新浪教育[微博] 讯 2013年12月14日全国大学英语四级考试已结束，本次考试为多题多卷，新浪外语第一时间收集整理不同版本试题，供考生参考，以下是沪江网校提供的英语四级听力填空原文：
There are a number of ways you can go about analyzing the data in a
But over the years, one particular procedure
has proved its usefulness over and over again.
This method is based on the Harvard Business School's case analysis
There are five stages in this process.
First, reading the case.
Second, identifying the problem.
Third, researching the issues surrounding the problem
and analyzing the data.
Fourth, generating and evaluating solutions to the problem.
And finally, recommending a solution.
The first step is to read the case you've been assigned.
You should first skim the case.
This is a key step, as it enables you to gain familiarity with the case
by reading it to get the gist, or broad idea of what the case is about.
Next, you should go back to determine the critical facts in the case.
This type of active reading helps you to determine critical facts
about the case, such as where it is taking place,
who the main characters are, what the key facts are,
and how the protagonist may have already tried
to deal with the problem in the case.
This type of understanding will allow you to then move on
to the second step, which is identifying the problem at the heart of the case.
This second step involves separating the facts
stating the problem around which the business case has
been built from the sometimes symptoms of the case.
This can be accomplished by focusing on the end result.
Then working backward towards the root of the problem by asking,
'Why and what caused this problem?'
This method is referred to as the 5 "Why's", as you
would begin with the end result of the case.
For example, an employee has been fired on her first day of the job.
Then you would begin asking, 'Why this action was taken?'
Using the example of the employee being fired on her first day at work,
you would ask why, and perhaps come up with the answer
that that employee behaved rudely to a customer.
Once you have answered this question, you would ask another
why question related to the answer, such as,
'Why did the employee behavior rudely?'
Maybe the employee did not know how to behave appropriately.
And why did the employee not know how to behave appropriately?
Well, perhaps the training for new employees
does not include a section on customer service.
This process should continue until you have separated
all the inferences, assumptions, or symptoms of the problem.
And have come up with what you feel is the root cause of the problem itself.
The next step is to become familiar with the problem
by conducting your own research and analyzing the data provided in the case
to support any hunches you have about the problem.
The type and amount of research you will need to conduct
depends on the content of the case and your own background.
Though, you should always consider the reliability and credibility
of the sources you use in your research.
Once you have a better understanding of the issues surrounding the problem,
you will next need to start looking at the data or evidence from the case
to begin investigating what is causing the problem.
This data will either be presented in a non numerical qualitative fashion
or with numerical quantitative data.
When analyzing qualitative data, try to keep in mind a very clear idea of what
you were trying to discover, or prove, so you're not distracted.
When analyzing qualitative data, look closely at textual features,
like titles and subtitles, highlighted terms,
synonyms of any key words from your problem statement, and any pictures,
images, and exhibits that have been included in the case.
Quantitative or numerical data tends to be given either within the case
or in charts or tables in exhibits attached at the end of the case.
Remember, that the purpose behind all this research and analysis
of the qualitative or quantitative data provided in the case
is to help you begin to brainstorm the potential solutions to the problem.
Therefore, you should be evaluating all the data you come across
to see if any of it enables you to suggest
how to solve the problem presented.
Which brings us to the fourth step in this case analysis process,
generating and evaluating solutions to the problem.
The fourth step involves using the information you gained in your research
into the issues surrounding the problem and analysis of any evidence related
to the problem to begin brainstorming all the feasible ideas you can come up
with to solve the problem.
It is important that you write down everything
you can think of before discarding the idea.
Once you have a list of potential solutions to the problem,
you will then need to evaluate how suitable each of them
would be until you come up with a preferred solution.
One way of deciding which would be the best solution is to use a tool
called a paired comparison analysis, which
requires you to prioritize the importance of each
of your potential solutions relative to each other.
The final step in this process is to decide upon one solution
to solve the problem.
And to recommend it using a clear action plan.
An action plan provides information on all the tasks
that need to be accomplished in order to carry out the recommended solution.
For example, you would need to articulate
who would need to be involved, what needs to be done,
where it needs to be done, how long each major step would take,
how much money each major step would cost,
and how the solution would benefit the stakeholders in the case.
Analyzing business cases can seem overwhelming at first.
But as you can see, if you approach your reading and analysis
in a structured systematic way, you should
be able to work through the case to understand
the problem at the heart of the case.
Then come up with a preferred solution that could help to solve this problem.
