Reading Vocabulary Questions
The oxidation of exhaust gases is one of the primary sources of the world’s pollution. The brown haze that is poised over some of the world’s largest cities is properly called photochemical smog; it results from Chemical reactions that take place in the air, using the energy of sunlight. The production of smog begins when gases are created in the cylinders of vehicle engines. It is there that oxygen and nitrogen gas combine as the fuel burns to form nitric oxide (NO), a colorless gas. The nitric oxide is forced out into the air through the vehicle tailpipe along with other gases.
When the gas reaches the air, it comes into contact with available oxygen from the atmosphere and combines with the oxygen to produce nitrogen dioxide (N02), which is a gas with a brownish hue. This nitrogen dioxide plays a role in the formation of acid rain in wetter or more humid climates and tends to decompose back into nitric oxide as it releases an oxygen atom from each molecule; the released oxygen atoms quickly combine with oxygen (02) molecules to form ozone (03). The brownish colored nitrogen dioxide is partially responsible for the brown color in smoggy air; the ozone is the toxic substance that causes irritation to eyes.
1. The word “poised” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
2. The phrase “take place” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
A. position themselves
C. are seated
3. The word “forced” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
4. The word ‘hue’ in paragraph 2 could best be replaced by
5. The phrase “plays a role in” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to
A. makes fun of
B. serves a function in
C. acts the part of
D. moves about in
Autism is a developmental disorder that is characterized by severe behavioral abnormalities across all primary areas of functioning. Its onset is often early; it generally makes itself known by the age of two and one-half. It is not a single disease entity but is instead a syndrome defined by patterns and characteristics of behavior; it, therefore, most likely has multiple etiologies rather than a single causative factor. Autism is not fully understood and thus is controversial with respect to diagnosis, etiology, and treatment strategies.
6. The word “primary” in the passage could best be replaced by
7. The word “onset” in the passage is closest in meaning to
8. The word “syndrome” in the passage is closest in meaning to
A. concurrent set of symptoms
B. feeling of euphoria
C. mental breakdown
D. repetitive task
9. The word “etiologies” in the passage is closest in meaning to
10. The phrase “with respect to” in the passage could best be replaced by
A. with dignity toward
B. in regard to
C. irrespective of
D. out of politeness for
Parasitic plants are plants that survive by using food produced by host plants rather than by producing their own food from the Sun’s energy. Because they do not need sunlight to survive, parasitic plants are generally found in umbrageous areas rather than in areas exposed to direct sunlight. Parasitic plants attach themselves to host plants, often to the stems or roots, by means of haustoria, which the parasite uses to make its way into the food channels of the host plant and absorb the nutrients that it needs to survive from the host plant.
The world’s heaviest flower, a species of rafflesia, is a parasite that flourishes among, and lives off of, the roots of jungle vines. Each of these ponderous blooms can weigh up to 15 pounds (7 kg) and can measure up to 3 feet (1m) across.
11. The word “umbrageous” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
B. well lit
12. “Haustoria” in paragraph 1 are most likely
A. offshoots from the parasite
B. seeds of the host plant
C. fruits from the host plant
D. food from the parasite
13. The phrase “make its way into” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
14. The word “ponderous” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to
15. The word “across” in paragraph 2 could best be replaced by
A. in diameter
B. on the other side
C. at a distance
D. inside and out
Edna Ferber (1887-1968) was a popular American novelist in the first half of the twentieth century. She embarked on her career by working as a newspaper reporter in Wisconsin and soon began writing novels. Her first novel, Dawn O’Hara, the Girl Who Laughed, was published in 1911, when she was only twenty-four years old.
Her big break came with the novel So Big (1924), which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Literature. The main conflict in the novel is between a mother who places a high value on hard work and honor and a son who repudiates his mother’s values, instead preferring the easier path to fortune and celebrity. Like many of Ferber’s novels, this novel features a tenacious female protagonist with strong character who struggles to deal with ethical dilemmas about the importance of status and money. Probably the best known of Ferber’s novels was Show Boat (1926), which tells the story of a Southern woman married to a charismatic but irresponsible man who leaves her with a daughter she must take great pains to support. In 1927, the novel was made into a musical that has endured to the present.
Other well-known novels by Ferber include Cimarron (1930) and Giant (1952), both of which were made into movies. These were epic novels about the settlement and growth of the West, centering on strong female lead characters who marry men lacking the same strength of character.
