READING PASSAGE 1You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1–14, which are based on Reading Passage 1 below. 

The students’ problem

(A) The college and university accommodation crisis in Ireland has become ‘so chronic’ that students are being forced to sleep rough, share a bed with strangers – or give up on studying altogether.

(B) The deputy president of the Union of Students in Ireland, Kevin Donoghue, said the problem has become particularly acute in Dublin. He told the Irish Mirror: “Students are so desperate, they’re not just paying through the nose to share rooms – they’re paying to share a bed with complete strangers. It reached crisis point last year and it’s only getting worse. “We’ve heard of students sleeping rough; on sofas, floors and in their cars and I have to stress there’s no student in the country that hasn’t been touched by this crisis. “Commutes – which would once have been considered ridiculous – are now normal, whether that’s by bus, train or car and those who drive often end up sleeping in their car if they’ve an early start the next morning.”

(C) Worry is increasing over the problems facing Ireland's 200,000 students as the number increases over the next 15 years. With 165,000 full-time students in Ireland – and that figure expected to increase to around 200,000 within the next 15 years –fears remain that there aren’t enough properties to accommodate current numbers.

(D) Mr. Donoghue added: “The lack of places to live is actually forcing school-leavers out of college altogether. Either they don’t go in the first place or end up having to drop out because they can’t get a room and commuting is just too expensive, stressful and difficult.”

(E) Claims have emerged from the country that some students have been forced to sleep in cars, or out on the streets, because of the enormous increases to rent in the capital. Those who have been lucky enough to find a place to live have had to do so ‘blind’ by paying for accommodation, months in advance, they haven’t even seen just so they will have a roof over their head over the coming year.

(F) According to the Irish Independent, it’s the ‘Google effect’ which is to blame. As Google and other blue-chip companies open offices in and around Dublin’s docklands area, which are ‘on the doorstep of the city’, international professionals have been flocking to the area which will boast 2,600 more apartments, on 50 acres of undeveloped land, over the next three to 10 years.

(G) Rent in the area soared by 15 per cent last year and a two-bedroom apartment overlooking the Grand Canal costs €2,100 (£1,500) per month to rent. Another two-bedroom apartment at Hanover Dock costs €2,350 (almost £1,700) with a three-bedroom penthouse – measuring some 136 square metres – sits at €4,500 (£3,200) per month in rent.

(H) Ireland’s Higher Education Authority admitted this was the first time they had seen circumstances ‘so extreme’ and the Fianna Fáil party leader, Michael Martin, urged on the Government to intervene. He said: “It is very worrying that all of the progress in opening up access to higher education in the last decade – particularly for the working poor – is being derailed because of an entirely foreseeable accommodation crisis.

 

Questions 1-8: Reading Passage 1 has eight paragraphs, A–H.

Choose the most suitable paragraph headings from the list of headings and write the correct letter, A–H, in boxes 1–8 on your answer sheet.

 

1. Cons of the commuting 

2. Thing that students have to go through 

3. Commutes have become common in Ireland nowadays 

4. Danger of the overflow 

5. Cause of the problems 

6. Pricing data 

7. Regression 

8. Eyeless choice 

 

 

Questions 9–14: Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1?

In boxes 9–14 on your answer sheet, write

TRUE if the statement agrees with the information

FALSE if the statement contradicts the information

NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this

 

9. The accommodation problem in Ireland is especially bad in Dublin. 

10. Commutes are considered ridiculous. 

11. The number of students in Ireland is not likely to increase in the future. 

12. Due to the opening of the new offices around Dublin, the number of local restaurants will go up significantly over the next 3 to 10 years. 

13. The rent price went up by 15% last year. 

14. Michael Martin stated that crisis could have been omitted if the government reacted properly.

 

 

READING PASSAGE 2You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 15–30, which are based on Reading Passage 2 below. 

 

The science of sleep

  We spend a third of our lives doing it. Napoleon, Florence Nightingale and Margaret Thatcher got by on four hours a night. Thomas Edison claimed it was waste of time.

