Study Guide

Field 002: English
Sample Multiple-Choice Questions

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Objective 001
Understand the integrated nature of the English language arts.

1. An English teacher has students write their own poetry during an integrated unit about poets from the United States. Before the students can submit their poems to the teacher, they must read them aloud to at least three people. The primary benefit of this requirement will be that it encourages the students to:

  1. exercise caution when selecting topics for their writing.
  2. identify overused sentiments or expressions by soliciting the opinions of other people.
  3. select poetic structures that are readily understood by others.
  4. consider the clarity of the language they have chosen by using it in a second modality.
Correct Response: D.

Objective 002
Understand that English is a dynamic language shaped by cultural, social, and historical influences.

2. Which of the following events began the transition from Old English to Middle English?

  1. the Viking invasions of the ninth century
  2. the Norman Conquest of 1066
  3. the Statute of Pleading in 1362
  4. the printing of the King James Bible in 1611
Correct Response: B.

Objective 004
Understand how language use reflects culture and affects meaning in all modes of communication.

3. Read the excerpt below, from the poem "Nuyorican Lament" by Gloria Vando; then answer the question that follows.

San Juan you're not for me.
My cadence quails and stumbles
on your ancient stones:

there is an inner beat here
to be reckoned with—
a seis chorreao, a plena,
an inbred ¡Oyeeee!
and ¡mira tú! against which
my Manhattan (sorry
wrong island) responses fell flat.

¡Vaya! How can I deal with that?

And yet . . . once, long ago,
your beach was mine; Luquillo
was my bridle path to ride—
back then, before the turning of the tide
when Teddy's blue-eyed shills
secured the hill
and tried in vain to blot
the language out. . .

In this poem, the poet moves back and forth between English and Spanish primarily to:

  1. emphasize her skills as a bilingual poet.
  2. make the poem more accessible to Spanish speakers.
  3. enhance the poem by adding a splash of local color.
  4. reflect a cultural identification with San Juan.
Correct Response: D.

Objective 006
Understand listening and speaking strategies used for effective communication for different purposes.

4. In a conversation, speakers can best adjust their message to improve its effectiveness by analyzing:

  1. the listener's attitudes.
  2. the length of time already spent on the conversation.
  3. the social context of the conversation.
  4. the listener's feedback.
Correct Response: D.


Objective 008
Understand the variety of purposes for studying literature.

5. When teaching literature, the books of Virginia Hamilton, Sandra Cisneros, Laurence Yep, and N. Scott Momaday are particularly useful in:

  1. encouraging students to resist societal pressures.
  2. introducing students to the diversity of cultures in the United States.
  3. encouraging students' interest in United States history.
  4. familiarizing students with regional literature.
Correct Response: B.

Objective 011
Understand various aspects of world literature in English, exclusive of North American literature, including oral, written, enacted, and visual texts that reflect major themes, characteristics, trends, works, and writers.

6. One of the most recognizable novelistic genres in British literature is the comedy of manners, which is concerned with the conflict between characters formed by particular social and cultural conditions. Which of the following writers is best known for her work in this genre?

  1. Emily Brontë
  2. Elizabeth Gaskell
  3. Jane Austen
  4. Charlotte Brontë
Correct Response: C.

Objective 013
Understand the characteristics of literature written for children and adolescents.

7. Read the excerpt below, from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll; then answer the question that follows.

By this time she had found her way into a tidy little room with a table in the window, and on it (as she had hoped) a fan and two or three pairs of tiny white kid-gloves: she took up the fan and a pair of the gloves, and was just going to leave the room, when her eye fell upon a little bottle that stood near the looking-glass. There was no label this time with the words "DRINK ME," but nevertheless she uncorked it and put it to her lips. "I know something interesting is sure to happen," she said to herself, "whenever I eat or drink anything: so I'll just see what this bottle does. I do hope it'll make me grow large again, for really I'm quite tired of being such a tiny little thing!"

It did so indeed, and much sooner than she had expected: before she had drunk half the bottle, she found her head pressing against the ceiling, and had to stoop to save her neck from being broken. She hastily put down the bottle, saying to herself "That's quite enough—I hope I shan't grow any more—As it is, I ca'n't get out at the door—I do wish I hadn't drunk quite so much!"

Which of the following themes commonly explored in children's literature is best exemplified by this passage?

  1. the benefits of preserving an active imagination and cultivating dreams
  2. the borderline recklessness to which a sense of adventure can sometimes lead
  3. the dangers of valuing material goods more than family and friends
  4. the personal achievements from which a sense of pride and confidence is developed
Correct Response: B.


Objective 015
Understand concepts relating to the structure of language.