16. The phrase “embarked on” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to
A. took a trip to
B. started out on
C. improved upon
D. had an opinion about
17. The word “break” in paragraph 2 could best be replaced by
18. The word “places” in paragraph 2 could best be replaced by
19. The word “repudiates” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to
A. refuses to accept
B. lives up to
C. tries to understand
D. makes the best of
20. The word “protagonist” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to
A. arch enemy
B. voracious reader
C. skilled worker
D. lead character
21. The phrase “take great pains” in paragraph 3 is closest in meaning to
A. work diligently
B. recognize hurtfully
C. accept unequivocally
D. hurt agonizingly
22. The word “endured” in paragraph 3 is closest in meaning to
23. The word “epic” in paragraph 4 could best be replaced by
A. lengthy narrative
B. detailed non-fictional
C. emotionally romantic
D. rousing Western
24. The phrase “centering on” in paragraph 4 could best be replaced by
A. circling around
B. pointing to
C. focusing on
D. arranging for
Many types of animals combine the advantages of family association with those conferred by membership in still larger groups. Bees congregate in hives; some fish move in schools; ants gather in mounds; wolves live in packs; deer associate in herds. The main advantage of membership in a mass community is the safety that it provides. A large group of prey may be easier for a predator to find at any given point than is a small one, and a predator may think twice before taking on such a group; if a predator does decide to challenge a large group, it may merely encounter a confusing mass of moving bodies and possibly may not succeed in its primary goal.
1. The word “those” in the passage refers to
2. The word “it” in line 4 refers to
3. The word “one” in the passage refers to
4. The word “it” in line 7 refers to
Most chromium compounds have brightly colored hues, and as a result they are widely used as coloring agents, or pigments, in paints. In addition to having a pleasing color, a paint must protect the surface to which it is applied and be easy to apply in a thin, uniform coat.
All paints consist of two parts. One is a powder of solid particles that is the source of the color and the opaqueness and is known as the pigment. The other, called the binder, is the liquid into which the pigment is blended. The binder used in some paints is made from oily solvents such as those derived from Petroleum resources. When applied, these solvents evaporate, leaving deposits of pigment on the surface.
5. The word “they” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. chromium compounds
B. brightly colored hues
C. coloring agents
6. The word “it” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. a pleasing color
B. a paint
C. the surface
D. a thin, uniform coat
7. The word “that” in paragraph 2 refers to
B. solid particles
C. the source
D. the color
8. The word “which” in paragraph 2 refers to
9. The word “those” in paragraph 2 refers to
A. some paints
B. oily solvents
C. Petroleum resources
D. deposits of pigment
A huge loss of life resulted from the introduction of Old World diseases into the Americas in the early sixteenth century. The inhabitants of the Americas were separated from Asia, Africa, and Europe by rising oceans following the Ice Ages, and, as a result, they were isolated by means of this watery barrier from numerous virulent epidemic diseases that had developed across the ocean, such as measles, smallpox, pneumonia, and malaria. Pre-Columbian Americans had a relatively disease-free environment but also lacked the antibodies needed to protect them from bacteria and viruses brought to America by European explorers and colonists. A devastating outbreak of disease that strikes for the first time against a completely unprotected population is known as a Virgin soil epidemic. Virgin soil epidemics contributed to an unbelievable decline in the population of native inhabitants of the Americas, one that has been estimated at as much as an 80 percent decrease of the native population in the centuries following the arrival of Europeans in the Americas.
10. The word “they” in the passage refers to
A. the inhabitants
B. epidemic diseases
C. rising oceans
D. the Ice Ages
11. The word “that” in the passage refers to
A. a disease-free environment
B. this watery barrier
C. virulent epidemic diseases
D. the ocean
12. The word “them” in the passage refers to
A. pre-Columbian Americans
B. the antibodies
C. bacteria and viruses
D. European explorers and colonists
13. The word “one” in the passage refers to
A. a Virgin soil epidemic
B. an unbelievable decline
C. the population of native inhabitants
D. the arrival of Europeans
Horatio Alger, Jr. (1832-1899) was the author of more than 100 books for boys in the second half of the nineteenth century that focused on the theme of success coming to those who work hard to achieve it. The son of a minister, Alger came from a prominent Massachusetts family. He graduated with honors from Harvard in 1852 and graduated from the Cambridge Divinity School eight years later. He served as a minister for a short time before moving to New York City in 1866 to devote his time to writing inspirational books for boys.
In many of his books, he wrote about the poor and homeless children of the slums of New York City, seeing them as unfortunate pawns of society who, if only given the opportunity, could improve their lot. A general plotline that he followed often was of a poor boy who managed to achieve a respectable and successful life by working hard and taking advantage of opportunities presented. Though his writing style was characterized by simplicity and repetition, it was well received by his target audience; his books were enormously popular, selling millions of copies well into the first few decades of the twentieth century.