The pragmatic versus normative dimension describes how people in the
as well as today, relate to the fact that so much that happens around us cannot
In societies with a 'normative orientation'
most people have a strong desire to explain as much as possible.
People in such societies have a strong concern
with establishing the absolute truth, and a need for personal stability.
They exhibit great respect for social conventions and traditions,
a relatively small propensity to save for the future, and a focus
on achieving quick results.
In societies with a 'pragmatic orientation',
most people don't have a need to explain everything,
as they believe that it is impossible to understand fully
the complexity of life.
The challenge is not to know the truth but to live a virtuous life.
In societies with a pragmatic orientation,
people believe that truth depends very much on situation, context, and time.
They show an ability to accept contradictions, adapt according
to the circumstances, a strong propensity to save and invest,
and thriftiness and perseverance in achieving results.
So to sum up this section, Hofstede's cultural dimensions theory
is a framework that is used to assist in distinguishing and comparing
the values among different country cultures.
This is a valuable framework for people like international business managers
or others involved in an international business setting,
because it can assist in avoiding or resolving potential communication
barriers or misunderstandings.
It's not only useful for the business context;
researchers, politicians, and educators have also used this framework
as a starting point to help them understand
the differences between cultures.
The purpose of this lecture is to initiate critical thinking
about Hofstede's cultural dimensions, which
has being introduced as a useful framework
for understanding cross-cultural differences for communicative purposes.
While Hofstede's theory could help us understand cultural differences
and develop cultural communication skills to overcome those differences,
it is not the only theory.
Nor does it provide a comprehensive explanation for cultural differences,
and some scholars have argued that it overgeneralizes cultural differences.
So while we think Hofstede is a good start
to assist you with developing cross-cultural understanding,
we still need to reflect on what other scholars have
said about cultural differences, and identify potential problems
in Hofstede's theory to avoid any possible mistakes, like stereotyping
First, let's revisit the concept of culture.
Remember, Hofstede defines culture as "The collective programming of the mind
which distinguishes the members of one human group from another.
Culture, in this sense, includes systems of values;
and values are among the building blocks of a culture."
We also looked at a definition provided by Melanie Moll in her book,
"The Quintessence of Intercultural Business Communication".
Her definition is: "Culture is the meaningful way in which people
act and interact in their social contexts with one another."
There are in fact many other definitions
provided by numerous researchers,
and it would be too difficult to cover them all here.
But as some point out, a key term that appears in many definitions
is the word 'programming.'
Some researchers believe that culture is not easily acquired;
it involves a slow process of growing into a society.
This includes: learning values, partaking of rituals, modeling against heroes,
and understanding symbols.
When Captain Cook asked the chiefs in Tahiti why they always ate apart and alone, they replied, “Because it is right。” If we ask Americans why they eat with knives and forks, or why their men wear pants instead of skirts or why they may be married to only one person at a time, we are likely to get similar and very uninformative answers because it’s right, because that’s the way it’s done, because it’s the custom or even I don’t know. The reason for these and countless other patterns of social behavior is that they are controlled by social norms shared rules or guide lines which prescribe the behavior that is appropriate in a given situation. Norms define how people ought to behave under particular circumstances in a particular society. We conform to norms so readily that we are hardly aware they exist. In fact we are much more likely to notice departures from norms than conformity to them. You will not be surprised if a stranger tried to shake hands when you were introduced, but you might be a little startled if they bowed, started to stroke you or kissed you on both cheeks. Yet each of these other forms of greeting is appropriate in other parts of the world. When we visit another society whose norms are different, we quickly become aware that things we do this way, they do that way。
The purpose of this lecture is to introduce you
to a framework to help understand cross-cultural communication.
This framework, called the Hofstede's cultural dimensions
theory, was introduced by Hofstede in his book, "Culture's Consequences",
and has had an influential role in our understanding
of intercultural communication.
In the 1970s, Hofstede analyzed a large survey database
about values and related sentiments of people in over 50 countries
around the world who worked for the multinational corporation IBM.
The data collected from the surveys allowed
Hofstede to introduce what he calls four dimensions of national culture.
According to him, a dimension is an aspect
of a culture that can be measured relative to other cultures.
In his later research, Hofstede added two new dimensions.
The current six dimensions are: power distance, uncertainty avoidance,
individualism vs. collectivism, masculinity
vs. femininity, pragmatic vs. normative,
and indulgence vs. restraint.
let's look at each dimension individually as defined by Hofstede.
