GED Social Studies Practice Test 4

This is our fourth and final Social Studies GED Test. It includes 10 questions which are scored instantly. Answers and detailed explanations are provided as well. The best way to prepare for this test is by working through as many practice questions as possible. Continue your test prep with our free questions, and be sure to carefully review the explanation for any that you answer incorrectly.

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Question 1
The monetary value of all the finished goods and services that are produced within a country's borders in a specific time period is the:

A
Money Supply
B
Gross Domestic Product
C
Balance of Trade
D
Aggregate Demand
Question 1 Explanation: 
The Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, is the main tool for measuring the activity of a country's economy. The GDP takes into account consumer spending, government spending, overall investment, and the total net exports. Money supply is the total amount of monetary resources available to a country at a given time. Balance of trade is the difference between a country’s exports and imports (or total net exports) at a given time. Aggregate demand is the total demand for goods and services in a country’s economy at a given time.
Question 2
Questions 2–3 refer to this excerpt from a speech given by Ronald Reagan:

From time to time, we have been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. But if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? All of us together, in and out of government, must bear the burden. The solutions we seek must be equitable, with no one group singled out to pay a higher price.

We hear much of special interest groups. Our concern must be for a special interest group that has been too long neglected. It knows no sectional boundaries or ethnic and racial divisions, and it crosses political party lines. It is made up of men and women who raise our food, patrol our streets, man our mines and our factories, teach our children, keep our homes, and heal us when we are sick—professionals, industrialists, shopkeepers, clerks, cabbies, and truckdrivers. They are, in short, "We the people," this breed called Americans.
 
Based on this primary source excerpt, what can we conclude about Reagan's views on self-rule?

A
Government by an elite group is superior to self-rule.
B
Self-rule can be challenging, but it is the best type of government.
C
Society is too complex to be managed by self-rule.
D
Most people are not capable of governing themselves, so there's no way they could help govern a country.
Question 2 Explanation: 
He states that it is tempting to believe that an "elite group is superior," but then rejects this idea and states that "All of us together...must bear the burden." This indicates that he is in favor of self-rule as it best enables a group to find “equitable solutions,” but that it can be a burden, or a challenge.
Question 3
From time to time, we have been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. But if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? All of us together, in and out of government, must bear the burden. The solutions we seek must be equitable, with no one group singled out to pay a higher price.

We hear much of special interest groups. Our concern must be for a special interest group that has been too long neglected. It knows no sectional boundaries or ethnic and racial divisions, and it crosses political party lines. It is made up of men and women who raise our food, patrol our streets, man our mines and our factories, teach our children, keep our homes, and heal us when we are sick—professionals, industrialists, shopkeepers, clerks, cabbies, and truckdrivers. They are, in short, "We the people," this breed called Americans.
 
Who is Reagan referring to when he mentions a "special interest group that has been too long neglected."?

A
Truck drivers
B
Political parties
C
Lobbyists
D
The American people
Question 3 Explanation: 
In the second paragraph, Reagan mentions special interest groups, hinting at their negative influence, before redirecting the focus on a neglected, but presumably important, special interest group. He goes on to describe the group, ultimately naming it as the American people.
Question 4
Austrailia Map

According to this map, the majority of Australia exhibits what climate type?

A
equatorial and temperate
B
tropical and grassland
C
desert and temperate
D
grassland and desert
Question 4 Explanation: 
It can be seen that orange, representing desert, makes up the largest portion of the continent. Yellow, representing grassland, makes up the next largest portion. No other combination covers as much of the continent.
Question 5
This excerpt is from a document entitled National Security Strategy of the United States, published on January 17, 2002.

The security environment confronting the United States today is radically different from what we have faced before. Yet the first duty of the United States Government remains what it always has been: to protect the American people and American interests. It is an enduring American principle that this duty obligates the government to anticipate and counter threats, using all elements of national power, before the threats can do grave damage. The greater the threat, the greater is the risk of inaction – and the more compelling the case for taking anticipatory action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy’s attack. There are few greater threats than a terrorist attack with WMD.

To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively in exercising our inherent right of self-defense. The United States will not resort to force in all cases to preempt emerging threats. Our preference is that nonmilitary actions succeed. And no country should ever use preemption as a pretext for aggression.
 
What is the main idea presented in the excerpt?

A
The U.S. will declare war on any nation that has weapons of mass destruction.
B
The United States will act preemptively with force against all emerging threats.
C
When faced with serious security threats the U.S. may decide to take preemptive military action.
D
Once the U.S. Government has identified details and timing of a planned attack, it will attempt to strike first.
Question 5 Explanation: 
The first paragraph describes growing security threats and the risk of not taking action. The second paragraph states that the U.S. is willing to take preemptive military action when necessary. The excerpt specifically states that the U.S. will not act against all emerging threats, but also that it may act even without knowing the place and time of a potential attack.
Question 6
This excerpt is the 5th Amendment from the Bill of Rights.

