isten in English
The Science of Pain

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Published: 5.29.2017
Level 6   |   Time: 4:47
Accent: Canadian
Source: Quirks & Quarks (5.20.2017)

TOEFL: A professor talks about the science of pain.

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triangle Directions


  1. REVIEW the vocabulary.
  2. LISTEN to the audio above.
  3. ANSWER the questions.
  4. CHECK your answers (Show Answers)

triangle Vocabulary


  • sensation [n] - sense / feeling
  • drive-state [n] - a desire for something
  • subjective [adj] - opinion (not objective)
  • intrinsically [adv] - in an essential way
  • internal [adj] - inside the body or mind
  • photons [n] - a particle (piece) of light
  • corresponds [v] - is connected
  • inflamation [n] - swelling, heat or redness in a body part
  • perception [n] - the ability to hear, feel, see, smell or taste
  • needle-prick [n] - a poke from a needle
  • joint [n] - a connection point in the body (elbow, knee)
  • visceral organs [n] - internal organs (heart, lungs, liver)
  • analgesics [n] - drugs that reduce pain
  • variability [n] - change / variation
  • put up with [phv] - endure / withstand
  • genes [n] - the physical units of genetics
  • variation [n] - change
  • stimulus [n] - ab event/action that makes a response
  • an astounding amount [adj] - a large (surprising) amount
  • thermal [adj] - related to heat
  • forearm [n] - the part of the arm between the hand and elbow
  • susceptibility [n] - being likely to be affected by something
  • opioids [n] - strong pain-killing drugs (like opium)
  • morphene [n] - a strong and addicitve pain-killing drug
  • chronic pain [n] - long-term pain

[n] - noun,  [v] - verb,  [phv] - phrasal verb,  [adj] - adjective,  [adv] - adverb,  [exp] - expression


triangle Questions


  1. What is the discussion mainly about?
    How people can cope with pain
    The factors influencing people's experience with pain
    The most recent scientific discoveries related to pain medication

  2. Why does the professor compare pain to light?
    Pain has many different properties.
    Pain is difficult to measure.
    Pain travels quickly through your body.

  3. Why is pain a drive-state?
    It can make people feel hungry or thirsty.
    It lasts for a long time.
    It forces people to respond to it.

  4. What difference does the professor imply between vision and pain?
    Vision requires more energy.
    Pain is more important.
    Pain is more difficult to measure.

  5. What does the speaker mean whren he says this?

    Pain ranges from mild to severe.
    Pain usually doesn't last long.
    Back pain is the most serious type of pain.

  6. The professor suggests that...
    there are many different types of pain.
    pain to the skin is more common than pain to joints.
    all pain has a similar biological basis.

  7. According to the professor, which factors influence how a person experiences pain?
    genetics
    past experience with pain
    whether you are a twin
    sex & gender
    drug addiction

  8. What does the speaker mean when he says this?

    People often exaggerate their pain.
    People respond to the same pain stimulus very differenty.
    Some types of pain are harder to measure than others.

  9. Having a lot of expereince with pain...
    makes you more sensitive to pain.
    makes you less sensitive to pain.
    has no effect on your sensitivity to pain.

  10. What does the professor mean when he says this?

    Women often argue about their pain experience.
    Most people guess that men are more sensitive to pain than women.
    Women are becoming more sensitve to pain.

  11. According to the professor, women...
    are more sensitive to pain than men.
    use more pain medication than men.
    are more likely to have chronic pain.