1. 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 question 8-10, complete the sentences with the information given in the passage.
Colleges taking another look at value of merit-based aid
Good grades and high tests scores still matter—a lot—to many colleges as they award financial aid.
But with low-income students projected to make up an ever-larger share of the college-bound population in coming years, some schools are re-examining whether that aid, typically known as “merit aid”, is the most effective use of precious institutional dollars.
George Washington University in Washington, D.C., for example, said last week that it would cut the value of its average merit scholarships by about one-third and reduce the number of recipients(接受者), pouring the savings, about $2.5 million, into need-based aid. Allegheny College in Meadville, Pa., made a similar decision three years ago.
Now, Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., says it will phase out merit scholarships altogether. No current merit-aid recipients will lose their scholarships, but need-based aid alone will be awarded beginning with students entering in fall 2008.
Not all colleges offer merit aid; generally, the more selective a school, the less likely it is to do so. Harvard and Princeton, for example, offer generous need-based packages, but many families who don’t meet need eligibility(资格)have been willing to pay whatever they must for a big-name school.
For small regional colleges that struggle just to fill seats, merit aid can be an important revenue-builder because many recipients still pay enough tuition dollars over and above the scholarship amount to keep the institution running.
But for rankings-conscious schools in between, merit aid has served primarily as a tool to recruit top students and to improve their academic profits. “They’re trying to buy students,” says Skidmore College economist Sandy Baum.
Studies show merit aid also tends to benefit disproportionately s[ 此文转贴于贵,州.学,习.网 http://www.Gzu521.com] tudents who could afford to enroll without it.
“As we look to the future, we see a more pressing need to invest in need-based aid,” says Monica Inzer, dean of admission and financial aid at Hamilton, which has offered merit scholarships for 10 years. During that time, it rose in US News & World Report’s ranking of the best liberal arts colleges, from 25 to 17.
Merit aid, which benefited about 75 students a year, or about 4% of its student body, at a cost of about $ 1 million a year, “served us well,” Inzer says, but “to be discounting the price for families that don’t need financial aid doesn’t feel right any more.”
Need-based aid remains by far the largest share of all student aid, which includes state, federal and institutional grants. But merit aid, offered primarily by schools and states, is growing faster, both overall and at the institutional level.
Between 1995-96 and 2003-04, institutional merit aid alone increased 212%, compared with 47% for need-based grants. At least 15 states also offer merit aid, typically in a bid to enroll top students in the state’s public institutions.
But in recent years, a growing chorus(异口同声)of critics has begun pressuring schools to drop the practice. Recent decisions by Hamilton and others may be “a sign that people are starting to realize that there’s this destructive competition going on,” says Baum, co-author of a recent College Report that raises concerns about the role of institutional aid not based on need.
David Laird, president of the Minnesota Private College Council, says many of his schools would like to reduce their merit aid but fear that in doing so, they would lose top students to their competitors.
“No one can take one-sided action,” says Laird, who is exploring whether to seek an exemption(豁免)from federal anti-trust laws so member colleges can discuss how they could jointly reduce merit aid, “This is a merry-go-round that’s going very fast, and none of the institutions believe they can sustain the risks of trying to break away by themselves.”
A complicating factor is that merit aid has become so popular with middle-income families, who don’t qualify for need-based aid, that many have come to depend on it. And, as tuitions continue to increase, the line between merit and need blurs.
That’s one reason Allegheny College doesn’t plan to drop merit aid entirely.
“We still believe in rewarding superior achievements and know that these top students truly value the scholarship,” says Scott Friedhoff, Allegheny’s vice president for enrollment.
Emory University in Atlanta, which boasts a $4.7 billion endowment(捐赠), meanwhile, is taking another approach. This year, it announced it would eliminate loans for needy students and cap them for middle-income families. At the same time, it would expand its 28-year-old merit program.
“Yeah, we’re playing the merit game,” acknowledges Tom Lancaster, associate dean for undergraduate education. But it has its strong point, too, he says. “The fact of the matter is, it’s not just about the lowest-income people. It’s the average American middle-class family who’s being priced out of the market.”
*A few words about merit-based aid:
Merit-based aid is aid offered to students who achieve excellence in a given area, and is generally known as academic, athletic and artistic merit scholarships.
Academic merit scholarships are based on students’ grades, GPA and overall academic performance during high school. They are typically meant for students going straight to college right after high school. However, there are scholarships for current college students with exceptional grades as well. These merit scholarships usually help students pay tuition bills, and they can be renewed each year as long as the recipients continue to qualify. In some cases, students may need to be recommended by their school or a teacher as part of the qualification process.
Athletic merit scholarships are meant for students that excel(突出)in sports of any kind, from football to track and field events. Recommendation for these scholarships is required, since exceptional athletic performance has to be recognized by a coach or a referee(裁判). Applicants need to send in a tape containing their best performance.
