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Multiple Choice Quiz
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Science can be thought of as
A)a set of laws and theories based on religious beliefs and speculation.
B)an example of a human endeavor that has failed to provide any practical or useful results.
C)a body of knowledge that is tentative in nature and subject to change as more evidence is gathered.
D)as the best way to understand the nature and meaning of the arts.

A scientific law or theory is discarded if
A)no one uses it in a scientific paper for over fifty years.
B)after a certain number of years, at which time a scientist may try to reestablish it with new tests.
C)a committee of scientists says so.
D)it is contradicted by new experimental findings.

The distinction between law and theory as used by scientists is
A)a law is just a convenient hypothesis whereas a theory is known to be true.
B)a law tells what happens, and a theory tells us why it happens.
C)there really is no distinction between law and theory as used by practicing scientists.
D)scientific laws always conform to "common sense" whereas scientific theories rarely do.

Which object below moves the fastest through the sky relative to the fixed stars?
C)the sun
D)the moon

Constellations consist of
A)stars determined by astronomers to be of about the same age.
B)stars grouped in terms of distance from the earth.
C)planets found in our solar system.
D)stars in the same region of the sky, as viewed from earth.

A planet visible to the naked eye is
D)the moon.

A planet unknown in ancient times is

The Ptolemaic system was ultimately rejected by the scientific community because
A)its explanations of celestial motions, based on observations, resulted in testable predictions.
B)it was never openly presented in book form, rather being passed down among members of a secret astrological society.
C)it was believed to represent an accurate view of the universe and solar system by religious leaders and science and religion can never agree.
D)a simpler system, with greater explanatory power, that matched the empirical data more accurately, was developed.

Kepler was able to refine the Copernican system by analyzing
A)the extensive and accurate observations made by Tycho Brahe.
B)the movement of a comet which mimicked the movements of planets.
C)when he discovered that combinations of circles forming looped orbits.
D)when he discovered that planets are all the same distance apart from one another.

The path a planet makes around the sun is called the planet's

The Copernican system was accepted by many scientists in the late 1700s because
A)most people believed that the Copernican system is correct, and the majority viewpoint rules in democratic societies.
B)predictions of planetary motions based on the Copernican system, as refined by Kepler, Newton, and others were verified empirically and proved to be incredibly accurate, even allowing the discovery of a new planet.
C)direct evidence that the earth rotates and the planets revolve around the sun came with the launching of the first unmanned rockets.
D)a committee of scientists certified that the Copernican system is correct in 1781.

The speed of a planet in its elliptical orbit around the sun
A)is constant.
B)is lowest when the planet is farthest from the sun.
C)is lowest when the planet is closest to the sun.
D)varies, but not with respect to the planet's distance from the sun.

According to Kepler's third law, the time needed for a satellite to complete an orbit around a particular planet
A)is the same for all the satellites around the particular planet.
B)depends on the gravitational constant, which varies from planet to planet.
C)is independent of the planet's distance from the sun.
D)can be calculated if we know the distance of the satellite from the planet and the period and average orbital radius of a second satellite orbiting around the same planet.

It is very unlikely that Newton would have discovered the law of gravity if
A)the planets Uranus and Neptune had not been found first.
B)he had lived in the 1300s when the Ptolemaic system was generally accepted by all scientists.
C)he had ignored the fact that the earth is not a perfect sphere.
D)the law that states what goes up must come down had been discovered first.

The law of gravity
A)is applicable to all objects with mass.
B)accounts for all known forces.
C)holds only in the solar system.
D)was demonstrated by Copernicus to vary from planet to planet.

A fundamental force
A)can be broken down into numerous smaller supplementary forces.
B)is an imaginary concept that Kepler used to explain how the planets were pulled along in their orbits around the sun.
C)cannot be explained in terms of any other force; gravity is one of the four fundamental forces currently accepted by the modern scientific community.
D)is a force that acts alone on an object without interference from any other force.

The spin of the earth
A)forces the axis to flip periodically, thus causing the seasons.
B)causes the earth to revolve around the sun.
C)creates a slight bulge at the creator and a flattening at the poles.
D)is due to the moon's gravitational pull.

The longitude exactly on the opposite side of the earth from Greenwich, England, is

A latitude of 80° north corresponds to
A)the north pole.
B)the region in the tropics, near but not exactly at the equator.
C)an area in the arctic, but not exactly at the north pole.
D)the prime meridian.

The earth is approximately, though not perfectly, spherical because
A)gravity tends to squeeze any planet into a spherical shape, causing bumps and depressions, such as mountains and ocean basins, to smooth out.
B)constant tidal changes pushing the earth one way and then another even it out into a sphere.
C)the spinning of earth naturally drives it into a sphere, otherwise it might well be elliptical in shape.
D)a spherical earth encounters less friction as it orbits around the sun.

Tides occur because
A)the moon, and to a lesser extent the sun, attract different parts of the earth to different extents at different times.
B)the moon is unstable and continuously “falling” toward the earth.
C)the spinning of the earth cause the water slosh in the basins of the oceans.
D)Mercury and Venus daily modulate the gravitational field of the sun reaching the earth.

Neap tides
A)occur only when the moon is a full moon.
B)occur only when the moon is on the opposite side of the earth from the place under consideration.
C)are tides that are especially high, and always at least 10 meters high by definition.
D)occur when the tide-raising forces of the sun and moon partially cancel out.

All of the following are basic units used in the International System except

The International System (SI)
A)uses units derived from the older metric system and therefore is commonly referred to as the metric system still.
B)is commonly used in many European countries, but has yet to be adopted by the scientific community.
C)is less accurate than the tried and true British system of units and measurements.
D)is flawed because it does not distinguish between masses and weights.

Which of the following is the longest?
A)20 cm
B)20 inches
C)200 mm
D).02 m

The Physical Universe, 11eOnline Learning Center

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