TOEFL Conversation 5 (Listen and Read)
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TOEFL Conversation 5
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Good afternoon, Ms. Pennington.
You are in my, um, American History 201 class, right?
How can I help you today?
It's about my term paper.
I, uh, I know it's due next Monday, but, um, I was hoping...
I don't think I can get it done by then.
Could I please turn it in by the end of next week instead?
I have a really good excuse.
Oh I'm sure you do!
I've been teaching 33 years.
Do you know how many excuses I've heard?
"My dog ate my paper".
"My roommate had a party so I couldn't concentrate".
"I have seven papers due in the same day!".
"I went home to see my parents and my car broke down".
My favorite was a student who told me she "forgot" all about her term paper until the day before it was due.
It's amazing she remembered to come to class.
Huh, I didn't forget, sir.
I've been working on the paper, really!
Here, I brought my outline and a rough draft.
It's, um, just that... well, a lot of things have been going on in my life,
and I'm having trouble managing things.
You know, I assigned that paper four weeks ago,
and I've been reminding students about it in each class.
So, tell me your story.
What's happening in your life?
First, about two weeks ago, my roommate found out her mother is real sick.
She has breast cancer.
So she's been really upset, and, uh,
I went home with her for a couple of days to see her mom.
That caused me to miss biology lab,
and I have a huge biology final coming up on Tuesday that I really need to study for this weekend.
Then I got the flu last week, and missed a day of class.
I tried to work on your paper that day, but I felt really horrible...
OK, I can understand that.
I'm glad that you're, er, helping your roommate through a tough time.
That's more important than school work.
But all this seems to have happened recently.
What about the two weeks after I first assigned the term paper?
I, uh... I guess I didn't use that time very well.
I kind of put off getting started on it.
Yes, you did.
You know, if I had a dollar for every time I've heard a student say that...
I'm sorry, Professor Dalton.
I've learned my lesson.
If I had spent just a little bit of time each week on the paper, I could have had it done on time.
I know now that I need to plan for unexpected things.
You seem like a bright, conscientious young lady, Ms...
your first name's Jill, isn't it?
When I was a young student, an upperclassman gave me some advice that I've never forgotten.
He said, "You're going to find yourself with a lot of small gaps during school days,
15 minutes, or half an hour.
What you do during those gaps will make a big difference in how successful you are".
Wow! That's great advice.
Yeah, I thought so. And I still do.
So I'll tell you what.
You can turn your paper in no later than 9 a.m. on Friday, right here on my office desk.
In exchange for this favor,
I want you to pass that advice on to all your friends and dorm mates.
Thank you, professor Dalton!
You bet I will.
Um, as long as you're here, let me take a peek at your outline and rough draft.
Do you have any questions about the paper that I can help you with?