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
 
This Amendment provides all of these rights EXCEPT:

A
The right against self incrimination.
B
The right of due process.
C
The right against unreasonable search and seizure.
D
The right to be tried only once.
Question 6 Explanation: 
All of these rights are mentioned in the 5th Amendment except unreasonable search and seizure, which is in the 4th Amendment.
Question 7
The following statement is from George Mason, a delegate to the U.S. Constitutional Convention of 1787:

Whatever power may be necessary for the National Government a certain portion must necessarily be left in the States. It is impossible for one power to pervade the extreme parts of the U.S. so as to carry equal justice to them.
 
Based upon his statement, George Mason’s political views would best be described as

A
Federalist
B
Socialist
C
Anti-Federalist
D
Loyalist
Question 7 Explanation: 
Mason, like other anti-federalists, supported the notion that America would be better served by a governmental structure comparable to what had been established by the Articles of Confederation following the Revolutionary War. He advocated for the majority of America’s governing power to be left in the hands of the individual states rather than be delegated to a strong, overarching federal government.
Question 8
This excerpt is from a 2015 editorial in the Los Angeles Times:

Super PACs, made possible by the Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling, are supposed to be independent political action committees, not extensions of candidates' official campaigns. Yet the Federal Election Commission has been timid—and politically stymied—in defining what constitutes forbidden coordination between candidates and independent groups.

The result is a situation in which, as one legal expert puts it, super PACs function as "alter egos" for official campaign committees without being subject to the same contribution limits and other restrictions. That undermines the argument enunciated by the Court that independent political expenditures create less of a potential for corruption than direct contributions to a candidate's campaign.
 
This excerpt from a 2016 article by David Bossie:

Simply put, since the Citizens United decision there is more free speech in America—and, importantly, no evidence that corporations have been able to buy an election. In fact, the candidates with the biggest super-PAC war chests have often lost. Jeb Bush, who spent more than $100 million before dropping out of the Republican primary on Feb. 20, is just the most recent example.
 
What assumption behind the David Bossie excerpt is not an assumption behind the Los Angeles Times excerpt?

A
There is a need for changing the rules regarding money in American political campaigns.
B
Money is a corrupting force in American politics.
C
The Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United ruling has had no impact on American elections.
D
Spending money to influence an election is a form of free speech.
Question 8 Explanation: 
David Bossie states that spending on elections is a type of free speech, and assumes that his readers will agree with this. The Los Angeles Times editorial doesn't make this same assumption, and focuses instead on the practical implications of the ruling, and the possibility of corruption.
Question 9
State governments have the power to perform which of the following?

A
Conduct elections.
B
Regulate trade between states.
C
Establish post offices.
D
Make treaties.
Question 9 Explanation: 
Under the U.S. system of Federalism, there is a Constitutional division of authority between the federal (national) government and the state governments, with each retaining significant authority. The power to conduct elections is reserved for states. The other powers listed are delegated to the federal government.
Question 10
This excerpt is from an Op-Ed by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, and U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Jacob J. Lew:

Early in his administration, the president took steps to ease restrictions on Cuban-American visits and remittances that opened new pathways for family reunification—and later expanded this to include religious, academic and cultural exchanges for all Americans. Last week’s decision builds boldly on those initial measures and will increase communications, commerce and travel between our two countries. The State Department will lead discussions to restore regular diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time since 1961 and re-establish an embassy in Havana. In our bilateral discussions, the United States will seek to advance cooperation on issues of mutual interest, including counter-narcotics, migration, combating trafficking-in-persons, the Ebola crisis and shared environmental challenges.
 
Which one of the following statements from the excerpt expresses a bias on the part of the authors?

A
“Early in his administration, the president took steps to ease restrictions on Cuban-American visits and remittances that opened new pathways for family reunification—and later expanded this to include religious, academic and cultural exchanges for all Americans.”
B
“Last week’s decision builds boldly on those initial measures and will increase communications, commerce and travel between our two countries.”
C
“The State Department will lead discussions to restore regular diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time since 1961 and re-establish an embassy in Havana.”
D
“In our bilateral discussions, the United States will seek to advance cooperation on issues of mutual interest, including counter-narcotics, migration, combating trafficking-in-persons, the Ebola crisis and shared environmental challenges.”
Question 10 Explanation: 
The use of the word “boldly” in the sentence adds a value judgement to the statement. It indicates the authors’ support for the decision as one that is both courageous and confident. The remaining statements discuss policy initiatives and changes without any included qualifying language.
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