. Usually people want an hour or two at a time. You’re limited to ten hours a week—that’s if it’s available. Like I said, we’re fairly booked up. You really need to come in early in the quarter, or before the quarter starts would be even better.

W:Wow! I didn’t realize space was so tight.

M:Yeah, it’s true. Enrollment is up 12 percent over last year, and it really makes a difference. So, um, what would you like to do?

W:Well, actually it’s for me and two of my classmates. We’re working on a presentation together, and we need a quiet space to meet and talk.

M:What time of day do you want—morning, afternoon, or evening? There are more rooms open in the evening.

W:One of my classmates is a commuter—she carpools from Spring Valley and has to leave campus at six o’clock. So evenings wouldn’t work. Actually, um, I think afternoons are best for all of us. Is there anything available … like, after three o’clock?

M:Let me check. That’s always a busy time.

W:Oh …

M:Wait a minute. I just thought of something. Does it matter if it’s in the Communications Building? They have some rooms over there.

W:Well, sort of. We, um, we were hoping to be here in the library.

M: The Communications Building is the one just behind us. You can even get there from the ground floor of this building.

W: Oh, really? I didn’t know that. Well then, maybe we could try that. Did you say they had rooms available?

M: Yes. They have rooms … it looks like from one to Five every day of the week.

W: Great! Can we reserve one of those, um, from three to five o’clock … on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday? Starting tomorrow?

M: Sure, I can do that. I just need to see your student I.D.

W: No problem.


Questions 6 through 11.

Listen to part of a talk in a meteorology class.

W: I’m glad to see everyone made it to school safely this morning. I wish I could say the same for myself, but I had a rather close call when I was getting on the expressway. I was on the onramp, and my car suddenly skidded and turned completely around, so I ended up with my car facing backward. Luckily, there was no one right behind me. I was able to turn my car around and slowly drive on. You see, what had happened was, I ran into a patch of black ice. And the nature of black ice is that you just don’t see it coming because it’s practically invisible. Generally, the formation of ice requires two conditions: the presence of water and temperatures below freezing. However, black ice can form on the highway when the air temperature is slightly above freezing but the ground temperature is below freezing. That’s how it was at seven o’clock this morning when I was driving to campus. The air temperature was 34 degrees Fahrenheit; however, the overnight low had been in the low twenties, so the ground temperature was below freezing. The black ice formed when evaporation on the wet surface of the pavement—it was mist, actually, water vapor— when the mist was exposed to above-freezing air temperatures. The evaporation lowered the surface temperature to below freezing, and this then froze the very thin layer of mist on the surface of the pavement.

M: Excuse me, Dr. West. I’m not sure I heard you correctly. Are you saying it’s possible for ice to form, even when it’s not freezing outside?

W: Yes, and black ice is a good example of this. The air temperature can be above freezing, but the temperature of a wet surface like pavement can be lower. The same thing happens when wet laundry is left hanging outside and it freezes solid at an air temperature of 35 degrees. Water evaporates from the wet clothes, which are colder than the air, and the vapor rising from the laundry freezes. So your clothes are then covered with a thin film of ice. One of the reasons black ice takes us so much by surprise is that we don’t expect to find ice when the thermometer says it’s above freezing—the air temperature, that is. But air temperature can be deceiving, and we have to be careful, especially on mornings like today.

We usually think of ice formation as the freezing of liquid water, but ice can also form by the process of sublimation. Sublimation is when water changes state from a gas directly to a solid—or from a solid to a gas—without first becoming a liquid. Ice formed in this way—by sublimation—forms directly from water vapor, or mist, which is a gas.

M: So, what you’re saying is, black ice is formed by sublimation?

W: Yes. Black ice is formed by sublimation—directly from water vapor on the surface of the road. Black ice is a form of frost. Some other forms of frost are ground frost and the frost you see on windows on cold winter nights. It can look like delicate feathery patterns of crystals on your windowpane, or it can be femlike crystals several centimeters long on the twigs and branches of trees. Water vapor forms as frost on the surface of an object if the temperature of the surface falls below both the freezing point and the point at which water vapor condenses to a liquid. In the case of window frost, the temperature of the window glass has to be below freezing. The window is chilled because it’s losing heat to the colder air outside. By the way, the beautiful patterns of window frost are due to its slightly curved crystals, because of organic impurities on the glass—dust and dirt— that interfere with crystal growth.