Test-Prep Your Cultural Literacy IQ has been written by test-prep experts with two goals in mind:
The first, and the most important, goal of this book is to help you score high on standardized tests. Our proven test-taking strategies will not only help you feel more confident about taking standardized tests but will also improve your performance. This book includes fourteen practice tests so you can practice with your new test-taking strategies. After all, practice makes perfect!
The second goal of this book is to have some fun! Really! And hey, after taking the tests in this book and reading the answers, you'll be more than ready to impress your friends and family. Go ahead -- challenge someone to a game of Trivial Pursuit™ or play along with Jeopardy!™. And the next time you get stuck with a bunch of intellectual snobs at some party, be confident that you can keep up with the conversation.
Why You Need This Book
Like it or not, multiple-choice tests play a pretty large role in people's lives today -- more so than ever before. In truth, high school teachers and college professors are actually in love with multiple-choice tests. Think of those pesky Advanced Placement tests and college entrance exams like the SAT and ACT Assessment that all use multiple-choice questions. Bottom line: You can't escape multiple-choice tests, so you might as well have fun while you learn to master them.
What Is Cultural Literacy?
There you are, sitting back in your favorite chair, scanning your favorite magazine, when you come across this phrase:
Here is a man who seemed to have the Midas touch...
What's the Midas touch? Do you know? Supposedly, if you're "culturally literate," you would know. Midas was a king who wished that everything he touched would turn to gold. He got his wish, turned his daughter into gold, and then realized that the touch was also a curse. How do we know that? Because we're culturally literate, and soon you will be too! But what exactly do we mean by cultural literacy? Read on...
A contemporary writer named E. D. Hirsch started a movement called the "Core Knowledge" movement. Basically, he believed that if students across the nation could learn a "core" of common knowledge, they would be certain to have a fair and solid elementary education. Hirsch wrote a book called Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know, and with this, the phrase "cultural literacy" was coined. You could read for hours about the Core Knowledge movement and cultural literacy on the Web, because there is so much information on it, but we're going to simplify cultural literacy in the following definition, which is all you need to know for this book:
Cultural literacy is stuff in the arts, humanities, and history that you (and everyone else) probably know.
How To Know If You Are Culturally Literate
When you complete a test, use the explanatory answers that follow the test to check your responses. The answers give information for you to determine why your response was correct or incorrect, and you can learn a lot by reading the explanations!
Use the scoring key at the end of this introduction to grade yourself and see how culturally literate you are.
Give yourself two points for each correct answer.
90-100 Excellent. You are culturally literate.
80-89 Good. You have more than a passing knowledge of this subject.
70-79 Fair. You have a competent grasp of many aspects of this subject.
60-69 Poor. You could use some improvement in this area.
Below 60 Time for cultural literacy training. See the Bibliography in the back of this book.
Copyright © 2003 by Diane Zahler and Kathy A. Zahler