CBEST Reading Practice Test

Use our free CBEST Reading practice test to prepare for the California Basic Educational Skills Test. It is designed to measure your ability to comprehend written information in passages, tables, and graphs. Questions are focused on evaluation, comprehension, critical analysis, and research skills. There are 50 multiple choice questions on the CBEST Reading test.

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Question 1

Read the passage; then answer the two questions that follow.

In the last few years, scientists in Australia have concluded that koalas sitting in trees aren’t just hanging out, as some people like to think. Using thermal imaging, scientists were able to determine that in hot weather, koalas climb down lower on their trees, where the tree is significantly cooler. When the weather turns cold, they move higher up the tree. This study was done as part of a larger environmental study researching the effects of climate change on animals indigenous to Australia. Scientists fear that koalas may have to find a more effective way to cool themselves as climate change continues to affect their environments.
 

Which of the following would be the most appropriate title for this passage?

A
Climate Change is Killing Koalas
B
Koalas Keeping their Cool
C
Australian Government Failing Koalas
D
Trees are Cool
E
How We Can Save the Koala
Question 1 Explanation: 
Ultimately the passage is about koalas keeping cool. There is no mention of koalas dying (A), or the government causing any of these issues (C). There is also no discussion of what people can do to help koalas (E). While (D) is supported by the passage, the trees are not the main subject. Therefore, the correct answer is (B).
Question 2
In the last few years, scientists in Australia have concluded that koalas sitting in trees aren’t just hanging out, as some people like to think. Using thermal imaging, scientists were able to determine that in hot weather, koalas climb down lower on their trees, where the tree is significantly cooler. When the weather turns cold, they move higher up the tree. This study was done as part of a larger environmental study researching the effects of climate change on animals indigenous to Australia. Scientists fear that koalas may have to find a more effective way to cool themselves as climate change continues to affect their environments.
 

This passage is most likely written for:

A
Scientists who study land animals in Australia
B
Officials in the Australian government
C
The average person who is curious about koalas
D
Climate change specialists
E
UN officials working on climate change
Question 2 Explanation: 
This passage lacks any real scientific data, industry terminology, or specific suggestions for how to proceed. It is written for someone who does not have expert knowledge in koalas or climate change. All of the answer choices are people who would require much more specific and detailed data, except for choice (C).
Question 3

Use the graph below to answer the three questions that follow.

What type of material has been the most recycled?

A
paper
B
metal
C
glass
D
plastic
E
cannot be determined from the chart
Question 3 Explanation: 
In each decade, the green bar representing paper is the tallest.
Question 4

In what year did the recycling of plastic get close to 10%?

A
1970
B
1980
C
1990
D
2000
E
2010
Question 4 Explanation: 
The yellow bar representing plastic is well below 10% until the final year on the chart, 2010.
Question 5

Which of the following conclusions can be made with certainty about the chart?

A
Recycling of some products increased in 1960 from the previous years.
B
There was no recycling during the years between 1960 and 1970.
C
There is no data indicated on the chart to show if 1960 held an increase or decrease in recycling for any of the materials.
D
There was no recycling before 1960.
E
The general population was not environmentally aware of recycling in the years prior to 1960.
Question 5 Explanation: 
Since we do not have data about what happened before 1960, we cannot tell if recycling increased or decreased in 1960. This eliminates choices (A), (D), and (E). Although the chart does not show the amount of recycling in the years between 1960 and 1970, it would be a mistake to assume that all recycling stopped during those years and then resumed in 1970; the study simply decided to portray the data for each tenth year.
Question 6

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

Many teachers across the country are noticing the importance of film in the modern classroom. No longer is putting a movie on meant as an invitation for students to check out while the teacher does work at their desk. Films are a versatile medium, and can function as textbooks, pieces of literature, or pieces of art that can bring a new dimension to a student’s learning. The teachers leading this charge know that teaching a film effectively means preparing lessons with the same amount of time and effort as any other days.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The teacher could simply shut the lights and throw on the first 20 minutes of Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan.” Or the teacher could spend a class period analyzing the scene with the class, looking at how Spielberg builds anxiety in the beginning, how he creates the chaos of the beach, and how he gets the audience to care for characters they haven’t even met yet. Students would get much more out of this second approach and would be able to appreciate the carnage and the pandemonium that soldiers experienced on the beaches of Normandy. Teachers with the second approach are revolutionizing what it means to watch a movie in class and taking advantage of a great learning tool.
 

Which sentence, if inserted into the blank line in the passage, would best fit the writer’s pattern of development?

A
Imagine a teacher who has feeling sick in class one day.
B
These teachers may think they’re helping the students, but they are just dumbing down the material for their students.
C
School Boards across the country are fighting back, with some districts banning films from the classroom.
D
Students love being able to watch films in class because it requires them to do less work.
E
Picture a history classroom that has been studying World War II for the past two weeks, most recently focusing on the Invasion of Normandy Beach (D-Day).
Question 6 Explanation: 
The second paragraph of the passage supports the use of films in the classroom, so choices (A), (B), and (D) are incorrect. Similarly, there is no indication from the passage that school boards are fighting back, so (C) is incorrect. Only (E) introduces the scenario without casting an unwarranted negative shadow on the lesson.
Question 7
Many teachers across the country are noticing the importance of film in the modern classroom. No longer is putting a movie on meant as an invitation for students to check out while the teacher does work at their desk. Films are a versatile medium, and can function as textbooks, pieces of literature, or pieces of art that can bring a new dimension to a student’s learning. The teachers leading this charge know that teaching a film effectively means preparing lessons with the same amount of time and effort as any other days.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The teacher could simply shut the lights and throw on the first 20 minutes of Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan.” Or the teacher could spend a class period analyzing the scene with the class, looking at how Spielberg builds anxiety in the beginning, how he creates the chaos of the beach, and how he gets the audience to care for characters they haven’t even met yet. Students would get much more out of this second approach and would be able to appreciate the carnage and the pandemonium that soldiers experienced on the beaches of Normandy. Teachers with the second approach are revolutionizing what it means to watch a movie in class and taking advantage of a great learning tool.
 

Which of the following is the best meaning of the word “versatile” as it is used in the first paragraph of the passage?

A
Something that has a strong rhythm
B
Something that is grounded in reality
C
Something that is easily misinterpreted
D
Something that can be used in many different ways
E
Something that has both video and audio
Question 7 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). In the same sentence in which the writer refers to film as a “versatile medium,” he or she goes on to list all of the different ways in which films can be used. Answer choice (E) might be tempting because the fact that a film provides both audio and video does mean it appeals to more of a student’s senses; however, this fact is not what makes it “versatile.” None of the other answer choices match the definition of the word or the tone of the passage.
Question 8
Many teachers across the country are noticing the importance of film in the modern classroom. No longer is putting a movie on meant as an invitation for students to check out while the teacher does work at their desk. Films are a versatile medium, and can function as textbooks, pieces of literature, or pieces of art that can bring a new dimension to a student’s learning. The teachers leading this charge know that teaching a film effectively means preparing lessons with the same amount of time and effort as any other days.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The teacher could simply shut the lights and throw on the first 20 minutes of Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan.” Or the teacher could spend a class period analyzing the scene with the class, looking at how Spielberg builds anxiety in the beginning, how he creates the chaos of the beach, and how he gets the audience to care for characters they haven’t even met yet. Students would get much more out of this second approach and would be able to appreciate the carnage and the pandemonium that soldiers experienced on the beaches of Normandy. Teachers with the second approach are revolutionizing what it means to watch a movie in class and taking advantage of a great learning tool.
 

Which of the following assumptions most influenced the writer’s argument in the passage?

