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Part II Reading Comprehension (Skimming and Scanning) (15 minutes)
Directions: In this part, you will have 15 minutes to go over the passage quickly and answer the questions on Answer Sheet 1. For questions 1-7, choose the best answer from the four choices marked A), B), C) and D). For questions 8-10, complete the sentences with the information given in the passage.
Suffering in silence
Despite a law designed to protect them, many people with disabling conditions are unaware of their rights. Carole Concha-Bell tells of her experiences.
Being diagnosed with a disabling condition is always a shock. Learning to live without the guarantee of health is like having to unlearn a previous life. The implications for your working life may seem intimidating.
There is the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), of course. But does it really provide the protection in the workplace that parliament intended? Are employers merely paying lip service to the DDA? Or are they even aware of an employer's legal duties and responsibilities?
In my experience, it is the latter. I have received little support from employers to whom I have revealed my condition. This has often left me feeling at a disadvantage and wondering why I bothered doing so in the first place.
I had been struggling with illness long before I was diagnosed. In practical terms the diagnosis did little to aid me. Of course, it enabled me to understand my body, my limitations and set me on a course to stabilise my symptoms. But it brought a new dilemma. Where I had previously struggled to work while ill, ignorant of why my body was misbehaving, I now had a name for my daily struggle: Lupus(狼疮). This is a chronic(慢性的)auto-immune disorder that can affect virtually any system in the body. It also leaves a huge, dark question hanging over my head when seeking employment: should I tell my employers I have a condition? It is a dilemma that continues to be a root cause of anxiety both for myself and for thousands of other UK employees.
The rocky road to my unfortunate enlightenment about work and disability began just after graduation when I'd set my sights on a career in communications and landed my dream job with a respected public relations consultancy(咨询公司)in Bristol. But while I was learning the art of media relations, my body wasn't quite making it in health terms. I often went to work with swollen limbs and fevers. At my first and last performance review, my boss was amazed that, despite my many capabilities. I hadn't quite taken control of my responsibilities. A few months later, my contract wasn't renewed and I plunged further into new depths of ill health.
However, I was determined not to be beaten and returned to the interview trail. My next job was in publishing. But despite a shining performance at the interview, I felt like a fraud. How long would it be before I sank into ill health and depression again?
The job was to end with a monumental bang when I became so poorly I could no longer function. A few feverish weeks in bed ended in specialist appointment, where I was diagnosed with Lupus and rushed into hospital for fear that it may have attacked my internal organs.
The next 12 months were filled with confusion. I had no idea about benefits, felt alienated(被视为另类)by the medical establishment and lived off my savings until I was broke. I realised I needed help from my family and moved to London.
As soon as I felt better, I marched into a marketing recruitment consultancy and, within 10 minutes, I had impressed the interviewer enough to be offered a job with the agency. We agreed on a decent salary and I told him I had arthritis(关节炎)and would need to work a four-day week.
Things went well at the start but soon the client meetings began to fall on my day off, and I rarely left the office on time. I began to slip both in health and professional terms. The 10-hour days crashed around my head; no amount of make-up could disguise my ill health as I battled against the odds to prove to myself that I could still make it in the business world. I often cried on the bus on the way back from work.
Not long before my contract was due to be made permanent, I was called to the boss's office and given the "talk" about how my performance was slipping, how awful I looked. I felt too weak to fight back and agreed to leave. No attempts to offer adjustments to my job, such as being able to work from home, were ever made. I had a case for unfair dismissal under the DDA, but was ignorant of this at the time.
An estimated 10 million people in the UK, or 17% of the population, qualify for disability status under the DDA. I have encountered a number of them: the liver-diseased boss; the co-worker with a heart condition; and my asthmatic(哮喘的)trainee-teacher friend. None had disclosed(透露)their conditions to employers, and all were feeling the strain of not doing so.
To access your rights under the DDA and to request "reasonable adjustments" to your working conditions or your workplace requires disclosure. I had warned my former employer about my condition but it served little purpose. They were ignorant about their obligations to their disabled staff.
However, there are plenty of forward-thinking organisations that have inclusive recruitment policies; are more likely to employ a worker with a disability; and are more aware of their legal duties. The public sector out-performs the private, but not always the voluntary, according to studies for the Disabilities Rights Commission.
I decided to give the voluntary sector ago and was surprised to be offered flexible working conditions and other solutions to meet my needs as an employee. But given the choice, I would still prefer a career in the private sector, which for mc is more dynamic, has more attractive salaries and offers better prospects than the voluntary or public sectors.
