Goal of American Education
Education is an enormous and expensive part of American life. Its size is matched by its variety.
Differences in American schools compared with those found in the majority of other countries lie in the fact that education here has long been intended for everyone — not just for a privileged elite. Schools are expected to meet the needs of every child, regardless of ability, and also the needs of society itself. This means that public schools offer more than academic subjects. It surprises many people when they come here to find high schools offering such courses as typing, sewing, radio repair, computer programming or driver training, along with traditional academic subjects such as mathematics, history, and languages. Students choose their curricula depending on their interests, future goals, and level of ability. The underlying goal of American education is to develop every child to the utmost of his or her own possibilities, and to give each one a sense of civic and community consciousness.
Schools have traditionally played an important role in creating national unity and “Americanizing” the millions of immigrants who have poured into this country from many different backgrounds and origins. Schools still play a large role in the community, especially in the small towns.
The approach to teaching may seem unfamiliar to many, not only because it is informal, but also because there is not much emphasis on learning facts. Instead, Americans try to teach their children to think for themselves and to develop their own intellectual and creative abilities. Students spend much time, learning how to use resource materials, libraries, statistics and computers. Americans believe that if children are taught to reason well and to research well, they will be able to find whatever facts they need throughout the rest of their lives. Knowing how to solve problems is considered more important than the accumulation of facts.
This is America's answer to the searching question that thoughtful parents all over the world are asking themselves in the fast-moving time: “How can one prepare today's child for a tomorrow that one can neither predict nor understand?”
1. Which of the following best states the goal of American education?
A. To teach every learner some practical skills.
B. To provide every learner with rich knowledge.
C. To give every student the opportunity to fully develop his/her ability.
D. To train every student to be a responsible citizen.
2. It is implied in the passage that
A. all high-school students take the same courses.
B. every high-school student must take some practical ability training courses.
C. every public school offers the same academic subjects.
D. the subject every student takes may vary.
3. American schools place great emphasis on the learner's
A. enrichment of knowledge.
B. accumulation of facts.
C. acquisition of the ability to be creative.
D. acquisition of the ability to work with his hands.
4. According to the passage, American education meets the needs of all the following EXCEPT
A. the brightest students.
B. the slow students.
C. the students from foreign countries.
D. the immigrants.
5. Which of the following best states the feature of American education that makes it different from education in other countries?
A. The large number of its schools.
B. The variety of the courses offered in its schools.
C. Its special consideration given to immigrants.
D. Its underlying goal to develop every child's abilities to the fullest extent.
Income may be national income and personal income. Whereas national income is defined as the total earned income of all the factors of production—namely, profits, interest, rent, wages, and other compensation for labor, personal income may be defined as total money income received by individuals before personal taxes are paid. National income does not equal GNP（Gross National Product）because the factors of production do not receive payment for either capital consumption allowances or indirect business taxes, both of which are included in GNP. The money put aside for capital consumption is for replacement and thus is not counted as income. Indirect taxes include sales taxes, property taxes, and excise taxes that are paid by businesses directly to the government and so reduce the income left to pay for the factors of production. Three-fourths of national income goes for wages, salaries, and other forms of compensation to employees.
Whereas national income shows the income that the factors of production earn, personal income measures the income that individuals or households receive. Corporation profits are included in national income because they are earned. Out of these profits, however, corporation profit taxes must be paid to government, and some money must be put into the business for expansion. Only that part of profits distributed as dividends goes to the individual; therefore, out of corporation profits only dividends count as personal income. The factors of production earn money for social security and unemployment insurance contributions, but this money goes to government（which is not a factor of production）, not to individuals. It is therefore part of national income but not part of personal income.
On the other hand, money received by individuals when they collect social security or unemployment compensation is not money earned but money received. Interest received on government bonds is also in this category, because much of the money received from the sale of bonds went to pay for war production and that production no longer furnishes a service to the economy.
The money people receive as personal income may be either spent or saved. However, not all spending is completely voluntary. A significant portion of our income goes to pay personal taxes. Most workers never receive the money they pay in personal taxes, because it is withheld from their paychecks. The money that individuals are left with after they have met their tax obligations is disposable personal income. Disposable income can be divided between personal consumption expenditures and personal savings. It is important to remember that personal saving is what is left after spending.
