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作文题目很平易近人,主旨是bilingual and multilingual education should be incorporated  into school curriculum.摘自Linda Moore的American's future should be  multilingual.




  We Americans must confront a stark disadvantage we face when it comes to  the global economy. Some eight in 10 Americans speak only English, and the  number of schools teaching a foreign language is in decline, according to a new  study by the Council on Foreign Relations. But the opposite is true among our  economic competitors. While some 200 million Chinese students are learning  English, only 24,000 Americans are studying Chinese, U.S. Department of  Education statistics say. Foreign language degrees account for only 1 percent of  all U.S. undergraduate degrees. And fewer than 2 percent of U.S. undergraduates  study abroad in a given year, the Education Department says. Our nation is  largely monolingual but is entering an increasingly multilingual world. More  than half of European Union citizens speak a language other than their mother  tongue, and more than a quarter speak at least three languages. This is because  additional languages are studied in European primary and secondary schools, and  are taken up by European college students in much larger numbers than in the  United States.

  The Council on Foreign Relations-sponsored task force report, headed by  former New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein and former Secretary of State  Condoleezza Rice, concluded: "Education failure puts the United States' future  economic prosperity, global position, and physical safety at risk." It warned  that the country "will not be able to keep pace — much less lead — globally  unless it moves to fix the problems it has allowed to fester for too long." For  decades, our children were deprived of bilingual or multilingual education out  of a mistaken belief that it took time away from other subjects, hindering  students' academic development. But recent research has shown that learning  another language is a wise investment, rather than a waste. Research from the  University of Georgia found that bilingual school children perform better on  standardized tests including the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) than their  monolingual peers. A George Mason University study discovered that younger  students who had enrolled in a second language immersion program outperformed  those who did not in coursework, as well as on standardized tests, throughout  their scholastic careers.

  Educators now conclude that learning additional languages improves one's  ability to focus, plan and solve problems. Among other benefits, this means that  such students are better able to move efficiently from one subject to another.  The D.C.-based Center for Applied Linguistics has ascertained that the earlier  we learn a foreign language, the greater the benefits. Moreover, these benefits  can last a lifetime. Learning another language can help people stave off the  effects of aging, including preventing the onset of dementia and other  age-related conditions like Alzheimer's, according to research done by  University of California neuroscientists. I believe that teaching students  foreign languages in pre-kindergarten to sixth-grade classes is a worthwhile  investment. Our school educates 350 students in Northeast Washington, D.C., to  think, speak, read, write and learn in two languages, either English and French,  or English and Spanish. Exposure to a new language and the skills it helps  develop is a key reason that our school, where 80 percent of our students come  from low-income households, was ranked as high performing by D.C.'s Public  Charter School Board in December. The ranking system was based on several  factors,

  including test scores, attendance and re-enrollment rates. The benefits of  learning a new language go beyond the classroom. When students graduate, being  fluent in a second language improves their career prospects. The Bureau of Labor  Statistics reports that a number of emerging occupations need workers who can  speak and write in more than one language. A University of Florida study  revealed that in large, linguistically diverse cities such as Miami and San  Antonio, the ability to speak a second language translates into more than $7,000  of increased annual income. We want our students to have access to these  opportunities and more. The economic importance of being bilingual is  highlighted by the fact that 31 percent of company executives can speak at least  two languages, according to international executive search firm Korn/Ferry. Using  multilingualism, we are expanding the scope of children's learning at a time  when public policy limits school accountability to math and reading. Most  policymakers want their children to

  have global skill sets but do not encourage this in our public schools.  Other countries have learned this lesson and have made the necessary commitments  to teach their students additional languages. Their students' exposure to  additional languages is paying dividends. I would like to see the U.S.  Department of Education encourage local education authorities to invest in  bilingual and multilingual education. Given the global competition for good  jobs, this is not a luxury, but a necessity. It will help our children, and our  nation, to succeed in the economy of tomorrow.






  历史类文章:主人公是约翰亚当斯-美国最后一位founding father;讲述联邦的话题,两篇文章的方向大体一致。



  科学类文章:考古题材,讲地球氧气最初存在时间的确定,引入了一个铁相关的物质,来挑 战之前关于物质的最初的一个解释。








  Madness of crowds, single ants beat colonies at easy choices

  Virtually every article or documentary about ants takes a moment to fawn  over their incredible collective achievements. Together, ant colonies can raise  gardens and livestock, build living rafts, run vaccination programmes, overpower  huge prey, deter elephants, and invade continents. No individual could do any of  this; it takes a colony to pull off such feats.

