Study Guide

Field 011: Psychology
Sample Multiple-Choice Questions

Expand All | Collapse All


Objective 001
Understand the historical development of major ideas in psychology.

1. Which of the following best describes how Gestalt psychologists influenced the development of psychological thought?

  1. by contending that most human behaviors can be reduced to the examination of biological motives
  2. by describing how the conscious mind goes about making rational decisions
  3. by arguing that experiences should be seen as whole entities that are greater than the sum of their parts
  4. by cautioning psychologists about the potential limitations of single-subject research
Correct Response: C.

Objective 004
Apply principles and techniques used in designing and conducting psychological research projects.

2. A psychologist would most likely employ longitudinal research techniques in which of the following studies?

  1. an evaluation of the effectiveness of different psychopharmacological therapies in treating a given personality disorder
  2. a study of the prevalence of selected psychological traits within a group of young adults
  3. an examination of individual changes in motor development between early childhood and adolescence
  4. an analysis of the ways in which genetic factors influence an individual's cognitive abilities
Correct Response: C.


Objective 007
Analyze the effects of heredity and environment on human development.

3. Use the hypothetical correlation table below to answer the question that follows.

Correlations of IQ Scores by Level of Relationship
and Reared Together/Apart
Relationship Reared Together Reared Apart
Monozygotic Twins
(N = 80)
0.82 0.71
Dizygotic Twins
(N = 130)
0.64 0.58
(N = 100)
0.59 0.49
Unrelated Adopted Siblings
(N = 110)
0.15 0.02

Based on the information in the table above, which of the following is the best description of the influence of genetic and environmental factors on IQ?

  1. Genetic and environmental factors are equally influential.
  2. Environmental factors are significantly more influential than are genetic factors.
  3. Genetic factors are significantly more influential than are environmental factors.
  4. Neither genetic nor environmental factors are influential.
Correct Response: C.

Objective 010
Apply knowledge of development during adolescence.

4. There is considerable debate about the development of morality in humans. According to Carol Gilligan, boys and girls are socialized differently and therefore develop different types of moral reasoning as adolescents. Based on Gilligan's research, male adolescents are more likely than female adolescents to focus on which of the following concepts when making moral judgments?

  1. broad principles such as justice and fairness
  2. compassionate concern for the welfare of individuals
  3. influences on one's own survival and betterment
  4. sacrificing one's own wishes to please others
Correct Response: A.


Objective 013
Apply knowledge of sensation and perception.

5. In which of the following situations is top-down processing the dominant perceptual mode?

  1. Using the shape and orientation of parts of the letter "R" to recognize the letter.
  2. Using the context of the letter "R" in the word "ORANGE" to recognize the letter.
  3. Using the features of a face to recognize emotional states.
  4. Using a person's behavior and speech, and the situation in which they occur, to recognize emotional states.
  1. I and II only
  2. III and IV only
  3. I and III only
  4. II and IV only
Correct Response: D.

Objective 015
Apply basic principles of learning.

6. In a conditioning experiment on cats, an auditory tone is paired with a puff of air. The unconditioned response to the puff of air is an eye blink. As a result of the pairings, the tone alone comes to elicit the eye blink. The researcher wants to expand the study to test classical conditioning theories on stimulus generalization. It would be most effective for the researcher to:

  1. pair the unconditioned stimulus and a different tone.
  2. pair the conditioned stimulus with the conditioned tone and a bright flash of light.
  3. present a different tone without the conditioned or unconditioned stimulus.
  4. elicit the eye blink with a sudden movement and pair the movement with the auditory tone.
Correct Response: C.

Objective 018
Apply knowledge of theories of motivation.

7. A group of adolescents who spend their free time writing in journals are promised a reward for continuing to write in them. According to some studies on motivation, the adolescents will eventually show a decreased interest in this activity. Which of the following provides the best explanation for this?

  1. Offering a reward to them changed writing from a primary drive to a secondary drive and diminished their need to write.
  2. The offer of a reward weakened their perceived self-efficacy and caused them to feel hesitant about writing.
  3. Promising them a reward increased their arousal and created a negative feedback loop that made them want to write less.
  4. Intrinsic motivations are often stronger than extrinsic ones, and the offer of a reward undermined their intrinsic motivation to write.
Correct Response: D.


Objective 021
Apply knowledge of trait, learning, and humanistic theories of personality.

8. Compared with proponents of psychoanalytic theory, proponents of Bandura's social learning theory are more likely to:

  1. emphasize the ways in which individuals use defense mechanisms to reduce personal tensions.
  2. locate the sources of personality disorders by examining the aggressive behavior of individuals.
  3. focus on the ways in which thoughts, feelings, and expectations shape an individual's personality.
  4. stress the significance of conflicts among different parts of an individual's personality.
Correct Response: C.

Objective 024
Understand approaches to the treatment of psychological disorders.

9. A combination of psychotherapy and psychotropic medication is most likely to be used in treating which of the following disorders?

  1. catatonic schizophrenia
  2. clinical depression
  3. simple phobia
  4. alcohol abuse
Correct Response: B.


Objective 025
Understand the nature of groups, group behavior, and self-concept.

10. Based on Solomon Asch's studies on conformity, which of the following best represents a situation in which conformity is likely to be high?

  1. The individual has confidence in himself or herself.
  2. The individual sees a task as difficult and ambiguous.
  3. The individual does not share demographic characteristics with other members of the group.
  4. The individual is asked to give confidential rather than public responses.
Correct Response: B.