Artistic merit scholarships require that applicants excel in a given artistic area. This generally includes any creative field such as art, design, fashion, music, dance or writing. Applying for artistic merit scholarships usually requires that students submit a portfolio(选辑)of some sort, whether that includes a collection of artwork, a recording of a musical performance or a video of them dancing. 【題組】1
. With more and more low-income students pursuing higher education, a number of colleges are ________.
(A) offering students more merit-based aid
(B) revising their financial aid policies
(C) increasing the amount of financial aid
(D) changing their admission processes
2.【題組】2. What did Allegheny College in Meadville do three years ago?
(A) It tried to implement a novel financial aid program.
(B) It added $ 2.5 million to its need-based aid program.
(C) It phased out its merit-based scholarships altogether.
(D) It cuts its merit-based aid to help the needy students.
3.【題組】3. The chief purpose of rankings-conscious colleges in offering merit aid is to ______.
(A) improve teaching quality
(B) boost their enrollments
(C) attract good students
(D) increase their revenues
4.【題組】4. Monica Inzer, dean of admission and financial aid at Hamilton, believes ______.
(A) it doesn’t pay to spend $ 1 million a year to raise its ranking
(B) it gives students motivation to award academic achievements
(C) it’s illogical to use so much money on only 4% of its students
(D) it’s not right to give aid to those who can afford the tuition
5.【題組】5. In recent years, merit-based aid has increased much faster than need-based aid due to ______.
(A) more government funding to colleges
(B) fierce competition among institutions
(C) the increasing number of top students
(D) schools’ improved financial situations
6.【題組】6. What is the attitude of many private colleges toward merit aid, according to David Laird?
(A) They would like to see it reduced.
(B) They regard it as a necessary evil.
(C) They think it does more harm than good.
(D) They consider it unfair to middle-class families.
7.【題組】7. Why doesn’t Allegheny College plan to drop merit aid entirely?
(A) Raising tuitions have made college unaffordable for middle-class families.
(B) With rising incomes, fewer students are applying for need-based aid.
(C) Many students from middle-income families have come to rely on it.
(D) Rising incomes have disqualified many students for need-based aid.
8. Part Ⅳ Reading Comprehension (Reading in Depth) (25 minutes)
Directions: There are 2 passages in this section. Each passage is followed by some questions or unfinished statements. For each of them there are four choices marked (A), (B), (C) and (D). You should decide on the best choice and mark the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2 with a single line through the centre.
Questions 57 to 61 are based on the following passage.
Throughout this long, tense election, everyone has focused on the presidential candidates and how they’ll change America. Rightly so, but selfishly, I’m more fascinated by Michelle Obama and what she might be able to do, not just for this country, but for me as an African-American woman. As the potential First Lady, she would have the world’s attention. And that means that for the first time people will have a chance to get up close and personal with the type of African-American woman they so rarely see. Usually, the lives of black women go largely unexamined. The prevailing theory se ( 贵.州,学.习,网 )hTTp://wWw.gZu521.cOmems to be that we’re all hot-tempered single mothers who can’t keep a man. Even in the world of make-believe, black women still can’t escape the stereotype of being eye-rolling, oversexed females raised by our never-married, alcoholic (酗酒的) mothers.
These images have helped define the way all women are viewed, including Michelle Obama. Before she ever gets the chance to commit to a cause, charity or foundation as First Lady, her most urgent and perhaps most complicated duty may be simple to be herself.
It won’t be easy. Because few mainstream publications have done in-depth features on regular African-American women, little is known about who we are, what we think and what we face on a regular basis. For better or worse, Michelle will represent us all.
Just as she will have her critics, she will also have millions of fans who usually have little interest in the First Lady. Many African-American blogs have written about what they’d like to see Michelle bring to the White House—mainly showing the world that a black woman can support her man and raise a strong black family. Michelle will have to work to please everyone—an impossible task. But for many African-American women like me, just a little of her poise (沉着), confidence and intelligence will go a long way in changing an image that’s been around for far too long. 【題組】57
. Why does Michelle Obama hold a strong fascination for the author?
(A) She serves as a role model for African women.
(B) She possesses many admirable qualities becoming a First Lady.
(C) She will present to the world a new image of African-American women.
(D) She will pay closer attention to the interests of African-American women.
9.【題組】58. What is the common stereotype of African-American women according to the author?
(A) They are victims of violence.
(B) They are of an inferior violence.
(C) They use quite a lot of body language.
(D) They live on charity and social welfare.
10.【題組】59. What do many African-Americans write about in their blogs?
(A) Whether Michelle can live up to the high expectations of her fans.
(B) How Michelle should behave as a public figure.
(C) How proud they are to have a black woman in the White House.
(D) What Michelle should do as wife and mother in the White House.
11.【題組】60. What does the author say about Michelle Obama as a First Lady?
(A) However many fans she has, she should remain modest,
(B) She shouldn’t disappoint the African-American community.