  But ants can also screw up. Like all animal collectives, they face  situations when the crowd’s wisdom turns into foolishness.

  Takao Sasaki and Stephen Pratt from Arizona State University found one such  example among house-hunting Temnothorax ants. When they need to find a new nest,  workers spread out from their colony to search for good real estate. In earlier  work, Sasaki and Pratt have shown that, as a group, the ants are better at  picking the best of two closely matched locations, even if most of the workers  have only seen one of the options. It’s a classic example of swarm intelligence,  where a colony collectively computes the best solution to a task.

  But Sasaki showed that this only happens if their choice is difficult. If  one nest site is clearly better than the other, individual ants actually  outperform colonies. When a worker finds a new potential home, it judges the  site’s quality for itself. Temnothorax ants love dark nests, in particular; with  fewer holes, it’s easier to control their temperature or defend them. If the  worker decides that it likes the spot, it returns to the colony and leads a  single follower to the new location. If the follower agrees, it does the same.  Through these “tandem-runs”, sites build up support, and better ones do so more  quickly than poorer ones. When enough ants have been convinced of the worth of a  site, their migration gathers pace. Workers just start picking up their  nestmates and carrying them to the new site.

  In past experiments, the team have always found that ant colonies make  better decisions than individual workers. Even though each worker might only  visit one or two possible sites, the colony collectively explores all the  options and weighs them against one another. And since many individuals need to  “vote” for a particular site, “this prevents any one ant’s poor choice from  misleading the entire colony,” says Sasaki.

  This time, the team wanted to see if the colony keeps its superiority for  easy tasks as well as difficult ones. They presented Temnothorax ants with two  possible nests—one held in constant darkness and another whose brightness could  be adjusted. Sometimes, the ants had an easy choice between a dark nest and a  blindingly illuminated one. Sometimes, they had to choose between two similar  sites, one just marginally dimmer than the other.

  As the light difference between the nests got bigger and the task became  easier, the ants, whether as individuals or colonies, made more accurate  choices. The team expected as much. But to their surprise, the single workers  showed the greatest improvements and eventually outperformed their collective  peers. In the easiest tasks, they chose the darker nest 90 percent of the time,  while the colonies peaked at 80 percent accuracy.

  To understand why this happens, consider how the ants choose their nests.  If an individual is working by herself, she might visit a few sites in a row and  gauge the difference between them. If they’re very similar, there’s a good  chance she’ll make the wrong decision. But the colony doesn’t work off the  recommendations of any individual; it relies on a quorum, just like the up- and  down-voting system of social websites like Reddit. Together, the colony can  amplify small differences between closely-matched sites and smooth out bad  choices from errant individuals.

  Still, this system isn’t perfect. If many ants happen to find a bad site  very quickly, they might reach a quorum before other workers have time to rouse  support for a better alternative. “A bad choice can happen even if one site is  much better than the other, because the ants at the bad site will have no  information at all about the existence of the much better alternative,” says  Sasaki.

  A single ant isn’t as vulnerable to this problem. “She will visit both  sites, easily see that one is better than the other, and nearly always make the  right choice,” says Sasaki. Colonies, however, put less effort into comparing  their options than lone individuals, which sometimes leads them astray.

  Does that sound familiar? Perhaps the same vulnerability can explain why  the collective intelligence of humans often flips into the so-called “madness of  crowds”. Sasaki certainly thinks so. “For example, I just went to an online site  to buy a fan,” he says. “Instead of comparing options carefully, I blindly  bought the most famous one. This ant-like consuming behaviour may lead to a  similar pattern—the crowd fails when quality of options is easy to  distinguish.”


  The best lie detectors in the workplace

  Do you have an employee who doesn’t follow through on her promises? What  about a coworker who exaggerates his accomplishments or tinkers with the  numbers? Chances are these folks duped someone during the hiring process into  overestimating their potential.

  In organizations, nowhere is judging character more important than in  evaluating talent. When screening prospective executives and employees, company  leaders constantly make predictions about whether these candidates will act in  good faith and measure up to the requirements of their roles, or if they have  oversold their talents and will have a negative impact on colleagues and the  bottom line. So who excels at distinguishing the givers from the takers? Is it  the skeptical leaders who harbor suspicions about others, or the trusting  leaders who assume the best?

  Lie detection is a notoriously difficult skill to master. In fact, even  most so-called lie detection experts — experienced detectives, psychiatrists,  job interviewers, judges, polygraph administrators, intelligence agents and  auditors — hardly do better than chance. In a massive analysis of studies with  more than 24,000 people, psychologists Charles Bond Jr. and Bella DePaulo found  that even the experts are right less than 55 percent of the time.

