The Reading Section of the THEA Practice Test consists of 7 reading selections. After each reading selection, you will be asked to answer several questions related to the selection. Read each question carefully and choose the ONE best answer. You may refer back to the selection to answer the questions. There are a total of 42 multiple-choice questions in the Reading Section, numbered 1 to 42.

In the Reading Section, the order of information requested by the questions does not necessarily correspond to the order of information in a given selection. Certain words and phrases within some selections have been highlighted for testing purposes, not for reasons of emphasis by the writers.


Read the passage below. Then answer the questions that follow.


Durkheim and the Development of Sociology

1 Sociology is defined as the study of human groups. In the broadest sense, sociology is concerned with understanding patterns of human relationships, their causes and their effects. Unlike psychology, sociology does not attempt to explain the behavior of a particular individual under certain circumstances. Rather, sociology focuses on social trends or other influences that affect whole groups or categories of people. Thus, while a psychologist might counsel an individual who feels worthless after retiring from a long and successful career, a sociologist would be more likely to examine societal attitudes that may contribute to the loss of self-esteem experienced by many retired persons in our society.

2 The emphasis that sociology places on human groups rather than individuals stems directly from the work of Emile Durkheim, a pioneering sociologist of the nineteenth century. Durkheim likened the nature of a social group to bronze, a unique metal that is formed when the metals tin, copper, and lead are melted and mixed together. Durkheim noted that bronze is much harder than any of its component metals. In the same way, he reasoned, the characteristics of a social group viewed as a whole cannot be determined simply by examining the characteristics of its individual members. Nor can individuals be understood strictly in terms of the individuals themselves; when people come together as members of a particular group, the group exerts considerable pressure on the individual to conform to what it considers acceptable ways of thinking, feeling, and behaving.

3 Besides developing a theoretical foundation for the study of social groups, Durkheim also conducted research designed to corroborate his theoretical work. Using landmark research methods, Durkheim collected and analyzed data from a number of countries that kept records on suicides. He wanted to show that social environment may have a profound effect even on those behaviors we consider most personal. The results of his study showed that suicide rates do indeed vary according to specific social characteristics. For example, Durkheim found that members of religions with strong prohibitions against suicide are less likely to commit suicide than are members of religious groups with weaker prohibitions. He also found a lower incidence of suicide among married persons than among persons who were single or divorced. Taken together, the findings of Durkheim's study provided convincing evidence that social groups do indeed exert pressures that control or regulate the behavior of individuals, including deeply personal behaviors.

4 Durkheim's rigorous research methods captured the attention of sociologists around the world, and were perhaps even more important to the future development of sociology than any specific research results could be. Within a short time, his specific approach to formulating and testing social theory became a model that guided the work of nearly all sociologists. This assured Emile Durkheim a lasting place as one of the key figures in the history of sociology.

1. Which of the following best expresses the main idea of the selection?

  1. Both the social group theory and the scientific research methods developed by Durkheim have contributed much to the field of sociology.

  2. Durkheim believed that individual members of a group strongly influence the group's ways of thinking, feeling, and behaving.

  3. The research study conducted by Durkheim provided strong evidence that suicide rates vary among members of different social groups.

  4. Through his research, Durkheim made great strides in distinguishing sociology from psychology.


2. The writer's main purpose in writing this selection is to:

  1. outline the steps Durkheim followed in conducting his research study.

  2. describe the ways in which Durkheim's work has influenced sociology.

  3. persuade the reader that social groups control most of the behaviors of their individual members.

  4. explain the differences between sociology and psychology.


3. According to the selection, how do sociologists and psychologists differ?

  1. Sociologists are more concerned with explaining behavior than are psychologists.

  2. Psychologists focus more on individuals than do sociologists.

  3. Sociologists spend more time helping people solve their problems than do psychologists.

  4. Psychologists are more interested in understanding patterns of human relationships than are sociologists.


4. In comparing social groups to bronze, Durkheim wished to illustrate the idea

  1. a social group has characteristics that differ from those of its individual members.

  2. social groups are made up of three major component parts acting together.

  3. each social group is a unique entity that is unlike any other social group.

  4. social groups are extremely difficult to break apart once they have been formed.


5. Which of the following lists of topics best organizes the information in the selection?

  1. —Psychology vs. sociology
    —Sociology likened to bronze
    —Durkheim's suicide research
    —Durkheim's influence in distinguishing sociology from psychology

  2. —Sociology before Durkheim
    —Durkheim's early work
    —Durkheim's later work
    —Durkheim's influence on sociology

  3. —The focus of contemporary sociology
    —Durkheim's contributions to sociological theory
    —Durkheim's contributions to sociological research methods

  4. —Sociology as the study of human groups
    —Sociology in Durkheim's time
    —Sociology since Durkheim


6. Which of the following best defines the word model as it is used in the last paragraph of the selection?

  1. one of two or more alternative styles

  2. an artist's subject

  3. a small copy of an object

  4. a plan to be imitated


Read the passage below.
Then answer the questions that follow.

