Additional Paragraph Comprehension for ASVAB Power Practice Problems (page 2)
These paragraph comprehension practice questions are based on the actual ASVAB. Take this quiz to see how you would do if you took the exam today and to determine your strengths and weaknesses as you plan your study schedule.
Time: 13 minutes
Our daily lives are filled with machines. We drive cars, operate computers, ride bicycles, talk on telephones, and use a myriad number of machines without even thinking about it. But did you know that all machines are based on six simple machines? What's more, all simple machines fall into one of two categories: the lever or the wedge. The lever is a simple machine that allows a person to lift a heavy weight using less energy than would be required to lift it directly. A wedge is a simple machine that separates two or more objects.
There are six basic machines, each of which uses either lever action or wedge action. The screw, for example, uses wedge action to separate the wood that it's being screwed into. A pulley uses lever action to enable a person to use less force to lift heavy objects. An inclined plane uses wedge action to separate an object from the ground; you can even see the wedge shape of an inclined plane if you look at it from the side. And the sixth simple machine, the wheel and axle, uses lever action to force the wheel to turn using less energy than would be required by manually spinning it.
- What is the main idea of this passage?
- Wheels and pulleys are simple machines.
- All machines are based on six simple machines.
- Screws use lever action.
- Machines are complicated.
- Which of the following statements is best supported by this passage?
- Screwdrivers are complex machines.
- Computers are simple machines.
- A car uses many simple machines to run.
- Gravity was discovered by Isaac Newton.
- Which of the following is not a simple machine?
- a screw
- a pushbutton
- a wedge
- a pulley
- As used in the passage, myriad most nearly means
- mirror image.
The town council met Wednesday night to discuss the recent vandalism at the park. Police have stated that the vandalism is caused by several youths in town who are angry because the park closes at sunset. Several parents spoke out, however, to say that the problems are being caused by transient workers who have no place to sleep. The mayor disagreed and suggested that the vandalism is the work of students from the rival high school in the next town.
Since the council can't take any action before the next meeting on the 3rd of next month, police have been instructed to increase security at the park at night. Town council members also asked the school board to implement stronger methods of policing at high school athletic events to ensure that students do not bring cans of spray paint or other tools of vandalism.
- According to the passage, who believes that the vandalism is being caused by rivalry between two local schools?
- the police
- the mayor
- not stated
- As used in this passage, transient most nearly means
- passing through.
- a window above a doorway.
- The town council will next meet on
- June 4.
- the 3rd of next month.
- the first Wednesday of the month.
- the 3rd of this month.
- As used in the passage, implement most nearly means
- an eating utensil.
- a tool.
- put into practice.
- a small unit of measurement.
Critical reading is a demanding process. To read critically, you must slow down your reading and, with pencil in hand, perform specific operations on the text. Mark up the text with your reactions, conclusions, and questions. When you read, become an active participant.
- This paragraph best supports the statement that
- critical reading is a slow, dull, but essential process.
- the best critical reading happens at critical times in a person's life.
- readers should get into the habit of questioning the truth of what they read.
- critical reading requires thoughtful and careful attention.
- What does being"an active participant" in reading mean?
- A good reader will be writing books.
- A good reader takes notes, asks questions, and draws conclusions.
- A good book will get an emotional reaction from the reader.
- Reading out loud is better than reading silently.
It has recently come to the attention of management that employees are using their sick days for purposes of vacation time. Effective June 1, all sick days not used prior to May 31 will be canceled, and all employees will begin to accrue new sick time effective June 1. The purpose of this new policy is to curtail abuse of employee sick days.
- The author of this passage most likely believes that employees are
- underpaid and overworked.
- highly skilled in their jobs.
- abusing their job benefits.
- showing up late for work too often.
- As used in the passage, accrue most nearly means
- gather together.
- turn sideways.
- take time off.
- report to work.
- Why is the company restarting sick time beginning June 1?
- It is the beginning of the company's fiscal year.
- The company has improved its sick-time benefits.
- Congress has passed a new law.
- Employees have been using sick time inappropriately.
- As used in the passage, curtail most nearly means
- an appendage.
- cut back.
- leave alone.
If you're a fitness walker, there is no need for a commute to a health club. Your neighborhood can be your health club. You don't need a lot of fancy equipment to get a good workout, either. All you need is a well-designed pair of athletic shoes.
- This paragraph best supports the statement that
- fitness walking is a better form of exercise than weight lifting.
- a membership in a health club is a poor investment.
- walking outdoors provides a better workout than walking indoors.
- fitness walking is a convenient and valuable form of exercise.
- b. The passage states that all machines are based on six simple machines, and it goes into detail to explain the principles of simple machines and give examples of each type. The other choices might refer to details in the passage, but only choice b states the overall theme.
- c. The passage states that most machines use one or more of the six basic simple machines to operate. Cars are listed among the complicated machines that we use daily, so we can infer that it uses simple machines to operate.
- b. Each of the choices is listed as a simple machine in the passage except for a pushbutton.
- d. The word myriad means "a very large, indefinite number." Therefore, many is the best choice.
- c. The mayor stated in the last sentence of the first paragraph that the vandalism was being caused by students from a rival high school
- a. The word transient refers to someone or something that will not remain in one place for very long. Thus, a transient person is just "passing through" town.
- b. The first sentence of the second paragraph states that the town council will meet again on the 3rd of next month.
- c. When implement is used as a verb, it means "to put something into practice." When it is used as a noun, it can refer to a tool or even an eating utensil, so you need to determine from the context whether it is being used as a noun or a verb. In this passage, it is used as a verb, a word that describes some form of action.
- d. This answer is implied by the whole paragraph. The author stresses the need to read critically by performing operations on the text in a slow and specific manner. Choice a is incorrect because the author never says that reading is dull. Choices b and c are not supported by the paragraph.
- b. The passage urges the reader to mark up the text, ask questions, and draw conclusions, which is what is meant by being an active participant. The other options may or may not be true, but they are not addressed in the passage.
- c. In the first sentence, the passage states that employees have been abusing their sicktime benefits in order to increase their vacation time. The writer's tone makes it clear that he or she does not approve of the practice, particularly since he or she refers to it as an "abuse" in the last sentence.
- a. The word accrue means to gather together or to collect.
- d. The new policy beginning June 1 is designed, according to the passage, to discourage employees from misusing their sick-time benefits.
- c. The word curtail means to cut back on something or to decrease something. To curtail abuse means to cut back on or decrease how much abuse is taking place.
- d. The author stresses the convenience of fitness walking by stating that it does not require a commute to a health club. The paragraph also implies that fitness walking will result in a good workout. Choice a is incorrect because no comparison to weight lifting is made. Choice b may seem like a logical answer, but the paragraph only refers to people who are fitness walkers, so for others, a health club might be a good investment. Choice c is not in the passage.
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