  So why do we sleep? This is a question that has baffled scientists for centuries and the answer is, no one is really sure. Some believe that sleep gives the body a chance to recuperate from the day's activities but in reality, the amount of energy saved by sleeping for even eight hours is miniscule - about 50 kCal, the same amount of energy in a piece of toast.

  With continued lack of sufficient sleep, the part of the brain that controls language, memory, planning and sense of time is severely affected, practically shutting down. In fact, 17 hours of sustained wakefulness leads to a decrease in performance equivalent to a blood alcohol level of 0.05% (two glasses of wine). This is the legal drink driving limit in the UK.

  Research also shows that sleep-deprived individuals often have difficulty in responding to rapidly changing situations and making rational judgements. In real life situations, the consequences are grave and lack of sleep is said to have been be a contributory factor to a number of international disasters such as Exxon Valdez, Chernobyl, Three Mile Island and the Challenger shuttle explosion.

  Sleep deprivation not only has a major impact on cognitive functioning but also on emotional and physical health. Disorders such as sleep apnoea which result in excessive daytime sleepiness have been linked to stress and high blood pressure. Research has also suggested that sleep loss may increase the risk of obesity because chemicals and hormones that play a key role in controlling appetite and weight gain are released during sleep.

  What happens when we sleep?

  What happens every time we get a bit of shut eye? Sleep occurs in a recurring cycle of 90 to 110 minutes and is divided into two categories: non-REM (which is further split into four stages) and REM sleep.

  Non-REM sleep

  Stage one: Light Sleep

  During the first stage of sleep, we're half awake and half asleep. Our muscle activity slows down and slight twitching may occur. This is a period of light sleep, meaning we can be awakened easily at this stage.

  Stage two: True Sleep

  Within ten minutes of light sleep, we enter stage two, which lasts around 20 minutes. The breathing pattern and heart rate start to slow down. This period accounts for the largest part of human sleep. 

  Stages three and four: Deep Sleep

  During stage three, the brain begins to produce delta waves, a type of wave that is large (high amplitude) and slow (low frequency). Breathing and heart rate are at their lowest levels.

  Stage four is characterised by rhythmic breathing and limited muscle activity. If we are awakened during deep sleep we do not adjust immediately and often feel groggy and disoriented for several minutes after waking up. Some children experience bed-wetting, night terrors, or sleepwalking during this stage.

  REM sleep

  The first rapid eye movement (REM) period usually begins about 70 to 90 minutes after we fall asleep. We have around three to five REM episodes a night.

  Although we are not conscious, the brain is very active - often more so than when we are awake. This is the period when most dreams occur. Our eyes dart around (hence the name), our breathing rate and blood pressure rise. However, our bodies are effectively paralysed, said to be nature's way of preventing us from acting out our dreams.

  After REM sleep, the whole cycle begins again.

  How much sleep is required?

  There is no set amount of time that everyone needs to sleep, since it varies from person to person. Results from the sleep profiler indicate that people like to sleep anywhere between 5 and 11 hours, with the average being 7.75 hours.

  Jim Horne from Loughborough University's Sleep Research Centre has a simple answer though: "The amount of sleep we require is what we need not to be sleepy in the daytime."

  Even animals require varied amounts of sleep:

Species

Average total sleep time per day

Python

18 hrs

Tiger

15.8 hrs

Cat

12.1 hrs

Chimpanzee

9.7 hrs

Sheep

3.8 hrs

African elephant  

3.3 hrs

Giraffe

1.9 hr

 The current world record for the longest period without sleep is 11 days, set by Randy Gardner in 1965. Four days into the research, he began hallucinating. This was followed by a delusion where he thought he was a famous footballer. Surprisingly, Randy was actually functioning quite well at the end of his research and he could still beat the scientist at pinball.

 

Questions 15–22: Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1? 

