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A conversation between two university instructors

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Listen to audio recording and answer the questions.

Narrator
Listen to a conversation between two university instructors.

Henry: Ah, Roger. I thought I'd find you here.

Roger: Hello, Henry. Yes, I'm afraid the smoker's lounge is about the only place I can relax in around here. Can I do something for you, or are you just slumming?

H: Well, I was just wondering... You teach the afternoon section of Modern Social Systems, don't you?

R: Yes, that's me. Why?

H: Have you got a student in there by the name of Steiger, Sara Steiger?

R: Sara? Yes-- you know her?

H: I sure do. She's in my undergrad psychology seminar. She's beginning to be a real problem for the class, and I was just wondering how you were handling her. Or is she OK in your class?

R: OK? Uh. Yes. Well, not really-- but she's just eager to learn, I think, don't you?

H: You think so? That's why she never stops asking questions? I'll tell you what I think-- I think she already knows the answers before she asks. Or she's just asking for the sake of asking.

R: Huh? Why's that?

H: Well, half the time she wants to know about something we've already discussed in some detail, and half the time she has questions that are off-topic or, well, just, uh, mindless.

R: (sighs) I suppose you could be right about that. Sara can certainly be irritating sometimes. Sometimes I feel I'm cheating the rest of the students by spending so much time explaining things to her.

H: Exactly. And I can see them all rolling their eyes. (laughs) The rest of my class is a little irritated with her, too.

R: Maybe we should give her the benefit of the doubt. Maybe she's just trying too hard, I dunno, to learn maybe, or maybe just to make an impression on us. I don't know what her motives could be.

H: Yeah, well. She's making an impression, all right, but it isn't a good one. Any ideas? Pro-active ones, I mean.

R: Well, I guess we should have a talk with her.

H: A talk? A private one, you mean?

R: Yeah. It's either that, or just give her the cold shoulder.

H: I'm afraid I've already been giving her a bit of that. I thought maybe she'd take the hint and sit back, listen and take notes for a change.

R: She doesn't-- Doesn't she take any notes? She does in my class-- voluminous ones!

H: Are you sure, Roger?

R: Sure, I'm sure-- she's always scribbling away.

H: But have you seen Sara's notes?

R: Well, no, but--

H: I have. I took a peek over her shoulder a couple of times. She's a doodler.

R: A what?! She doodles?

H: All over her notebook. I don't think she's keeping any kind of notes or paying any attention at all to what I'm saying or what anyone else says in class. She's just daydreaming-- or dreaming up something irrelevant to inquire into. This morning we'd been talking about Jung's theory of archetypes, and she suddenly blurted out 'What's an archtype?' Well, we'd been discussing archtypes for half an hour by then, and it was like she'd just realized that she'd heard a strange word, when the conversation was almost over.

R: Heh! That's Sara, all right. OK then, who's going to talk to her, you or me?

H: Umm..

R: OK, OK, I'll see if I can get her to come in and talk to me later this week. I'll be seeing her in class tomorrow afternoon, I guess. Maybe I can get her to settle down a little. ...She doodles?!

H: Yes! (laughs) Pretty good, really. Complex, architectural, rococo things. Maybe she should go to art school instead of majoring in sociology.

R: That's Sara's major, is it?

H: I think so-- I think she mentioned that once. Anyway, yes: if you could have a little talk with her, that would be great. And let me know what happens, what you find out, will you?

R: Of course. I'll let you know how it goes.

H: Thanks, Roger, very much. I owe you one. Now, I've got to run before all this secondhand smoke does me in.

R: (laughs) Now don't start that!

H: (laughs) All right-- but you know you should really try to---

R: Henry!

H: OK. Thanks. See you.

R: Talk to you soon.

1

What is the purpose of this conversation?

2

Why do the other students roll their eyes?

3

Why does Henry mention archtypes?

Listen again to part of the passage and answer the following question.

4

Why does Roger say this: " Maybe we should give her the benefit of the doubt"?

5

What will Roger probably do soonest?

 

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