Verbs associated with change:
• abandon (abandons, abandoning, abandoned)
VERB If you abandon an activity or piece of work, you stop doing it before it is finished.
■ The authorities have abandoned any attempt to distribute food.
■ The scheme’s investors, fearful of bankruptcy, decided to abandon the project.
• adjust (adjusts, adjusting, adjusted)
VERB When you adjust to a new situation, you get used to it by changing your behaviour or your ideas.
■ [+ to] We are preparing our fighters to adjust themselves to civil society.
■ [+ to] I felt I had adjusted to the idea of being a mother very well.
• alter (alters, altering, altered)
VERB If something alters or if you alter it, it changes.
■ Little had altered in the village.
■ attempts to genetically alter the caffeine content of coffee plants
• decline (declines, declining, declined)
VERB If something declines, it becomes less in quantity, importance, or strength.
■ [+ from] The number of staff has declined from 217,000 to 114,000.
■ Hourly output by workers declined 1.3% in the first quarter.
■ [V-ing] a declining birth rate
• develop (develops, developing, developed)
VERB When something develops, it grows or changes over a period of time and usually becomes more advanced, complete, or severe.
■ It’s hard to say at this stage how the market will develop.
■ [+ into] These clashes could develop into open warfare.
• diminish (diminishes, diminishing, diminished)
VERB When something diminishes, or when something diminishes it, it becomes
reduced in size, importance, or intensity.
■ The threat of nuclear war has diminished.
■ Federalism is intended to diminish the power of the central state.
■ [V-ing] Universities are facing grave problems because of diminishing resources.
■ This could mean diminished public support for the war.
• evolve (evolves, evolving, evolved)
VERB If something evolves or you evolve it, it gradually develops over a period of time into something different and usually more advanced.
■ [+ into] a tiny airline which eventually evolved into Pakistan International Airlines
■ [+ from] Popular music evolved from folk songs.
■ As medical knowledge evolves, beliefs change.
• modify (modifies, modifying, modified)
VERB If you modify something, you change it slightly, usually in order to improve it.
■ The club members did agree to modify their recruitment policy.
■ The plane was a modified version of the C-130.
• refine (refines, refining, refined)
VERB If something such as a process, theory, or machine is refined, it is improved by having sm all changes made to it.
■ Surgical techniques are constantly being refined.
■ Twentieth century botanists have continually refined these classifications.
• shift (shifts, shifting, shifted)
VERB If someone’s opinion, a situation, or a policy shifts or is shifted, it changes slightly.
■ Attitudes to mental illness have shifted in recent years.
■ The emphasis should be shifted more towards Parliament.
• transform (transforms, transforming, transformed)
VERB To transform something or someone means to change them completely and suddenly so that they are much better or more attractive.
■ The spread of the internet and mobile telephony have transformed society.
■ [+ into] Yeltsin was committed to completely transforming Russia into a market economy.
Nouns for periods of time:
• century (centuries)
1 NOUN A century is any period of a hundred years.
■ The drought there is the worst in a century
■ [+ of] This may be ending centuries of tradition.
2 NOUN A century is a period of a hundred years that is used when stating a date. For example, the 19th century was the period from 1801 to 1900.
■ celebrated figures of the late eighteenth century
■ a 17th-century merchant’s house
• decade (decades)
NOUN A decade is a period of ten years, especially one that begins with a year ending in 0, for example 1980 to 1989.
■ the last decade of the nineteenth century
• generation (generations)
NOUN A generation is all the people in a group or country who are of a sim ilar age, especially when they are considered as having the same experiences or attitudes.
[ + of] the younger generation of Party members
■ David Mamet has long been considered the leading American playwright of his generation.
• millennium (millenniums or millennia)
NOUN A millennium is a period of one thousand years, especially one which begins and ends with a year ending in ‘000‘, for example the period from the year 1000 to the year 2000.
■ But then many Japanese companies are unsure whether they will survive until the new millennium at all.
■ France begins celebrating the millennium an hour before Britain, and Eurotunnel wants to make sure supplies are maintained.
Examiner: How are schools today different from schools in your parents’ generation?
Candidate: There is much less discipline and pupils are difficult to control. Standards of behaviour have really declined.
Examiner: In what ways has the countryside in your country changed during your lifetime?
Candidate: There are far fewer young people living in the countryside. Many of them have had to abandon rural life and move to the cities to look for work.
Examiner: What do you think is the most significant change in the way people
Candidate: Social networking sites – definitely. Just look at the way they’ve evolved over the last few years. You could almost spark a revolution with a click of a mouse.
Examiner: What do you think will be the most significant change in people’s life style in the next ten or twenty years?
Candidate: I think as energy becomes more expensive, we will have to modify how we live – consume less, conserve more.
Examiner: In what ways has the experience of living abroad affected you?
Candidate: I’ve had to learn to adjust to different ways of doing things – shopping, cooking, socializing – all sorts of things.
Examiner: How, in your view, are patterns of employment in your country likely to change in the next few years?
Candidate: Many more people are going to work in financial services. That whole sector is developing very rapidly in my country. There are lots of opportunities now.
1 I grew up in a village that looks much as it did five centuries ago. Almost nothing has altered.
2 Job security has diminished over the last few years. It’s almost impossible to find long-term work let alone a job for life.
3 I think over the next decade, surgical techniques will become increasingly refined. Surgeons will be able to perform operations that we can only dream of now.
4 Within a generation, attitudes towards authority have shifted. Nowadays, people are more likely to challenge authority figures.
5 Unless we transform the way we live, we’re unlikely to survive into the next millennium.
1 Do you think people are more adventurous now than in the past?
2 Why, in your view, have attitudes towards risk changed?
3 What sort of adventures do you think people will be having in ten or twenty years’ time?
Examiner: Do you think people are more adventurous now than in the past?
Candidate: On the whole, yes, I think they are. When I compare young people today with my parent’s generation, I would say that attitudes have shifted. People expect more from life and want to develop personally as well as professionally. People are looking for experiences that will transform them in some way – give them new insights. For example, many people my age want to travel abroad and
experience very different life styles.
Examiner: Why, in your view, have attitudes towards risk changed?
Candidate: I suppose society has evolved. There is a greater emphasis on independence and originality. You can’t develop these qualities without taking risks. In my country, previous generations were more likely to conform. People would adjust their behaviour so as not to stand out too much. These days, people
want to be a bit different; they want to stand out from the crowd.
Examiner:What sort of adventures do you think people will be having in ten or twenty years’ time?
Candidate: I think as tourism extends into every corner of the world, interest in foreign travel as a form of adventure will diminish. People will look for adventure closer to home, maybe by being more creative – doing things that haven’t been done before. I have a friend who’s lost his job and had to abandon his plans to travel abroad. He’s going to see how far he can get by travelling on
local buses. I think he’s calculated that he can get halfway across the country.
It will be quite an adventure!