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IELTS Preparation Series 2, Episode 9: Whale Sharks


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0:13

Hello. I'm Margot Politis. Welcome to Study English, IELTS preparation.

0:19

Today, we're going to look at the use of contractions in spoken English. A contraction is like a

0:25

short form in speech.

0:28

I've just used three examples:

0:30

I'm for 'I am',

0:32

we're for 'we are',

0:35

and I've for 'I have'

0:38

English speakers often use contractions, so mastering them will help your speech improve.

0:43

Our story today is about tourists helping scientists study whale sharks off the coast

0:51

of Western Australia.

0:53

Listen to this conversation, and try to identify the contractions.

0:58

So what sort of information are you recording in your log?

1:00

The latitude and longitude, the depth, the time, the sex and any sort of interaction

1:07

that the swimmers have with it. The whale sharks don't actually seem to mind the interaction

1:12

with them and certainly if it wasn't for them being out here we wouldn't have the amount

1:16

of knowledge we do about them.

1:18

The difference is, I suppose, with scientific research, you might have a research team here

1:22

for a week, two weeks, and then they leave. They might come here once every few years.

1:27

But when you've got, well, six or seven whale shark boats here, three or four in Coral Bay,

1:32

running for three or four months then their contribution to research is awesome. They're

1:38

out here every day.

1:41

Did you hear the contractions? The first speaker used three of them.

1:46

Simon said: don't, wasn't and wouldn't.

1:51

Listen again.

1:54

The whale sharks don't actually seem to mind the interaction with them and certainly if

1:58

it wasn't for them being out here we wouldn't have the amount of knowledge we do about them.

2:03

Don't is a contraction of do not.

2:07

Wasn't is a contraction of was not.

2:10

Wouldn't is a contraction of would not.

2:15

These are all examples of a very common style of contraction - a verb and the negative,

2:21

not.

2:22

Now listen to a tour guide, Steve Gibson, talking about the tourists who help study

2:28

the whale sharks. He uses another type of contraction. Can you identify it?

2:34

The difference is, I suppose, with scientific research, you might have a research team here

2:38

for a week, two weeks, and then they leave. They might come here once every few years.

2:43

But when you've got, well, six or seven whale shark boats here, three or four in Coral Bay,

2:49

running for three or four months then their contribution to research is awesome. They're

2:54