1. This passage is mainly about
A. the classification of income.
B. the difference between national income and personal income.
C. the concept of income.
D. the difference between disposable income and non-disposable income.
2. Which of the following statements is true according to the first paragraph?
A. GNP equals national income plus indirect business taxes.
B. GNP excludes both capital consumption allowances and indirect business taxes.
C. Personal income is regarded as the total money income received by an individual after his or her taxes are paid.
D. The money that goes for capital consumption is not regarded as income.
3. It can be known from this passage that the government levy tax on
A. corporation profits.
B. every individual even though his income is very low.
C. those who work in joint ventures.
D. those who work in government departments.
4. According to this passage, the money you get as interest from government bonds is
A. money earned.
B. not money earned but money received.
C. money received because you have contributed to the economy.
D. money earned because you have furnished a service to the economy.
5. The passage implies that
A. people willingly pay taxes because they want to do something useful to the country.
B. people willingly pay taxes because they do not want to be looked down upon by others.
C. people pay taxes unwillingly because they feel they will be arrested if they do not.
D. people pay taxes somewhat unwillingly.
The Gene Industry
Major companies are already in pursuit of commercial applications of the new biology. They dream of placing enzymes in the automobile to monitor exhaust and send data on pollution to a microprocessor that will then adjust the engine. They speak of what the New York Times calls “metal-hungry microbes that might be used to mine valuable trace metals from ocean water.” They have already demanded and won the right to patent new life forms.
Nervous critics, including many scientists, worry that there is corporate, national, international, and inter-scientific rivalry in the entire biotechnological field. They create images not of oil spills, but of “microbe spills” that could spread disease and destroy entire populations. The creation and accidental release of extremely poisonous microbes, however, is only one cause for alarm. Completely rational and respectable scientists are talking about possibilities that stagger the imagination.
Should we breed people with cow-like stomachs so they can digest grass and hay, thereby relieving the food problem by modifying us to eat lower down on the food chain? Should we biologically alter workers to fit the job requirement, for example, creating pilots with faster reaction times or assembly-line workers designed to do our monotonous work for us? Should we attempt to eliminate “inferior” people and breed a “super-race” ? （Hitler tried this, but without the genetic weaponry that may soon issue from our laboratories. ）Should we produce soldiers to do our fighting? Should we use genetic forecasting to pre-eliminate “unfit” babies? Should we grow reserve organs for ourselves, each of us having, as it were, a “savings bank” full of spare kidney, livers, or hands?
Wild as these notions may sound, every one has its advocates（and opposes） in the scientific community as well as its striking commercial application. As two critics of genetic engineering, Jeremy Rifkin and Ted Howard, state in their book Who Should Play God? “Broad scale genetic engineering will probably be introduced to America much the same way as assembly lines, automobiles, vaccines, computers and all the other technologies. As each new genetic advance becomes commercially practical, a new consumer need will be exploited and a market for the new technology will be created. ”
1. According to the passage, the exhaust from a car engine could probably be checked by
A. using metal-hungry microbes.
B. making use of enzymes.
C. adjusting the engine.
D. patenting new life forms.
2. According to the passage, which of the following would worry the critics the most?
A. The unanticipated explosion of population.
B. The creation of biological solar cells.
C. The accidental spill of oil.
D. The unexpected release of destructive microbes.
3. Which of the following notions is NOT mentioned?
A. Developing a “savings bank” of one's organs.
B. Breeding soldiers for a war.
C. Producing people with cow-like stomachs.
D. Using genetic forecasting to cure diseases.
4. According to the passage, Hitler attempted to
A. change the pilots biologically to win the war.
B. develop genetic farming for food supply.
C. kill the people he thought of as inferior.
D. encourage the development of genetic weapons for the war.
5. What does Jeremy Rifkin and Ted Howard's statement imply?
A. The commercial applications of genetic engineering are inevitable.
B. America will depend on other countries for biological progress.
C. America are proud of their computers, automobiles and genetic technologies.
D. The potential application of each new genetic advance should be controlled.