8. Which of the following sentences violates the principles of conventional syntax?

  1. Where is the rock greenly sleeping?
  2. Shun the fruminous Bandersnatch!
  3. The quertl chased from the room.
  4. It could have been; but it was not to be.
Correct Response: C.

Read the excerpt below from Ralph Ellison's novel Invisible Man; then answer the two questions that follow.

I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids⎯and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me. Like the bodiless heads you see sometimes in circus sideshows, it is as though I have been surrounded by mirrors of hard, distorting glass. When they approach me they see only my surroundings, themselves, or figments of their imagination⎯indeed, everything and anything except me.

Nor is my invisibility exactly a matter of a biochemical accident to my epidermis. That invisibility to which I refer occurs because of a peculiar disposition of the eyes of those with whom I come in contact. A matter of the construction of their inner eyes, those eyes with which they look through their physical eyes upon reality. I am not complaining, nor am I protesting either. It is sometimes advantageous to be unseen, although it is most often rather wearing on the nerves. Then too, you're constantly being bumped against by those of poor vision. Or again, you often doubt if you really exist. You wonder whether you aren't simply a phantom in other people's minds. Say, a figure in a nightmare which the sleeper tries with all his strength to destroy. It's when you feel like this that, out of resentment, you begin to bump people back. And, let me confess, you feel that way most of the time. You ache with the need to convince yourself that you do exist in the real world, that you're part of all the sound and anguish, and you strike out with your fists, you curse and you swear to make them recognize you. And, alas, it's seldom successful.

Objective 016
Apply approaches to reading for literary response.

9. Which of the following statements most accurately identifies the significance of the narrator's invisibility?

  1. The narrator's invisibility is the fantastic science fiction premise that introduces the theme of an alien's isolation among humankind.
  2. The concept of the narrator's invisibility symbolizes his personal dilemma stemming from a sense of social exclusion.
  3. The narrator's feeling of invisibility reflects his perception that other people are incapable of appreciating his superiority.
  4. The narrator's invisibility represents the first stage in his recognition that he has died and now exists as a ghost among the living.
Correct Response: B.

Objective 020
Understand the forms, techniques, and stylistic requirements of writing for personal and artistic expression and social interaction.

10. The voice of this passage was most likely employed by the author for the purpose of:

  1. involving the reader more immediately in the experience of the author's own writing process.
  2. creating a sense of the uncanny through the reader's shared experience of this character's strange situation.
  3. drawing the reader in on a direct, personal level to the narrator's emotional experience.
  4. reinforcing the narrator's self-centered egotism and aloof detachment from those around him.
Correct Response: C.

Objective 022
Understand processes and purposes of revising and editing written texts.

11. A teacher wants students to develop resources for revising their writing and wants them to be comfortable sharing their written drafts with others. Which of the following strategies would most effectively address both of these goals?

  1. modeling procedures for small group revision
  2. beginning each writing period with a brainstorming session
  3. asking students to read their drafts aloud to the class
  4. showing examples of final drafts to the students
Correct Response: A.

Objective 023
Understand the active and constructive nature of viewing and visually representing information.

12. Students watch a videotaped news story about events that took place during a political protest. The camera operator has taken only "live" footage. To initiate a discussion of the methods that can be used to create visual messages, which of the following questions should the teacher ask first?

  1. Which elements of the protest did the camera operator choose to record?
  2. Does this footage make you want to participate in a protest like this one?
  3. Why was the camera operator sent to videotape this political protest?
  4. Will viewers understand what happened during this protest?
Correct Response: A.


Objective 024
Apply reading strategies for the acquisition, interpretation, and application of information.

13. Read the passage below; then answer the question that follows.

In contrast to European fairy tales and folk tales, American Indian folk tales and legends are not always self-contained stories but are frequently portions of lengthy episodes that flow one into the next. These episodes often reach back to a nation's most ancient traditions.

Characters in American Indian stories often transform their personalities unexpectedly and without explanation. Coyote, a prominent figure in southwestern Indian tales, is one example of this type of character. One minute Coyote is manipulative and cowardly, while in the next he is brave and powerful. He is much like a "shape-shifter" or trickster and his behavior reflects the dualities of nature.

These ancient tales are told for adults and children alike, often within the context of important religious ceremonies. They serve to teach people lessons about human and animal behavior. If one tries to apply a "Western" aesthetic to American Indian tales, one can miss their power and beauty.

Which of the following facts from the passage best supports the writer's contention that American Indian tales are quite different from European folk tales?

  1. Coyote, a prominent figure in southwestern Indian tales, is a character that can change personalities unexpectedly.
  2. The lengthy episodes of which many American Indian folk tales are a part often reach back to a nation's most ancient traditions.
  3. American Indian folk tales are generally not self-contained stories, but parts of longer tales that comprise many stories.
  4. American Indian folk tales serve to teach people lessons about human and animal behavior.
Correct Response: C.

