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Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer PTE Reading
Read the text and answer the multiple-choice question by selecting the correct response. Only one response is correct.
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #1
Recently some scientists have concluded that meteorites found on Earth and long believed to have a Martian origin might actually have been blasted free of Mars’s gravity by the impact on Mars of other meteorites. This conclusion has led to another question: whether meteorite impacts on Earth have similarly driven rocks from this planet to Mars.According to astronomer S. A. Phinney, kicking a rock hard enough to free it from Earth’s gravity would require a meteorite capable of making a crater more than 60 miles across. Moreover, even if Earth rocks were freed by meteorite impact, Mars’s orbit is much larger than Earth’s, so Phinney estimates that the probability of these rocks hitting Mars is about one-tenth as great as that of Mars’s rocks hitting Earth. To demonstrate this estimate, Phinney used a computer to calculate where 1,000 hypothetical particles would go if ejected from Earth in random directions. He found that 17 of the 1,000 particles would hit Mars.
The passage is primarily concerned with
1) presenting an argument to support a particular hypothesis
2) suggesting an answer to a theoretical question
3) questioning the assumptions of a research project
4) criticizing experimental results
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #2
Hank Morgan, the hero of Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, is a nineteenth-century master mechanic who mysteriously awakening in sixth-century Britain, launches what he hopes will be a peaceful revolution to transform Arthurian Britain into an industrialized modern democracy. The novel, written as a spoof of Thomas Malory’s Morte d’ Arthur, a popular collection of fifteenth-century legends about sixth-century Britain, has been made into three upbeat movies and two musical comedies. None of these translations to screen and stage, however, dramatize the anarchy at the conclusion of A Connecticut Yankee, which ends with the violent overthrow of Morgan’s three-year-old progressive order and his return to the nineteenth century, where he apparently commits suicide after being labeled a lunatic for his incoherent babblings about drawbridges and battlements. The American public, although enjoying Twain’s humor, evidently rejected his cynicism about technological advancement and change through peaceful revolution as antithetical to the United States doctrine of progress.
According to the passage, which of the following is a true statement about the reception of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by the American public?
1) The public had too strong a belief in the doctrine of progress to accept the cynicism demonstrated at the conclusion of Twain’s novel.
2) Twain’s novel received little public recognition until the work was adapted for motion pictures and plays.
3) Although the public enjoyed Twain’s humor, his use of both sixth-century and nineteenth-century characters confused many people.
4) The public has continued to enjoy Twain’s story, but the last part of the novel seems too violent to American minds.
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #3
The success of fluoride in combating dental decay is well established and, without a doubt, socially beneficial. However, fluoride’s toxic properties have been known for a century. In humans excessive intake (for adults, over 4 milligrams per day) over many years can lead to skeletal fluorosis, a well-defined skeletal disorder, and in some plant species, fluoride is more toxic than ozone, sulfur dioxide, or pesticides.Some important questions remain. For example, the precise lower limit at which the fluoride content of bone becomes toxic is still undetermined. And while fluoride intake from water and air can be evaluated relatively easily, it is much harder to estimate how much a given population ingests from foodstuffs because of the wide variations in individual eating habits and in fluoride concentrations in foodstuffs. These difficulties suggest that we should be wary of indiscriminately using fluoride, even in the form of fluoride-containing dental products.
In the passage, the author is primarily concerned with
1) analyzing and categorizing
2) comparing and contrasting
3) synthesizing and predicting
4) describing and cautioning
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #4
The outpouring of contemporary American Indian literature in the last two decades, often called the Native American Renaissance, represents for many the first opportunity to experience Native American poetry. The appreciation of traditional oral American Indian literature has been limited, hampered by poor translations and by the difficulty, even in the rare culturally sensitive and aesthetically satisfying translation, of completely conveying the original’s verse structure, tone, and syntax. By writing in English and experimenting with European literary forms, contemporary American Indian writers have broadened their potential audience, while clearly retaining many essential characteristics of their ancestral oral traditions. For example, Pulitzer-prizewinning author N. Scott Momaday’s poetry often treats art and mortality in a manner that recalls British romantic poetry, while his poetic response to the power of natural forces recalls Cherokee oral literature. In the same way, his novels, an art form European in origin, display an eloquence that echoes the oratorical grandeur of the great nineteenth-century American Indian chiefs.