Lucy the Chimpanzee

1 As we all know, before a human being can survive on its own, it needs many years of parental care and instruction. We think of animals as creatures of instinct, but in fact they too learn by observing. A baby chimpanzee must spend years watching its elders and then practicing the skills they demonstrate before it can take care of itself.

2 What would happen if a chimpanzee raised by humans were to be transferred to the wild? Could it adapt itself to such different surroundings? Could an adult acquire the new skills required to survive? Would it learn to socialize with other chimpanzees instead of with humans? Would it learn to gather its own food rather than opening the refrigerator for a ready-made snack? These were the questions faced in the case of a chimpanzee named Lucy. She was born in a roadside zoo and then raised almost like a human daughter by the Temerlins, a pair of American psychologists. Lucy lived in a house, "read" magazines for amusement, and even learned to communicate extensively with sign language.

3 When Lucy's "parents" heard about a program in Africa to return captive chimps to the wild, they wanted to see if the program could work for her. They had long been searching for a way to bring Lucy's captivity to an end, and this program, run by Stella and Eddie Brewer, seemed ideal. So the Temerlins and Janis Carter, a student who had been involved with their project, flew Lucy to Africa.

4 In Africa, however, it became clear to the Temerlins and Janis that Lucy would not benefit from the Brewers' program and would not survive on her own without a great deal of special help. Unlike the Brewers' chimps, Lucy had been raised for years as a human. It would, therefore, take much extra time and effort to help her develop the skills she would need for survival in the wild. Although the Temerlins left after a brief stay, Janis remained in Africa to help Lucy adapt to her new home.

5 Janis ended up staying with Lucy and other chimps in an African island refuge for the next ten years. Janis had to live almost as a chimp herself. She showed the animals how to build sleeping platforms and demonstrated how to eat green figs and ants. When one of the chimps frequently forgot to nurse her newborn infant, Janis tied a doll to her chest in the nursing position.

6 At first Lucy was especially dependent upon her teacher. As the chimp acquired skills and related with the other chimps, however, Janis gradually withdrew her support. This was an important step in transforming Lucy from a pet back into a wild animal, but it was painful for both Janis and Lucy.

7 Eventually the time came for Janis to leave the island. She moved to the mainland, from where she would continue to visit and observe the chimps. Six months after moving, Janis visited Lucy for the first time since their separation. Lucy greeted her tenderly but soon moved off to rejoin the other chimps. Her behavior was no longer noticeably different from those of her fellow chimps who had been born in the wild, and her future seemed assured. With raised hopes, Janis left the area for her first vacation in ten years.

8 When Janis returned a month later, Lucy had disappeared. Janis organized a search, and eventually Lucy's skeleton was found. The cause of death? Janis could never be certain, but the most likely answer was that the chimp had been killed by human beings.

9 Although Janis was saddened by this tragedy, she managed to find consolation in the knowledge that Lucy had made a substantial contribution to our understanding of learning and behavior in animals. During her years in captivity, Lucy had learned to communicate in a way that far exceeded anything previously known or expected of animals. Subsequently she proved that even a creature that had lived for years in captivity could adapt to living in the wild.

7. Which of the following best defines the word raised as it is used in paragraph 7 of the selection?

  1. advanced

  2. refined

  3. elevated

  4. inspired


8. Which of the following statements best expresses the main idea of the selection?

  1. Psychologists have found that, with adequate training, chimpanzees such as Lucy can learn to live among, and communicate extensively with, human beings.

  2. Despite her unfortunate end, Lucy's experiences living first in a human home and later in the wild taught researchers much about chimpanzee learning and behavior.

  3. Compared with other types of animals, chimpanzees have a unique ability to learn complex skills through observation and practice.

  4. Lucy's problems adjusting to the wild should serve as a warning that the costs associated with the removal of animals from their natural environment may well outweigh any possible benefits.


9. The writer's main purpose in this selection is to:

  1. explore the ability of chimpanzees to learn and adapt.

  2. compare the intelligence of humans and chimpanzees.

  3. analyze psychological theories explaining chimpanzee behavior.

  4. expose the negative results of experimentation with animals.


10. Janis and the Temerlins did not believe that Lucy would benefit from the Brewers' program to return captive chimps to the wild because Lucy:

  1. could communicate only with sign language.