14. The word “that” in paragraph 1 refers to
15. The word “it” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. the second half
B. the nineteenth century
16. The word “them” in paragraph 2 refers to
17. The word “who” in paragraph 2 refers
18. The word “it” in paragraph 2 refers to
George Lucas’s Star Wars changed the direction of American film with some of the most ingenious special eftects contrived for movies of its time. Twenty-two months were spent on the special eftects, including the six months needed to design the equipment and the more than 1,000 story boards for the effects sequences.
A special computerized camera, called a Dykstraflex, was designed to give the illusion of real screen movement. This system, controlled by the camera operator, enabled him or her to pan, tilt, and track around the model, always keeping it in focus. The breakthrough was the camera’s ability to repeat the identical movements from shot to shot; thus the eftects sequences could be built like a music track, layer upon layer. The illusion was complete: 10 none of the spaceships in Star Wars ever moved – only the camera did.
The star-field backdrop in space was made by punching holes in black plexiglass. More than 75 models were constructed, with astonishing detail work. On the rebel blockade runner artists built a tiny cockpit, all done to scale. The miniaturized laser canons were fully motorized to swivel and tilt by remote control. The light sabers were four-sided blades coated with 15 reflective aluminum, attached to a small motor. When rotated, they created a flashing light later enhanced by animation.
43. The word “some” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. American film
D. special effects
44. In paragraph 1, the word “contrived” could be best replaced with which of the following?
45. In paragraph 2, “this system” refers to
A. the creation of an illusion
B. screen movement
C. panning and tilting around a model
D. a special computerized camera
46. The word “it” in paragraph 2 refers to the
47. The word “they” in paragraph 3 refers to the
A. miniaturized laser cannons
C. four-sided blades
D. seventy-five models
There are three main types of sedimentary rocks, which are classified according to the origin and size of their particles. One type, called evaporftes, is formed from chemically derived sediments. For example, an inland sea might evaporate and leave a deposit of rock salt.
The second type is derived entirely from organic material. Since it is a fossil in its own right, it is called fossitiferous rock. Fossiliferous rocks, such as limestones and chalks, are formed from calcium-based skeletons of tiny organisms deposited on the seabed. Some limestones are fossilized corals; others, known as tufa, are derived from mosses and other plants that grow beside hot springs. Carbon-based rocks, such as coal and jet, are the remains of plant material laid down in huge quantities. The remains of sponges and microscopic diatoms constitute rocks such as chert and tlint.
The third type of sedimentary rock is clastic. It is formed from eroded particles of other rocks and is graded according to the size of these particles. Fine shales are perhaps the most signiticant sedimentary rocks covering the earth.
The sedimentary rocks most likely to contain fossils are those that were laid down in places where there was abundant life and where deposition was rapid enough to bury the organisms before their bodies were broken up and decomposed. The sandy bottoms of shallow, calm seas, river deltas, lagoons, and deserts are the most likely places to give rise to fossils. The finer the sediment, the finer the detail recorded in them. Details such as the fur of those reptilian flyers, the pterosaurs, are only visible because they were fossilized in exceptionally fine limestone.
48. In paragraph 1 the word “their” refers to
B. sedimentary rocks
C. origin and size
49. As used in this passage, the word “material” refers to
50. The word “others” in in paragraph 2 refers to
A. fossilized corals
C. tiny organisms
51. To which of the following does the word “those” in paragraph 4 refer?
A. Sedimentary rocks
D. Fine shales
52. The word “them” in paragraph 4 refers to
On a drop shot, a tennis player “drops” the ball just over the net, hoping that his or her opponent won’t get to it at all or will just barely reach it, thus making a weak return. The drop shot works well in a number of situations. It can be used to tire an opponent, to bring a baseline player to the net, to win points outright when an opponent is slow in moving forward or is out of position, or to substitute for the approach shot.
A perfect situation for a drop shot occurs when a player’s opponent is far out of court and hits well to the inside of the service line. A good drop shot is a sure winner, but a bad one is equally certain disaster. The opponent who gets to the ball early has been handed the net position, which is a distinct advantage for the net rusher who will usually win the point in short order.
There are two types of drop shots, each requiring a distinct stroke. The first is used to drop slow balls descending from the peak of the bounce. The second is used on rising balls. These shots require excellent timing and a simple stroke, such as the swing on waist-high volleys.