Keep in mind that I'm presenting these in no particular order.
Let's first look at Hofstede's dimension: power distance.
According to his theory, 'power distance' is the characteristic
of a culture that defines the extent to which the less powerful persons
in a society accept inequality in power and consider it as normal.
In other words, inequality exists within any culture,
but the degree of it that is tolerated varies between one culture and another.
This dimension expresses the degree to which
the less powerful members of a society accept and expect
that power is distributed unequally.
The fundamental issue here is how a society
handles inequalities among people.
Here are the differences between small-power distance and large-power
distance provided by Hofstede.
Individualism versus collectivism looks at two elements.
The first, called 'individualism', suggests
individuals are expected to take care of only themselves
and their immediate families.
The second, 'collectivism', suggests individuals
can expect their relatives or members of a particular in-group
to look after them in exchange for unquestioning loyalty.
A society's position on this dimension is
reflected in whether people's self-image is defined in terms of "I" or "we".
According to Hofstede, individualist cultures
assume that any person looks primarily after his or her own interest
and the interest of his or her immediate family (husband, wife, and children).
Collectivist cultures assume that any person, through birth and possible later
events, belongs to one or more tight "in-groups" from which he or she cannot
You have most likely heard this many times:
We are living in a globalized world.
While people have been interacting with others
across different cultures for centuries, today, more people
are doing so than in the past.
And in today's global business world, many
will find themselves interacting where intercultural communication
skills are very important.
Developing cross-cultural, or intercultural, understanding
is essential if you want to communicate successfully
when conducting business in a foreign country.
Developing intercultural communication skills
is necessary to establish good interpersonal relations with people
and to communicate effectively when cultural differences might exist.
But before we get to intercultural communication skills,
we need to ask this question:
How do you define a culture?
The word 'culture' can mean different things in different contexts.
For example, how would you define Chinese culture to North Americans?
How would that definition differ for a Chinese resident
in New York or Shanghai?
When we talk about culture, are we talking
About: National culture? Ethnic culture? Institutional culture?
How much does geography play a role in defining a culture?
What about values and beliefs?
As you may guess, it may not always be easy to define a culture because most
cultures are too complex and change over time to have a generalized definition.
Regardless, it's still important for us to have
an idea about what the word "culture" means for the context of this course.
For starters, let's look at how some different scholars have defined
必威，culture, some of them being quite different and for different purposes.
Many researchers often refer to Hofstede's work
on cultural dimension theory.
For example: when trying to understand cross-cultural communication.
In his book, "Culture's Consequences", he defines culture
as "The collective programming of the mind
which distinguishes the members of one human group from another.
Culture, in this sense, includes systems of values;
and values are among the building blocks of culture."
Other scholars in communications like to refer
to Edward T. Hall's Iceberg Model of Culture.
Here are the differences between masculinity and femininity
provided by Hofstede.
Indulgence versus restraint is related to the gratification versus
of basic human desires related to enjoying life.
'Indulgence' stands for a society that allows relatively free gratification
of basic and natural human drives related
to enjoying life and having fun.
'Restraint' stands for a society that suppresses gratification of needs
and regulates it by means of strict social norms.
Here are the differences between indulgence and restraint
provided by Hofstede.
Some scholars continue to argue for the relevance of his theory
because there have been no significant studies on culture like his.
Other studies have replicated similar findings, adding
some validity to his generalizations, and that Hofstede
has continued to update his data since the 1980s.
What is problematic about this statement?
Well, first, I ask myself: Can a group of workers in one office
provide information on the entire cultural system of a country?
I might then ask, who are these workers?
Are they managers? Computer programmers? Assistants?
How long have they worked at the company?
What part of France do they come from?
Have any of the employees ever worked in another culture or another country?
There are many elements one could question [about] this statement.
Researcher Dr. Brendan McSweeney challenges Hofstede's theory
in his paper: "Hofstede's model of national cultural differences
and their consequences:: A triumph of faith - a failure of analysis".
He argues that Hofstede's theory is based on generalizations
that do not fit neatly into every context.
For example, he argues that many nations often
have different ethnic groups which are not
typical of the national cultural identity.
Another point to consider is how national identity and culture
One might ask, Do nations have a culture?
Is there a national culture?
What about national borders?
Does a culture end at a nation's border?
Some critics argue that nations are not the proper unit of analysis,
as cultures are not necessarily bounded by borders.