  2. lacked the animal instincts of other chimps in the program.

  3. had been born in a roadside zoo.

  4. possessed fewer survival skills than other chimps in the program.


11. Which of the following information included in the selection most directly supports the writer's view that, like humans, chimps learn by observing?

  1. Janis showed the animals how to build sleeping platforms and demonstrated how to eat green figs and ants.

  2. Janis's gradual withdrawal of support was an important step in transforming Lucy from a pet back into a wild animal.

  3. In Africa, it became clear that Lucy would not benefit from the Brewers' program and would not survive on her own without special help.

  4. Janis moved to the mainland, from where she would continue to visit and observe the chimps.


12. Which of the following statements best summarizes the information presented in the selection for study purposes?

  1. Like human infants, baby chimps must spend years watching and learning from their elders before they can take care of themselves. As a result, chimps that have been raised to behave like human beings are unlikely to have the skills needed to survive in the wild. The case of Lucy demonstrated, however, that such chimps do have the capacity to develop these skills.

  2. Lucy, a chimpanzee, was born in a roadside zoo and raised by the Temerlins, a pair of American psychologists. After teaching Lucy to live and communicate much like a human being, the Temerlins turned her over to Janis Carter, whose job it was to prepare the chimp for life in the wild.

  3. Animals learn how to take care of themselves in much the same way that humans do: by watching and practicing the skills demonstrated by their elders. This idea was first set forth by the Temerlins, a pair of psychologists, and was later conclusively proven by Janis Carter in her work with Lucy and other chimpanzees.

  4. Janis Carter devoted more than ten years to developing a program to help captive chimps learn the skills needed to survive on their own. Through her work Janis demonstrated that it was possible to teach such chimps how to build sleeping platforms, find food, and nurse their young. One of her more successful "students" was a chimpanzee named Lucy, who had been raised by two American psychologists.


Read the passage below. Then answer the questions that follow.

The Production of a Television Commercial

1 Everything in today's world is going faster and faster, and television commercials are no exception. At the start of the television age the standard commercial lasted 60 seconds, but most of today's commercials are only half that length and many are even shorter. The 15-second commercial, introduced a few years ago as a way to cut skyrocketing advertising costs, may soon be the most common in the United States. (Our television-watching counterparts in Japan and Europe are already being treated to 7-second mini-commercials!)

2 What stands behind the message that blips onto and off of our television screens before we have time to get to the kitchen and back? Months of planning; hundreds of interviews with potential users of the product; hours of writing; dozens of actors, directors, and technicians; days of filming; and hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to the television networks that will run the ad.

3 Take for example a recent commercial for a certain brand of cough drops. The manufacturer of the cough drops spent four months trying to think of a way to boost sales. After several surveys of cough drop users, the company decided to market a strawberry-flavored lozenge. Further surveys identified the typical users of the strawberry-flavored cough drop as persons between the ages of 15 and 30. This information was important in planning the content and style of the commercial (fast-paced and upbeat, with colorful graphics and lively music) and in determining when to air it (during situation comedies, prime-time dramas, and music specials).

4 The creative team at the advertising agency that handled the cough drop company's account then took over. After hours of discussion and writing, they came up with six scripts, from which the client chose two. One involved a young woman pulling a strawberry out of a box of cough drops. The outline, or storyboard, for the commercial looked deceptively simple: four sketches and a few lines of 'voice-over.' Yet these few words and images (just enough to fill 15 seconds) had been carefully selected to convey crucial information about the product: its effectiveness in suppressing coughs and soothing sore throats, the absence of sugar, and its strawberry flavor.

5 Turning this carefully calculated script into an effective commercial involved finding just the right actor: a young woman who would be attractive to the target audience and who could make her positive response to the cough drops look convincing. Forty-two actors were auditioned; one was chosen.

6 The actor wasn't the only element of the commercial that had to go through an audition. More than a hundred outfits were inspected before one was chosen for her to wear, and hundreds of strawberries had to be sorted through.

7 The filming began at 9:30 one morning. "All" the actor had to do was to open a box of cough drops, pull out a strawberry and munch on it. Yet her movements and facial expressions had to be just right, and achieving that perfection took three hours and 72 shootings, or 'takes.'

8 Even then—shooting completed—the job was far from done. Thousands of feet of film had to be reduced to a compact 45 feet of finished commercial. Using million-dollar, computerized equipment, the producer, writer, and art director selected the best two takes and mixed images and sound to produce a polished final product. The result? A simple, effortless-looking little film that shows none of the tremendous effort that went into producing it, but which should justify all of that time, creativity, and expense by boosting cough drop sales.