A
Films can be a helpful tool in the classroom
B
Too many teachers use films to avoid having to teach
C
School officials are not in support of using films in the classroom
D
Steven Spielberg is a great director
E
Films are a good way to give students a break from their hard work
Question 8 Explanation: 
While (B) and (C) might be true, neither of them are indicated in the passage. Similarly, (E) is incorrect because the writer’s point is that films can be more than that. Since the writer mentions Spielberg in the example, the writer probably thinks he is a great director. However, that is not the point of the passage. Only choice (A) accurately informs the main idea of the passage.
Question 9
Many teachers across the country are noticing the importance of film in the modern classroom. No longer is putting a movie on meant as an invitation for students to check out while the teacher does work at their desk. Films are a versatile medium, and can function as textbooks, pieces of literature, or pieces of art that can bring a new dimension to a student’s learning. The teachers leading this charge know that teaching a film effectively means preparing lessons with the same amount of time and effort as any other days.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The teacher could simply shut the lights and throw on the first 20 minutes of Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan.” Or the teacher could spend a class period analyzing the scene with the class, looking at how Spielberg builds anxiety in the beginning, how he creates the chaos of the beach, and how he gets the audience to care for characters they haven’t even met yet. Students would get much more out of this second approach and would be able to appreciate the carnage and the pandemonium that soldiers experienced on the beaches of Normandy. Teachers with the second approach are revolutionizing what it means to watch a movie in class and taking advantage of a great learning tool.
 

Which of the following inferences may be drawn from information presented in the passage?

A
Film is becoming an outdated medium and will soon be irrelevant.
B
Teaching with a film requires less preparation from the teacher than a normal lesson.
C
As technology advances, films will take the place of books in most high school curricula.
D
In “Saving Private Ryan,” Steven Spielberg accurately portrays the Invasion of Normandy (D-Day).
E
Students are more engaged by films than they are by books.
Question 9 Explanation: 
Choice (D) is the only option that is directly supported by the passage. Choices (A) and (B) are directly refuted by the passage. Choice (E) might be true, but the passage doesn’t discuss student engagement so much as what the student can get out of the experience. While the passage suggests that more teachers are using films as time goes on, it would be going too far to say that they will take the place of books (C). Choice (D) is the only option that is true and directly supported by the passage.
Question 10

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi took charge of the Indian National Congress, a group of thirteen men in the Indian government who fought discrimination and unfair taxation against farmers and urban laborers. Using the nonviolent tactic of civil disobedience, Gandhi and his followers resisted British control over Indian life, choosing not to follow unfair, discriminatory laws and policies. The British responded to this resistance by strengthening their military presence in India, often at the cost of human lives. Gandhi was eventually imprisoned in 1942 for his “radical” beliefs, but he refused to recognize violence as a means of fighting the British. He gained international attention for his hunger strikes, refusing to eat until the British changed their unjust policies.
 

Which of the following best describes the author’s portrayal of Gandhi?

A
positive and prejudiced
B
positive and objective
C
negative and prejudiced
D
negative and objective
E
neither positive nor negative; neither prejudiced or objective
Question 10 Explanation: 
The words “unfair,” “discriminatory,” and “unjust” reveal that the author has a negative view of the British policies over India during Gandhi’s time, and therefore a positive view of Gandhi. This narrows the choices to A or B. While the author does use biased diction to describe the British policies, his descriptions of Ghandi are factual and informative and therefore objective.
Question 11
In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi took charge of the Indian National Congress, a group of thirteen men in the Indian government who fought discrimination and unfair taxation against farmers and urban laborers. Using the nonviolent tactic of civil disobedience, Gandhi and his followers resisted British control over Indian life, choosing not to follow unfair, discriminatory laws and policies. The British responded to this resistance by strengthening their military presence in India, often at the cost of human lives. Gandhi was eventually imprisoned in 1942 for his “radical” beliefs, but he refused to recognize violence as a means of fighting the British. He gained international attention for his hunger strikes, refusing to eat until the British changed their unjust policies.
 

The orderly arrangement of this paragraph is best described as:

A
Chronological
B
Spatial
C
Ascending order of importance
D
List of reasons
E
Descending order of importance
Question 11 Explanation: 
“Chronological” means in order of time. The paragraph progresses through time with the non-violent protests, the initial response of the British, the imprisonment of Gandhi, and his hunger strikes.
Question 12
In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi took charge of the Indian National Congress, a group of thirteen men in the Indian government who fought discrimination and unfair taxation against farmers and urban laborers. Using the nonviolent tactic of civil disobedience, Gandhi and his followers resisted British control over Indian life, choosing not to follow unfair, discriminatory laws and policies. The British responded to this resistance by strengthening their military presence in India, often at the cost of human lives. Gandhi was eventually imprisoned in 1942 for his “radical” beliefs, but he refused to recognize violence as a means of fighting the British. He gained international attention for his hunger strikes, refusing to eat until the British changed their unjust policies.
 

Near the end of the paragraph, why does the author place the word “radical” in quotation marks?

A
To show that he is quoting Gandhi
B
To show that he believes Gandhi’s actions were extreme
C
To show that Gandhi was coming up with new ideas that had not been considered
D
To show that many people do not consider Gandhi’s actions to be radical.
E
To show that extreme protests often bring imprisonment
Question 12 Explanation: 
The use of the quotation marks in this selection reveal that while some people considered Gandhi to be radical and extreme, many others do not agree, including the author. He uses the word of Gandhi’s opponents, but puts it in quotation marks to show that while others have said that, he does not feel it is so.
Question 13
In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi took charge of the Indian National Congress, a group of thirteen men in the Indian government who fought discrimination and unfair taxation against farmers and urban laborers. Using the nonviolent tactic of civil disobedience, Gandhi and his followers resisted British control over Indian life, choosing not to follow unfair, discriminatory laws and policies. The British responded to this resistance by strengthening their military presence in India, often at the cost of human lives. Gandhi was eventually imprisoned in 1942 for his “radical” beliefs, but he refused to recognize violence as a means of fighting the British. He gained international attention for his hunger strikes, refusing to eat until the British changed their unjust policies.
 

Which of the following best summarizes the main ideas of this selection?

A
Gandhi went too far in his protests and was subsequently imprisoned by the British authorities in India.
B
Gandhi started a congress in India to pass legislation to fix unfair labor policies in the country
C
Gandhi was against paying taxes, taking human life, and eating while unjustly imprisoned.
D
Gandhi was probably the most effective historical figure to use the tactic of a hunger strike.
E
Gandhi used non-violent protests to successfully alert the world to unfair practices of the British against his country of India.
Question 13 Explanation: 
Choice A expresses an opinion that is not offered in the selection. Choice B only states one point provided in the selection rather than summarizing the main ideas. Choice C gives three points, but they are not the main points. Choice D may be true, but it does not summarize the selection effectively. Choice E succinctly gives a good summary of the main thoughts of the paragraph.
Question 14

The selection below is a page from an index of book, showing most of the items in the section of the book about sculpture. Use the index page to answer the three questions that follow.

What is the orderly arrangement used in the Sculpture section of the book?

A
chronological order (time)
B
spatial order (location)
C
order of importance
D
comparison and contrast
E
statements and reasons
Question 14 Explanation: 
The main subcategories in this sculpture section of the book are names of cities, indicating the location of the various sculptures. Therefore, the arrangement is considered spatial.
Question 15

In which city are the unfinished sculptures that the book discusses?

A
London
B
Bologna
C
Milan
D
Berlin
E
Rome
Question 15 Explanation: 
The unfinished sculptures are discussed on pages 93 to 112 and are listed in the index as a subsection of the city of Rome.
Question 16

On what pages would one find information about the bronze sculpture entitled “Young Athlete?”

A
90 to 92
B
113 to 199
C
200 to 203
D
245 to 287
E
288 to 289
Question 16 Explanation: 
The “Young Athlete” sculpture is listed in the index at part of the Beit Collection in the city of London, with the page numbers corresponding to choice D.
Question 17

Read the passage; then answer the three questions that follow.

_________ U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill took aim at weight-loss diet scams that she said represent “a crisis in consumer protection.” McCaskill used a hearing in the Consumer Protection panel that she leads to pose tough questions to popular TV host Dr. Mehmet Oz regarding his frequent claims about “miracle” products. McCaskill’s goal is to explore options for regulators and industry to crack down on deceptive practices and to urge media outlets to strengthen screening of false advertising. “We’ve all heard and seen the ads, promising quick and substantial weight-loss if only you take this pill, drink this shake, use this device, or apply this cream,” said McCaskill, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance. “All without adjusting diet or increasing physical activity. _________ , it seems too good to be true. And of course, it is.”
 

