Issue 1, Non-Fiction



The following exam will test your understanding of the material through application of both critical and quantitative reasoning skills in demonstrating your knowledge of the subject matter.  

The exam is composed of 3 sections: Multiple choice, Vocabulary, and the Essay. A wrong answer will result in subtraction of one fifth (1/5) of a point UNLESS there is more than one correct answer in which case the point value subtracted will be equal to 1/(6-x) where x is the number of correct answers. If there is more than one correct answer, but only one correct answer is selected, the point value awarded will be equal to 3/(2x) where x is the number of correct answers. If your score for a given section is more than 2 times the average of the two scores of the other sections, the value awarded for each correctly answered question of the highest difficulty level in that section will be reduced by a variable percentage starting at 3% and increasing by 2% per correctly answered question. These deductions will only apply in the calculation of your total score, NOT your score for the section, which will be calculated with the original point values. 

The essay section is scored on the basis of 12 criteria: style, theme, content, words, grammar, form, vocabulary, spelling, length, argument, ideas, and quality. Each of these is assigned a value 1-12. Scoring of the vocabulary section is dependent on your performance in the essay section. If the sum of your point values for words, vocabulary, and theme is greater than 18, your vocabulary section is scored on a scale of 1 to 3. If the sum of the aforementioned point values is 16 or 17, your vocabulary section is marked with written comments. If the sum is below 15, your entire test will receive a score of 0.

DO NOT consult any textbooks or outside materials, unless you have forgotten something and must draw information such as a name or concept from one of your books. If you must consult a book or personal notes, approach your test proctor before doing so, and inform her that you are very sorry and have had a hard week. 

If you require scrap paper or a calculator on the day of your test, you must inform the test site coordinator before the day of your test. 


Who or what is Cerberus? 

o A three-headed dog 

o A mythological beast 

o A hallucinogenic plant extract 

o None of the above 

o All of the above 

Who is the god of sleep? 

o Morpheus 

o Orpheus 

o Cerberus 

o Hypnos 

o Zeus 

What is the significance of Cerberus? 

o As metaphor for cerebral experience 

o Narrative theme of a living being gaining access to the underworld by overcoming Cerberus 

o Imagery 

o Cerberus makes you think about mortality, which is your greatest fear 

o Cerberus is not significant 

What is most appealing about mythology as a topic? 

o It reminds one of childhood and yet one feels sophisticated knowing about it 

o It is symbolic 

o It is easy to understand 

o Myths are literal accounts of real events 

o It has sentimental value because one of your first books was about mythology 

In a group of 100 people, 54 of them are younger than 30, 4 of them are older than 80, and 30 of them were born before April, but only 2 of them have the same birthday. How many times must a father retrieve his daughter from an emergency room before the daughter has turned 20? 

o Three 

o Four 

o Five 

o Six 

o Seven 

If the cube in Figure 1 was rotated 90 degrees such that side A was facing upward, which of the following is NOT a person who has seen you cry? 

o Sacha 

o Babe 

o Gabe 

o Marbs 

o Doctor Fay 

Does meaning matter? 

o Yes 

o No 

o It depends on the context 

o I don’t remember 

o Cerberus 


Respond to ONE of the following prompts. Include a clear argument and support your claims with evidence. Write your essay on the back of this sheet. 

  1. Is it possible to reconcile claims of intellectual curiosity with total lack of commitment to engaging with art and information? In your response, address the question of whether “disorders” (e.g. ADHD, bipolar, anxiety) are merely excuses for avoiding intellectual challenges and responsibilities. 
  1. What justifies your continually selfish and insensitive behavior toward your mother, if anything? (If you choose to argue that there is no justification, explain your reasoning and offer critical insight on what would constitute a sufficient apology or expression of guilt.) 
  1. If you’re so afraid of death, why do you take such bad care of your body? 


Write the definition of each word in the space provided.

bruxism involuntary teeth grinding 
gelastic of, like, or pertaining to laughter 
hodiernal of, like or pertaining to the present day 
clear slang word meaning the drug/weed equivalent of “sober” that me and Babe made up 
humor high temperature protective sphere 
parenthood mental state characterized by a heightened sensitivity to a ringing phone 
lie to recline in a bed as the downer tags the upper out 
awaken to sit up suddenly, alarmed by silence 
episode 1. fit of laughter; 2. concerning memory lapse; 3. quivering fingers against a wet forehead 
love steady fingers aggressively clasping quivering fingers 
mnesic of, like or pertaining to memory