13. Which of the following best expresses the main idea of the selection?

  1. Although most television commercials look simple and straightforward, they typically take a great deal of time, effort, and money to produce.

  2. Because the development of television commercials involves so many steps, commercials are among the most difficult and complex types of film to produce.

  3. The major factors in developing a successful television commercial are good planning of style and content and careful selection of actors.

  4. A reduction in the average length of television commercials has made their development more complex and costly than it used to be.


14. At the end of the first paragraph, the writer includes a parenthetical remark about the 7-second mini-commercials currently seen in Japan and Europe. The writer most likely includes this information to help readers understand that:

  1. the United States has fallen behind its Japanese and European competitors in some important areas of development.

  2. television commercials seen in the United States may well become even shorter than they are at present.

  3. television commercials in other parts of the world use even more advanced technology than that used in the United States.

  4. the quality of a television commercial is not necessarily related to its length.


15. According to information included in the selection, which of the following occurs first in the development of a television commercial?

  1. developing alternative scripts

  2. determining the general style of the commercial

  3. selecting an actor or actors

  4. identifying the commercial's target audience


16. Which of the following is the best assessment of the writer's credibility?

  1. The approving tone of the selection and the author's thinly disguised enthusiasm for television commercials raise serious questions about his or her credibility.

  2. Although readers are unable to assess the representativeness of the case study discussed in the selection, the considerable amount of factual detail presented inspires faith in the writer's credibility.

  3. The writer's credibility is questionable because the selection devotes more attention to actors than to the technical personnel involved in making a commercial.

  4. Although the selection provides useful information about the procedures involved in producing a television commercial, the writer's credibility is weakened by a failure to say more about the costs.


17. Which of the following sets of topics would best organize the information in the selection?

  1. I. Television commercials around the world
    II. Cough drop commercials as an example of television commercials in the United States

  2. I. Recent trends in television commercials
    II. Steps in making a television commercial

  3. I. The role of networks and manufacturers in the production of television commercials
    II. Professional personnel required for developing television commercials

  4. I. Characteristics of television commercials
    II. Goals of television commercials


18. Which of the following best defines the word storyboard as it is used in paragraph 4 of the selection?

  1. a written description of a film's setting and characters

  2. an enlarged script placed so that actors can read the words as they perform

  3. a sequence of pictures and text illustrating the major segments of a film

  4. the scenery used as a backdrop for the main action in a film


Read the selection adapted from Child Development by Neil J. Salkind and Sueann Robinson Ambron. Then answer the six questions that follow.

Children's Fears

1 Children's fears come and go, but most children experience similar types of fears at approximately the same age. For toddlers, the worst fears are often associated with separation and change. Toddlers want their own mommy, daddy, spoon, chair, and bed. They are profoundly conservative little people. The most daring toddlers feel content if they can hold onto what they already know. Yet, children's fears are a useful index of their development. Fear of strangers appears to be a consequence of their first specific attachment, and its ending is a sign that they have acquired a more inclusive schema of faces and people in general. A child who is afraid of cats but not of rabbits evidently can differentiate one small animal from another. Fear of a particular person implies recognition of that person.

2 Just as children learn to fear things, they can learn what not to fear. As long as fears do not become too intense, a child's natural impulse to explore and discover things will be of help. Parents can be of assistance, both in overcoming fears and in preventing their development. They can prepare a child through play, stories, and happy prognostications for dealing with new situations that might be overwhelming; give prompt and unstinted comfort after a frightening experience or a bad dream; provide a night-light if the child is afraid of the dark; and devise ways in which a child can be gently and gradually—not abruptly—encouraged to take another look at feared objects and situations. Avoidance of the feared object reinforces the fear, and the fear becomes increasingly intense. Children's fears should be taken seriously, never ridiculed or dismissed as silly or babyish. Often, if the caregiver can get the child to explain exactly what it is that is so frightening, the child can be reassured. The one thing not to do is force children into confronting a feared situation before they are ready to do so.

3 Almost all children are afraid of something and, as with adults, these fears are often well-grounded. If we are in an open field during a thunderstorm, we probably have good reason to be afraid of lightning.

4 But occasionally fear of something gets out of control and becomes a phobia. A phobia is an irrational fear of something. A child may be afraid of the dark and hesitate to go up the stairs alone at night. But when the child refuses to remain in a place where there is no light, such as the movies or his or her bedroom, the fear is taking too great a toll on the child's development.

5 There are many different ways that phobias are treated in children. One of these techniques, commonly referred to as contact desensitization, is a behavioral technique designed to eliminate unnatural fears. The basic premise of the technique is that any fear is learned, and that anything that is learned can be unlearned. If a child is overly sensitive to something like water, for example, the gradual introduction of the feared object coupled with a pleasant experience can help reduce the strength of the fear, making it more manageable.

