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IDIOMS!
"buckle down" = start to work hard

"If you don't buckle down and save money, you'll never be able to afford college."


"hand to mouth" = with barely enough money to live

"My father lived hand to mouth while he was trying to finish college."

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[ Quiz Script ]

A University Degree
I. Pre-Listening Exercises
II. Listening Exercises
III. Vocabulary and Grammar
IV. Post-Listening
V. Online Investigations

Level:Topic: Type:Speakers:Length:
mediumuniversity studiesconversationman - woman02:38

I. Pre-Listening Exercises [Top]

What are some of the things you need to do to apply for college and succeed in your studies at that level? What are the potential benefits getting an online degree?

HELPFUL TIP: Starting to save money from a very early age for a unversity degree will help relieve the stress of having enough money to pay for college. Parents often won't be able to do it for you.

university degree


II. Listening Exercises [Top]
Listen to the conversation by pressing the "Play Audio" button and answer the questions. Press the "Final Score" button to check your quiz.

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1. What will happen if the woman doesn't pay her tuition by the due date?
A. She'll have to pay a significant late fee.
B. She'll be required to register again for school.
C. She'll need to wait a semester to take classes.

2. What is the woman planning to take with her to school from home?
A. some food
B. warm clothing
C. her game system

3. Based on her major, where will she most likely work?
A. at a bank
B. for a school
C. in a national park

4. The father suggests a specific major based on the possibility of _______________.
A. earning a decent living
B. traveling to different countries
C. moving up in the company

5. The man is surprised by the fact that his daughter ________________________.
A. already has a part-time job at school
B. has earned a scholarship for the first year
C. is involved in a serious relationship


Score =
Correct answers:

Listen to the conversation again as you read the Quiz Script.

III. Vocabulary and Grammar [Top]
Review the key vocabulary from the conversation: [ Why do these? ]

IV. Post-Listening Exercises [Top]

In your culture, who are mainly responsible for saving money and paying for college: parents or children? If children pay at least part, what values can they learn from such an experience? What percent of college students have part-time jobs? Does the money they earn go to pay for school expenses or other non-essential items like music, eating out, or trips? What are signs that university students have developed independence?

V. Online Investigations - [ What's This? ] [Top]
What are all of the costs involved in obtaining a university degree? What are some ways students can earn money to pay for college tuition? Find a school you are interested in attending and visit their Web site. Then, research the cost of attending that institution for an entire year, including tuition, school fees, books, and housing. Also, consider additional expenses including health care, food, and incidentals. What additional costs might you incur at the school? Finally, consider why some programs are more expensive than others. Is a more expensive program necessarily better than a cheaper one? Why or why not?

Also, remember to take in to account that earning an online degree can cost less than traditional "brick and mortar" educational institutions. Thus, browsing for online schools might grant you a cheaper education while maintaining a high level of quality.\

Now, write your ideas on a similar topic at Randall's ESL Blog HERE.

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