In boxes 15–22 on your answer sheet, write 

TRUE                          if the statement agrees with the information 

FALSE                        if the statement contradicts the information 

NOT GIVEN                if there is no information on this 

 

15. Thomas Edison slept 4 hours a night.

16. Scientists don't have a certain answer for why we have to sleep. 

17. Lack of sleep might cause various problems. 

18. Sleep-deprivation may be the cause of anorexia. 

19. There are four stages of the REM sleep. 

20. According to Jim Horne, we need to sleep as much as it takes to not be sleepy during the day. 

21. Giraffes require less sleep than dogs. 

22. After four sleepless days, Randy had a delusion about him being a football celebrity. 

 

 

Questions 23–27: Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

Write the correct letter in boxes 23–27 on your answer sheet.

 

23. During the Light Sleep stage: 

  1.  Muscle activity increases 
  2.  Jiggling might occur  
  3.  It is not easy to be woken up
  4.  After waking up, one may experience slight disorientation 

 

24. Heart rate is at the lowest level during: 

  1.  Light Sleep stage
  2.  Rem Sleep 
  3.  True Sleep stage
  4.  Third Sleep stage

 

25. The brain activity is really high: 

  1.  During REM sleep
  2.  During the stage of True Sleep 
  3.  When we are awake
  4.  During the Deep sleep stage 

 

26. Humans require at least: 

  1.  7.75 hours of sleep
  2.  5 hours of sleep 
  3.  8 hours
  4.  There is no set amount of time 

 

27. Pythons need: 

  1.  Less sleep than tigers
  2.  Twice as much sleep as cats 
  3.  Almost ten times more sleep than giraffes
  4.  More sleep than any other animal in the world

 

Questions 28–30: Complete the sentences below. 

Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from the passage for each answer. 

Write your answers in boxes 28–30 on your answer sheet.

28. If we continually lack sleep, the specific part of our brain that controls language, is  . 

29. True Sleep lasts approximately  . 

30. Although during REM sleep our breathing rate and blood pressure rise, our bodies 

 

READING PASSAGE 3You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 31–40, which are based on Reading Passage 3 below.

 

A new study finds that half of human cultures don't practice romantic lip-on-lip kissing. Animals don't tend to bother either. So how did it evolve?

 

When you think about it, kissing is strange and a bit icky. You share saliva with someone, sometimes for a prolonged period of time. One kiss could pass on 80 million bacteria, not all of them good.

Yet everyone surely remembers their first kiss, in all its embarrassing or delightful detail, and kissing continues to play a big role in new romances.  

At least, it does in some societies. People in western societies may assume that romantic kissing is a universal human behaviour, but a new analysis suggests that less than half of all cultures actually do it. Kissing is also extremely rare in the animal kingdom.

So what's really behind this odd behaviour? If it is useful, why don't all animals do it – and all humans too? It turns out that the very fact that most animals don't kiss helps explain why some do.

According to a new study of kissing preferences, which looked at 168 cultures from around the world, only 46% of cultures kiss in the romantic sense.

Previous estimates had put the figure at 90%. The new study excluded parents kissing their children, and focused solely on romantic lip-on-lip action between couples.

Many hunter-gatherer groups showed no evidence of kissing or desire to do so. Some even considered it revolting. The Mehinaku tribe in Brazil reportedly said it was "gross". Given that hunter-gatherer groups are the closest modern humans get to living our ancestral lifestyle, our ancestors may not have been kissing either.

The study overturns the belief that romantic kissing is a near-universal human behaviour, says lead author William Jankowiak of the University of Nevada in Las Vegas. Instead it seems to be a product of western societies, passed on from one generation to the next, he says. There is some historical evidence to back that up.

Kissing as we do it today seems to be a fairly recent invention, says Rafael Wlodarski of the University of Oxford in the UK. He has trawled through records to find evidence of how kissing has changed. The oldest evidence of a kissing-type behaviour comes from Hindu Vedic Sanskrit texts from over 3,500 years ago. Kissing was described as inhaling each other's soul.

In contrast, Egyptian hieroglyphics picture people close to each other rather than pressing their lips together.

So what is going on? Is kissing something we do naturally, but that some cultures have suppressed? Or is it something modern humans have invented?

We can find some insight by looking at animals.