6 This exact technique was used in one study with fifty snake-avoidant children ranging in age from three to nine years. To see which technique was most effective, the fifty children were divided into five groups:

A. Members of the "contact desensitization group" were told about snakes and how to approach them, were encouraged by an adult to approach a snake, were given praise when they tried, and watched one adult hold the snake.

B. The "contact desensitization without touch group" received all that group A did, but no one touched the snake.

C. The "verbal input plus modeling group" received verbal input and modeling (when the adult touched the snake).

D. The "verbal input only" received only verbal assurances from the adult.

E. Finally, one group of children received no treatment and, hence, was called the "no treatment group."

7 The researchers used something called the Behavior Avoidance Test to see if there was a reduction in avoidance of the snake. Here, an adult reads a series of instructions to each child, asking him or her to do things such as approach the snake, pet it, pick it up, and hold it. The instructions go from little contact with the snake to increasing contact. This way the researchers can see which group of children has the most contact.

8 The results showed that 82 percent of the children in the contact desensitization group reduced their fear of snakes. Children in the other groups also reduced their fear, but not as dramatically.

9 Fears are something we all have to live with. When they get out of hand, a technique like the one we described here can be very useful in assisting a child through a difficult experience.

Child Development by Sueann Robinson Ambron and Neil J Salkind. Harcourt College Pub; 7 edition (June 1993)

19. Which of the following details best supports the authors' point that children can be helped to overcome fears?

  1. Fear of strangers usually ends when a child develops a more inclusive schema of faces and people.

  2. Children should never be forced to confront a feared situation before they are ready to do so.

  3. A child can sometimes be reassured after a caregiver has encouraged the child to explain the fear.

  4. Many of children's fears are well-grounded and reasonable.


20. In paragraph 1, the sentence "The most daring toddlers feel content if they can hold onto what they already know" can best be described as having which of the following effects on the reader?

  1. It focuses the reader's attention on the wide variety of children's fears.

  2. It informs the reader of a specific type of fear.

  3. It helps the reader understand children's fears from an adult perspective.

  4. It allows the reader to decide how best to handle children's fears.


21. Based on the information presented in this selection, a child can best be helped to overcome a fear of riding an escalator by:

  1. talking with an adult about why riding an escalator is frightening.

  2. watching an adult ride an escalator, being encouraged to try it, and being praised if he or she does.

  3. being allowed to avoid escalators until the fear has diminished naturally.

  4. watching an adult ride an escalator and receiving verbal assurances from the adult that it is safe.


22. Which of the following details from the passage is least relevant to the authors' main topic?

  1. Parents can help prevent the development of fears in their child.

  2. Just as children learn to fear things, they can learn what not to fear.

  3. A child's fears should be taken seriously; they should not be ridiculed.

  4. In one study of children's fears, fifty children were divided into five groups.


23. Which three main topics would best help outline the information in this selection?

  1. I. Universality of children's fears
    II. Helping children overcome fears
    III. Children's phobias and their treatment

  2. I. Types of fears in children
    II. Treatment of fears in children
    III. Comparison of fears in children and adults

  3. I. Normal fears experienced by toddlers
    II. Normal fears experienced by older children
    III. Phobias experienced by children

  4. I. Children's fears of people
    II. Children's fears of situations
    III. Contact desensitization as a treatment for phobias


24. What is the meaning of the word index as it is used in paragraph 1 of this selection?

  1. an indicator or measurement of something

  2. a list or catalog of information

  3. an object used to point or indicate

  4. a relation or ratio of one quantity to another


Read the selection adapted from "The Language We Know" (1987)
by Simon J. Ortiz. Then answer the six questions that follow.

Writing as a Native American

1 My writing in my late teens and early adulthood was fashioned after the U.S. short stories and poetry taught in the high schools of the 1940s and 1950s, but by the 1960s, after I had gone to college and dropped out and served in the military, I began to develop topics and themes from my Native American background. The experience in my village of Deetziyamah and Acoma Pueblo was readily accessible. I had grown up within the oral tradition of speech, social and religious ritual, elders' counsel and advice, countless and endless stories, everyday events, and the visual art that was symbolically representative of life all around. My mother was a potter of the well-known Acoma clayware, a traditional art form that had been passed to her from her mother and the generations of mothers before. My father carved figures from wood and did beadwork. This was not unusual, as Native American people know; there was always some kind of artistic endeavor that people set themselves to, although they did not necessarily articulate it as "Art" in the sense of Western civilization. One lived and expressed an artful life, whether it was in ceremonial singing and dancing, architecture, painting, speaking, or in the way one's social-cultural life was structured. When I turned my attention to my own heritage, I did so because this was my identity, the substance of who I was, and I wanted to write about what that meant. My desire was to write about the integrity and dignity of a Native American identity, and at the same time I wanted to look at what this was within the context of an America that had too often denied its Native American heritage.

