CSET English Subtest 2 Practice Test

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CSET English subtest 2 practice test


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    Which of the following best describes theconcept of Universal Grammar?

    • A.

      The grammatical rules that are established before the introduction of slang and jargon

    • B.

      A set of principles that apply to all languages and are unconsciously accessible to every human language user

    • C.

      The grammatical rules that all the dialects of a language have in common

    • D.

      A set of principles that should be followed when writing or when speaking in a formal setting

    Correct Answer
    B. A set of principles that apply to all languages and are unconsciously accessible to every human language user
    Explanation
    Universal Grammar refers to a set of principles that apply to all languages and are unconsciously accessible to every human language user. It suggests that humans are born with an innate ability to acquire language and that there are underlying grammatical rules that are common to all languages. This concept implies that language acquisition is not solely dependent on environmental factors, but also on a universal cognitive framework that enables language learning.

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  • 2. 

    Read the passage below; then answerthe question that follows.When speakers of two mutually unintelligiblelanguages come into contact, theneed for communication often requiresthat they develop a common code thatcontains features of both languages. Thisis then learned as a first language bysubsequent generations of children. Thevocabulary is gradually expanded, andthe grammar becomes more complexover time, until the language is similarin structure to other human languages.Which of the following linguisticphenomena is described in the abovepassage?

    • A.

      Creolization

    • B.

      Hypercorrection

    • C.

      Motherese

    • D.

      Deep structure

    Correct Answer
    A. Creolization
    Explanation
    The passage describes the linguistic phenomenon of creolization. When speakers of two mutually unintelligible languages come into contact, they develop a common code that combines features of both languages. This code is then learned as a first language by subsequent generations of children, and over time, the vocabulary expands and the grammar becomes more complex, resulting in a language that is similar in structure to other human languages.

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  • 3. 

    The smallest unit of meaning in alanguage is known as a:

    • A.

      Morpheme.

    • B.

      Syntactic unit.

    • C.

      Phoneme.

    • D.

      Grapheme.

    Correct Answer
    A. Morpheme.
    Explanation
    A morpheme is the smallest unit of meaning in a language. It can be a word or a part of a word that carries meaning. For example, in the word "unhappiness," there are three morphemes: "un-" (meaning not), "happy" (meaning joyous), and "-ness" (meaning state or quality). Each of these morphemes contributes to the overall meaning of the word. In contrast, a phoneme refers to the smallest unit of sound in a language, a grapheme represents a written letter or combination of letters, and a syntactic unit refers to a group of words that function together in a sentence.

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  • 4. 

    Which of the following topics is part ofthe study of pragmatics?

    • A.

      The acquisition of grammatical rules in a second language

    • B.

      The change in the meaning of a word over time

    • C.

      The relationship between a word's structure and its meaning

    • D.

      The uses of different types of utterances in different contexts

    Correct Answer
    D. The uses of different types of utterances in different contexts
    Explanation
    The study of pragmatics involves examining how language is used in different contexts and the effects it has on communication. It focuses on understanding the social and cultural aspects of language, as well as the intentions and implications behind utterances. Therefore, the topic of "the uses of different types of utterances in different contexts" is directly related to the study of pragmatics.

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  • 5. 

    Use the diagram below to answer the question that follows. (Refer to test booklet -- could not copy diagram)SentenceNoun phrase Verb phrasePrepositionNoun Verb PrepositionalphrasePrepositionalphraseArticlePreposition Article Noun Article NounThis diagram represents the structure ofwhich of the following sentences?

    • A.

      The woman in the car drives to the opera.

    • B.

      A rainy day is an opportunity to stay at home.

    • C.

      The dog on the beach loves to play frisbee.

    • D.

      A bird in hand is worth two in the bush.

    Correct Answer
    A. The woman in the car drives to the opera.
    Explanation
    The diagram represents the structure of the sentence "The woman in the car drives to the opera." The noun phrase "The woman in the car" is followed by the verb phrase "drives to the opera." The prepositional phrase "in the car" modifies the noun phrase "woman." The prepositional phrase "to the opera" functions as an adverbial phrase, indicating the destination of the woman's drive.

