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Thread: American Civic Literacy Quiz

  1. #1
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    American Civic Literacy Quiz

    Here's a neat little quiz to test one's knowledge of some pretty basic facts of our nation's history. From the website,

    [QUOTE]"OUR FADING HERITAGE"
    MAJOR FINDINGS
    Americans Fail the Test of Civic Literacy
    Americans Agree: Colleges Should Teach America's Heritage
    College Adds Little to Civic Knowledge
    Television—Including TV News—Dumbs America Down
    What College Graduates Don't Know about America[/QUOTE]


    Take the test:
    [url]http://www.americancivicliteracy.org/resources/quiz.aspx[/url]

    Some of the questions are a little tough. How'd you do?

  2. #2
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    This wasn't as easy as I thought it was going to be, even for a a history major.

    [QUOTE]You answered 28 out of 33 correctly — 84.85 %

    Answers to Your Missed Questions:

    Question #11 - A. their arguments helped lead to the adoption of the Bill of Rights
    Question #13 - E. certain permanent moral and political truths are accessible to human reason
    Question #25 - B. individual citizens create, exchange, and control goods and resources
    Question #27 - A. the price system utilizes more local knowledge of means and ends
    Question #33 - D. tax per person equals government spending per person[/QUOTE]

  3. #3
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    I got one wrong -- the first one: I put life, liberty & property instead of pursuit of happiness. I reverted to John Locke for some reason.

  4. #4
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    With all due respect, it's a cool test, but I don't trust the vast majority of our posters in here to post their results honestly. Everyone is going to claim they did very well on it.

  5. #5
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879023]With all due respect, it's a cool test, but I don't trust the vast majority of our posters in here to post their results honestly. Everyone is going to claim they did very well on it.[/QUOTE]

    I'll try not to take that as a insult to me specifically.:rolleyes: Frankly, I think getting one wrong for a former history teacher, political operative, law student with a degree in economic policy is disappointing.

  6. #6
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    [QUOTE=fukushimajin;2879035]I'll try not to take that as a insult to me specifically.:rolleyes: Frankly, I think getting one wrong for a former history teacher, political operative, law student with a degree in economic policy is disappointing.[/QUOTE]

    Take it however you like. Won't bother me one way or the other.

    [QUOTE=My Own Results]You answered 27 out of 33 correctly — 81.82 %

    Average score for this quiz during November: 78.1%
    Average score: 78.1%

    You can take the quiz as often as you like, however, your score will only count once toward the monthly average.

    If you have any comments or questions about the quiz, please email [email]americancivicliteracy@isi.org[/email].

    You can consult the following table to see how citizens and elected officials scored on each question.

    Where to from here?

    [B][U]Answers to Your Missed Questions[/U][/B]:

    4) What was the main issue in the debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas in 1858?
    A. Is slavery morally wrong?
    B. Would slavery be allowed to expand to new territories?
    [B]C. Do Southern states have the constitutional right to leave the union? [/B]
    D. Are free African Americans citizens of the United States?

    [B][U]Question #4 - B. Would slavery be allowed to expand to new territories?[/U][/B]

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    7) What was the source of the following phrase: “Government of the people, for the people, by the people”?
    A. the speech “I Have a Dream”
    B. Declaration of Independence
    [B]C. U.S. Constitution[/B]
    D. Gettysburg Address

    [B][U]Question #7 - D. Gettysburg Address[/U][/B]

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    8) In 1935 and 1936 the Supreme Court declared that important parts of the New Deal were unconstitutional. President Roosevelt responded by threatening to:
    [B]A. impeach several Supreme Court justices[/B]
    B. eliminate the Supreme Court
    C. appoint additional Supreme Court justices who shared his views
    D. override the Supreme Court’s decisions by gaining three-quarter majorities in both houses of Congress
    [B][U]
    Question #8 - C. appoint additional Supreme Court justices who shared his views[/U][/B]

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    14) The Puritans:
    A. opposed all wars on moral grounds
    B. stressed the sinfulness of all humanity
    C. believed in complete religious freedom
    D. colonized Utah under the leadership of Brigham Young
    [B]E. were Catholic missionaries escaping religious persecution[/B]

    [B][U]Question #14 - B. stressed the sinfulness of all humanity[/U][/B]

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    27) Free markets typically secure more economic prosperity than government’s centralized planning because:
    A. the price system utilizes more local knowledge of means and ends
    B. markets rely upon coercion, whereas government relies upon voluntary compliance with the law
    [B]C. more tax revenue can be generated from free enterprise [/B]
    D. property rights and contracts are best enforced by the market system
    E. government planners are too cautious in spending taxpayers’ money