2 To a great extent my writing has a natural political-cultural bent simply because I was nurtured intellectually and emotionally within an atmosphere of Native American resistance. . . . The Acoma Pueblo, despite losing much of their land and surrounded by a foreign civilization, have not lost sight of their native heritage. This is the factual case with most other Native American peoples, and the clear explanation for this has been the fight-back we have found it necessary to wage. At times, in the past, it was outright armed struggle . . . ; currently, it is often in the legal arena, and it is in the field of literature. In 1981, when I was invited to the White House for an event celebrating American poets and poetry, I did not immediately accept the invitation. I questioned myself about the possibility that I was merely being exploited as an Indian, and I hedged against accepting. But then I recalled the elders going among our people in the poor days of the 1950s, asking for donations—a dollar here and there, a sheep, perhaps a piece of pottery—in order to finance a trip to the nation's capital. They were to make another countless appeal on behalf of our people, to demand justice, to reclaim lost land even though there was only spare hope they would be successful. I went to the White House realizing that I was to do no less than they and those who had fought in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680, and I read my poems and sang songs that were later described as "guttural" by a Washington, D.C., newspaper. I suppose it is more or less understandable why such a view of Native American literature is held by many, and it is also clear why there should be a political stand taken in my writing and those of my sister and brother Native American writers.

3 The 1960s and afterward have been an invigorating and liberating period for Native American people. It has been only a little more than twenty years since Native American writers began to write and publish extensively, but we are writing and publishing more and more; we can only go forward. We come from an ageless, continuing oral tradition that informs us of our values, concepts, and notions as native people, and it is amazing how much of this tradition is ingrained so deeply in our contemporary writing, considering the brutal efforts of cultural repression that was not long ago outright U.S. policy. We were not to speak our languages, practice our spiritual beliefs, or accept the values of our past generations; and we were discouraged from pressing for our natural rights as Native American human beings. In spite of the fact that there is to some extent the same repression today, we persist and insist in living, believing, hoping, loving, speaking, and writing as Native Americans.

Ortiz, Simon. The Language We Know. Reproduced from I Tell You Now: Autobiographical Essays by Native American Writers edited by Brian Swan and Arnold Krupat by permission of the University of Nebraska Press.
Copyright 1987 by the University of Nebraska Press.

25. Which of the following statements best expresses the main idea of paragraph 1
of this selection?

  1. The artful nature of Native American life compels the author to explore and write about that heritage.

  2. Art is an important part of Native American life and should be a part of everyone's existence.

  3. The author remembers his childhood, especially his parents and the elders in his community, in a very positive way.

  4. A desire to return to traditional Native American values led the author to write about Native American issues.


26. The effect of the quoted word "guttural" as the author uses it in the second paragraph of the selection is to:

  1. convey the sound of the Acoma Pueblo language to readers who are unfamiliar with it.

  2. emphasize the dramatic effect on the White House audience of the author's reading of his poems and performance of traditional Pueblo songs.

  3. describe most accurately how the author felt about his White House reading of his poems.

  4. communicate the newspaper's lack of understanding and respect for the author's presentation.


27. Which of the following caused the author to change his mind about declining his invitation to the White House?

  1. He realized that he had not been invited to the event as a representative of Native Americans.

  2. He remembered the sacrifices that his ancestors had made for the privilege of going there, even if only to be ignored.

  3. He was eager to read his poetry to an audience of other poets and literary critics.

  4. He wanted his writing and the writing of other Native American men and women to take on a more political tone.


28. Which of the following assumptions most influenced the author's main argument in this selection?

  1. Literature can be a powerful tool for asserting the cultural values and political rights of ethnic groups.

  2. The artistic traditions of Native American peoples are similar to those of European cultures.

  3. All writings produced by Native Americans express, either directly or indirectly, a political position.

  4. The major responsibility of Native American writers is to celebrate and preserve the cultural traditions of their people.


29. Which of the following topic lists best summarizes the main points of the selection?

  1. —Arts of Native American family
    —Invitation to White House
    —Brotherhood of Native American writers

  2. —Native American background as topic for writing
    —Importance of attending White House poetry event
    —Vitality of contemporary Native American writing

  3. —Native American writing
    —Achievements of ancestors
    —Future of Native Americans

  4. —Writing in 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s
    —Involvement of Native Americans in many forms of art
    —Writing about Native American heritage


30. What is the meaning of the word spare as it is used in paragraph 2 of the selection?

  1. frugal

  2. extra

  3. meager

  4. free


Read the passage below. Then answer the questions that follow.