Our closest relatives, chimpanzees and bonobos, do kiss. Primatologist Frans de Waal of Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, has seen many instances of chimps kissing and hugging after conflict.

For chimpanzees, kissing is a form of reconciliation. It is more common among males than females. In other words, it is not a romantic behaviour.

Their cousins the bonobos kiss more often, and they often use tongues while doing so. That's perhaps not surprising, because bonobos are highly sexual beings.

When two humans meet, we might shake hands. Bonobos have sex: the so-called bonobo handshake. They also use sex for many other kinds of bonding. So their kisses are not particularly romantic, either.

These two apes are exceptions. As far as we know, other animals do not kiss at all. They may nuzzle or touch their faces together, but even those that have lips don't share saliva or purse and smack their lips together. They don't need to.

Take wild boars. Males produce a pungent smell that females find extremely attractive. The key chemical is a pheromone called androstenone that triggers the females' desire to mate.

From a female's point of view this is a good thing, because males with the most androstonene are also the most fertile. Her sense of smell is so acute, she doesn't need to get close enough to kiss the male. 

The same is true of many other mammals. For example, female hamsters emit a pheromone that gets males very excited. Mice follow similar chemical traces to help them find partners that are genetically different, minimising the risk of accidental incest.

Animals often release these pheromones in their urine. "Their urine is much more pungent," says Wlodarski. "If there's urine present in the environment they can assess compatibility through that."

It's not just mammals that have a great sense of smell. A male black widow spider can smell pheromones produced by a female that tell him if she has recently eaten. To minimise the risk of being eaten, he will only mate with her if she is not hungry.

The point is, animals do not need to get close to each other to smell out a good potential mate.

On the other hand, humans have an atrocious sense of smell, so we benefit from getting close. Smell isn't the only cue we use to assess each other's fitness, but studies have shown that it plays an important role in mate choice.

A study published in 1995 showed that women, just like mice, prefer the smell of men who are genetically different from them. This makes sense, as mating with someone with different genes is likely to produce healthy offspring. Kissing is a great way to get close enough to sniff out your partner's genes.

In 2013, Wlodarski examined kissing preferences in detail. He asked several hundred people what was most important when kissing someone. How they smelled featured highly, and the importance of smell increased when women were most fertile.

It turns out that men also make a version of the pheromone that female boars find attractive. It is present in male sweat, and when women are exposed to it their arousal levels increase slightly.

Pheromones are a big part of how mammals chose a mate, says Wlodarski, and we share some of them. "We've inherited all of our biology from mammals, we've just added extra things through evolutionary time."

On that view, kissing is just a culturally acceptable way to get close enough to another person to detect their pheromones.

In some cultures, this sniffing behaviour turned into physical lip contact. It's hard to pinpoint when this happened, but both serve the same purpose, says Wlodarski.

So if you want to find a perfect match, you could forego kissing and start smelling people instead. You'll find just as good a partner, and you won't get half as many germs. Be prepared for some funny looks, though.

Questions 31–35: Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 3? 

In boxes 31–35 on your answer sheet, write 

TRUE                          if the statement agrees with the information 

FALSE                        if the statement contradicts the information 

NOT GIVEN                if there is no information on this 

 

31. Both Easter and Wester societies presume that kissing is essential for any part of the world. 

32. Our ancestors were not likely to kiss. 

33. Chimpanzees and bonbons kiss not for the romance. 

34. There are other animal, rather than apes, that kiss. 

35. Scent might be important in choosing your partner. 

 

Questions 36–39: Complete the sentences below. 

Write NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer. 

Write your answers in boxes 35–39 on your answer sheet. 

36. According to the Mehinaku tribe, kissing is  . 

37. Human tradition is to  when they meet. 

38. A male black widow will mate with the female if only she is  . 

39. Humans benefit from getting close due to the fact that we have an  of smell. 

 

Question 40

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

40. Passage 3 can be described as: 

  1.  Strictly scientific text 
  2.  Historical article 
  3.  Article from a magazine 
  4.  Dystopian sketch