Objective 025
Understand the use of metacognitive techniques in reading comprehension.

14. Which of the following techniques is most effective in enhancing reading comprehension?

  1. refraining from considering implications of the text until one has completed the reading
  2. reading the text slowly enough so that every word can be understood
  3. generating questions about the text before and during the course of reading
  4. attempting to read the text in its entirety in an uninterrupted period
Correct Response: C.

Objective 027
Understand strategies for eliciting and using readers' responses to texts.

15. When reviewing students' reading journal responses to a play, an English teacher notices that students' various cultural and personal experiences result in their having different interpretations of the text. The teacher can enhance all students' learning most effectively in this situation by:

  1. providing the class with professional critiques of the text from different perspectives.
  2. encouraging students to share their interpretations of the text in a class discussion.
  3. dividing the class into discussion groups whose members have similar interpretations of the text.
  4. responding in students' reading journals with an explanation of the teacher's interpretation of the text.
Correct Response: B.

Objective 028
Understand the connection between writing and learning across the curriculum.

16. Read the math problem below; then answer the question that follows.

There are 320 children entering the first grade at Briarwood Elementary. 85 percent of these students have been vaccinated. How many students still need to receive their shots?

A high school math teacher requires students to write a step by step description of the way they solve word problems such as the one shown above. Which of the following is the primary benefit of having students write about their solutions to math problems?

  1. Students have multiple opportunities to practice and memorize a variety of math facts.
  2. The students and the teacher gain insight into the thought processes and problem-solving strategies that individual students use.
  3. The teacher can provide students with more difficult and complex math problems.
  4. The teacher and the students can make meaningful connections between school math problems and the uses of math in everyday life.
Correct Response: B.

Objective 030
Understand techniques for the critical evaluation of information, media, and technology.

17. The bandwagon approach to influencing people's decisions or behavior is typically characterized by:

  1. the use of vague or meaningless slogans.
  2. efforts to give negative information without proof.
  3. the personal testimony of a well-known person.
  4. appeals to the human urge to belong to a group.
Correct Response: D.


Read the excerpt below from Rebecca Harding Davis's Life in the Iron Mills; then answer the three questions that follow.

A cloudy day: do you know what that is in a town of iron-works? The sky sank down before dawn, muddy, flat, immovable. The air is thick, clammy with the breath of crowded human beings. It stifles me. I open the window, and, looking out, can scarcely see through the rain the grocer's shop opposite, where a crowd of drunken workers are puffing Lynchburg tobacco in their pipes. I can detect the scent through all the foul smells ranging loose in the air. . .

Can you see how foggy the day is? As I stand here, idly tapping the window-pane, and looking out through the rain at the dirty back-yard and the coalboats below, fragments of an old story float up before me,—a story of this old house into which I happened to come to-day. You may think it a tiresome story enough, as foggy as the day, sharpened by no sudden flashes of pain or pleasure.—I know: only the outline of a dull life, that long since, with thousands of dull lives like its own, was vainly lived and lost: thousands of them,—massed, vile, slimy lives, like those of the torpid lizards in yonder stagnant water-butt.—Lost? There is a curious point for you to settle, my friend, who study psychology in a lazy, dilettante way. Stop a moment. I am going to be honest. This is what I want you to do. I want you to hide your disgust, take no heed to your clean clothes, and come right down with me,—here, into the thickest of the fog and mud and foul effluvia. I want you to hear this story. There is a secret down there, in this nightmare fog, that has lain dumb for centuries.

Objective 007
Understand the distinctive features of various genres and recognize recurrent themes in all genres.

18. This passage best exemplifies which of the following types of fiction?

  1. folklore
  2. realist
  3. gothic
  4. idealist
Correct Response: B.

Objective 010
Understand various aspects of North American literature, including oral, written, enacted, and visual texts that reflect major themes, characteristics, trends, works, and writers.

19. In this passage, the author primarily addresses which of the following nineteenth century issues?

  1. the environmental damage caused by industrialization
  2. the trend of intemperance in industrial centers
  3. the darker side of American industrial prosperity
  4. the social mobility brought about by industrialization
Correct Response: C.

Objective 018
Understand the forms, techniques, and stylistic requirements of writing for literary response and analysis.

20. In writing a literary response to this passage, it would be most appropriate to approach the text through an analysis of:

  1. imagery.
  2. conflict.
  3. character.
  4. symbolism.
Correct Response: A.


Question 3
"Nuyorican Lament" from Promesas: Geography of the Impossible by Gloria Vando is reprinted with permission from the publisher (© 1993 Arte Publico Press - University of Houston).

Passage Preceding Questions 9 & 10
Ellison, Ralph. (1947). Invisible Man. (pp. 3–4) New York: Random House. Reprinted with permission.