So when reviewing Hofstede's theory of cultural dimensions,
one should consider the method and tools used for collecting information,
how that information is analyzed, and whether findings from the analysis
can be used to create a theory that explains something.
There should then be careful consideration
of whether a theory overgeneralizes.
That said, Hofstede's research should not be ignored.
His findings add value to our understanding
of cultural behavior and, for the purpose of this course,
By reviewing and critically reflecting on his theory on cultural dimensions,
you can use the knowledge to understand the following:
Hall's Iceberg Model of Culture suggests people only
see a few elements or behaviors of a particular culture,
and the major essence of any culture is hidden from the general public.
Next, let's take a look at the dimension called 'uncertainty
According to Hofstede, this describes that extent
to which people within a culture are made
nervous by situations which they perceive as unstructured, unclear,
or unpredictable situations which they therefore try to avoid
[by] maintaining strict codes of behavior and a belief in absolute truths.
According to Hofstede, uncertainty avoidance
should not be considered the same as risk avoidance.
This dimension considers a society's tolerance for ambiguity.
It provides a framework for understanding
how people might feel uncomfortable or comfortable in unstructured situations.
Here are the differences between weak uncertainty avoidance
and strong uncertainty avoidance provided by Hofstede.
This may be a good start, but it still does not
explain the context of how a culture exists.
Quite often, it is the context and the relationships
within that context that defines a culture.
Melanie Moll, in her book, "The Quintessence of Intercultural Business
Communication", uses this definition:
"Culture is the meaningful way in which people act and interact
in their social contexts with one another."
Moll also identifies what we call "cultural patterns":
"The ways in which people in a culture interact, socialize,
and relate to one another and their surroundings."
But, again, because culture is so complex,
it is important that people don't overgeneralize
when identifying cultural patterns -
this is what is called stereotyping.
Having an understanding of the complexities of cultures
and the cultural patterns within them are
important if you are to develop intercultural communication skills.
It's not an easy task:
Misunderstandings, overgeneralizations, and stereotyping
can occur, which have a negative impact on any communication.
So what might be included in intercultural communication skills?
Well, you may need to understand the impact of directness or indirectness
of speech; turntaking norms within a culture;
orientations to power; roles and relationships
in face-to-face communication; impact of nonverbal communication;
environment where communication takes place; values
and beliefs within the culture; attitudes
of the people within the culture; and worldviews generally held
by a culture.
This list is not exhaustive, and there could
be other elements you need to be aware of when
participating in cross-cultural communication.
We'll explore some theories and the idea of cultural dimensions
and how they can help inform people when participating
in cross-cultural communication in a business setting.
Masculinity versus femininity is related to the division
of emotional roles between women and men.
According to Hofstede, the 'masculinity' side of this dimension
represents a preference in society for achievement, heroism, assertiveness,
and material rewards for success.
Society at large is more competitive.
Its opposite, 'femininity', stands for a preference for cooperation,
modesty, caring for the weak, and quality of life.
Society at large is more consensus-oriented.
Here are the differences between individualism and collectivism
provided by Hofstede.
However, when reading theories that attempt to define culture and
cultural behavior, such as Hofstede's cultural dimensions,
it is important to contextualize how these definitions are framed.
In other words, we need to identify the methods used to collect information,
and to understand the perspectives of the researchers
and how they form their ideas.
How do the researchers approach their study?
What tools do they use to gather information?
Are those tools appropriate and adequate to gather information
to form a conclusive idea?
And, most importantly, are the ideas presented
in a theory generalizable across different settings or circumstances?
First, let's talk about the method or tools
for gathering information for Hofstede's theory.
If you remember, his main method for gathering information
was through questionnaires given to IBM employees working at different offices
throughout the world.
Some scholars argue that a weakness in Hofstede's theory
is that he generalizes about the entire national population in each country
solely on the basis of analysis of a few questionnaire responses.
Others point out that because culture is not easily defined,
we should ask: Is Hofstede measuring the unmeasurable?
That last question leads us to another point
to consider when referring to Hofstede's cultural dimensions.
We've already identified that culture is difficult to define
because things like values and beliefs can vary and are not
always visible to an observer; and because context and environments vary
and can influence how an observer perceives and understands a culture.
As I mentioned earlier, some critics point to the fact
that Hofstede's analysis of the questionnaires
suggests that workers at each IBM office represent
the national culture which they work in.
Critics suggest that this is too simplistic.
One way of looking at this argument is by looking at a statement like this:
A group of IBM workers in France have a common set of values and beliefs
and therefore represent all French culture.