CSET Subtest 1 Practice Test

15 Questions | Total Attempts: 2165

SettingsSettingsSettings
CSET Subtest 1 Practice Test

CSET subtest 1 practice taken from the official CSET site.


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    Which of the following forms of fixed or closed verse originated in Italy but was introduced to England, where it was developed and established as an English literary tradition?
    • A. 

      Sonnet

    • B. 

      Ballad

    • C. 

      Villanelle

    • D. 

      Limerick

  • 2. 
    Which of the following excerpts is most characteristic of the traditional American literary form called the slave narrative?
    • A. 

      The girl belonged to a class—unhappily but too extensive—the very existence of which, should make men's hearts bleed. Barely past her childhood, it required but a glance to discover that she was one of those children, born and bred in neglect and vice, who have never known what childhood is: who have never been taught to love and court a parent's smile, or to dread a parent's frown.

    • B. 

      The stench of the hold, while we were on the coast, was so intolerably loathsome, that it was dangerous to remain there for any time, and some of us had been permitted to stay on the deck for the fresh air; but now that the whole ship's cargo were confined together, it became absolutely pestilential. The closeness of the place, and the heat of the climate, added to the number in the ship, being so crowded that each had scarcely room to turn himself, almost suffocated us.

    • C. 

      It is possible for a race or an individual to have mental development and yet be so handicapped by custom, prejudice, and lack of employment as to dwarf and discourage the whole life. This is the condition that prevails among the race in many of the large cities of the North; and it is to prevent this same condition in the South that I plead with all the earnestness of my heart.

    • D. 

      A resistless feeling of depression falls slowly upon us, despite the gaudy sunshine and the green cotton-fields. This, then, is the Cotton Kingdom,—the shadow of a marvellous dream. And where is the King? Perhaps this is he,—the sweating ploughman, tilling his eighty acres with two lean mules, and fighting a hard battle with debt. So we sit musing, until . . . there comes a fairer scene suddenly in view,—a neat cottage snugly ensconced by the road, and near it a little store.

  • 3. 
    Literary works such as James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Gustave Flaubert's A Sentimental Education, and Thomas Mann's The Magic Mountain provide examples of which of the following traditional novelistic forms?
    • A. 

      Nouveau roman or "new novel"

    • B. 

      Social novel

    • C. 

      Bildungsroman or "novel of formation"

    • D. 

      Historical novel

  • 4. 
    Read the poem below; then answer the question that follows. Now begins the cryOf the guitar,Breaking the vaults Of dawn.Now begins the cryOf the guitar.UselessTo still it.ImpossibleTo still it.It weeps monotonouslyAs weeps the water,As weeps the windOver snow.ImpossibleTo still it.It weepsFor distant things,Warm southern sandsDesiring white camellias.It mourns the arrow without a target,The evening without morning.And the first bird deadUpon a branch.O guitar!A wounded heart,Wounded by five swords.The style and subject matter of this poem are most characteristic of works from which of the following movements in world literature?
    • A. 

      Classicism

    • B. 

      Romanticism

    • C. 

      Realism

    • D. 

      Modernism

  • 5. 
    Literary works by American authors associated with the "local color" style of writing, or regionalism, such as Sarah Orne Jewett, Kate Chopin, and Bret Harte, served primarily which of the following functions?
    • A. 

      Describing the unique physical landscape of a place and the distinctive customs, dialect, and way of thinking of those who live there

    • B. 

      Explaining the special appeal of a geographic area and the reasons that people have for deciding to settle and work there

    • C. 

      Inspiring those who live in rural areas to venture beyond their isolated communities and explore diverse people, places, and cultures

    • D. 

      Promoting a simple, agrarian lifestyle, the importance of family, and a focus on personal happiness rather than material wealth

  • 6. 
    Literary works by British writers of the neoclassical period such as Alexander Pope, John Dryden, and Samuel Johnson tend to share which of the following characteristics?
    • A. 

