Listening Day 18: Matching information from a list

Tapescript and Answers

TIM:                      Well, all in all it sounds very positive – I think I will go ahead and apply for a placement myself. How do I go about it?

LAURA:                It’s easy enough to do, because there’s a government agency called STEP – S-T-E-P – that organises placements for students. You should start by getting their booklet with all the details – I expect you can download one from their website.

TIM:                      Actually, they’ve got copies in the psychology department – I’ve seen them there. I’ll just go to the office and pick one up. (Q25)

LAURA:                Right. And then if I were you, after I’d looked at it I’d go over all the options with someone …

TIM:                      I suppose I should ask my tutor’s advice. He knows more about me than anyone.

LAURA:                One of the career officers would be better (Q26), they’ve got more knowledge about the jobs market than your personal tutor would have.

TIM:                      OK …

LAURA:                And then when you know what you want you can register with STEP – you’ll find their address in the booklet. And once you’ve registered they assign you to a mentor who looks after your application.

TIM:                      And then I suppose you just sit back and wait till you hear something?

LAURA:                They told me at the careers office that it’s best to be proactive, and get updates yourself by checking the website for new placement alerts (Q27). Your mentor is supposed to keep you informed, but you can’t rely on that.

TIM:                      I don’t suppose it’s a good idea to get in touch with companies directly, is it?

LAURA:                Not really … But it is the company who notifies you if they want you to go for an interview. You get a letter of invitation or an email from personnel departments. (Q28)

TIM:                      And do I reply directly to them?

LAURA:                Yes, you do. STEP only gets involved again once you’ve been made a job offer.

TIM:                      Right … So, once you’ve had an interview you should let your mentor know what the outcome is? I mean whether you’re offered a job, and whether you’ve decided to accept it? (Q29)

LAURA:                That’s right. They’ll inform the careers office once a placement has been agreed, so you don’t have to do that.

TIM:                      Is that all then?

LAURA:                More or less. Only once you’ve accepted an offer you’ll probably have to supply a reference, because the placement will be conditional on that. And that’s something you should ask your own tutor to provide (Q3). He knows about your academic ability and also about your qualities, like reliability.

TIM:                      Well, thanks very much for the information – I’m starting to look forward … 

Bootcamp bonus: matching info from a list 

Tapescript and Answers

TUTOR:                OK, Jim. You wanted to see me about your textile design project.

JIM:                      That’s right. I’ve been looking at how a range of natural dyes can be used to colour fabrics like cotton and wool.

TUTOR:                Why did you choose that topic?

JIM:                      Well, I got a lot of useful ideas from the museum, you know, at that exhibition of textiles. But I’ve always been interested in anything to do with colour. Years ago, I went to a carpet shop with my parents when we were on holiday in Turkey, and I remember all the amazing colours(Q21)

TUTOR:                They might not all have been natural dyes.

JIM:                      Maybe not, but for the project I decided to follow it up. And I found a great book about a botanic garden in California that specialises in plants used for dyes.

TUTOR:                OK. So, in your project, you had to include a practical investigation.

JIM:                      Yeah. At first I couldn’t decide on my variables. I was going to just look at one type of fibre for example, like cotton …

TUTOR:                … and see how different types of dyes affected it?

JIM:                      Yes. Then I decided to include others as well, so I looked at cotton and wool and nylon(Q22)

TUTOR:                With just one type of dye?

JIM:                      Various types, including some that weren’t natural, for comparison.

TUTOR:                OK.

JIM:                      So, I did the experiments last week. I used some ready-made natural dyes. I found a website which supplied them, they came in just a few days, but I also made some of my own.

TUTOR:                That must have taken quite a bit of time.

JIM:                      Yes, I’d thought it’d just be a matter of a teaspoon or so of dye, and actually that wasn’t the case at all. Like I was using one vegetable, beetroot, for a red dye, and I had to chop up a whole pile of it (Q23). So it all took longer than I’d expected.

TUTOR:                One possibility is to use food colourings.

JIM:                      I did use one. That was a yellow dye, an artificial one.

TUTOR:                Tartrazine?

JIM:                      Yeah. I used it on cotton first. It came out a great colour, but when I rinsed the material, the colour just washed away (Q24). I’d been going to try it out on nylon, but I abandoned that idea.

TUTOR:                Were you worried about health issues?

JIM:                      I’d thought if it’s a legal food colouring, it must be safe.

TUTOR:                Well, it can occasionally cause allergic reactions, I believe.


TUTOR:                So what natural dyes did you look at?

JIM:                      Well, one was turmeric. The colour’s great, it’s a really strong yellow. It’s generally used in dishes like curry.

TUTOR:                It’s meant to be quite good for your health when eaten, but you might find it’s not permanent when it’s used as a dye – a few washes, and it’s gone(Q25)

JIM:                      Right. I used beetroot as a dye for wool. When I chop up beetroot to eat I always end up with bright red hands, but the wool ended up just a sort of watery cream shade (Q26). Disappointing.

TUTOR:                There’s a natural dye called Tyrian purple. Have you heard of that?

JIM:                      Yes. It comes from a shellfish, and it was worn in ancient times but only by important people as it was so rare. I didn’t use it(Q27)

TUTOR:                It fell out of use centuries ago, though one researcher managed to get hold of some recently. But that shade of purple can be produced by chemical dyes nowadays. Did you use any black dyes?

JIM:                      Logwood. That was quite complicated. I had to prepare the fabric so the dye would take.

TUTOR:                I hope you were careful to wear gloves.

JIM:                      Yes. I know the danger with that dye.

TUTOR:                Good. It can be extremely dangerous if it’s ingested (Q28). Now, presumably you had a look at an insect-based dye? Like cochineal, for example?

JIM:                      Yes. I didn’t actually make that, I didn’t have time to start crushing up insects to get the red colour and anyway they’re not available here, but I managed to get the dye quite easily from a website. But it cost a fortune (Q29). I can see why it’s generally just used in cooking, and in small quantities.

TUTOR:                Yes, it’s very effective, but that’s precisely why it’s not used as a dye.

JIM:                      I also read about using metal oxide. Apparently you can allow iron to rust while it’s in contact with the fabric, and that colours it.

TUTOR:                Yes, that works well for dying cotton. But you have to be careful as the metal can actually affect the fabric (Q30) and so you can’t expect to get a lot of wear out of fabrics treated in this way. And the colours are quite subtle, not everyone likes them. Anyway, it looks as if you’ve done a lot of work … 

Get the explanations here:

Get the Reading about purple dyes here:

Reading_ William Henry Perkin

How the lesson will help:

Matching information from a list:
– waiting for the prompt
– choosing between two options
– waiting for confirmation
– listening for extra clues to help you guess
– using the 30 seconds to fill in any gaps


Why you need to do it:

You will learn how to distinguish between the two options presented for each question – one of the most common and tricky aspects of Listening Part 3.


What you need to do:

1. Do the test exactly as it would be in the real test (1st half of the video)

2. Check your answers from the PDF (from the previous lesson), or watch the second half (with the tapescript, or watch again with the tapescript).

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