Despite the advances of the DDA, there will always be an army of workers who will soldier on, maybe aware of their rights but choosing to remain silent for personal reasons. It is important, though, to recognize the significance of the act, the protection it affords and the obligations that employers have to us as employees and as human beings.
1. What is people's immediate response when they are first diagnosed with a disabling condition?
A) They report the situation to their employers.
B) They come to realize the value of good health.
C) They feel nervous about their work prospects.
D) They try to seek protection from the DDA.
2. When the author revealed her condition to her employers, they ___________.
A) were quite sympathetic toward her
B) did not give her the support she needed
C) made adjustments to meet her needs
D) were annoyed not to be informed earlier
3. When the author was diagnosed with Lupus, she was in a dilemma whether she should _____________.
A) ask for assistance from her fellow workers
B) find employment at a different company
C) ignore her limitations and struggle to work
D) inform her employers of her disability status
4. The author lost her job at the public relations consultancy in Bristol because___.
A) her boss had found a much better replacement
B) she was in no mood at all to discharge her duties
C) her performance was disappointing to her boss
D) she failed to show up for her performance review
5. Why did the author feel like a fraud when she got her second job?
A) She knew she would fall ill any time again.
B) She was not as competent as she appeared to be.
C) She concealed the fact that she had just been fired.
D) She pretended to be very keen on the job.
6. Why did the author move to London?
A) To get help from her family. C) To start a consulting business.
B) To receive better medical care. D) To seek a more suitable job.
7. The author worked hard at the marketing recruitment consultancy in order to_.
A) earn the boss's appreciation and clients' recognition
B) demonstrate her strong willpower to conquer illness
C) provide for herself without protection from the DDA
D) prove herself capable of success in the business world
8. Although many people qualify for disability status in the UK, they would rather not tell their employers about _____________.
9. The author was offered flexible working conditions in the voluntary sector, but if she had a choice, she would still like to work in ___________________.
10. The author stresses that it is important to recognise employers' ____________ to their disabled employees.
Part III Listening Comprehension (35 minutes)
Directions: In this section, you will hear 8 short conversations and 2 long conversations. At the end of each conversation, one or more questions will be asked about what was said. Both the conversation and the questions will be spoken only once. After each question there will be a pause. During the pause, you must read the four choices marked A), B), C) and D), and decide which is the best answer. Then mark the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2 with a single line through the centre.
11. A) He needs another week for the painting.
B) The painting was completed just in time.
C) The building won't open until next week.
D) His artistic work has been well received.
12. A) Go camping.
B) Decorate his house.
C) Rent a tent.
D) Organize a party.
13. A) She talked with Mr. Wright on the phone.
B) She is about to call Mr. Wright's secretary.
C) She will see Mr. Wright at lunch time.
D) She failed to reach Mr. Wright.
14. A) He is actually very hardworking.
B) He has difficulty finishing his project.
C) He needs to spend more time in the lab.
D) He seldom tells the truth about himself.
15. A) Rules restricting smoking.
B) Ways to quit smoking.
C) Smokers' health problems.
D) Hazards of passive smoking.
16. A) He is out of town all morning.
B) He is tied up in family matters.
C) He has been writing a report.
D) He has got meetings to attend.
17. A) He is not easy-going.
B) He is the speakers' boss.
C) He is not at home this weekend.
D) He seldom invites people to his home.
18. A) Take a break.
B) Refuel his car.
C) Ask the way.
D) Have a cup of coffee.
Questions 19 to 21 are based on the conversation you have just heard.
19. A) They are as good as historical films.
B) They give youngsters a thrill.
C) They have greatly improved.
D) They are better than comics on film.
20. A) The effects were very good.
B) The acting was just so-so.
C) The plot was too complicated.
D) The characters were lifelike.
21. A) They triumphed ultimately over evil in the battle.
B) They played the same role in War of the Worlds.
C) They are popular figures among young people.
D) They are two leading characters in the film.
Questions 22 to 25 are based on the conversation you have just heard.
22. A) It is scheduled on Thursday night.
B) It is supposed to last nine weeks.
C) It takes place once a week.
D) It usually starts at six.
23. A) To make good use of her spare time in the evening.
B) To meet the requirements of her in-service training.
C) To improve her driving skills as quickly as possible.
D) To get some basic knowledge about car maintenance.
24. A) Participate in group discussions.
B) Take turns to make presentations.
C) Listen to the teacher's explanation.
D) Answer the teacher's questions.
25. A) Most of them are female.
B) Some have a part-time job.
C) They plan to buy a new car.
D) A few of them are old chaps.