2015年7月11日托福阅读真题+题目+答案：Individual Performance and the Presence of Others
1. A person's performance on tasks can be enhanced or impaired by the mere presence of others, and a person's behavior as part of a group can be quite different from the person's behavior when acting alone.
2. In certain cases, individual performance can be either helped or hindered by the physical presence of others. The term social facilitation refers to any effect on performance, whether positive or negative, that can be attributed to the presence of others. Research on this phenomenon has focused on two types of effects: audience effects (the impact of passive spectators on performance) and coaction effects (the effect on performance caused by the presence of other people engaged in the same task).
3. In one of the first studies in social psychology, psychologist Norman Triplett looked at coaction effects. He had observed in official bicycle records that bicycle racers pedaled faster when they were pedaling against other racers than when they were racing against the clock. Was this pattern of performance peculiar to competitive bicycling Or was it part of a more general phenomenon whereby people work faster and harder in the presence of others than when performing alone Triplett set up a study in which he told 40 children to wind fishing reels as quickly as possible under two conditions: alone or in the presence of other children performing the same task. He found that the children worked faster when other reel turners were present than when they performed alone.
4. Later studies on social facilitation found just the opposite effectthat the presence of others, whether co-acting or just watching, could hurt or diminish individual performance. Social psychologist Robert Zajonc proposed an explanation for these seemingly contradictory effects. He reasoned that we become aroused by the presence of others and that arousal facilitates the dominant responsethe one most natural to us. On simple tasks and on tasks at which we are skilled, the dominant response is to perform effectively. However, on tasks that are difficult or tasks we are just learning, the incorrect response (making a mistake or not performing effectively) is dominant. This reasoning accounts for the repeated findings that, in the presence of others, performance improves on tasks that people do easily but suffers on difficult tasks. Other researchers have suggested that concern over the observers' evaluation is what most affects people's performance, particularly if they expect a negative evaluation.
5. What happens in cooperative tasks when two or more people are working together instead of competing Do they increase their effort or slack off Researcher Bibb Latan¨¦ used the term social loafing to refer to people's tendency to exert less effort when working with others on a common task than when they work alone. Social loafing occurs in situations where no one person's contribution to the group can be identified and individuals are neither praised for a good performance nor blamed for a poor one. In one experiment, Latan¨ ¦ and others asked male students to shout and clap as loudly as possible, first alone and then in groups. In groups of two, individuals made only 71 percent of the noise they had made alone; in groups of four, each student put forth 51 percent of his solo effort; and with six students, each made only a 40 percent effort.
6. Harkins and Jackson found that social loafing disappeared when participants in a group believed that each person's performance could be monitored and evaluated; indeed, even the idea that the group performance may be evaluated against some standard can be sufficient to eliminate the loafing effect. When a group is relatively small and group evaluation is important, some members will even expend extra effort if they know that some of their coworkers are unwilling, unreliable, or incompetent to perform well. Moreover, social loafing is unlikely when participants can evaluate their own individual contribution or when they have a personal stake in the outcome. It is also unlikely when participants feel that the task is challenging or when they are working with close friends or teammates. Some 80 experimental studies have been conducted on social loafing in diverse cultures. Based on evidence these studies have produced, social loafing probably occurs in almost all cultures.
1..The word enhanced in the passage is closest in meaning to
2..What role does paragraph 1 play in the passage
A. It introduces a common opinion that the rest of the passage challenges on the basis of scientific evidence.
B. It explains why the passage focuses on actions people take individually rather than on actions people take as part of a group.
C. It offers a specific example of a general principle discussed in the rest of the passage.
D. It describes two phenomena, possible explanations of which are considered in the rest of the passage.
3..According to paragraph 2, the term "social facilitation" refers to the phenomenon that a person's performance
A. is intended to help someone
B. is influenced by the presence of other people
C. is evaluated by other people
D. has an effect on others working on the same task
4..The phrase peculiar to in the passage is closest in meaning to
A. damaging to
B. unique to
C. rare in
D. new in
5..The study conducted by Norman Triplett described in paragraph 3 supported the hypothesis that
A. coaction effects are stronger on the performance of children than they are on the performance of adults
B. coaction effects are limited to situations in which the time taken for a task matters
C. people perform better when they know that their performance is being measured by someone
D. people perform better in the presence of others who are doing the same thing they are
6..According to paragraph 4, Robert Zajonc proposed that whether the presence of others hurts or helps a person's performance is determined by
A. how skilled the observers are in the task that they are observing
B. how closely the person is being watched
C. whether or not the person finds the task difficult
D. whether or not the person likes the people who are watching
7..According to paragraph 4, if other people are present, a person's performance on a task that he or she is just learning would most likely be
A. somewhat worse than if no one else is there
B. somewhat better than if no one else is there
C. completely unaffected by the presence of those other people
D. dependent on the number of people who are present
8..The word exert in the passage is closest in meaning to
A. put forth
9..According to paragraph 5, people tend to engage in social loafing when they
A. prefer to work alone
B. fear being blamed for a poor performance
C. believe that their individual performance will not be identified
D. desire to be loyal to their group
10..Which of the following can be inferred from paragraph 5 about Bibb Latan¨¦'s research on social loafing
A. The less a person likes to work alone, the harder that person is likely to work as a member of a group.
B. The less a person contributes to a group, the more likely it is that person will be blamed if the group performs poorly.
C. The more people there are in a group, the more likely they are to compete with each other.
D. The fewer people there are in a group, the less likely it is that social loafing will occur.
11..Which of the sentences below best expresses the essential information in the highlighted sentence in the passage Incorrect choices change the meaning in important ways or leave out essential information.
A. Social loafing does not occur when participants in the group believe that evaluating individual performance will improve the group's performance.
B. The loafing effect is eliminated if the members of the group accept the standard by which their performance and that of the group is evaluated.
C. Social loafing tends to disappear if the members of the group believe that their or the group's performance may be evaluated.
D. Researchers have found that when group members receive monitoring and evaluation of their performance, their performance improves.
12..According to paragraph 6, which of the following has NOT been shown to decrease social loafing
A. Participants know that fellow group members are willing, reliable, and competent.
B. The group's task is seen as a challenge.
C. Group members know and like each other.
D. Participants know that their group is being judged on its performance.
13..Look at the four squares that indicate where the following sentence could be added to the passage.
However, it appears to be most common in individualistic Western cultures such as that of the United States.
Where would the sentence best fit Click on a square to add the sentence to the passage.
14..Drag your choices to the spaces where they belong. To review the passage, click on View Text.
A. When people are present, the performance of individuals generally improves on tasks they already do well but worsens on tasks they generally do poorly.
B. Studies show that bicycle racers pedal faster when they are competing against other racers, but children wind fishing reels slower when in the presence of others than when alone.
C. People's performance on a task is more affected by the presence of others when those others are engaged in the same task than when the others are passive spectators.
D. When people work together on a common task but no one's contribution is measured, there is a tendency for individuals to work less hard than if they were working alone.
E. Social loafing decreases under certain conditions, such as when the performance of the group or its members is evaluated or when a positive outcome matters to the participants.
F. While social loafing occurs in almost all groups across cultures, the extent to which it occurs in any particular group depends on the individual personalities of the group's members.