IELTS Academic Reading: Cambridge 7, Test 4: Reading Passage 3; Effects of noise; with top solutions and detailed explanations

IELTS Academic Reading: Cambridge 7, Test 4: Reading Passage 3; Effects of noise; with top solutions and detailed explanations

This IELTS Reading post highlights all the solutions for IELTS Cambridge 7 Test 4 Reading Passage 3, which is entitled ‘Effects of noise’. This is a targeted post for IELTS candidates who have great problems in finding answers for the Academic Reading module. This post can guide you the best to understand each Reading answer with ease. Tracing IELTS Reading answers is a gradual process and I sincerely hope this post can guide you in your IELTS Reading preparation.

IELTS Cambridge 7 Test 4: AC Reading Module

Reading Passage 3:

The headline of the passage: EFFECTS OF NOISE

Questions 27-29: Multiple choice questions

[This type of question asks you to choose a suitable answer from the options using the knowledge you gained from the passage. Generally, this question is found as the last question so you should not worry much about it. Finding all the answers to previous questions gives you a good idea about the title.]

Question 27: The writer suggests that people may have difficulty sleeping in the mountains because –

Keywords for this question: may have difficulty, sleeping, mountains, because,   

The writer says in lines 1-4 of paragraph no. 2-4, “ . . . . And yet most of us have had the experience of having to adjust to sleeping in the mountains or the countryside because it was initially ‘too quiet’, an experience that suggests that humans are capable of adapting to a wide range of noise levels.”

Here, humans = they, wide range of noise levels = higher noise level,

So, the answer is: D (they may have adapted to a higher noise level in the city.)

Question 28: In noise experiments, Glass and Singer found that –

Keywords for this question: noise experiments, Glass and Singer, 

In lines 7-8 of paragraph no. 1 the writer states, “The noise was quite disruptive at first, but after about four minutes the subjects were doing just as well on their tasks as control subjects who were not exposed to noise.”

This means that bursts of noise do not disrupt problem-solving ultimately (subjects were doing just as well on their tasks).

So, the answer is: C (bursts of noise do not seriously disrupt problem-solving in the long run.)

Question 29: Researchers discovered that high noise levels are not likely to interfere with the –

Keywords for this question: Researchers, discovered, high noise levels, not likely, interfere with,

Take a look at paragraph no. 2, line no. 1-2 where the writer states, “But there are limits to adaptation and loud noise becomes more troublesome if the person is required to concentrate on more than one task.”

The lines suggest that there is a low chance of interference by high noise levels if a person is required to do one task. But if there is more than one task, the chance of interference becomes higher.

So, the answer is: A (successful performance of a single task.)

Questions 30-34: (Completing summary with a list of words)

[In this type of question, candidates are asked to complete a summary with a list of words taken from the passage. Candidates must write the correct letter (not the words) as the answers. Keywords and synonyms are important to find answers correctly. Generally, this type of question maintains a sequence. Find the keywords in the passage and you are most likely to find the answers.]

Question 30: Glass and Singer (1972) showed that situations in which there is intense noise have less effect on performance than circumstances in which _____________ noise occurs.

Keywords for this question: Glass and Singer (1972), situations, intense noise, less effect, performance, than circumstances, noise occurs,

In lines 2-4 of paragraph no. 3, the writer describes, “. . . . . We are much more able to ‘tune out’ chronic background noise, even if it is quite loud, than to work under circumstances with unexpected intrusions of noise.”

Here, quite loud = intense,

So, the answer is: B (unexpected)

Question 31: Subjects were divided into groups to perform a task. Some heard loud bursts of noise, others sort. For some subjects, the noise was predictable, while for others its occurrence was random. All groups were exposed to __________  noise. 

Keywords for this question: subjects, divided, perform a task, loud burst of noise, predictable, occurrence was random, all groups, exposed to,

In paragraph no. 3, the writer states in lines 6-8, “.. .. . For some subjects, the bursts were spaced exactly one minute apart (predictable noise); others heard the same amount of noise overall, but the bursts occurred at random intervals (unpredictable noise).”

The lines suggest that though for some subjects the bursts of noise were exactly at one-minute intervals and for others the intervals were random, the amount of noise was the same.

So, the answer is: D (the same amount of)

Question 32: The predictable noise group ___________ the unpredictable noise group on this task.

Keywords for this question: predictable noise group, unpredictable noise group,

Again, in paragraph no. 3, the author states in lines 8-10, “ . . . Subjects reported finding the predictable and unpredictable noise equally annoying, and all subjects performed at about the same level during the noise portion of the experiment . .. .”  

So, the answer is: F (performed at about the same level as)

Question 33: In the second part of the experiment, the four groups were given a proofreading task to complete under conditions of no noise. They were required to check written material for errors. The group which had been exposed to unpredictable noise ___________ the group which had been exposed to predictable noise. 