In which situation would this selection most likely appear?

A
A transcript of a news report
B
A scientific journal article about weight loss
C
Campaign material for Senator McCaskill
D
A political opinion website
E
A personal post on Senator McCaskill’s social media page
Question 17 Explanation: 
The selection does not give an opinion about Dr. Oz or about Senator McCaskill; therefore, choices C and D are not valid. A scientific journal (choice B) would be much more technical, giving specific information about some of the dieting scams. The senator would not refer to herself in third person in a personal post (choice E). A news report would simply tell what happened in an objective manner; therefore, choice A is correct.
Question 18
_________ U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill took aim at weight-loss diet scams that she said represent “a crisis in consumer protection.” McCaskill used a hearing in the Consumer Protection panel that she leads to pose tough questions to popular TV host Dr. Mehmet Oz regarding his frequent claims about “miracle” products. McCaskill’s goal is to explore options for regulators and industry to crack down on deceptive practices and to urge media outlets to strengthen screening of false advertising. “We’ve all heard and seen the ads, promising quick and substantial weight-loss if only you take this pill, drink this shake, use this device, or apply this cream,” said McCaskill, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance. “All without adjusting diet or increasing physical activity. _________ , it seems too good to be true. And of course, it is.”
 

Which words or phrases, if inserted in order into the blanks in the passage, would help the reader understand the sequence of the writer's ideas?

A
Today; Naturally
B
Recently; Since
C
In the future; Despite these promises
D
Unfortunately; In conclusion
E
Next week; Furthermore
Question 18 Explanation: 
The tone of the passage is that of a news report, and the writer uses simple past tense throughout. This would suggest something is being reported that occurred recently. (A) and (B) both suggest this with “today” and “recently.” However, only (A) has a second transition word that makes logical sense in context.
Question 19
_________ U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill took aim at weight-loss diet scams that she said represent “a crisis in consumer protection.” McCaskill used a hearing in the Consumer Protection panel that she leads to pose tough questions to popular TV host Dr. Mehmet Oz regarding his frequent claims about “miracle” products. McCaskill’s goal is to explore options for regulators and industry to crack down on deceptive practices and to urge media outlets to strengthen screening of false advertising. “We’ve all heard and seen the ads, promising quick and substantial weight-loss if only you take this pill, drink this shake, use this device, or apply this cream,” said McCaskill, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance. “All without adjusting diet or increasing physical activity. _________ , it seems too good to be true. And of course, it is.”
 

In the context of the passage what does “crack down” mean?

A
To use violence as a way of solving problems.
B
To look at the situation much more carefully.
C
To stop wasting so much time trying to solve a mundane problem.
D
To handle a situation with grace and care.
E
To adopt a stricter approach to handling a given situation.
Question 19 Explanation: 
The colloquial phrase “crack down” is used in modern vernacular to indicate a stricter approach to handling a given situation, which is choice E. The panel took some of its time to explore options to enable regulators and industry to legally reduce the deceptive practices. Choice A is not correct since the selection is not suggesting violence in any way. Choice C is almost directly opposed to the message of the passage. Choices B and D reflect a carefulness that isn’t in line with the phrase “crack down.”
Question 20

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

The Megatherium is an extinct type of giant ground sloth that lived from two million to perhaps 4,400 years ago. While medium-sized sloths continue to live in arborous habitats in Central and South America, the ground-dwelling Megatherium lived in parts of North and South America. These animals were as big as elephants and had huge claws on their feet. The giant sloth’s extinction occurred at about the same time as humans arrived on the continent.

(1) The most plausible explanation for this simultaneous action is that humans hunted the giant ground sloth to its extinction. (2) Early humans hunted animals for a variety of reasons, but food and clothing were among the most important. (3) They could eat the animals that they killed and then fashion the skins into clothing. (4) Humans may also have killed animals as perceived threats, even if they were not valuable as a source of food or clothing. (5) Scientists using radiocarbon to date giant sloth fossils from Cuba and Hispaniola recently found that the last record of a giant ground sloth coincided with the arrival of humans about 4,400 years ago.
 

The second paragraph of the selection suggests possible reasons for the sloth’s extinction. To make the paragraph more concise, which numbered sentence could be removed due to redundancy?

A
Sentence (1)
B
Sentence (2)
C
Sentence (3)
D
Sentence (4)
E
Sentence (5)
Question 20 Explanation: 
Effective writing avoids unnecessary repetition. Sentence (2) and (3) give basically the same information, so one of them can be eliminated. Since sentence (2) maintains the scientific tone of the paragraph better than sentence (3), the removal of sentence (3) is the best choice. Sentences (1), (4), and (5) all express different ideas that are important to the passage.
Question 21
The Megatherium is an extinct type of giant ground sloth that lived from two million to perhaps 4,400 years ago. While medium-sized sloths continue to live in arborous habitats in Central and South America, the ground-dwelling Megatherium lived in parts of North and South America. These animals were as big as elephants and had huge claws on their feet. The giant sloth’s extinction occurred at about the same time as humans arrived on the continent.

(1) The most plausible explanation for this simultaneous action is that humans hunted the giant ground sloth to its extinction. (2) Early humans hunted animals for a variety of reasons, but food and clothing were among the most important. (3) They could eat the animals that they killed and then fashion the skins into clothing. (4) Humans may also have killed animals as perceived threats, even if they were not valuable as a source of food or clothing. (5) Scientists using radiocarbon to date giant sloth fossils from Cuba and Hispaniola recently found that the last record of a giant ground sloth coincided with the arrival of humans about 4,400 years ago.
 

Based on the context of the passage, what is the meaning of the prefix “mega-” in the term “Megatherium”?

A
Old
B
Huge
C
American
D
Prehistoric
E
Healthy
Question 21 Explanation: 
The prefix “mega-” is a Greek prefix meaning “very large.” In the metric number system, it is used to indicate one million. For example, one megagram is equal to one million grams. Therefore, choice B is the best answer. Even if you don’t know this already, the sentence following the introduction of the term refers to “medium-sized sloths,” which shows that “mega-” has something to do with size. Later in the passage, the sloths are referred to as “giant sloths,” so “huge” is the best answer.
Question 22
The Megatherium is an extinct type of giant ground sloth that lived from two million to perhaps 4,400 years ago. While medium-sized sloths continue to live in arborous habitats in Central and South America, the ground-dwelling Megatherium lived in parts of North and South America. These animals were as big as elephants and had huge claws on their feet. The giant sloth’s extinction occurred at about the same time as humans arrived on the continent.

(1) The most plausible explanation for this simultaneous action is that humans hunted the giant ground sloth to its extinction. (2) Early humans hunted animals for a variety of reasons, but food and clothing were among the most important. (3) They could eat the animals that they killed and then fashion the skins into clothing. (4) Humans may also have killed animals as perceived threats, even if they were not valuable as a source of food or clothing. (5) Scientists using radiocarbon to date giant sloth fossils from Cuba and Hispaniola recently found that the last record of a giant ground sloth coincided with the arrival of humans about 4,400 years ago.
 

Which of the following is the best meaning of the word valuable as it is used in the passage?

A
worth a great deal of money
B
having fur that can be used as clothing
C
able to be used in trade
D
having a beneficial use
E
seen as a symbol of high status
Question 22 Explanation: 
The passage reads, “Humans may also have killed animals as perceived threats, even if they were not valuable as a source of food or clothing.” There is nothing to indicate that minted coin, or money, was something early humans had. The animal’s value refers to both food AND clothing, so (B) is too limited. The focus of this passage is not on trade. The best meaning is (D). The value of the sloth was perceived as its usefulness to the early humans as a food and clothing source.
Question 23
The Megatherium is an extinct type of giant ground sloth that lived from two million to perhaps 4,400 years ago. While medium-sized sloths continue to live in arborous habitats in Central and South America, the ground-dwelling Megatherium lived in parts of North and South America. These animals were as big as elephants and had huge claws on their feet. The giant sloth’s extinction occurred at about the same time as humans arrived on the continent.