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  • 6. 

    English orthography is only partiallyregular (i.e., the spelling of a word isnot a perfect guide to its pronunciation).Which of the following best explainsthis fact?

    • A.

      The earliest forms of English evolved from languages with pictographic writing systems.

    • B.

      Careless transcriptions have changed the spelling of many English words.

    • C.

      In the transition to Modern English, the pronunciation of many words changed while their spelling did not.

    • D.

      Words that are slang and jargon have distinct pronunciation rules.

    Correct Answer
    C. In the transition to Modern English, the pronunciation of many words changed while their spelling did not.
    Explanation
    English orthography is only partially regular because during the transition to Modern English, the pronunciation of many words changed while their spelling remained the same. This means that the spelling of a word is not always a reliable guide to its pronunciation.

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  • 7. 

    English-speaking children from differentsociocultural backgrounds are most likelyto differ in which of the following aspectsof language development?

    • A.

      The syntactic structures that they find easiest to learn

    • B.

      The style and structure of their oral narratives

    • C.

      The use of coordinate structures in oral language

    • D.

      The inferences they make about a speaker's desires or intentions

    Correct Answer
    B. The style and structure of their oral narratives
    Explanation
    English-speaking children from different sociocultural backgrounds are most likely to differ in the style and structure of their oral narratives because narrative style and structure are influenced by cultural norms, storytelling traditions, and personal experiences. Different cultures may have different storytelling conventions, such as the use of specific narrative structures, the inclusion of certain themes or motifs, or the emphasis on different aspects of a story. Therefore, children from different sociocultural backgrounds are likely to have varying styles and structures in their oral narratives.

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  • 8. 

    Convergent research suggests that infantsstart out able to discriminate betweenall the phonemes that occur in humanlanguage. However, they soon lose theability to distinguish between phonemesthat they do not hear being used in theirenvironment. This finding would help toexplain the fact that:

    • A.

      Second-language learners often have trouble recognizing and producing certain phonemes in the target language.

    • B.

      There are rules that govern the combinations of phonemes that can occur in any given language.

    • C.

      The sounds associated with letter combinations in English have changed over the history of the language.

    • D.

      Children's first utterances tend to involve the repetition of simple syllables.

    Correct Answer
    A. Second-language learners often have trouble recognizing and producing certain phonemes in the target language.
    Explanation
    The given passage states that infants start out being able to discriminate between all phonemes in human language but lose this ability as they grow and only recognize the phonemes they hear in their environment. This finding suggests that second-language learners often struggle with recognizing and producing certain phonemes in the target language because they did not hear those specific phonemes in their native language environment.

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  • 9. 

    Which of the following is most likely toincrease a reader's fluency and readingrate?

    • A.

      Stopping periodically while reading a difficult text to predict what will happen next

    • B.

      Taking notes while reading a difficult text, then reviewing the notes after reading

    • C.

      Using a graphic organizer after reading a text to represent the main ideas and themes

    • D.

      Engaging in repeated reading of a text at the reader's independent reading level

    Correct Answer
    D. Engaging in repeated reading of a text at the reader's independent reading level
    Explanation
    Engaging in repeated reading of a text at the reader's independent reading level is most likely to increase a reader's fluency and reading rate. By repeatedly reading a text, the reader becomes more familiar with the words and the content, which leads to improved fluency. Additionally, reading at their independent reading level ensures that the text is not too difficult for the reader, allowing them to read more quickly and smoothly.

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  • 10. 

    A speaker uses the Standard Englishdialect when interacting with strangers,and uses a different dialect wheninteracting with individuals whom sherecognizes as members of her own socialgroup. This illustrates which of thefollowing types of linguistic behavior?

    • A.

      Hypercorrection

    • B.

      Negative transfer

    • C.

      Borrowing

    • D.

