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Early believe assumptions vs Science new findings about Altruism


margarita 8 / 25  
Dec 1, 2009   #1
FYI. This is for the TOEFL integrated writing task. The objetive of this task is to give the opportunity to ESL students to demostrate their ability to communicate in writing about academic information they have read and listened to. I was asked to summarizethe points I heard from the lecture and explain how they cast doubt on points made on the reading

Although you haven't listen the lecture or read the paragraph, all comments about my writing will be very appreciated. Thanks!

On the reading, the information provided support the idea that altruism, in contraposition of selfishness, is a behavior that is based on the sacrifices of individuals without gaining any benefit for themselves. On the other hand, on the lecture is explained that science new findings, in regard with behaviors considered as altruistic in earliest times, are associated with behaviors performed by the self-interest of the individual, instead.

The reading stays that the meerkat, which is an African mammal, is protected for one of the animals of the group, acting as a sentinel. This sentinel sacrifices for food and leopards its life without any benefit. It acts as a guard, just looking out for predators and giving alarm to the group. Therefore, this behavior is considered as altruism because the sentinel take care of the group without getting any benefit, in fact it is the opposite, it endangers its life and gives up for food. On the other hand, in the lecture is explained that this behavior on meerkats have been study recently closer tan before and they eat before they stand guard. Moreover, since the stand guards see a predator first, they are able to run first after they give the alarm to the herd. In the lecture is added the fact that the alarm makes the meerkat group run, taking more attention from the predator and putting them in more danger situation.

The second example used in both, the reading and the lecture, is about human donating organs. The reading stays that this is consider as an altruistic behavior, given that people who donate organs do not get anything as compensation. On the other hand, the lecture explains than the appreciation and increase of self-worth that family, friends and society give is considered very valuable

kooka 1 / 5  
Dec 1, 2009   #2
Hi margarita,

Here is my notes.

sacrifices of individualsindividual interest (?)

in regard withto behaviors


The noun "behavior" is uncountable.

On the other hand, on the lecture is explained that science new findings, in regard with behaviors considered as altruistic in earliest times, are associated with behaviors performed by the self-interest of the individual, instead.

I feel that something is wrong with the sentence structure. May be this sentence should be divided into two ones for increasing readability and clearness.
OP margarita 8 / 25  
Dec 2, 2009   #3
thanks kooka!

I corrected. Does it make more sense?

On the reading, the information provided supports the idea that altruism, in contraposition of selfishness, is a behavior based on the individual's sacrifices without gaining any benefit for themselves. On the other hand, the lecture explained that science's new findings have concluded that what was considered altruistic in earliest times, nowadays, it is being associated with a behavior performed by the self-interest of the individual, instead.
kooka 1 / 5  
Dec 2, 2009   #4
The sense exposed more clear in this variant for me.

the provided information provided supports

It acts as a guard, just looking out for predators and giving alarm to the group. Therefore, this behavior is considered as altruism because the sentinel take care of the group without getting any benefit. In fact it is the opposite. it endangers its life and gives up for food . On the other hand, In the lecture is explained that this behavior on meerkats have been study recently closer tan before and they eat before they stand guard. ... (and as a conclusion). So the fact is that guard endangers its life and gives up for food and taking advantage in escape.


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