Bacteria Farming

1 Most people consider bacteria dangerous. After all, these microorganisms cause a host of serious human diseases, including tuberculosis, typhoid fever, pneumonia, and food poisoning. In fact, however, only a small percentage of bacteria cause diseases, while many bacteria are actually beneficial to humans. For example, doctors use bacteria to produce vaccines and other medicines. Bacteria are also critical to many industrial processes, from fermenting wine to recycling wastes, and scientists use bacteria to study many of the biological processes common to all living things.

2 With such a wide variety of economic and scientific applications, it is no surprise that several laboratories around the United States grow and sell bacteria as a crop. These laboratories use specialized farming techniques to produce one of the nation's most valuable biological commodities.

3 Like plants, bacteria have specific growth requirements. In particular, they need a place to grow and they need a supply of nutrients. Bacteria may be cultivated in containers ranging from small test tubes to giant steel tanks. The organisms are placed in a container along with a nutritionally balanced liquid or jelly, called a culture medium, which provides vitamins, minerals, and fluids to the growing bacteria. The growth container and culture medium must be kept at a constant temperature that is appropriate for the type of bacteria being cultivated. Most bacteria used in medicine and industry grow best between 20 and 45C.

4 In a closed container, bacteria exhibit a definite growth pattern. The figure shows a typical bacterial growth curve. All bacteria follow this pattern, a fact that is very important to anyone who wants to cultivate them in large numbers.

5 When bacteria are first placed in a growth container, they must adapt to their new environment, and growth is slow while they are making this adjustment. This period is called the "start phase" of the bacterial growth cycle. At the end of this phase, as the bacteria become accustomed to their new living conditions, they begin to grow and reproduce rapidly. During the second phase, called the "log phase," a population explosion occurs. In a large tank, millions of new bacteria may be produced every hour during this phase. Eventually, however, the bacterial population reaches the maximum size possible, given the limitations of the growth container. At this point, the bacteria enter the "stationary growth phase," during which they continue to reproduce, but at a slower rate. After a time, the bacteria use up their supply of nutrients and their wastes accumulate in the growth container. The final period in the growth cycle, called the "death phase," occurs when the bacteria begin to die faster than they reproduce.

6 People who grow bacteria for science and industry take advantage of this unique growth cycle. Bacteria are harvested during the "stationary growth phase," yielding a good crop of usable organisms. By carefully monitoring the growth pattern, bacteria farmers can also decide when to add more nutrients to the culture medium or to transfer the bacteria to new growth containers. In this way, they can prevent large losses during the "death phase." By applying a knowledge of the growth requirements and patterns of bacteria, these modern day agriculturalists are able to help everyone derive the maximum benefit from these versatile organisms.

31. Which of the following statements from the selection best expresses the main idea of the first paragraph?

  1. Most people consider bacteria dangerous.

  2. Only a small percentage of bacteria cause diseases, while many bacteria are actually beneficial to humans.

  3. These microorganisms cause a host of serious human diseases.

  4. Bacteria are critical to many industrial processes, from fermenting wine to recycling wastes, and scientists use bacteria to study many of the biological processes common to all living things.


32. The writer's main purpose in this selection is to:

  1. explain how bacteria are cultivated.

  2. identify harmful and beneficial forms of bacteria.

  3. compare methods of growing bacteria.

  4. demonstrate the beneficial uses of bacteria.


33. According to information presented in the selection, which of the following would most likely hasten the "death phase" of the bacterial growth cycle?

  1. transferring the bacterial population to a smaller growth container

  2. neglecting to monitor growth during the "start phase" of growth cycle

  3. increasing the amount of liquids in the culture medium

  4. failing to make adjustments in the temperature of the culture medium


34. Ideas presented in the selection are most influenced by which of the following assumptions?

  1. Bacteria farming is more useful and profitable than most other types of farming.

  2. All organisms exhibit similar growth rates.

  3. The greatest strides in medicine and industry have come about through the use of bacteria.

  4. Scientific knowledge often has important commercial applications.


35. According to the graph, a bacterial population begins to decrease in size after approximately how many hours of incubation?

  1. 6

  2. 12

  3. 24

  4. 36


36. Which of the following best defines the word yielding as it is used in the last paragraph?

  1. surrendering

  2. producing

  3. giving up

  4. granting


Read the passage below. Then answer the questions that follow.

