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                                                                                          ĐỀ 1: Population Viability Analysis

Part A
To make political decisions about the extent and type of forestry in a region it is important to understand the consequences of those decisions. One tool for assessing the impact of forestry on the ecosystem is population viability analysis (PVA). This is a tool for predicting the probability that a species will become extinct in a particular region over a specific period. It has been successfully used in the United States to provide input into resource exploitation decisions and assist wildlife managers and there is now enormous potential for using population viability to assist wildlife management in Australia’s forests. A species becomes extinct when the last individual dies. This observation is a useful starting point for any discussion of extinction as it highlights the role of luck and chance in the extinction process. To make a prediction about extinction we need to understand the processes that can contribute to it and these fall into four broad categories which are discussed below.

Part B
     A)   Early attempts to predict population viability were based on demographic uncertainty whether an individual survives from one year to the next will largely be a matter of chance. Some pairs may produce several young in a single year while others may produce none in that same year. Small populations will fluctuate enormously because of the random nature of birth and death and these chance fluctuations can cause species extinctions even if, on average, the population size should increase. Taking only this uncertainty of ability to reproduce into account, extinction is unlikely if the number of individuals in a population is above about 50 and the population is growing.

  1. B)   Small populations cannot avoid a certain amount of inbreeding. This is particularly true if there is a very small number of one sex. For example, if there are only 20 individuals of a species and only one is a male, all future individuals in the species must be descended from that one male. For most animal species such individuals are less likely to survive and reproduce. Inbreeding increases the chance of extinction.
  2. C)    Variation within a species is the raw material upon which natural selection acts. Without genetic variability a species lacks the capacity to evolve and cannot adapt to changes in its environment or to new predators and new diseases. The loss of genetic diversity associated with reductions in population size will contribute to the likelihood of extinction.
  3. D)   Recent research has shown that other factors need to be considered. Australia’s environment fluctuates enormously from year to year. These fluctuations add yet another degree of uncertainty to the survival of many species. Catastrophes such as fire, flood, drought or epidemic may reduce population sizes to a small fraction of their average level. When allowance is made for these two additional elements of uncertainty the population size necessary to be confident of persistence for a few hundred years may increase to several thousand.

Part C
Beside these processes we need to bear in mind the distribution of a population. A species that occurs in five isolated places each containing 20 individuals will not have the same probability of extinction as a species with a single population of 100 individuals in a single locality. Where logging occurs (that is, the cutting down of forests for timber) forest-dependent creatures in that area will be forced to leave. Ground-dwelling herbivores may return within a decade. However, arboreal marsupials (that is animals which live in trees) may not recover to pre-logging densities for over a century. As more forests are logged, animal population sizes will be reduced further. Regardless of the theory or model that we choose, a reduction in population size decreases the genetic diversity of a population and increases the probability of extinction because of any or all of the processes listed above. It is therefore a scientific fact that increasing the area that is loaded in any region will increase the probability that forest-dependent animals will become extinct.

Questions 28-31

Do the following statements agree with the views of the writer in Part A of Reading Passage 1? In boxes 28-31 on your answer sheet write:

YES                if the statement agrees with the writer
NO                  if the statement contradicts the writer
NOT GIVEN    if it is impossible to say what the writer thinks about this

Example                                                                                                                                   Answer

A link exists between the consequences of decisions and
the decision making process itself.                                                                                     YES

28     Scientists are interested in the effect of forestry on native animals.

29     PVA has been used in Australia for many years.
30     A species is said to be extinct when only one individual exists.
31     Extinction is a naturally occurring phenomenon. 

Questions 32-35
These questions are based on Part B of Reading Passage 1. In paragraphs A to D the author describes four processes which may contribute to the extinction of a species. Match the list of processes (i-vi) to the paragraphs. Write the appropriate number (i-vi) in boxes 32-35 on your answer sheet.
NB There are more processes than paragraphs so you will not use all of them.

32   Paragraph A

33   Paragraph B

34   Paragraph C

35   Paragraph D

i   Loss of ability to adapt
ii   Natural disasters
iii   An imbalance of the sexes
iv   Human disasters
v   Evolution
vi  The haphazard nature of reproduction

Questions 36-38
Based on your reading of Part C, complete the sentences below with words taken from the passage. Use NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 36-38 on your answer sheet.

While the population of a species may be on the increase, there is always a chance that small isolated groups ………. (36) ………. Survival of a species depends on a balance between the size of a population and its ………. (37) ……… The likelihood that animals which live in forests will become extinct is increased when ……….  (38) ………..

Question 39
Choose the appropriate letter A-D and write it in box 39 on your answer sheet.

39 An alternative heading for the passage could be:
     A    The protection of native flora and fauna
     B    Influential factors in assessing survival probability
     C    An economic rationale for the logging of forests
     D    Preventive measures for the extinction of a species

28. Yes    29. No    30. No    31. Not Given    32. vi : The haphazard nature of reproduction    33. iii: An imbalance of the sexes    34. i: Loss of ability to adapt    35. ii: Natural disasters    36. will (/may) not survive / will (/ may)could become extinct     37. locality/ distribution    38. logging takes place (/ occurs) 39. B

ĐỀ 2: 