      Code-switching

    Correct Answer
    D. Code-switching
    Explanation
    Code-switching refers to the practice of alternating between two or more languages or dialects within a conversation or interaction. In this case, the speaker is using the Standard English dialect when talking to strangers, but switches to a different dialect when interacting with individuals from her own social group. This behavior demonstrates code-switching because the speaker is consciously changing her language or dialect based on the social context and the identity of the people she is communicating with.

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  • 11. 

    A reader who encounters an unfamiliarword in a text sounds the word out byapplying phonics and syllabication skills.It is most likely that the reader will thenbe able to identify the word's meaning if:

    • A.

      The word is in the reader's oral vocabulary.

    • B.

      The reader recognizes the word's part of speech.

    • C.

      The word is a homophone of a familiar word.

    • D.

      The reader recognizes the word's language of origin.

    Correct Answer
    A. The word is in the reader's oral vocabulary.
    Explanation
    If the reader encounters an unfamiliar word in a text and is able to sound it out using phonics and syllabication skills, they are most likely to be able to identify the word's meaning if it is in their oral vocabulary. This means that the reader is familiar with the word and has heard it spoken before, which would give them a better chance of understanding its meaning in context.

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  • 12. 

    A reader will use predicting most effectivelyas a comprehension strategy if thereader:

    • A.

      Is able to recognize faulty reasoning.

    • B.

      Is familiar with the conventions of different genres.

    • C.

      Is able to use a text's index and glossary.

    • D.

      Has extensive knowledge of content-area vocabulary.

    Correct Answer
    B. Is familiar with the conventions of different genres.
    Explanation
    A reader will use predicting most effectively as a comprehension strategy if they are familiar with the conventions of different genres. This is because different genres have different structures, language styles, and narrative patterns. By being familiar with these conventions, the reader can make predictions about the content, plot, and characters based on their understanding of how the genre typically unfolds. This allows them to engage more deeply with the text, anticipate what might happen next, and make connections between different parts of the story.

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  • 13. 

    Read the sentences below; then answerthe question that follows.• Gabriel García Márquez is myfavorite writer.• He is the author of One HundredYears of Solitude.Which of the following sentencescombines the two sentences above usingan embedded appositional phrase?

    • A.

      Gabriel García Márquez, my favorite writer, is the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude.

    • B.

      Gabriel García Márquez is my favorite writer; he is the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude.

    • C.

      Gabriel García Márquez is my favorite writer and the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude.

    • D.

      Gabriel García Márquez, who is my favorite writer, is the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude.

    Correct Answer
    A. Gabriel García Márquez, my favorite writer, is the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude.
    Explanation
    The correct answer combines the two sentences by using an embedded appositional phrase to provide additional information about Gabriel García Márquez. The phrase "my favorite writer" is inserted between the name and the verb "is," clarifying the speaker's personal preference.

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  • 14. 

    Which of the following sentencescontains an underlined word thatfunctions as a noncount noun?

    • A.

      These flowers are beautiful.

    • B.

      Every petal has a different hue.

    • C.

      I will put them in a vase with water.

    • D.

      Thank you for this wonderful gift!

    Correct Answer
    C. I will put them in a vase with water.
    Explanation
    The correct answer is "I will put them in a vase with water." In this sentence, the word "water" functions as a noncount noun because it cannot be counted or pluralized. It is used to refer to a substance rather than individual units.

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  • 15. 

    Which of the following word sets iscomposed of verbs that function asmodals?

    • A.

      Cooking, shopping, driving

    • B.

      Sailed, ran, soared

    • C.

      Can, would, must

    • D.

      Shine, disperse, finish

    Correct Answer
    C. Can, would, must
    Explanation
    The word set "can, would, must" is composed of verbs that function as modals. Modals are a type of auxiliary verb that are used to express various meanings such as ability, possibility, necessity, and obligation. In this case, "can" expresses ability, "would" expresses possibility or willingness, and "must" expresses necessity or obligation. Therefore, these verbs fit the criteria of functioning as modals.

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  • Current Version
  • Mar 21, 2023
    Quiz Edited by
    ProProfs Editorial Team
  • Jul 13, 2009
    Quiz Created by
    Apremo
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