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  1. #1
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    Default Help with exam paper. (not asking for correction or help in doing it)

    Hi guys, I need help with my comprehension paper.
    This one of the paragraphs given in the passage:

    Why would vegetation influence our mental well-being? For one thing, grass and tress provide a welcoming place for people to gather. In the hectic and crowded cores of cities, people need the little grove of chestnut trees outside their apartments where they can mingle in the shade and hear the hiss of wind in high trees. They need big public lawns where they can play together. Scientists suspect that green space also has a restorative effect on our voluntary attention, the kind of intense focus required to work or study, to ignore distractions and concentrate on the task at hand. Living in a city with its relentless crush of notice and traffic, conflicts and demands, make us "crabby and impulsive", Kuo says. Being in nature refreshes us by letting us give voluntary attention a rest and allowing us to surrender to involuntary attention: the effortless and often enjoyable noticing of sensory stimuli in our environment.


    Q: Explain in your own words why the author feels that we need to give 'voluntary attention a rest'. (2 marks)
    My answer: It allows us to appreciate and enjoy nature without being forced to, but rather allow nature to grab hold of our attention so we can fully enjoy it.

    The examiner marked me wrong, citing that there is no logic in 'being forced to' and it was inaccurate as a whole.

    This another paragraph from another passage:

    For the past two decades the National Park Service has laboriously created a plan lying out a future for Yosemite, that seeks to balance tourism with sound conservation. The plan is thorough- 2,300 pages- and sensible. At its core are two changes: The first is moving facilities that do not need to be in the valley to other areas of the park, thereby returning the deep heart of Yosemite to something closer to its native appearance, preserving its natural wonders. The second: persuading tourists to use public transport instead of private automobiles to get around the narrow valley. Shuttles have already reduced traffic in the valley, although they have not eliminated two-mile-long lines of cars at peak hours. Superintendent Michale Tollefson said, "Our goal is to have a smaller human footprint."


    Q: State one of the outcomes of having a 'smaller human footprint' on the Yosemite Valley. (1 mark)
    My answer: There will be more shuttles and lesser privately-owned cars.

    The examiner marked me wrong, scribbling "so" next to my answer. Apparently, they want the students to state the outcomes of having lesser privately-owned cars, eg. more conservation. I don't believe, however, that my answer is inaccurate.

    This is the vocabulary section:
    For each of the following words, give one word or phrase(of not more than seven words) which has the same meaning that the word has in the passage.
    (a) impending
    My answer: coming
    Usage in the passage:
    Our ears are made not for the stinging scream of sirens but for the sly scratch of a predator's paws and the whistle of wind that warns of impending weather.

    (b) charged
    My answer: fuelled
    Usage in the passage:
    But beyond the herds of tourists there is another Yosemite- less familar, perhaps, but charged with a power of its own.

    Both of my answers were wrong :(

    Does anyone have any comments on my answer and the model answer? Was I correct and the examiner wrong or vice versa? I've asked my teacher for explanations, but she brushed me away, telling me that that's just the way the marking scheme is!! :@ I really want to learn, thank you so much in advance. Big Smile :D

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Help with exam paper. (not asking for correction or help in doing it)

    Our voluntary attention is our concentration; when we are surrounded by the greens of nature, we don't have to concentrate, but can let other areas of our attention come to the fore.

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