Which of the following is most likely one of the reasons that the author mentions the work of N. Scott Momaday?
1) To illustrate how the author believes that members of the Native American Renaissance have broadened their potential audience
2) To emphasize the similarities between Momaday’s writings and their European literary models
3) To demonstrate the contemporary appeal of traditional Native American oral literature
4) To suggest that contemporary American Indian writers have sacrificed traditional values for popular literary success
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #5
Typically the queen honeybee is mother to all the bees in a hive; after mating with several male drones from other colonies, she lays fertilized eggs that develop into all-female worker bees and lays unfertilized eggs that become all-male drones. When a queen dies, workers often lay unfertilized eggs that hatch into drones. Yet workers rarely reproduce while a queen reigns.According to natural selection theory, a worker would enhance her fitness—or ability to propagate her genes—by hatching her own eggs in addition to or in place of the queen’s. But a typical worker’s fitness would be diminished if other workers’ sons, who have less genetic material in common with the worker, supplanted the queen’s sons (the worker’s brothers). Researchers, testing the hypothesis that workers usually somehow block each other’s attempts to reproduce, put unfertilized eggs laid by workers and by the queen into a hive. Other workers quickly devoured the workers’ eggs while leaving the queen’s eggs alone.
The inner workings in a honeybee hive that regulate reproduction, as they are described in the passage, are most similar to which of the following types of human societies?
1) A totalitarian society in which citizens’ “policing” of each other’s actions helps to maintain the status quo.
2) A pacifist state in which the individuals are strongly opposed to the use of violence or aggression to settle disputes.
3) A democratic society in which the voice of the majority rules.
4) A parliamentary society in which a few members, organized as a cabinet wield executive power.
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #6
Influenced by the view of some twentieth-century feminists that women’s position within the family is one of the central factors determining women’s social position, some historians have underestimated the significance of the woman suffrage movement. These historians contend that nineteenth-century suffragist was less radical and, hence, less important than, for example, the moral reform movement or domestic feminism—two nineteenth-century movements in which women struggled for more power and autonomy within the family. True, by emphasizing these struggles, such historians have broadened the conventional view of nineteenth-century feminism, but they do a historical disservice to suffragism. Nineteenth-century feminists and anti-feminist alike perceived the suffragists’ demand for enfranchisement as the most radical element in women’s protest, in part because suffragists were demanding power that was not based on the institution of the family, women’s traditional sphere. When evaluating nineteenth-century feminism as a social force, contemporary historians should consider the perceptions of actual participants in the historical events.
The author asserts that the historians discussed in the passage have
1) influenced feminist theorists who concentrate on the family
2) honored the perceptions of the women who participated in the women suffrage movement
3) treated feminism as a social force rather than as an intellectual tradition
4) paid little attention to feminist movements
5) expanded the conventional view of nineteenth-century feminism
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #7
One explanation for the tendency of animals to be more vigilant in smaller groups than in larger ones assumes that the vigilant behavior—looking up, for example—is aimed at predators. If individuals on the edge of a group are more vigilant because they are at greater risk of being captured, then individuals on average would have to be more vigilant in smaller groups, because the animals on the periphery of a group form a greater proportion of the whole group as the size of the group diminishes. However, a different explanation is necessary in cases where the vigilant behavior is not directed at predators. J. Krebs has discovered that great blue herons look up more often when in smaller flocks than when in larger ones, solely as a consequence of poor feeding conditions. Krebs hypothesizes that the herons in smaller flocks are watching for herons that they might follow to better feeding pools, which usually attract larger numbers of the birds.