The Road to Civil Rights

1 The period immediately following the Civil War was a time of great hope for Black Americans. It was also a time of momentous constitutional change, as the nation sought to extend those liberties enshrined in the Bill of Rights to all Americans, Black and White. The Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery, the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed all citizens equal protection of the laws, and the Fifteenth Amendment declared that no one could be denied the right to vote "on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." In subsequent decades, however, it became all too apparent, at least to Blacks and an unfortunately small number of concerned White Americans, that the promises contained in these amendments were not being honored. By century's end, racial segregation was still an inescapable fact of American social life, in the North as well as the South. At the same time, most southern states had adopted devices such as the poll tax, literacy test, and White primary to strip Blacks of their right to vote.

2 The struggle to close the gap between constitutional promise and social reality would pass through two important stages. In the first stage, organizations such as the NAACP worked through the courts to restore the meaning of the Reconstruction-era amendments. These efforts culminated in the 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, which outlawed segregation in public schools. The decision also stated that separate facilities were inherently unequal, thus providing a legal basis for subsequent suits to desegregate other kinds of public accommodations.

3 As it turned out, the principles enunciated in the Brown decision were more easily stated than enforced. Court orders to desegregate public schools often encountered massive resistance. Seeing this, Blacks and their supporters began to adopt new tactics. As they did, the struggle for Black rights entered its second stage, a stage that would be characterized by direct action rather than legal challenges, and would be played out in the streets rather than the courts. In turning to civil disobedience, leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr. made it possible for all victims of racial injustice to take action in a way that was direct and forceful, but also peaceable. And through the power of their moral example, they soon won widespread support for their cause. In response to these developments, Congress took steps to restore the full meaning of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments by passing the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

4 The enactment of these measures by no means marked the end of the civil rights movement. There was still much to be done. Yet the passage of these acts nevertheless had far-reaching significance. The acts not only helped correct social inequities that had persisted far too long, they also showed that the Constitution means something, however long it may sometimes take to give substance to that meaning. This is no small matter in a nation of laws.

37. Which of the following statements from the selection best expresses the main idea of the first paragraph?

  1. The period immediately following the Civil War was a time of great hope for Black Americans.

  2. The Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery, the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed all citizens equal protection of the laws, and the Fifteenth Amendment declared that no one could be denied the right to vote "on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude."

  3. In subsequent decades, it became all too apparent that the promises contained in the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments were not being honored.

  4. Most southern states had adopted devices such as the poll tax, literacy test, and White primary to strip Blacks of their right to vote.


38. The content of paragraph 3 indicates the writer's belief that:

  1. the first stage of the civil rights movement was a failure.

  2. Supreme Court decisions have less influence on United States society than Congressional actions.

  3. social movements are able to influence the political process.

  4. the costs of civil disobedience sometimes outweigh its benefits.


39. According to the selection, many communities refused to enforce the Brown decision. Blacks and their supporters tried to overcome this problem by:

  1. demanding that Congress pass additional civil rights legislation.

  2. engaging in nonviolent direct action.

  3. selecting new leaders for the civil rights movement.

  4. requesting the assistance of the Supreme Court.


40. Which of the following assumptions most influenced the views expressed by the writer in this selection?

  1. Nations that profess a belief in the rule of law should ensure that all laws are observed.

  2. Social injustice can be eliminated most effectively through amendments to the Constitution.

  3. As a rule, people must be forcibly compelled to respect the rights of others.

  4. Without forceful leaders, social movements are unlikely to gain broad support.


41. Which of the following statements best summarizes the information presented in the selection?

  1. After the Civil War, the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments were adopted to protect and extend the rights of Black Americans. By century's end, however, racial segregation was still an inescapable fact of American social life. It would remain so until the 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, which called for the full desegregation of all kinds of public accommodations.

  2. During the past century, there have been significant changes in the leadership of the civil rights movement. Organizations such as the NAACP spearheaded the initial phase of the struggle for Black rights. As legal action gave way to direct action, however, leadership came primarily from individuals like Martin Luther King, Jr.

  3. Adopted immediately after the Civil War, the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery, the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed Blacks equal protection of the laws, and the Fifteenth Amendment gave Blacks the right to vote. Blacks and their supporters have long struggled to give meaning to these amendments.

  4. Efforts by Black Americans and their supporters to close the gap between the constitutional promises of the Reconstruction-era amendments and the realities of American social life passed through two important stages. The first stage, which focused on legal action, culminated in the Brown decision of 1954. This stage was followed by a direct action phase that resulted in the passage of the civil rights acts of the sixties.


42. Which of the following best defines the word culminated as it is used in paragraph 2 of the selection?

  1. initiated a lengthy process

  2. completed the initial phase of a project

  3. began a period of decline

  4. reached the highest point of achievement


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