Summarize Spoken Text

Summarize Spoken Text – You will hear a short report. Write a summary for a fellow student who was not present. You should write 50-70 words.

We have given sample response for your convenience. Don’t forget to share your own summary with our readers through comments.

You have 10 minutes to finish this task. Your response will be judged on the quality of your writing and on how well your response presents the key points presented in the report.


Exercise 1

# 1 Listen to the audio and summarize it in your own words 


    In the last 50 years there has been no apparent increase in personal happiness in Western nations, despite steadily growing economies. In both Europe and the USA surveys have found no greater level of happiness since the 1950s, which seems strange since wealthier people generally claim to be happier than poorer people.

    In America, for example, more than a third of the richest group said they were ‘very happy’, while only half this number of the poorest made the same claim. Although it would be logical to expect that rising national wealth would lead to greater national happiness, this has not happened. Individually, more money does seem to increase happiness, but when everyone gets richer, no one appears to feel better.

    Economists have recently paid more attention to studying happiness, instead of the more traditional GDP per person. One suggestion has been that people rapidly get used to improvements, and therefore devalue them. Central heating is a good example: whereas 30 years ago it was a luxury item, today it is standard in nearly every home.

# 2 Listen to the audio and summarize it in your own words 


South Korea is planning to move its capital from Seoul to a new site in the middle of the country. Although Seoul has been the capital since the fourteenth century, the city of over 20 million is now very crowded, and also close to the hostile armies of North Korea. The new capital is planned to cost $45 billion, with construction finishing by 2012.

There is, however, strong opposition to the project, since similar schemes in other countries have taken far longer and cost much more than originally planned. Australia, for example, took over 70 years to finish building Canberra, while Nigeria has never completed its planned new capital, Abuja.

Both Brazil and Malaysia have found that the building of new capitals (Brasilia and Putrajaya) can sharply increase the national burden of debt. Even if the government does eventually move to the new capital, it is unlikely that South Korea’s main businesses will follow it, so Seoul will probably continue to be the country’s principal city.

Exercise 2.


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