Here are sample questions from the science portion of the Illinois Standards Achievement Test, given in 4th and 7th grade; and the Prairie State Achievement Examination, administered in 11th grade. Answers are below.

4th grade

1. The graph above shows the outdoor daily temperatures for one week. What were the temperatures like during this week?

A. Mostly above freezing

B. Mostly below freezing

C. Mostly below 20º

D. Mostly below 0º

2. Which is an example of a chemical change?

A. The grinding of salt crystals to powder

B. The evaporating of water from a puddle

C. The melting of ice

D. The burning of wood

7th grade

3. Milky Way galaxy is to the sun as

A. An ocean is to a water molecule.

B. An engine is to a car.

C. The rails are to a train.

D. The sun is to the earth.

4. This is a diagram of a genetic cross. In guinea pigs, black hair color is dominant (B) and white hair color is recessive (b). What hair color are the guinea pigs’ offspring?

A. All black

B. All white

C. Mostly black with some white

D. Mostly white with some black

11th grade

5. In contrast to DNA, an RNA molecule contains uracil (U) instead of thyamine (T). All other bases remain the same. During transcription, an RNA molecule is constructed from a coding strand of DNA using complementary coding. How would the RNA molecule coded from this portion of a DNA molecule TACCGG read?





6. Elements in the same vertical column of the Periodic Table have similar chemical properties and combining ratios. Which statement accounts for this chemical behavior of these elements?

A. They have equal numbers of protons, neutrons and electrons.

B. They have equal numbers of electrons in their outer energy levels.

C. They have equal numbers of neutrons in their nuclei.

D. They have equal numbers of protons in their nuclei.

Answers: 1. B; 2. D; 3. A; 4. C; 5. A; 6. B

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