      A fondness for satire and an inclination to make generalizations about the world in the form of aphoristic verse

    • B. 

      The use of stock imagery and alliterative verse to tell tales of kings, knights, and epic battles

    • C. 

      An idealistic view of the world and a preoccupation with the close examination of inner feelings and emotions

    • D. 

      The use of symbolism and an impressionistic, broad-stroke style to express ideas indirectly

  • 7. 
    One significant feature of literature written for young adults is that the stories tend to:
    • A. 

      Explore the various educational and professional choices that people make rather than the particular skills and interests that led them to pursue their goals

    • B. 

      Focus on the thoughts and experiences of an individual character and convey a sense of immediacy rather than nostalgia.

    • C. 

      Provide a straightforward approach for solving a social problem rather than a long explication of the roots and complexities of the problem.

    • D. 

      Inquire into the motivations and actions of a wide range of characters and convey a sense of levity rather than deep seriousness.

  • 8. 
    Read the excerpt below from "Spring and All," a poem by William Carlos Williams; then answer the question that follows. By the road to the contagious hospitalunder the surge of the bluemottled clouds driven from thenortheast—a cold wind. Beyond, thewaste of broad, muddy fields brown with dried weeds, standing and fallenpatches of standing waterthe scattering of tall treesAll along the road the reddishpurplish, forked, upstanding, twiggystuff of bushes and small treeswith dead, brown leaves under themleafless vines— The style and subject matter in this excerpt are most characteristic of poetry from which of the following literary movements?
    • A. 

      Imagist

    • B. 

      Symbolist

    • C. 

      Parnassian

    • D. 

      New formalist

  • 9. 
    Read the excerpt below from A Tale of a Tub, a work of fiction by Jonathan Swift; then answer the question that follows.   For great turns are not always given by strong hands, but by lucky adaption, and at proper seasons; and it is of no import where the fire was kindled, if the vapor has once got up into the brain. For the upper region of man is furnished like the middle region of the air; the materials are formed from causes of the widest difference, yet produce at last the same substance and effect. Mists arise from the earth, steams from dunghills, exhalations from the sea, and smoke from fire; yet all clouds are the same in composition as well as consequences, and the fumes issuing from a jakes1 will furnish as comely and useful a vapor as incense from an altar. Thus far, I suppose, will easily be granted me; and then it will follow, that as the face of nature never produces rain but when it is overcast and disturbed, so human understanding, seated in the brain, must be troubled and overspread by vapors, ascending from the lower faculties to water the invention and render it fruitful.   In this excerpt, Swift primarily satirizes which of the following aspects of late seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century rationalism?
    • A. 

      A belief in the power of human reasoning to reveal truth

    • B. 

      The spread and growing acceptance of the scientific method

    • C. 

      The erosion of unquestioning acceptance of religious doctrine

    • D. 

      A faith that humanity necessarily progresses toward perfection

  • 10. 
    In Theatre of the Absurd, the characters often use dislocated, repetitious, and clichéd speech primarily to:
    • A. 

      Illustrate the essentially illogical, purposeless nature of the human condition.

    • B. 

      Re-create the workings of the subconscious.

    • C. 

      Mock the exaggerated dignity and wisdom of modern, self-professed intellectuals.

    • D. 

      Reinforce the comedic action of farcical plots.

  • 11. 
    Read the passage below from "The Open Boat," a short story by Stephen Crane; then answer the question that follows.   As each slaty wall of water approached, it shut all else from the view of the men in the boat, and it was not difficult to imagine that this particular wave was the final outburst of the ocean, the last effort of the grim water. There was a terrible grace in the move of the waves, and they came in silence, save for the snarling of the crests.   Which of the following statements describes most accurately how a literary or rhetorical technique is used in this passage?
    • A. 

      Personification is used to portray the ocean as an unsympathetic creature intent on destroying the men in the boat.

    • B. 

      Metaphors related to industry and machinery are used to compare the ocean to a never-ending production line.

    • C. 