       A Workaholic Economy

For the first century or so of the industrial revolution, increased productivity led to decreases in working hours. Employees who had been putting in 12-hour days, six days a week, found their time on the job shrinking to 10 hours daily, then finally to eight hours, five days a week. Only a generation ago social planners worried about what people would do with all this new- found free time. In the US, at least it seems they need not have bothered. Although the output per hour of work has more than doubled since 1945, leisure seems reserved largely for the unemployed and underemployed. Those who work full-time spend as much time on the job as they did at the end of World War II. In fact, working hours have increased noticeably since 1970 — perhaps because real wages have stagnated since that year. Bookstores now abound with manuals describing how to manage time and cope with
stress. There are several reasons for lost leisure. Since 1979, companies have responded to improvements in the business climate by having employees work overtime rather than by hiring extra personnel, says economist Juliet B. Schor of Harvard University. Indeed, the current economic recovery has gained a certain amount of notoriety for its “jobless” nature: increased production has been almost entirely decoupled from employment. Some firms are even downsizing as their profits climb. “All things being equal, we'd be better off spreading around the work," observes labour economist Ronald G. Ehrenberg of Cornell University
Yet a host of factors pushes employers to hire fewer workers for more hours and at the same time compels workers to spend more time on the job. Most of those incentives involve what Ehrenberg calls the structure of compensation: quirks in the way salaries and benefits are organised that make it more profitable to ask 40 employees to labour an extra hour each than to hire one more worker to do the same 40-hour job. Professional and managerial employees supply the most obvious lesson along these lines. Once people are on salary, their cost to a firm is the same whether they spend 35 hours a week in the office or 70. Diminishing returns may eventually set in as overworked employees lose efficiency or leave for more arable pastures. But in the short run, the employer’s incentive is clear. Even hourly employees receive benefits – such as pension contributions and medical insurance – that are not tied to the number of hours they work. Therefore, it is more profitable for employers to work their existing employees harder. For all that employees complain about long hours, they too have reasons not to trade moneyfor leisure. “People who work reduced hours pay a huge penalty in career terms,” Schor maintains. “It's taken as a negative signal’ about their commitment to the firm.’ [Lotte] Bailyn [of Massachusetts Institute of Technology] adds that many corporate managers find it difficult to measure the contribution of their underlings to a firm’s well-being, so they use the number of hours worked as a proxy for output. “Employees know this,” she says, and they adjust their behavior accordingly. “Although the image of the good worker is the one whose life belongs to the company,” Bailyn says, “it doesn't fit the facts.’ She cites both quantitative and qualitative studies that show increased productivity for part-time workers: they make better use of the time they have and they are less likely to succumb to fatigue in stressful jobs. Companies that employ more workers for less time also gain from the resulting redundancy, she asserts. "The extra people can cover the contingencies that you know are going to happen, such as when crisestake people away from the workplace." Positive experiences with reduced hours have begun to change the more-is-better culture at some companies, Schor reports. Larger firms, in particular, appear to be more willing to experiment with flexible working arrangements… It may take even more than changes in the financial and cultural structures of employment for workers successfully to trade increased productivity and money for leisure time, Schor contends. She says the U.S. market for goods has become skewed by the assumption of full-time, two-career households. Automobile makers no longer manufacture cheap models, and developers do not build the tiny bungalows that served the first postwar generation of home buyers. Not even the humblest household object is made without a microprocessor. As Schor notes, the situation is a curious inversion of the “appropriate technology” vision that designers have had for developing countries: U.S. goods are appropriate only for high incomes and long hours.        —– Paul Walluh
Questions 27-32
Do the following statements agree with the views of the writer in reading passage 4? In boxes 27-32 on your answer sheet write:
YES                             if the statement agrees with the writer
NO                              if the statement contradicts the writer
NOT GIVEN               if it is impossible to say what the writer thinks about this
Example                                                                                                      Answer
During the industrial revolution people worded harder                         NOT GIVEN

27    Today, employees are facing a reduction in working hours.
28    Social planners have been consulted about US employment figures.
29    Salaries have not risen significantly since the 1970s.
30    The economic recovery created more jobs.
31    Bailyn’s research shows that part-time employees work more efficiently.
32    Increased leisure time would benefit two-career households.
Questions 33-34
Choose the appropriate letters A-D and write them in boxes 33 and 34 on your answer sheet.
33 Bailyn argues that it is better for a company to employ more workers because
A    it is easy to make excess staff redundant.
B    crises occur if you are under-staffed.
C    people are available to substitute for absent staff.
D    they can project a positive image at work.
34 Schor thinks it will be difficult for workers in the US to reduce their working hours because

A    they would not be able to afford cars or homes.
B    employers are offering high incomes for long hours.
C    the future is dependent on technological advances.
D    they do not wish to return to the humble post-war era.
Questions 35-38
The writer mentions a number of factors that have resulted, in employees working longer
hours. Which FOUR of the following factors are mentioned? Write your answers (A-H) in
boxes 35-38 on your answer sheet.

List of Factors
A   Books are available to help employees cope with stress.
B   Extra work is offered to existing employees.
C   Increased production has led to joblessness.
D   Benefits and hours spent on the job are not linked.
E   Overworked employees require longer to do their work.
F    Longer hours indicate greater commitment to the firm.
G   Managers estimate staff productivity in terms of hours worked.

H   Employees value a career more than a family.

27.  No    28.  Not Given    29.  Yes    30.  No    31.  Yes   32.  Not Given    33.  C    34.  A
35.  B. Extra work is offered to existing employees.   36.  D. Benefits and hours spent on the
job are not linked    37.  F. Longer hours indicate greater commitment to the firm.    38. G.
Managers estimate staff productivity in terms of hours worked.


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