(1) The most plausible explanation for this simultaneous action is that humans hunted the giant ground sloth to its extinction. (2) Early humans hunted animals for a variety of reasons, but food and clothing were among the most important. (3) They could eat the animals that they killed and then fashion the skins into clothing. (4) Humans may also have killed animals as perceived threats, even if they were not valuable as a source of food or clothing. (5) Scientists using radiocarbon to date giant sloth fossils from Cuba and Hispaniola recently found that the last record of a giant ground sloth coincided with the arrival of humans about 4,400 years ago.
 

What assumption does the author make in his argument for linking the extinction of the sloth with the arrival of humans on the American continents?

A
That people of Cuban descent do not like sloths.
B
That the technique of radiocarbon dating is reliable.
C
That sloths were around for millions of years.
D
That humans in those days needed food and clothing.
E
Dinosaurs have been extinct for millions of years.
Question 23 Explanation: 
Choice B is the best answer because the strongest argument for the extinction of Megatherium coinciding with the arrival of humans is that radiocarbon dating methods are reliable. Choice A is not indicated at all in the text. Choice C can be considered an assumption but does not affect the argument for linking the two items. Choice D is not an assumption, but an obvious fact. Some would say that choice E is an assumption; others would say it is a fact. Either way, dinosaurs are not discussed in this selection.
Question 24

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

Compared to most of our country’s Founding Fathers, Thomas Paine is essentially unknown. In fact, there are many Americans who have never even heard of him. Paine was born in 1737. He was the son of a corseter—a tailor specializing in corsets and other undergarments—and grew up in rural Thetford, England. As a young man, Paine worked as a corseter, sailor, and minister, but found his true calling when he moved to the British colonies in America.

Paine first gained notoriety as the editor of Pennsylvania Magazine and, as political turmoil engulfed the colonies, he became more prominent. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The book’s popularity spread like wildfire; soon there were 200,000 copies in circulation. Once the war began, Paine published a series of pamphlets called The Crisis. These, in the midst of a bloody war, helped keep up the morale of the troops. Thomas Paine is also credited with conceiving the name “The United States of America.”

Thomas Paine was an extremely talented writer; Thomas Jefferson and John Adams drew heavily on his work when drafting the Declaration of Independence. Later in life, Paine wrote other, highly controversial works. He was even exiled from England and imprisoned in France for his writings. In 1796, Paine did his part to inspire what would become Social Security. He suggested a system of social insurance for the young and the elderly in his last great work, Agrarian Justice.
 

Which sentence, if inserted into the blank line in the second paragraph, would be most consistent with the writer's purpose and intended audience?

A
Paine wrote many articles for the Pennsylvania Magazine.
B
In 1776, Paine published a book called Common Sense.
C
Paine argued passionately that American should be independent from Britain.
D
Paine heavily criticized Silas Deane, a diplomat he believed was not devoted to the American cause.
E
Paine became a well-known political commentator.
Question 24 Explanation: 
The previous sentence describes Paine’s career as a writer for a magazine, and the next sentence references the popularity of a book, but what book is being discussed? Inserting this sentence will introduce the book, Common Sense, and help clarify Paine’s contribution to American Independence.
Question 25
Compared to most of our country’s Founding Fathers, Thomas Paine is essentially unknown. In fact, there are many Americans who have never even heard of him. Paine was born in 1737. He was the son of a corseter—a tailor specializing in corsets and other undergarments—and grew up in rural Thetford, England. As a young man, Paine worked as a corseter, sailor, and minister, but found his true calling when he moved to the British colonies in America.

Paine first gained notoriety as the editor of Pennsylvania Magazine and, as political turmoil engulfed the colonies, he became more prominent. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The book’s popularity spread like wildfire; soon there were 200,000 copies in circulation. Once the war began, Paine published a series of pamphlets called The Crisis. These, in the midst of a bloody war, helped keep up the morale of the troops. Thomas Paine is also credited with conceiving the name “The United States of America.”

Thomas Paine was an extremely talented writer; Thomas Jefferson and John Adams drew heavily on his work when drafting the Declaration of Independence. Later in life, Paine wrote other, highly controversial works. He was even exiled from England and imprisoned in France for his writings. In 1796, Paine did his part to inspire what would become Social Security. He suggested a system of social insurance for the young and the elderly in his last great work, Agrarian Justice.
 

Which of the following conclusions may logically be drawn from the first paragraph of the passage?

A
Paine was one of the Founding Fathers.
B
Paine’s influence on the country was forgettable.
C
The Declaration of Independence could not have been written without Paine’s contribution.
D
Paine’s wide range of job experiences likely helped him develop his political opinions.
E
Paine felt no loyalty to Britain and despised the country of his birth.
Question 25 Explanation: 
The first sentence compares Paine to "our country's other Founding Fathers." From this statement we can conclude that he was one of the Founding Fathers. None of the other choices are directly supported by the first paragraph. While the passage does mention that people have forgotten about Thomas Paine, the main point of the passage is that Paine’s work was not forgettable (or unimportant). If you chose (E), the tone of this answer choice is much too strong to align with the author’s voice.
Question 26
Compared to most of our country’s Founding Fathers, Thomas Paine is essentially unknown. In fact, there are many Americans who have never even heard of him. Paine was born in 1737. He was the son of a corseter—a tailor specializing in corsets and other undergarments—and grew up in rural Thetford, England. As a young man, Paine worked as a corseter, sailor, and minister, but found his true calling when he moved to the British colonies in America.

Paine first gained notoriety as the editor of Pennsylvania Magazine and, as political turmoil engulfed the colonies, he became more prominent. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The book’s popularity spread like wildfire; soon there were 200,000 copies in circulation. Once the war began, Paine published a series of pamphlets called The Crisis. These, in the midst of a bloody war, helped keep up the morale of the troops. Thomas Paine is also credited with conceiving the name “The United States of America.”

Thomas Paine was an extremely talented writer; Thomas Jefferson and John Adams drew heavily on his work when drafting the Declaration of Independence. Later in life, Paine wrote other, highly controversial works. He was even exiled from England and imprisoned in France for his writings. In 1796, Paine did his part to inspire what would become Social Security. He suggested a system of social insurance for the young and the elderly in his last great work, Agrarian Justice.
 

What sentence, if added to the end of the passage, would provide the best conclusion to both the paragraph and the passage?

A
Unfortunately, not enough is known about Thomas Paine to call him a Founding Father.
B
Given Paine’s contributions to America, he deserves recognition as one of our most important Founding Fathers.
C
Paine was also an inventor, patenting his design for a cantilever bridge.
D
If Paine had received the recognition he deserved, he would have been seen as a much more controversial figure.
E
Thomas Paine died in New York City at the age of 72.
Question 26 Explanation: 
Concluding sentences should summarize and contextualize, not introduce new information. Answer (B) nicely ties the last paragraph back to the first paragraph without introducing new information or opinions. (E) might be a good conclusion to a biography of Paine, but this passage focuses more on Paine’s contributions than the major events in his life.
Question 27
Compared to most of our country’s Founding Fathers, Thomas Paine is essentially unknown. In fact, there are many Americans who have never even heard of him. Paine was born in 1737. He was the son of a corseter—a tailor specializing in corsets and other undergarments—and grew up in rural Thetford, England. As a young man, Paine worked as a corseter, sailor, and minister, but found his true calling when he moved to the British colonies in America.

Paine first gained notoriety as the editor of Pennsylvania Magazine and, as political turmoil engulfed the colonies, he became more prominent. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The book’s popularity spread like wildfire; soon there were 200,000 copies in circulation. Once the war began, Paine published a series of pamphlets called The Crisis. These, in the midst of a bloody war, helped keep up the morale of the troops. Thomas Paine is also credited with conceiving the name “The United States of America.”

Thomas Paine was an extremely talented writer; Thomas Jefferson and John Adams drew heavily on his work when drafting the Declaration of Independence. Later in life, Paine wrote other, highly controversial works. He was even exiled from England and imprisoned in France for his writings. In 1796, Paine did his part to inspire what would become Social Security. He suggested a system of social insurance for the young and the elderly in his last great work, Agrarian Justice.
 

The reader can infer that this passage was taken from which of the following?