53. The word “it” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. his or her opponent
B. the ball
C. the net
D. a weak return
54. In paragraph 2, the word “one” refers to
A. A disaster
B. a sure winner
C. the service line
D. a drop shot
55. The word “who” iln paragraph 2 refers to
A. the net rusher
B. the net position
C. the advantage
D. the opponent
56. In paragraph 2, the word “which” refers to
A. the opponent
B. a distinct advantage
C. the net position
D. the winning point
57. The word “distinct” in paragraph 2 is closest in meaning to which of the following?
Every year in late December, a southward-moving current warms the water along the Pacific coast of Peru. Because the warm current arrives around Christmas, the Peruvians named it El Nino, “boychild.” Until the mid-1970s, El Nino was an unrecognized local phenomenon, until scientists began to realize that El Nino, later named El Nino Southern 5 Oscillation (ENSO), is part of a huge ocean and atmosphere System that is felt as far away as Australia and Indonesia.
Every few years the El Nino current is warmer than normal, causing greater ocean warming and consequently changes in the normal patterns of sea and surface temperatures. The resulting changes in atmospheric pressure affect trade wind speeds and the location of the largest thunderstorms, thus affecting weather patterns around the world. The shift in location of the Pacific’s largest thunderstorms, which usually occur from the Western Pacific to the Central Pacific, changes global weather patterns because the thunderstorms pump air into the atmosphere in different places than normal. The result is a shift in the location of high- and low-pressure areas, wind patterns, and the paths followed by storms.
From 1982 to 1983 the El Nino condition caused greater than average precipitation along the U.S. West Coast and sent five hurricanes to French Polynesia, which normally goes years without hurricanes. That same year, El Nino was linked to floods in Louisiana, Florida, Cuba, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia, and to droughts in Hawaii, Mexico, Southern Africa, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Australia.
In response to the 1982-83 global weather disruption, the World Meteorological Organization initiated the Tropical Ocean and Global Atmosphere (TOGA) program. The goal of the 10-year program is to gain a better understanding of El Nino so scientists can forecast future El Nino episodes and their likely results.
58. In paragraph 1, the word “it” refers to
B. the warm current
D. the coast of Peru
59. To what does the word “that” In paragraph 1 refer?
A. A local phenomenon
B. An ocean and atmosphere System
C. The El Nino Southern Oscillation
60. In paragraph 2, the word “which” refers to
A. shifts in location
B. global weather patterns
C. the atmosphere
61. In paragraph 4, the word “initiated” could best be replaced with which of the following?
D. Responded to
62. The word “their” in paragraph 4 refers to
B. future events
C. El Nino episodes
There are about two dozen species of seahorses, all of which are aquatic. Their tails are prehensile and very agile, but do not propel them fast enough to catch the living food they need. Therefore seahorses have evolved another method of catching their prey. They use extremely strong suction that whips animals such as brine shrimp into their open mouths. Seahorses have eyes that move independently of each other, which enable them to spot potential food, and predators, more easily. The seahorse’s genus name is Hippocampus, which translates as “horse Caterpillar.”
63. The word “they” in the passage refers to
A. the tails of seahorses
B. aquatic animals
C. sources of food
D. species of seahorses
64. As used in the passage the word “evolved” means
65. The word “they” in the passage refers to
A. prehensile tails
66. In the passage, the word “them” refers to
D. brine shrimp
67. In the passage the word “which” refers to
A. potential food
c. horse Caterpillar
D. a translation
Planes are subjected to drag forces because an object moving forward through the air is hampered by it to a greater or lesser extent, since the air or any gas has friction. A plane in subsonic flight is preceded by the pressure waves it creates as it makes its way through the air. These pressure waves push away the air in front of the plane so there is less drag than 5 would otherwise be the case. But when a plane reaches sonic speed, or the speed of sound, the pressure waves no longer precede the plane. They no longer push away any of the air in front of the craft, so the drag forces become much greater. The large rise in drag as the plane approaches Mach 1, or the speed of sound, is referred to as the Sonic barrier.
Even a conventional subsonic plane traveling at a speed below Mach 1 can encounter an extreme rise in drag. This is because the pressure over the wing is decreased as the wing moves through the air. This results from the increase in the speed of the air stream over the wing in accordance with the law of physics called Bernoulli’s principle.
68. The word “subjected” in paragraph 1 is closest in meaning to which of the following?
69. In paragraph 1 the word “it” refers to
A. drag force
B. an object
C. the air
D. a plane
70. The word “it” in paragraph 1 refers to
A. a plane in subsonic flight
B. a pressure wave
C. air or any gas
D. drag force
71. In paragraph 1, the word “they” refers to
A. planes reaching Sonic speed
B. pressure waves
C. drag forces
D. conventional subsonic planes
72. To which of the following does the word “this” in paragraph 2 refer?
A. A decrease in pressure over the wing
B. An increase in the speed of the air stream over the wing
C. Pressure waves preceding the plane
D. A rise in drag encountered by a subsonic plane