      Words connoting dizziness and disorientation are used to illustrate the desperate situation of the men in the boat.

    • D. 

      Hyperbole is used to emphasize the the vastness of the ocean and the relative insignificance of the men in the boat.

  • 12. 
    Use the information below to answer the question that follows. A writer has taken the notes below in preparation for writing one section of a report on the earth's major ecosystems.   • Oceans make up the earth's largest ecosystem, covering around 75% of the planet's surface.   • Scientists divide ocean ecosystems by depth and distance from shore, into four zones: the intertidal zone, the pelagic zone, the benthic zone, and the abyssal zone.   • The marine biome—or major ecological and environmental community—includes the oceans, coral reefs, and estuaries.   • The oceans absorb and store heat, a capacity that helps to stabilize the earth's temperatures and climates. • By some measures, oceans have greater biodiversity than any other ecosystem.   Given the information provided in these notes, the writer will be best prepared to develop this section of the report by:
    • A. 

      Comparing and contrasting the earth's ecosystems and biomes.

    • B. 

      Constructing a hypothesis about the ocean ecosystem.

    • C. 

      Illustrating the characteristics of ecosystems and biomes.

    • D. 

      Presenting an extended definition of the ocean ecosystem.

  • 13. 
    Read the excerpt below from "The Lady in the Looking Glass: A Reflection," a short story by Virginia Woolf; then answer the question that follows.   So she stood thinking. Without making any thought precise—for she was one of those reticent people whose minds hold their thoughts enmeshed in clouds of silence—she was filled with thoughts. Her mind was like her room, in which lights advanced and retreated, came pirouetting and stepping delicately, spread their tails, pecked their way; and then her whole being was suffused, like the room again, with a cloud of some profound knowledge, some unspoken regret, and then she was full of locked drawers, stuffed with letters, like her cabinets. To talk of "prizing her open" as if she were an oyster, to use any but the finest and subtlest and most pliable tools upon her was impious and absurd. One must imagine—here was she in the looking glass.   A literary critic using a psychoanalytic approach would most likely focus on which of the following interpretations of the figurative language used in this excerpt?
    • A. 

      The connection drawn between the character's ideas and the lights in her room suggests that reason illuminates the truth while emotion obscures it.

    • B. 

      The references to the movements of dancers and birds implies that the character is incapable of serious, sustained intellectual inquiry.

    • C. 

      The description of the character's mind as "full of locked drawers" illustrates the degree to which she represses disagreeable thoughts.

    • D. 

      The implied comparison between the character's mind and a pearl hidden inside an oyster suggests that intelligence is a commodity.

  • 14. 
    Morality plays rely mainly on which of the following literary devices to dramatize the battle between the forces of good and evil in the human soul?
    • A. 

      Irony

    • B. 

      Hyperbole

    • C. 

      Allegory

    • D. 

      Paradox

  • 15. 
    Use the information below to answer the question that follows.   A writer has drafted the paragraph below as part of a narrative about a transformational experience.   I'll never forget the first time I taught. I was in graduate school, working on a master's degree in English, and I thought that teaching a section of Freshman Writing would be an easy way to earn a little extra money. The summer before, I gave teaching hardly a thought, preferring to focus on reading ahead for my grad courses. After all, I figured, how hard could teaching freshmen how to write really be? On day one, I ran off photocopies of my syllabus and headed to class whistling a happy tune. _______________________ I froze in my tracks. The room was filled to overflowing with students looking up expectantly at me. I glanced at my pathetic little pile of papers and regretted doing so little to prepare. While I wrote my name on the board, I struggled to compose myself. Then I swallowed my panic, turned around, and started the greatest adventure of my life.   To control the flow and pace of the narrative, which of the following clausal modifiers should the writer use in the blank in this paragraph?
    • A. 

      Because I was so nervous,

    • B. 

      After I settled down at my desk,

    • C. 

      When I realized how foolish I'd been,

    • D. 

      As I strolled through the door,

Back to Top Back to top