A
A political treatise
B
A history textbook
C
A tourist guidebook
D
A historical novel
E
A scientific journal
Question 27 Explanation: 
Because the passage is informational and factual, it is likely not from a political treatise (which would be more opinionated) or a historical novel (which would be fictional). Between a history textbook and a tourist guidebook, it is more likely that the passage is from the former since the passage contains no information about specific places that would be of interest to a tourist besides the brief mention of Thetford. The passage is more historical than scientific, so (E) would not be an appropriate response.
Question 28

Read the passage; then answer the three questions that follow.

Jonathan Swift’s dark view of humanity is expressed in his novel, Gulliver’s Travels. Swift believed that society, which is meant to protect people from inequality and injustice, actually encourages the worst evils, promotes immorality, and allows injustices to occur. In Gulliver’s Travels, Swift asks whether “civilization” is only an elaborate cover for the lowest forms of human behavior. Swift raises this question through satire, a literary form which he brings to perfection in Gulliver’s Travels. Following in the great tradition of classical satirists, Swift uses Gulliver’s Travels to point out the underlying ridiculousness of the society around him. In one section of Gulliver’s Travels, for example, Gulliver describes his native England to the king of a land of giants. Gulliver talks enthusiastically to the giant king about the class system, laws, constitution, military glory, and history of his homeland. After carefully listening to Gulliver’s speech, however, the king proceeds to point out the many shortcomings of Gulliver’s native land. Gulliver is unable to come up with adequate responses to the criticism. He can only stand there in embarrassed silence as the king eventually concludes that the institutions of the human world should be condemned.
 

The passage’s focus is primarily on

A
Civilization’s weaknesses
B
Swift's hatred for humanity
C
Swift's depiction of human nature
D
The inspiration behind the character of Gulliver
E
Recounting the plot of the book Gulliver's Travels
Question 28 Explanation: 
The primary purpose of the passage is to explore how Swift expressed his “dark view” of humanity in his novel Gulliver’s Travels. Answers (A) and (B) are too broad and extreme to be correct, while (D) is too specific.
Question 29
Jonathan Swift’s dark view of humanity is expressed in his novel, Gulliver’s Travels. Swift believed that society, which is meant to protect people from inequality and injustice, actually encourages the worst evils, promotes immorality, and allows injustices to occur. In Gulliver’s Travels, Swift asks whether “civilization” is only an elaborate cover for the lowest forms of human behavior. Swift raises this question through satire, a literary form which he brings to perfection in Gulliver’s Travels. Following in the great tradition of classical satirists, Swift uses Gulliver’s Travels to point out the underlying ridiculousness of the society around him. In one section of Gulliver’s Travels, for example, Gulliver describes his native England to the king of a land of giants. Gulliver talks enthusiastically to the giant king about the class system, laws, constitution, military glory, and history of his homeland. After carefully listening to Gulliver’s speech, however, the king proceeds to point out the many shortcomings of Gulliver’s native land. Gulliver is unable to come up with adequate responses to the criticism. He can only stand there in embarrassed silence as the king eventually concludes that the institutions of the human world should be condemned.
 

The passage implies that the giant king’s opinion of England’s laws and society is

A
One of hidden jealously
B
Close to Swift's own opinion
C
Similar to the citizens of England's
D
In line with the author of the passage's own opinion
E
Open to interpretation and ambiguous
Question 29 Explanation: 
The example of the king is used to point out one way Swift used Gulliver’s Travels to highlight his own view of the ridiculousness of society. The king also believes England’s civilization has “many shortcomings.” Answer (D) is tempting, but we do not know anything about the opinions of the author of the passage itself.
Question 30
Jonathan Swift’s dark view of humanity is expressed in his novel, Gulliver’s Travels. Swift believed that society, which is meant to protect people from inequality and injustice, actually encourages the worst evils, promotes immorality, and allows injustices to occur. In Gulliver’s Travels, Swift asks whether “civilization” is only an elaborate cover for the lowest forms of human behavior. Swift raises this question through satire, a literary form which he brings to perfection in Gulliver’s Travels. Following in the great tradition of classical satirists, Swift uses Gulliver’s Travels to point out the underlying ridiculousness of the society around him. In one section of Gulliver’s Travels, for example, Gulliver describes his native England to the king of a land of giants. Gulliver talks enthusiastically to the giant king about the class system, laws, constitution, military glory, and history of his homeland. After carefully listening to Gulliver’s speech, however, the king proceeds to point out the many shortcomings of Gulliver’s native land. Gulliver is unable to come up with adequate responses to the criticism. He can only stand there in embarrassed silence as the king eventually concludes that the institutions of the human world should be condemned.
 

When discussing Swift’s views, the author’s tone in the passage could best be described as

A
Admiring
B
Critical
C
Impatient
D
Bittersweet
E
Neutral
Question 30 Explanation: 
While Swift is critical of England’s society, the author of the passage itself does not present his own point of view. Therefore, the passage could be described as having a neutral tone.
Question 31

Use a table of contents from a biology textbook below to answer the four questions that follow.

The use of the word “Foundations” in the title for Unit 1 indicates that:

A
The first unit simply contains concepts to warm up the minds of students before getting to the hard chapters.
B
The teachings in Unit 1 will be essential to understanding everything else that will be taught from the book for the duration of the school year.
C
The first unit can be skipped so that the teacher has time to get through the entire textbook before the end of the year.
D
Students must have a foundational understanding of reading, writing, and arithmetic in order to succeed in this class.
E
The first unit will review the concepts taught in previous science classes without adding any new material.
Question 31 Explanation: 
The word “Foundations” indicates the underlying principles that will help all of the material following to make sense. The word communicates that the students must immediately engage in grasping the concepts taught if they are to succeed in understanding the later units. The chapter titles in the first unit show that the foundations of reading, writing, and arithmetic are not the foundations to which the unit title is referring.
Question 32

Which unit would likely help students to understand why children often resemble their parents in their appearance?

A
Unit 1
B
Unit 2
C
Unit 3
D
Unit 4
E
Unit 5
Question 32 Explanation: 
The title of Unit 3 includes the word “Genetics,” a word which students have learned in basic science classes before taking Biology class. Some of the chapter titles in the unit refer to “genes,” and the title for chapter 12 includes “Inheritance Patterns,” indicating that Unit 3 would be the best place to read to find out about children inheriting physical traits from their parents.
Question 33

When one examines the unit title and the chapter titles for Unit 6, what conclusion does NOT seem evident?

A
Microbes, protists, and fungi must be biologically related in some way.
B
Fungi are probably a type of protist.
C
Viruses and bacteria are probably two types of microbes.
D
Though many people do not use the term “protists,” they must represent an important category of organisms in biology.
E
These chapters are about smaller and simpler forms of life than the life forms in the later units.
Question 33 Explanation: 
The conclusion in choice A is reasonable since the three are grouped together into one unit. The conclusion is choice C is less obvious, but it is reasonable when one compares the unit title with the chapter title. Choice D is reasonably evident, since the textbook chooses to devote an entire chapter to protists. Choice E is also somewhat obvious to those who know that bacteria and viruses are tiny organisms. Choice B is not likely, since the unit title puts “protists” and “fungi” in a list of equals, and since fungi are not discussed as a subcategory of protists in the chapter on protists.
Question 34

The organization method for the second half of the book (Units 6 through 10) seems to be:

A
From lesser life forms to greater life forms
B
From tiny life forms to the biggest life forms
C
From later life forms to earlier life forms
D
From complicated life forms that are hard to understand to the life forms we see every day
E
A random catalogue of the major categories of life forms
Question 34 Explanation: 
From previous science courses, a student will understand that humans are the most complex of life forms, with animals a bit lower (lacking complex language), and plants a bit lower (lacking visible emotions, and microscopic life forms being less complex than plants. Therefore, choice A is the best description among the choices given for the arrangement of the second half of the units. Since many mammals are larger than humans, choice B is not correct.
Question 35

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

The study of cetacean intelligence has added to our understanding of dolphin behavior. Even though cetaceans, which are marine animals including dolphins, whales, and porpoises, are widely considered intelligent species, conclusions about the extent of dolphin intelligence have not yet been reached.