  Still, some people are better judges of character than others. So when we  need to count on people to assess honesty, we tend to turn to the skeptics among  us, expecting that they’ll be thorough and discerning.

  Consider a clever study by psychologists Nancy Carter and Mark Weber, who  presented business professionals with a scenario about an organization  struggling with dishonesty in its hiring interviews. They had the chance to  choose one of two highly competent senior managers to be the company’s job  interviewer. The major difference between the two managers wasn’t experience or  skill, it was a matter of personality: One manager was skeptical and suspicious,  whereas the other manager had a habit of trusting others. Eighty-five percent  chose the skeptical manager to make the hiring decisions, expecting the trusting  manager to be naïve and easily duped.

  But are we right that skeptics are better lie detectors? To find out,  Carter and Weber created videotapes of eight business students interviewing for  a job. Half of the interviewees told the truth throughout the interview, while  the other half was instructed to tell three significant lies apiece.

  Carter and Weber recruited a group of people to watch the videos. Several  days beforehand, they had completed a survey about whether they were generally  skeptical or trusting of others. After watching the videos, the participants  placed their bets about which candidates lied and which told the truth, and then  made a choice about which ones they would hire.

  The results were surprising. The more trusting evaluators better identified  the liars among the group than the skeptics did, and were also less likely to  hire those liars. Contrary to conventional wisdom, it’s the skeptics who are  easiest to fool. Why would this be? One possibility, according to Carter and  Weber, is that lie-detection skills cause people to become more trusting. If  you’re good at spotting lies, you need to worry less about being deceived by  others, because you can often catch them in the act.

  The other possibility is that by trusting others, we sharpen our skills in  reading people. Skeptics assume that most people are hiding or misrepresenting  something. This makes them interpersonally risk-averse, whereas people who  habitually trust others get to see a wider range of actions — from honesty to  deception and generosity to selfishness. Over time, this creates more  opportunities to learn about the signals that distinguish liars from truth  tellers. It’s this latter explanation, that trust improves our lie detection  skills, that I find more plausible. Children develop beliefs about the integrity  and benevolence of others early in life, often years before they can master the  art of spotting con artists.

  So what signals do trusters use to spot lies? One of the study’s findings  is that they pay more attention to vocal cues than skeptics do. This lines up  beautifully with a breakthrough review led by the psychologist Alder Vrij. His  team examined several decades of research and concluded that most of us rely  heavily on nonverbal cues, such as nervousness or confidence, even though they  can be misleading.

  To effectively spot lies, Vrij and colleagues recommend renewed attention  to verbal cues-inconsistencies in stories and incorrect responses to questions  for which you already know the answer. These cues are most likely to emerge when  the dialogue is mentally challenging (as lies are harder to remember than the  truth) and when questions are unexpected (as candidates won’t have a scripted  answer).

  Because every conversation and candidate is different, the red flags that  matter will ultimately vary in each interaction. This means that we need leaders  who demonstrate skill in recognizing dishonesty. Instead of delegating these  judgments to skeptics, it could be wiser to hand over the hiring interviews to  those in your organization who tend to see the best in others. It’s the  Samaritans who can smoke out the charlatans.

  Of course, faith in others can go too far. It’s important to sprinkle a few  ounces of skepticism into each pound of trust. Ultimately, while the best  leaders don’t trust all of the people all of the time, the keenest judges of  character may be the leaders who trust most of the people most of the time.



  数学部分: 难度不大 ,今天从亚博出来出场后,一位考生提及有道错题检查出来,但是没有来的及改正;故敦促大家数学部分不要马虎,计算力争准确,一步到位,能拿到的分一点不能落。





  第一篇文章:地理类-Geographical information system: helping urban foresters to help  cities



  第二篇文章: a pet maybe really a child’s friend

  文章讲述到大部分家长都将孩子的过敏现象与养宠物练习起来,  但是本片文章就澄清了这样一个误解,通过研究,文章表明养宠物与过敏的直接关系并不大,而且对孩子的成长大有好处。

  第三篇文章:Lost in translation


  第四篇文章:Turnback the clocks

  Daylight Save  Time(DST)一直以来被认为是高效且节省能源的一种生活方式,而这篇文章否定了这个观点。作者明确指出这种方法对上班族的健康会带来不利影响,对能源的节约也没有任何帮助。


  至于大家关心的硬伤词汇题,这次也是手下留情只考了3个:enlarge & exacerbate, concede & confess,  confer与on的介词搭配。









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