IGNOU BCA Sem-1 Assignment (CS-610 Foundation Course in English for Computing)

CS-610 Foundation Course in English for Computing

Assignment Number             :           BCA(1)-610/Assign/09

Maximum Marks                  :           25

Last Date of submission        :           30th April, 2009/30th October, 2009


There are four questions in this assignment. Answer all questions.


Q1:      Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions that follow:


We have been brought up to fear insects. We regard them as unnecessary creatures that do more harm than good. Man continually wages war on them, for they contaminate his food, carry diseases, or devour his crops. They sting or bite without provocation; they fly uninvited into our room on summer nights, or beat against the lighted windows.  We live in dread, not only of unpleasant insects like spiders or wasps, but of quite harmless ones like moths. Reading about them increases our understanding without dispelling our fears. Knowing that the industrious ant lives in a highly organized society does nothing to prevent us from being filled with revulsion when we find hordes of them crawling over a carefully prepared picnic lunch.


No matter how much we like honey, or how much we have read about the uncanny sense of direction which bees possess we have a horror of being stung. Most of our fears are unreasonable, but they are difficult to erase. At the same time however, insects are strangely fascinating; we enjoy reading about them, especially when we find that like the praying mantis, they lead perfectly normal lives. We enjoy staring at them entranced as they go about their business, unaware (we hope) of our presence. Who has not stood in awe at the sight of a spider pouncing on a fly, or a column of ants triumphantly bearing home an enormous dead beetle?


Last summer, I spent days in the garden watching thousands of ants crawling up the trunk of my prized peach tree. The tree has grown against a warm wall on a sheltered side of the house. I am especially proud of it, not only because it has survived several severe winters, but because it occasionally produces luscious peaches. During the summer I noticed that the leaves of the tree were beginning to wither. Clusters of tiny insects called aphis were to be found on the underside of the leaves. They were visited by a large colony of ants which obtained a sort of honey from them. I immediately embarked on an experiment which, even though it failed to get rid of the ants, kept me fascinated for twenty four hours. I bound the base of the tree with a sticky tape, making it impossible for the ants to reach the aphis. The tape was so sticky that they did not dare to cross it. For a long time, I watched them scurrying around the base of the tree in bewilderment. I even went out at midnight with a torch and noted with satisfaction (and surprise) that the ants were still swarming around the sticky tape without being able to do anything about it. I got up early next morning hoping to find that the ants had given up in despair. Instead, I saw that they had discovered a new route. They were climbing up the wall of the house and then on the leaves of the tree. I realized sadly that I had been completely defeated by their ingenuity. The ants had been quick to find an answer to my thoroughly unscientific methods!


Answer the following questions in your own words as far as possible:

Use one or two sentences only for each answer:


a.         What is our attitude to insects?                                              (1 mark)

b.         Why do human beings try to exterminate insects?                 (1 mark)

c.         Why does the writer say that knowing about the insects does not help         human             beings to change their attitude to insects?                     (1 mark)

d.         Do you think that the attitude of human beings to insect as described in this passage is right? Why, why not? Give two reasons in support of your thinking.                                                                               (1 mark)

e.         What do you think the writer wanted to prove by the experiment he            conducted on ants? Quote words/expressions to support your answer.                                                                                                                 (1 mark)


Q 2.     Choose the correct form of the verbs from those which have been underlined.                                                       

            The conference was very successful. The seminars and talks

(1) were / had been  extremely interesting and it was obvious that all the speakers (2) had prepared / prepared their material very thoroughly. Everyone agreed that this should become an annual event.


There was however a number of administrative problems. When we

(3) arrived / had arrived, we (4) discovered / had discovered that the hotel manager (5) reserved / had reserved the wrong room for us and therefore we (6)  did not have / had not had enough space. Unfortunately, he could not let us have the larger room because he (7) gave / had given it to another group, even bigger than ours.


He (8) also misunderstood / had also misunderstood the letter explaining what food we (9) required / had required. In fact, we (10) suspected / had suspected that he had lost the letter. We do not recommend using this hotel again.

                                                                                                              ( 5 marks)



Q 3.     Carefully read the following passage. Then using your own words as far as possible summarize it to one third the length. Give a title to the passage.                                   


            ‘Sleep is a behaviour and like all behaviours, it varies greatly among people,’ explains Dr. Carol Landis, sleep researcher and associate professor in biobehavioural nursing and health systems at the University of Washington, School of Nursing. The greatest difference occurs in the timing of sleep and the amount of sleep and the factors which are most important in determining whether you will wake up feeling rested.


            Research has found that people sleep better at different times during the daily cycles. For example, some people function better if they go to sleep early, while others feel more rested if they stay up late and sleep in. “Many people don’t pay attention to the timing of their sleep,” Landis notes. “Yet delaying or altering the time you go to sleep can have a major impact on how you feel when you wake up.”


            The amount of sleep the average adult needs each night also varies. Some people may be fine with six hours sleep, while other need up to nine hours per night. Landis points out that those who follow a regular sleep schedule are more up to function better on fewer hours, but she adds that most adults need at least six hours of sleep each night.


            “A person’s sleeping patterns aren’t set in concrete,” Landis stresses. Gradually altering the timing of sleep can help change sleep patterns. An “evening person” who needs to get to work early in the morning can try upping the time they go to bed by 30 minutes every few days. Within a few weeks, this slow adjustment will help ‘reset’ the internal body clock.


In addition to maintaining a regular daily sleep schedule, Landis offers the following tips on practicing good sleep hygiene.


Avoid stimulants including cigarettes, caffeinated beverages and food such as chocolate in the late afternoon and evening. Avoid alcohol in the evening. This can have a rebounding effect, causing a person to wake up a few hours into sleep and disturb sleep patterns. Finish exercising at least two hours before going to sleep. Exercise increases body temperature and has an arousing effect, making it more difficult to easily fall asleep. Don’t sleep in a warm environment. A drop in a person’s body temperature is important at the onset of deep sleep.

                                                                                                            (5 marks)


Q 4.     Write a composition in about 300 words on one of the topics given below:


i.  If there were one thing you could change in the country, what would it be?

ii. By the end of the twenty – first century, mankind will be close to extinction.

iii. How do you think world peace can be achieved?

iv. A world without Internet.

                                                                                                  ( 10 marks)



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