Dolphins produce two primary types of vocalizations: clicks and whistles. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Dolphins emit clicks as rapid broadband bursts that are sent out and then echo back, giving them information about their surroundings. Whistles differ from clicks by being sent out as narrow-band signals. Strong evidence supports the idea that dolphins use signature whistles to identify and call to each other.

Researchers have noticed that large packs rely on a highly organized method of communication when responding to predators, such as sharks. When a group of dolphins reacts to an unexpected disturbance, it will quickly move in near-unison to avoid the threat. In this way, dolphins rely on visual and auditory cues to communicate their location and to interpret the locations of others in the pod.
 

Which sentence, if inserted into the blank line in the passage, would best fit the writer’s pattern of development?

A
Dolphins are the top of the list of intelligent creatures, along with chimpanzees, apes, and whales.
B
Dolphins generally use clicks for the purposes of echolocation and whistles for communication.
C
The intelligence of dolphins has allowed them to be used in many famous movies and television shoes for a number of decades.
D
Along with being extremely intelligent, dolphins also have a grace and beauty that make them a pleasure to observe in scientific studies.
E
Man is likely the most intelligent of all life forms, as indicated by his advanced communication system.
Question 35 Explanation: 
The underlined portion of the text is introduced with a mention of both clicks and whistles. In the sentence following, the author discusses whistles. Logically, it would make sense if the author also discussed click, so the correct answer is choice (B). Choices A, C, and D refer to the intelligence of dolphins, but they do not fit the development of the paragraph as well as choice B. Choice E may be true, but the statement does not fit with the development of this paragraph about dolphin communication.
Question 36
The study of cetacean intelligence has added to our understanding of dolphin behavior. Even though cetaceans, which are marine animals including dolphins, whales, and porpoises, are widely considered intelligent species, conclusions about the extent of dolphin intelligence have not yet been reached.

Dolphins produce two primary types of vocalizations: clicks and whistles. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Dolphins emit clicks as rapid broadband bursts that are sent out and then echo back, giving them information about their surroundings. Whistles differ from clicks by being sent out as narrow-band signals. Strong evidence supports the idea that dolphins use signature whistles to identify and call to each other.

Researchers have noticed that large packs rely on a highly organized method of communication when responding to predators, such as sharks. When a group of dolphins reacts to an unexpected disturbance, it will quickly move in near-unison to avoid the threat. In this way, dolphins rely on visual and auditory cues to communicate their location and to interpret the locations of others in the pod.
 

The writer's main purpose in the passage is to:

A
Define clicks and whistles
B
Explain how sea creatures communicate
C
Praise the abilities of dolphins
D
Refute the notion that cetaceans are unintelligent
E
Provide examples of dolphin intelligence
Question 36 Explanation: 
The author describes ways in which dolphins communicate as a way of describing their intelligence. (A) is too specific to apply to the entire passage, while (B) is too broad, since this passage focuses narrowly on dolphins. The author’s focus here is more informational, so the verb “praise” in (C) doesn’t fit, while “refute” in (D) is much too extreme. The best choice, tonally, is (E).
Question 37
The study of cetacean intelligence has added to our understanding of dolphin behavior. Even though cetaceans, which are marine animals including dolphins, whales, and porpoises, are widely considered intelligent species, conclusions about the extent of dolphin intelligence have not yet been reached.

Dolphins produce two primary types of vocalizations: clicks and whistles. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Dolphins emit clicks as rapid broadband bursts that are sent out and then echo back, giving them information about their surroundings. Whistles differ from clicks by being sent out as narrow-band signals. Strong evidence supports the idea that dolphins use signature whistles to identify and call to each other.

Researchers have noticed that large packs rely on a highly organized method of communication when responding to predators, such as sharks. When a group of dolphins reacts to an unexpected disturbance, it will quickly move in near-unison to avoid the threat. In this way, dolphins rely on visual and auditory cues to communicate their location and to interpret the locations of others in the pod.
 

Information presented in the passage best supports which of the following conclusions?

A
Researchers study the level of communication among dolphins because communication systems can offer insight into an animal’s intelligence.
B
Communication is not an important part of how dolphins behave in groups.
C
Good communication skills allow dolphins to travel as pods of up to several hundred.
D
Other animals that do not use clicks and whistles are not as effective at communication as dolphins are.
E
Researchers believe that dolphins are the most intelligent cetaceans.
Question 37 Explanation: 
This conclusion is best in line with the information in the passage. The other choices are either out of scope (as in (C)) or express a conclusion that is not clearly supported by information from the passage. For example, we cannot conclude that dolphins are the MOST intelligent simply because there is evidence that they are very intelligent. Choice (D) is similarly unsubstantiated, while choice (B) is contradicted by the passage. Therefore, the correct response is (A).
Question 38
The study of cetacean intelligence has added to our understanding of dolphin behavior. Even though cetaceans, which are marine animals including dolphins, whales, and porpoises, are widely considered intelligent species, conclusions about the extent of dolphin intelligence have not yet been reached.

Dolphins produce two primary types of vocalizations: clicks and whistles. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Dolphins emit clicks as rapid broadband bursts that are sent out and then echo back, giving them information about their surroundings. Whistles differ from clicks by being sent out as narrow-band signals. Strong evidence supports the idea that dolphins use signature whistles to identify and call to each other.

Researchers have noticed that large packs rely on a highly organized method of communication when responding to predators, such as sharks. When a group of dolphins reacts to an unexpected disturbance, it will quickly move in near-unison to avoid the threat. In this way, dolphins rely on visual and auditory cues to communicate their location and to interpret the locations of others in the pod.
 

Based on information contained in the passage, it is reasonable to infer that dolphins:

A
Are less intelligent than previously thought
B
Are more intelligent than previously thought
C
Are smarter than other cetaceans
D
Communicate well with each other
E
Communicate better than their predators
Question 38 Explanation: 
The discussion of how dolphin pods work in concert to avoid predators supports this statement. We do not have enough information from the passage to make a comparison between dolphin intelligence and the intelligence of other cetaceans or their predators. Remember to avoid extreme claims for inference questions. The best answer must match the general tone of the passage.
Question 39

Use the graph below to answer the two questions that follow.

Which department had the most students for their summer courses in 2017?

A
Business
B
History
C
Literature
D
Math
E
Science
Question 39 Explanation: 
The departments are shown on the right of the chart. The history classes are marked in pink, and so you can add up the three classes marked with pink (European History, Civics, American History):

8% + 6% + 9% = 23%

After adding up all departments you will see that history has the highest percentage. Next highest is science, at 22%.
Question 40

Which of the following conclusions is supported by the data in the graph above?

A
More students are taking Creative Writing than all the math classes combined
B
American History is the most popular class this summer
C
Finance is the least popular class this summer
D
Biology is the most popular science class
E
Most students are only taking the classes that are important
Question 40 Explanation: 
Mathematically, choice (A), (B), and (C) are incorrect. Answer choice (E) might be true, but the chart does not distinguish between important and unimportant classes, so this choice is a matter of unsubstantiated opinion. Biology has a higher percentage of enrollees than the other science classes, so answer choice (D) is correct.
Question 41

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

(1) Modern Americans tend to look back at the “founding fathers” and early presidents as infallible figures in history. (2) Just like politicians today, though, these men were flawed characters who don’t deserve to be remembered as great leaders. (3) One such man is Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, who served office from 1829 to 1837. (4) For many Americans, Jackson blends in with all the other early presidents, only standing out because he is the face on the $20 bill. (5) Jackson is remembered by others as an influential military leader prior to his presidency in the War of 1812, an important voice in the fight for the right to vote for all white males (not just landowners), and the first official president of the Democratic party. (6) To people who follow history closely, however, Jackson is best known by his nickname: “Indian killer.”

(7) In many ways, his military leadership in the Creek War, considered part of the War of 1812, helped shape the country Americans know today. (8) That is mostly because Jackson ordered his men to systematically kill Native American women and children in an effort to exterminate their tribes. (9) The decimation of Native Americans in the Creek War and other “battles” in the southeast paved the way for one of Jackson’s worst presidential maneuvers, the Trail of Tears. (10) By forcing Native Americans off their land, Jackson secured millions of acres of land for the US government and caused the deaths of thousands of Native Americans (not to mention the suffering and indignity of thousands more). (11) When we remember Andrew Jackson, we should remember him as “Indian Killer,” the worst president our country has ever seen.
 