    [B][U]Question #27 - A. the price system utilizes more local knowledge of means and ends[/U][/B]

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    29) A flood-control levee (or National Defense) is considered a public good because:
    A. citizens value it as much as bread and medicine
    B. a resident can benefit from it without directly paying for it
    C. government construction contracts increase employment
    D. insurance companies cannot afford to replace all houses after a flood
    [B]E. government pays for its construction, not citizens[/B]

    [B][U]Question #29 - B. a resident can benefit from it without directly paying for it[/U][/B][/QUOTE]
    Last edited by Warfish; 11-24-2008 at 01:43 PM.

  7. #7
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879057]Take it however you like. Won't bother me one way or the other.[/QUOTE]

    I simply ask: why suggest that people are liars? People who do poorly will either not post or will eventually found out to be frauds. We're mostly gentlemen here and protected by anonymity.

  8. #8
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    [QUOTE=fukushimajin;2879067]I simply ask: why suggest that people are liars? People who do poorly will either not post or will eventually found out to be frauds. We're mostly gentlemen here and protected by anonymity.[/QUOTE]

    I'm not suggesting anything.

    I'm TELLING you flat out. People ARE liars, especially on the Internet.

    I assume a former history teacher, political operative and law student with a degree in economic policy doesn't need this explained further, correct?

  9. #9
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879075]I'm not suggesting anything.

    I'm TELLING you flat out. People ARE liars, especially on the Internet.

    I assume a former history teacher, political operative and law student with a degree in economic policy doesn't need this explained further, correct?[/QUOTE]

    Since when does everyone on the internet post here? We're a pretty select group and I feel I know our crowd fairly well. I would be hard pressed to come up with more than four of five people that would deliberately post a bold-face lie.

    Anyway, we've done this act before -- you're just more pessimistic (you would say realistic) about your fellow man.

    Peace always. 8-3! F-the Pats.

  10. #10
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    That’s funny, I found this on another site this morning and got a 30 out of 33. Take it for what it’s worth but I saw this article with it.

    [URL="http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20081120/od_afp/ushistoryeducationoffbeat"]http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20081120/od_afp/ushistoryeducationoffbeat[/URL]

    [QUOTE][B]US officials flunk test of American history, economics, civics[/B]

    WASHINGTON (AFP) – US elected officials scored abysmally on a test measuring their civic knowledge, with an average grade of just 44 percent, the group that organized the exam said Thursday.

    Ordinary citizens did not fare much better, scoring just 49 percent correct on the 33 exam questions compiled by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI).
    "It is disturbing enough that the general public failed ISI's civic literacy test, but when you consider the even more dismal scores of elected officials, you have to be concerned," said Josiah Bunting, chairman of the National Civic Literacy Board at ISI.

    "How can political leaders make informed decisions if they don't understand the American experience?" he added.

    The exam questions covered American history, the workings of the US government and economics.

    Among the questions asked of some 2,500 people who were randomly selected to take the test, including "self-identified elected officials," was one which asked respondents to "name two countries that were our enemies during World War II."

    Sixty-nine percent of respondents correctly identified Germany and Japan. Among the incorrect answers were Britain, China, Russia, Canada, Mexico and Spain.

    Forty percent of respondents, meanwhile, incorrectly believed that the US president has the power to declare war, while 54 percent correctly answered that that power rests with Congress.

    Asked about the electoral college, 20 percent of elected officials incorrectly said it was established to "supervise the first televised presidential debates."
    In fact, the system of choosing the US president via an indirect electoral college vote dates back some 220 years, to the US Constitution.

    The question that received the fewest correct responses, just 16 percent, tested respondents' basic understanding of economic principles, asking why "free markets typically secure more economic prosperity than government's centralized planning?"

    Activities that dull Americans' civic knowledge include talking on the phone and watching movies or television -- even news shows and documentaries, ISI said.

    Meanwhile, civic knowledge is enhanced by discussing public affairs, taking part in civic activities and reading about current events and history, the group said.
    [/QUOTE]

  11. #11
    Waterboy
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    [QUOTE=fukushimajin;2879035] Frankly, I think getting one wrong for a former history teacher, political operative, law student with a degree in economic policy is disappointing.[/QUOTE]

    Well, that's all very impressive.

    I did pretty badly last night. I mean, embarrassingly bad. But I was also hungover, so there's that. I don't want to take the test again because I know all of the answers now.