It can be inferred from the passage that in species in which vigilant behavior is directed at predators, the tendency of the animals to be more vigilant in smaller groups than in larger ones would most likely be minimized if which of the following were true?
1) The vigilance of animals on the periphery of a group always exceeded that of animals located in its interior, even when predators were not in the area.
2) The risk of capture for individuals in a group was the same, whether they were located in the interior of the group or on its periphery.
3) Animals on the periphery of a group tended to be less capable of defending themselves from attack by predators than animals located in the interior of the group.
4) Animals on the periphery of a group tended to bear marks that were more distinctive to predators than animals located in the interior of the group.
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #8
An experiment conducted aboard Space Lab in 1983 was the first attempt to grow protein crystals in the low-gravity environment of space. That experiment is still cited as evidence that growing crystals in microgravity can increase crystal size: the authors reported that they grew lysozyme protein crystals 1,000 times larger than crystals grown in the same device on Earth. Unfortunately, the authors did not point out that their crystals were no larger than the average crystal grown using other, more standard techniques in an Earth laboratory. No research has yet produced results that could justify the enormous costs of producing crystals on a large scale in space. To get an unbiased view of the usefulness of microgravity crystal growth, crystals grown in space must be compared with the best crystals that have been grown with standard techniques on Earth. Given the great expense of conducting such experiments with proper controls, and the limited promise of experiments performed thus far, it is questionable whether further experiments in this area should even be conducted.
According to the passage, which of the following is true about the Space Lab experiment conducted in 1983?
1) It was the first experiment to take place in the microgravity environment of space.
2) It was the first experiment in which researchers in space were able to grow lysozyme protein crystals greater in size than those grown on Earth.
3) Its results have been superseded by subsequent research in the field of microgravity protein crystal growth.
4) Its results are still considered by some to be evidence for the advantages of microgravity protein crystal growth.
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #9
Although the hormone adrenaline is known to regulate memory storage, it does not pass from the blood into brain cells. We are faced with an apparent paradox: how can a hormone that does not act directly on the brain have such a large effect on brain function? Recently, we tested the possibility that one of the hormone’s actions outside the brain might be responsible. Since one consequence of adrenaline release in an animal is an increase in blood glucose levels, we examined the effects of glucose on memory in rats. We found that glucose injected immediately after training enhances memory tested the next day. Additional evidence was provided by negative findings: drugs called adrenergic antagonists, which block peripheral adrenaline receptors, disrupted adrenaline’s ability to regulate memory but did not affect memory enhancements produced by glucose that was not stimulated by adrenaline. These results are as they should be if adrenaline affects memory modulation by increasing blood glucose levels.
The primary purpose of the passage is to
1) reconcile two opposing theories
2) compare two different explanations for a phenomenon
3) describe experimental research that appears to support an unpopular theory
4) present evidence that may help to resolve an apparent contradiction
Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Question #10
Geologists Harris and Gass hypothesized that the Red Sea rift developed along the line of a suture (a splice in the Earth’s crust) formed during the late Proterozoic era, and that significant observable differences in the composition of the upper layers of rocks deposited on either side of the suture give clues to the different natures of the underlying igneous rocks. Other geologists argued that neither the upper rock layer nor the underlying igneous rocks on the one side of the rift differ fundamentally from the corresponding layers on the other side. These geologists believe, therefore, that there is inadequate evidence to conclude that a suture underlies the rift. In response, Harris and Gass asserted that the upper rock layers on the two sides of the rift had not been shown to be of similar age, structure, or geochemical content. Furthermore, they cited new evidence that the underlying igneous rocks on either side of the rift contain significantly different kinds of rare metals.
Part of the Harris and Gass hypothesis about the Red Sea rift would be weakened if it could be demonstrated that the composition of upper rock layers
1) cannot cause a suture to develop
2) has no effect on where a suture will occur
3) cannot provide information about the nature of underlying rocks
4) is similar on the two sides of a rift unless a suture divides the two sides