E T S Praxis Series

Middle School Content Knowledge (0146/5146)

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Sample Test Questions

Current section: Multiple Choice > Questions


I. Literature and Language Studies

  1. The correct answer is B. Only sentence 3 has characteristics that both introduce a paragraph and contain a suggestion of the way the ideas in the paragraph will be developed. The words "once believed" in sentence 3 anticipate the counterassertion in sentence 1, which introduces the example of Native American languages. Sentence 4 provides specific support to sentence 1. The introductory phrase in sentence 5 refers back to the number of words mentioned in sentence 4. Further, sentence 5 introduces the notion of flexibility, which is restated and developed in sentence 2.

  2. The correct answer is B. The central analogy links Polly's feelings of confinement and desire for freedom to the plight of the birds she had released from their cage. She did not regret her action although the birds' freedom had led to their deaths.

  3. The correct answer is C. Charlie tried to protect the birds for Polly and to solve the problem they presented by caging them. He regretted that they had been killed. Polly longs to have Charlie understand what she is feeling; there is no suggestion, however, of angry confrontation. The passage presents evidence of caring but also of a failure of communication.

  4. The correct answer is D. The characterizations of Polly in the first and last paragraphs suggests reflection, not hostility or self-reproach or disinterest.

  5. The correct answer is C. The first syllable contains a schwa vowel sound and the second the vowel sound in the word "cot." The third syllable contains a schwa vowel sound, and the fourth contains the sound of the vowels in the word "easy."

  6. The correct answer is A. The terms mentioned are processes and devices associated with generating new ideas and organizing them. These processes and devices would not be associated with proofreading (D). While they might be part of drafting (B) or revising (C), they are most important during the prewriting stage of the writing process.

II. Mathematics

  1. 420% of 39.7 equals 4.2 times 39.7. Only option C offers this choice or an equivalent for this choice. The correct answer is C.

  2. When triangle ABC is reflected across the y axis, the figure formed is located in quadrant I and is the mirror image of the given figure. Rotating the triangle about vertex C by 90 degrees yields choice A.

  3. When two numbers with like bases are multiplied, the base remains the same and the exponents can be summed. Therefore, 2 raised to the third power times 2 raised to the second power can be expressed as 2 raised to the fifth power. Also, 3 raised to the fourth power times 3 raised to the third power can be expressed as 3 raised to the seventh power. The correct answer is A.

  4. The total salary of all 10 employees can be determined by calculating 6($367) + 4($382) = $3,730. The average salary of the 10 staff members is $3,730/10 = $373. The correct answer is B.

  5. Scoring at the 70th percentile implies that 70 percent of the group had scores below Bill, or 30 percent of the group had scores higher than Bill. The correct answer is C.

  6. In order to solve this problem, let us look at the sequence of powers 3n relation to the exponent n.

    n 3n Units Digit
    0 1 1
    1 3 3
    2 9 9
    3 27 7
    4 81 1
    5 243 3
    6 729 9
    7 2,187 7
    8 6,561 1

    Note that the units digit of 34 is 1, which is equal to the units digit of 30, and then the sequence of units digits repeats itself in sets of four, with the following pattern (where k is some positive integer):

    • If n is of the form n = 4k, the units digit of 3n is 1.
    • If n is of the form n = 4k + 1, the units digit of 3n is 3.
    • If n is of the form n = 4k + 2, the units digit of 3n is 9.
    • If n is of the form n = 4k + 3, the units digit of 3n is 7.

    In the problem, the value of the exponent is 43; i.e., n = 43 = 4 × 10 + 3; thus, the units digit of 343 is 7. The correct answer is C.

III. History/Social Studies

  1. While choices A, B, and C might have some truth for some aspects of the population of the different regions, the only claim supported by the table is D, the correct answer.

  2. The Seneca Falls Declaration is associated with the women's rights movement. The correct answer is C.

  3. The only conclusion supported by the diagram is choice B. The diagram reflects the mathematical concept of an ellipse, which is defined as the set of all points, the sum of whose distances from two fixed points is constant.

  4. Upon inspection of the diagram, the correct answer is D. The reigns are spaced equally, the years are not. There are only 12 years shown between Frederick I and Frederick William I. Frederick William I ruled for 27 years, and Frederick II the Great ruled for 26 years. Frederick William II ruled for only 11 years, and Frederick William III ruled for 43 years.

  5. Choice C is the correct answer. It was in the twentieth century that technological advances throughout the world increased the demand for oil and made it economically beneficial to mine the oil of the Middle East countries. This need for larger quantities of crude oil increased European interest in the politics and economics of the area.

  6. The correct answer is C. Roosevelt's New Deal established a wide range of new federal agencies concerned with issues including financial regulation of the economy, social welfare, and economic development, thereby expanding the size, scope, and responsibility of the national government. Banks were not nationalized, the size of the Supreme Court did not expand, and decisions about welfare spending were concentrated in the federal government.

IV. Science

  1. The correct answer is C. Human males generally have one X and one Y chromosome. Male offspring will only receive a Y chromosome from their father, while female offspring will only receive an X chromosome from their father. Therefore, genes on the Y chromosome are passed only to male offspring.

  2. The correct answer is C. "Shooting stars" are meteors that have entered into the Earth's atmosphere where frictional heating has caused them to glow.

  3. The correct answer is D. Chlorine and certain chlorine-containing compounds are highly reactive oxidizing agents that are used as chemical disinfectants in a variety of situations including swimming pools.

  4. The correct answer is C. Acid rain is caused by the reaction of sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides with water in the atmosphere to form acids. The burning of fossil fuels is a major source of these oxides.

  5. Although the aluminum foil will reflect radiant energy, it will not significantly reduce the flow of energy by conduction. Because a nail is a good thermal conductor, heat will flow through the nail and cook the potato from the inside as well as from the outside. Thus, the potato with the imbedded nail will cook faster. C is the correct answer.

  6. The correct answer is A. The other options are true of both tornadoes and hurricanes. However, hurricanes require warm ocean surface waters in order to develop, and it is from these warm waters and the release of latent heat that they derive their energy. Tornadoes are associated with thunderstorms, form over land, and are most likely to occur when large differences in temperature and moisture exist between two air masses and the boundary between the air masses is sharp.