Which of the following numbered sentences from the passage best expresses an opinion rather than a fact?

A
Sentence 1
B
Sentence 3
C
Sentence 4
D
Sentence 5
E
Sentence 11
Question 41 Explanation: 
While the author’s bias seeps from each sentence in the passage, Sentence 11 is the only option that truly expresses an opinion, that Andrew Jackson should be remembered as America’s worst president. The other options are rather factual. While the author offers no evidence that Andrew Jackson “blends in with all the other early presidents,” this is a statement that readers are willing to reasonably accept as true without evidence.
Question 42
(1) Modern Americans tend to look back at the “founding fathers” and early presidents as infallible figures in history. (2) Just like politicians today, though, these men were flawed characters who don’t deserve to be remembered as great leaders. (3) One such man is Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, who served office from 1829 to 1837. (4) For many Americans, Jackson blends in with all the other early presidents, only standing out because he is the face on the $20 bill. (5) Jackson is remembered by others as an influential military leader prior to his presidency in the War of 1812, an important voice in the fight for the right to vote for all white males (not just landowners), and the first official president of the Democratic party. (6) To people who follow history closely, however, Jackson is best known by his nickname: “Indian killer.”

(7) In many ways, his military leadership in the Creek War, considered part of the War of 1812, helped shape the country Americans know today. (8) That is mostly because Jackson ordered his men to systematically kill Native American women and children in an effort to exterminate their tribes. (9) The decimation of Native Americans in the Creek War and other “battles” in the southeast paved the way for one of Jackson’s worst presidential maneuvers, the Trail of Tears. (10) By forcing Native Americans off their land, Jackson secured millions of acres of land for the US government and caused the deaths of thousands of Native Americans (not to mention the suffering and indignity of thousands more). (11) When we remember Andrew Jackson, we should remember him as “Indian Killer,” the worst president our country has ever seen.
 

Which of the following best describes the writer’s pattern of organization in the passage?

A
Order of importance
B
Explaining with examples
C
Spatial order
D
Chronological order
E
Compare-contrast
Question 42 Explanation: 
In the passage, the author beings by describing what lots of people already think. He or she goes on to explain why that popular opinion is wrong, supporting ideas with examples. While the author’s final assertion is that Andrew Jackson was the worst US President, he/she doesn’t actual compare him to any other presidents, so choice (E) is incorrect. Considering the author’s placement of his/her main point as the final sentence, it’s hard to argue that the passage is organized by importance (A). The passage’s organization also has nothing to do with locations (C) or time (D). The correct answer is (B).
Question 43
(1) Modern Americans tend to look back at the “founding fathers” and early presidents as infallible figures in history. (2) Just like politicians today, though, these men were flawed characters who don’t deserve to be remembered as great leaders. (3) One such man is Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, who served office from 1829 to 1837. (4) For many Americans, Jackson blends in with all the other early presidents, only standing out because he is the face on the $20 bill. (5) Jackson is remembered by others as an influential military leader prior to his presidency in the War of 1812, an important voice in the fight for the right to vote for all white males (not just landowners), and the first official president of the Democratic party. (6) To people who follow history closely, however, Jackson is best known by his nickname: “Indian killer.”

(7) In many ways, his military leadership in the Creek War, considered part of the War of 1812, helped shape the country Americans know today. (8) That is mostly because Jackson ordered his men to systematically kill Native American women and children in an effort to exterminate their tribes. (9) The decimation of Native Americans in the Creek War and other “battles” in the southeast paved the way for one of Jackson’s worst presidential maneuvers, the Trail of Tears. (10) By forcing Native Americans off their land, Jackson secured millions of acres of land for the US government and caused the deaths of thousands of Native Americans (not to mention the suffering and indignity of thousands more). (11) When we remember Andrew Jackson, we should remember him as “Indian Killer,” the worst president our country has ever seen.
 

Which of the following is the best meaning of the word maneuvers as it is used in the passage?

A
Strategic actions
B
Terrible tragedies
C
Smart decisions
D
Lies he told
E
Unsuccessful plans
Question 43 Explanation: 
The author is describing the Trail of Tears as a strategic action (A) here to emphasize that this was not an accident. While the author uses the word maneuvers to subtly nod to the audience that Jackson was not a good President, it is too severe to say the word itself means “terrible tragedies” (B). The author is clearly not happy about Jackson’s intentional actions, so (C) and (D) would not fit tonally. While the author is not happy about the Trail of Tears, it was successful in the author’s eyes because Jackson got rid of Native Americans like he wanted to, so (E) is incorrect.
Question 44
(1) Modern Americans tend to look back at the “founding fathers” and early presidents as infallible figures in history. (2) Just like politicians today, though, these men were flawed characters who don’t deserve to be remembered as great leaders. (3) One such man is Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, who served office from 1829 to 1837. (4) For many Americans, Jackson blends in with all the other early presidents, only standing out because he is the face on the $20 bill. (5) Jackson is remembered by others as an influential military leader prior to his presidency in the War of 1812, an important voice in the fight for the right to vote for all white males (not just landowners), and the first official president of the Democratic party. (6) To people who follow history closely, however, Jackson is best known by his nickname: “Indian killer.”

(7) In many ways, his military leadership in the Creek War, considered part of the War of 1812, helped shape the country Americans know today. (8) That is mostly because Jackson ordered his men to systematically kill Native American women and children in an effort to exterminate their tribes. (9) The decimation of Native Americans in the Creek War and other “battles” in the southeast paved the way for one of Jackson’s worst presidential maneuvers, the Trail of Tears. (10) By forcing Native Americans off their land, Jackson secured millions of acres of land for the US government and caused the deaths of thousands of Native Americans (not to mention the suffering and indignity of thousands more). (11) When we remember Andrew Jackson, we should remember him as “Indian Killer,” the worst president our country has ever seen.
 

What assumption best supports the author’s assertion that “The decimation of Native Americans in the Creek War and other ‘battles’ in the southeast paved the way for one of Jackson’s worst presidential maneuvers, The Trail of Tears”?

A
Jackson had been planning the Trail of Tears since the beginning of the Creek War.
B
Killing many Native American women and children in the Creek War and other “battles” made it easier for Jackson to later kick the Native Americans off their land in southeast America.
C
The Trail of Tears gave millions of acres of land to the US government and helped to shape the modern American southeast.
D
The Trail of Tears may have been a huge mistake, but it was the only recorded mistake that Jackson made during his presidency.
E
Andrew Jackson was president during the War of 1812 and used the war as a way to ethnically cleanse Native Americans.
Question 44 Explanation: 
As a military leader, Jackson ordered his men to kill Native American women and children in the Creek War. Later, as president, Jackson initiated the Indian Removal Act, which lead to the trail of tears. In the sentence mentioned in the question, the author asserts that the Creek War made it easier for Jackson to create the Trail of Tears. Only choice (B) addresses why the author would conclude this connection. Choices (A), (D), and (E) are directly refuted by the passage. Choice (E) is true, but the author states it later in the passage and it has no bearing on the logic the author uses here.
Question 45

Read the passage; then answer the two questions that follow.

My family used to take yearly trips to Florida to go on vacation and visit my grandmother. I used to love these trips because the warm weather, pools, and beaches were a big change from what I was used to in Connecticut. I woke up one morning, the day we were set to leave for one of these vacations, to find my parents already out of bed. I walked downstairs to find my parents talking with my aunt. I couldn’t figure out why she was there, but they all looked very upset. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ My grandmother had died. I hated my parents for inviting all of our family over to laugh and tell stories. Why was everyone so happy? It took a long time for me to realize that that was just how my family dealt with death.
 

What does the sentence, “I hated my parents for inviting all of our family over to laugh and tell stories” tell us about the narrator?