  12. #12
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    [QUOTE=pauliec;2879302]Well, that's all very impressive.

    I did pretty badly last night. I mean, embarrassingly bad. But I was also hungover, so there's that. I don't want to take the test again because I know all of the answers now.[/QUOTE]

    It was actually pretty tough, sure there where some gimmes, but some where pretty tough, especially when you haven't covered this stuff in years, so I wouldn't sweat it.

    I'm pretty sure I'm the only poster on here, who will eventually be taking this test.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=Tyler Durden;2879668]It was actually pretty tough, sure there where some gimmes, but some where pretty tough, especially when you haven't covered this stuff in years, so I wouldn't sweat it.

    I'm pretty sure I'm the only poster on here, who will eventually be taking this test.[/QUOTE]

    Good point. See that? I'm helping you become a citizen!

  14. #14
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    Here are my scores - I'm Average

    You answered 26 out of 33 correctly — 78.79 %

    Average score for this quiz during November: 78.1%
    Average score: 78.1%

    You can take the quiz as often as you like, however, your score will only count once toward the monthly average.

    If you have any comments or questions about the quiz, please email [email]americancivicliteracy@isi.org[/email].

    You can consult the following table to see how citizens and elected officials scored on each question.

    Where to from here?

    Answers to Your Missed Questions:


    Question #14 - B. stressed the sinfulness of all humanity
    Question #15 - E. Thomas Jefferson’s letters
    Question #25 - B. individual citizens create, exchange, and control goods and resources
    Question #27 - A. the price system utilizes more local knowledge of means and ends
    Question #30 - C. decreasing taxes and increasing spending
    Question #31 - A. an increase in a nation’s productivity
    Question #33 - D. tax per person equals government spending per person

  15. #15
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879075]I'm not suggesting anything.

    I'm TELLING you flat out. People ARE liars, especially on the Internet.

    I assume a former history teacher, political operative and law student with a degree in economic policy doesn't need this explained further, correct?[/QUOTE]

    You're telling me that you don't believe me when I tell you I had a threesome with Jessica Biel and Jessica Alba?

    Sorry man, your loss. It was fun. I wish you could just be happy for me.

  16. #16
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    28/33...got )#27,33 wrong like most i would suspect.

  17. #17
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    [QUOTE=Tyler Durden;2879668]It was actually pretty tough, sure there where some gimmes, but some where pretty tough, especially when you haven't covered this stuff in years, so I wouldn't sweat it.

    I'm pretty sure I'm the only poster on here, who will eventually be taking this test.[/QUOTE]

    Don't assume. Not all of us were born here, you know.

  18. #18
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879778]Don't assume. Not all of us were born here, you know.[/QUOTE]
    Until someone says otherwise... I'll assume I'm the only one, just to annoy you. :)

  19. #19
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    You answered 29 out of 33 correctly — 87.88 %

    7) [B]What was the source of the following phrase: “Government of the people, for the people, by the people”?[/B]
    My Answer: [COLOR="Red"]B. Declaration of Independence[/COLOR]
    Correct Answer: [COLOR="DarkGreen"]D. Gettysburg Address[/COLOR]

    15) [B]The phrase that in America there should be a “wall of separation” between church and state appears in:[/B]
    My Answer: [COLOR="Red"]A. George Washington’s Farewell Address[/COLOR]
    Correct Answer: [COLOR="DarkGreen"]E. Thomas Jefferson’s letters[/COLOR]

    30) [B]Which of the following fiscal policy combinations would a government most likely follow to stimulate economic activity when the economy is in a severe recession?[/B]
    My Answer: [COLOR="red"]B. increasing taxes and decreasing spending[/COLOR]
    Correct Answer: [COLOR="DarkGreen"]C. decreasing taxes and increasing spending[/COLOR]

    32) [B]Which of the following is a policy tool of the Federal Reserve?[/B]
    My Answer: D. [COLOR="Red"]increasing or decreasing government spending[/COLOR]
    Correct Answer: [COLOR="DarkGreen"]C. buying or selling government securities[/COLOR]


    Not too bad. My economic knowledge failed a bit, though

  20. #20
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    [QUOTE=Warfish;2879023]With all due respect, it's a cool test, but I don't trust the vast majority of our posters in here to post their results honestly. Everyone is going to claim they did very well on it.[/QUOTE]

    I imagine that most people in this forum would do well on it. After all, if you are on a politics section of a forum, then I would imagine, in general, you have more knowledge of American civics than an average person who doesn't take an interest in politics

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