Keywords for this question: second part of the experiment, four groups, proofreading task, under conditions of no noise, check written material, errors, exposed to, unpredictable noise, predictable noise,

In paragraph no. 3, the writer talks about the second part of the experiment in lines 10-14, “. . . . But the different noise conditions had quite different after-effects when the subjects were required to proofread written material under conditions of no noise. As shown in Table 1 the unpredictable noise produced more errors in the later proofreading task than predictable noise; and soft, unpredictable noise actually produced slightly more errors on this task than the loud, predictable noise.”

Here, produced .. .. more errors = make more mistakes,  

So, the answer is: I (made more mistakes than)

Question 34: The group which had been exposed to loud predictable noise performed better than those who had heard soft, unpredictable bursts. The results suggest that __________ noise produces fatigue but that this manifests itself later.

Keywords for this question: results suggest, noise, produces fatigue, manifests itself later,

In paragraph no. 4, the writer discusses the results found from the experiments in paragraph no. 3, “Apparently, unpredictable noise produces more fatigue than predictable noise, but it takes a while for this fatigue to take its toll on performance.”

Here, unpredictable = unexpected,

So, the answer is: B (unexpected)

Questions 35-40 (Matching statements with the correct researchers)

(In this type of question, candidates need to relate statements which are given by or links to some researchers in the passage. The rules for finding answers to this sort of question are simple. Just find the name of the researchers and read around them carefully. Then, give a quick look to check whether there is another statement or idea provided by the same researchers in the text. If there is, check the reference carefully and decide your answer. Remember, the questions may not follow any sequential order.)

Question 35: Subjects exposed to noise find it difficult at first to concentrate on problem-solving tasks.

Keywords for this question: subjects, exposed to noise, difficult, concentrate, problem-solving tasks,

Have a look at paragraph no. 1 where the writer says in lines 5-7, “ . .. .. For example, Glass and Singer (1972) exposed people to short bursts of very loud noise and then measured their ability to work out problems and their physiological reactions to the noise. The noise was quite disruptive at first,. . .”

Here, disruptive = difficult to concentrate,

So, the answer is: A (Glass and Singer)

Question 36: Long-term exposure to noise can produce changes in behaviour which can still be observed a year later.

Keywords for this question: long-term exposure, changes, behaviour, still be observed, a year later,

In the final paragraph the writer explains, “A follow-up study showed that children who were moved to less noisy classrooms still showed greater distractibility one year later than students who had always been in the quiet schools (Cohen et al, 1981).”

Here, one year = long-term exposure,

So, the answer is: D (Cohen et al.)

Question 37: The problems associated with exposure to noise do not arise if the subject knows they can make it stop.

Keywords for this question: problems, exposure to noise, do not arise, if, subject knows, can make it stop,

In paragraph no. 5, we find the writer arguing that, “ .. . If the individual knows that he or she can control the noise, this seems to eliminate both its negative effect at the time and its after-effects. This is true even if the individual never actually exercises his or her option to turn the noise off (Glass and Singer, 1972).”

Here, control = stop,

So, the answer is: A (Glass and Singer)

Question 38: Exposure to high-pitched noise results in more errors than exposure to low-pitched noise.

Keywords for this question: exposure to high-pitched noise, result in more errors, than, low-pitched noise,   

In paragraph no. 2, the writer explains the fact that it was found by Broadbent that loud noise becomes a problem, and we make more mistakes, when a person has to concentrate on more than one task. However, this gives us idea about the limit on how bad or how well we can adapt to exposure to loud noise.

We find no reference of any researchers about high-pitched noise gives birth to more noise.

So, the answer is: E (None of the above)

Question 39: Subjects find it difficult to perform three tasks at the same time when exposed to noise.

Keywords for this question: subjects, difficult to perform, three tasks, same time, when, exposed to noise,

We can find this answer in paragraph no. 2. Here, in lines 2-4, the writer states, “ . .. . For example, high noise levels interfered with the performance of subjects who were required to monitor three dials at a time, a task not unlike that of an aeroplane pilot or an air-traffic controller (Broadbent, 1957).”

Here, required to monitor three dials at a time = perform three tasks at the same time,

So, the answer is: B (Broadbent)

Question 40: Noise affects a subject’s capacity to repeat numbers while carrying out another task.

Keywords for this question: noise affects, subject’s capacity, to repeat numbers, while, another task,  

Again, in paragraph no. 2, the author writes in lines 5-7, “ . .. . Similarly, noise did not affect a subject’s ability to track a moving line with a steering wheel, but it did interfere with the subject’s ability to repeat numbers while tracking (Finkelman and Glass, 1970).”

Here, tracking = carrying out another task,

So, the answer is: C (Finkelman and Glass)

Click here for solutions to Cambridge 7 Test 4 Reading Passage 1

Click here for solutions to Cambridge 7 Test 4 Reading passage 2

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