(C) However hard she tries, she can’t expect to please everybody.
(D) She will give priority to African-American women’s concerns.
12.【題組】61. What do many African-American women hope Michelle Obama will do?
(A) Help change the prevailing view about black women.
(B) Help her husband in the task of changing America.
(C) Outshine previous First Lady.
(D) Fully display her fine qualities.
Questions 62 to 66 are based on the following passage.
When next year’s crop of high-school graduates arrive at Oxford University in the fall of 2009, they’ll be joined by a new face; Andrew Hamilton, the 55-year-old provost (教务长) of Yale, who’ll become Oxford’s vice-chancellor—a position equivalent to university president in America.
Hamilton isn’t the only educator crossing the Atlantic. Schools in France, Egypt, Singapore, etc, have also recently made top-level hires from abroad. Higher education has become a big and competitive business nowadays, and like so many businesses, it’s gone global. Yet the talent flow isn’t universal. High-level personnel tend to head in only one direction: outward from America.
The chief reason is that American schools don’t tend to seriously consider looking abroad. For example, when the board of the University of Colorado searched for a new president, it wanted a leader familiar with the state government, a major source of the university’s budget. “We didn’t do any global consideration,” says Patricia Hayes, the board’s chair. The board ultimately picked Bruce Benson, a 69-year-old Colorado businessman and political activist (活动家) who is likely to do well in the main task of modern university presidents: fund-raising. Fund-raising is a distinctively American thing, since U.S. schools rely heavily on donations. The fund-raising ability is largely a product of experience and necessity.
Many European universities, meanwhile, are still mostly dependent on government funding. But government support has failed to keep pace with rising student number. The decline in government support has made funding-raising an increasing necessary ability among administrators and has hiring committees hungry for Americans.
In the past few years, prominent schools around the world have joined the trend. In 2003, when Cambridge University appointed Alison Richard, another former Yale provost, as its vice-chancellor, the university publicly stressed that in her previous job she had overseen “a major strengthening of Yale’s financial position.”
Of course, fund-raising isn’t the only skill outsiders offer. The globalization of education means more universities will be seeking heads with international experience of some kind of promote international programs and attract a global student body. Foreigners can offer a fresh perspective on established practices. 【題組】62
. What is the current trend in higher education discussed in the passage?
(A) Institutions worldwide are hiring administrators from the U.S.
(B) A lot of political activists are being recruited as administrators.
(C) American universities are enrolling more international students.
(D) University presidents are paying more attention to funding-raising.
14.【題組】63. What is the chief consideration of American universities when hiring top-level administrators?
(A) The political correctness.
(B) Their ability to rais
(C) Their fame in academic circles.
(D) Their administrative experience.
15.【題組】64. What do we learn about European universities from the passage?
(A) The tuitions they charge have been rising considerably.
(B) Their operation is under strict government supervision.
(C) They are strengthening their position by globalization.
(D) Most of their revenues come from the government.
16.【題組】65. Cambridge University appointed Alison Richard as its vice-chancellor chiefly because _____.
(A) she was known to be good at raising money
(B) she could help strengthen its ties with Yale
(C) she knew how to attract students overseas
(D) she had boosted Yale’s academic status
17.【題組】66. In what way do top-level administrators from abroad contribute to university development?
(A) They can enhance the university’s image.
(B) They will bring with them more international faculty.
(C) They will view a lot of things from a new perspective.
(D) They can set up new academic disciplines.
18.Part Ⅴ Cloze (15 minutes)
Directions: There are 20 blanks in the following passage. For each blank there are four choices marked (A), (B), (C), and (D) on the right side of the paper. You should choose the ONE that best fits into the passage. Then mark the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2 with a single line through the centre.
Older people must be given more chances to learn if they are to contribute to society rather than be a financial burden, according to a new study on population published recently.
The current people approach which 67 on younger people and on skills for employment is not 68 to meet the challenges of demographic (人口结构的) change, it says. Only 1% of the education budget is 69 spent on the oldest third of the population.
The 70 include the fact that most people can expect to spend a third of their lives in 71 , that there are now more people over 59 than under 16 and that 11.3 million people are 72 state pension age.
“ 73 needs to continue throughout life. Our historic concentration of policy attention and resources 74 young people cannot meet the new 75 ,” says the report’s author, Professor Stephen McNair.
The major 76 of our education budget is spent on people below the age of 25. 77 people are changing their jobs, 78 , partners and lifestyles more often than 79 , they need opportunities to learn at every age 80 , some people are starting new careers in their 50s and later.
People need opportunities to make a “midlife review” to 81 to the later stage of employed life, and to plan for the transition (过渡) 82 retirement, which may now happen 83 at any point from 50 to over 90, says McNair.
And there should be more money 84 to support people in establishing a 85 of identity and finding constructive 86 for the “third age”, the 20 or more years they will spend in healthy retired life.