A
The narrator was mad that she couldn’t go on vacation
B
The narrator was used to experiencing death
C
The narrator misunderstood the behavior of her family
D
The narrator had a bad relationship with her parents
E
The narrator was upset that her family didn’t like her grandmother
Question 45 Explanation: 
Based on the sentence that follows, the narrator didn’t realize how sad her family really was. This makes Choice (C) correct, but also makes Choice (E) incorrect. Choice (A) may be true, but there is nothing to support it in the passage. The details in the passage pretty directly refute choices (B) and (D).
Question 46
My family used to take yearly trips to Florida to go on vacation and visit my grandmother. I used to love these trips because the warm weather, pools, and beaches were a big change from what I was used to in Connecticut. I woke up one morning, the day we were set to leave for one of these vacations, to find my parents already out of bed. I walked downstairs to find my parents talking with my aunt. I couldn’t figure out why she was there, but they all looked very upset. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ My grandmother had died. I hated my parents for inviting all of our family over to laugh and tell stories. Why was everyone so happy? It took a long time for me to realize that that was just how my family dealt with death.
 

Which sentence, if inserted into the blank line in the passage, would best fit the writer’s pattern of development?

A
I loved my grandmother very much.
B
I couldn’t wait to get on the plane and head to Florida.
C
I can’t stand my aunt because she’s always kissing me on the cheek.
D
We didn’t go on vacation that day.
E
The more I think about it now, the angrier I am at myself.
Question 46 Explanation: 
Answer choice (D) fits best because it helps lead into the next sentence. The narrator is first upset that they’re not going on vacation before ultimately being more upset that her grandmother has died. While answer choices (A), (B), (C), and (D) may be true, they wouldn’t really fit into that part of the passage. There is not much in the passage to support choice (E); it would possibly only fit at the end of the passage.
Question 47

Read the passage; then answer the four questions that follow.

(1) Governments may respond to climate change by adopting a "wait-and-see" approach, by pursuing research programs to improve scientific knowledge and develop technological options, by regulating greenhouse gas emissions, or by engaging in a combination of research and regulation. (2) The United States has invested in research and subsidized the development of carbon-removal and alternative energy technologies. (3) Furthermore, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as pollution reduction, energy independence, and the limitation of soil erosion, also discourage emissions or encourage the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. (4) However, other programs have opposing effects.

Should a government decide to control emissions, it may choose from a broad menu of regulatory approaches. One option is direct controls, which set emissions standards for equipment and processes, require households and businesses to use specific types of equipment, or prohibit them from using others. A government could also adopt more indirect, incentive-based approaches, either singly or in combination—for example, by restricting overall quantities of emissions through a system of permits or by raising the price of emissions through fees or taxes. Incentive-based approaches are generally more cost-effective than direct controls as a means of regulating greenhouse gas emissions.
 

In the context of the passage, what is the meaning of “incentive-based”?

A
Giving people an example of what will happen if they don’t comply
B
Persuading people to change using rewards
C
Requiring everyone to follow the same rules
D
Using research to decide the best course of action
E
Threatening imprisonment if someone does not comply
Question 47 Explanation: 
After using the term “incentive-based,” the author discusses raising taxes on emissions to incentivize, or reward, people who emit less greenhouse gases. This means that choice (B) is correct. Choice (C) is incorrect because the government is not requiring people to follow a rule, they are simply taxing them if they don’t meet a standard. Choices (A), (D), and (E) are not supported by the passage.
Question 48
(1) Governments may respond to climate change by adopting a "wait-and-see" approach, by pursuing research programs to improve scientific knowledge and develop technological options, by regulating greenhouse gas emissions, or by engaging in a combination of research and regulation. (2) The United States has invested in research and subsidized the development of carbon-removal and alternative energy technologies. (3) Furthermore, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as pollution reduction, energy independence, and the limitation of soil erosion, also discourage emissions or encourage the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. (4) However, other programs have opposing effects.

Should a government decide to control emissions, it may choose from a broad menu of regulatory approaches. One option is direct controls, which set emissions standards for equipment and processes, require households and businesses to use specific types of equipment, or prohibit them from using others. A government could also adopt more indirect, incentive-based approaches, either singly or in combination—for example, by restricting overall quantities of emissions through a system of permits or by raising the price of emissions through fees or taxes. Incentive-based approaches are generally more cost-effective than direct controls as a means of regulating greenhouse gas emissions.
 

What foundational assumption is NOT made in the selection?

A
That climate change is actually taking place
B
That climate change is a significant problem
C
That government is the best entity to solve the problem of climate change
D
That greenhouse gases are a primary cause of climate change
E
That energy independence is vital to controlling climate change
Question 48 Explanation: 
While some debate whether or not climate change is actually taking place or that greenhouse gases are its cause, the author begins with the underlying premise that both are true. When he suggests solutions in the second paragraph, each of them involves the government, showing that he assumes that the government is the best entity to provide a solution to the situation. He mentions energy independence, but he does not indicate that it is vital to controlling the situation— only that it may indirectly help.
Question 49
(1) Governments may respond to climate change by adopting a "wait-and-see" approach, by pursuing research programs to improve scientific knowledge and develop technological options, by regulating greenhouse gas emissions, or by engaging in a combination of research and regulation. (2) The United States has invested in research and subsidized the development of carbon-removal and alternative energy technologies. (3) Furthermore, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as pollution reduction, energy independence, and the limitation of soil erosion, also discourage emissions or encourage the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. (4) However, other programs have opposing effects.

Should a government decide to control emissions, it may choose from a broad menu of regulatory approaches. One option is direct controls, which set emissions standards for equipment and processes, require households and businesses to use specific types of equipment, or prohibit them from using others. A government could also adopt more indirect, incentive-based approaches, either singly or in combination—for example, by restricting overall quantities of emissions through a system of permits or by raising the price of emissions through fees or taxes. Incentive-based approaches are generally more cost-effective than direct controls as a means of regulating greenhouse gas emissions.
 

What change would be a correction or improvement to the beginning the following sentence from the selection: “Furthermore, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as…”

A
Comma after programs.
Furthermore, some programs, that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as…
B
Change the two words in tended into one word. “Furthermore, some programs that were intended to achieve other goals, such as…”
C
Change Furthermore to However. “However, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as…”
D
Change some to most, making the statement more forceful. “Furthermore, most programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as…”
E
Change some to all of the, making the statement more forceful. “Furthermore, all of the programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as…”
Question 49 Explanation: 
The two words “in tended” do not make sense. The author most likely intended to use the word “intended,” meaning that the programs were meant to achieve goals differing from the goal of the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. For choice A, no comma is needed after programs since the clause that follows is essential, identifying which programs are being discussed rather than simply describing the programs. For choice C, the change would be incorrect; “furthermore” means “in addition to” which makes sense; but “however” means “in contrast to,” which does not make sense here. Choices D and E also are incorrect since the author by no means is saying that most (or all) of the government programs have inadvertently caused reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.
Question 50
(1) Governments may respond to climate change by adopting a "wait-and-see" approach, by pursuing research programs to improve scientific knowledge and develop technological options, by regulating greenhouse gas emissions, or by engaging in a combination of research and regulation. (2) The United States has invested in research and subsidized the development of carbon-removal and alternative energy technologies. (3) Furthermore, some programs that were in tended to achieve other goals, such as pollution reduction, energy independence, and the limitation of soil erosion, also discourage emissions or encourage the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. (4) However, other programs have opposing effects.

Should a government decide to control emissions, it may choose from a broad menu of regulatory approaches. One option is direct controls, which set emissions standards for equipment and processes, require households and businesses to use specific types of equipment, or prohibit them from using others. A government could also adopt more indirect, incentive-based approaches, either singly or in combination—for example, by restricting overall quantities of emissions through a system of permits or by raising the price of emissions through fees or taxes. Incentive-based approaches are generally more cost-effective than direct controls as a means of regulating greenhouse gas emissions.
 

Which sentence in the first paragraph ought to be omitted since it is unsupported in the selection?

A
(1)
B
(2)
C
(3)
D
(4)
E
None of the above (all are well-supported)
Question 50 Explanation: 
Sentence (4) mentions other programs but does not list them or describe them in any way. Also, clarity is lacking about the meaning of “opposing effects.” Are they programs that oppose each other? Do they oppose the previously mentioned programs? Are we to infer that they oppose the reduction of greenhouse gases? In an article written to persuade, this sentence can be counterproductive to the author’s purpose since it may give opposing views a point of criticism. It would be best to eliminate this sentence.
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