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Study Guide Quiz
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Circle the best answer for each of the following questions.


Which statement best characterizes the nature of science?
A)the laws and theories of science are based on belief and speculation
B)science is a living body of knowledge, not a set of unchanging ideas
C)science has done a poor job of explaining physical phenomena and has failed to improve the quality of human life
D)science is superior to other aspects of human culture such as religion, art, and music

A scientific law
A)is seldom based upon experimental evidence since it can never be considered to be absolutely true
B)usually states a regularity or relationship that describes how nature behaves in a certain specific way
C)explains why certain phenomena in nature take place
D)is known to be true beyond a shadow of a doubt

The ptolemaic system fulfilled the requirements of a scientific theory because
A)its explanations of celestial motions, based on observations, resulted in testable predictions
B)it was presented openly for public inspection when included in Ptolemy’s Almagest
C)it was believed to represent an accurate view of the universe and solar system by religious leaders and learned scholars of the time
D)it provided a “common sense” explanation concerning the observed motions of heavenly bodies

The principle known as Occam's razor states that
A)the most complicated scientific explanation for a given phenomenon is likely to be correct
B)a scientific hypothesis that makes common sense is most likely to be correct
C)scientific inquiry can never lead to a complete understanding of the natural world because it is impossible to precisely measure any physical parameter
D)the simplest scientific explanation for a phenomenon is most likely to be correct

Newton’s discovery of the law of gravity was dependent upon
A)the discovery of the planet Neptune
B)an understanding of the shape of the earth
C)the development of the copernican system of the solar system
D)the law that states what goes up must come down

The time it takes a planet to make one complete trip around the sun is called the planet’s

The modern version of the copernican system is considered to be correct because
A)most people believe that the copernican system is correct, and the majority viewpoint rules
B)predictions of planetary motions based on the copernican system proved to be correct
C)there is direct evidence that the earth rotates and the planets revolve around the sun
D)a committee of scientists has certified that the copernican system is correct

When observable evidence does not agree with a scientific theory
A)the truthfulness of the evidence must be questioned since a theory is never wrong
B)the evidence is ignored and the theory remains valid
C)the theory is reduced in status to a hypothesis
D)the theory must be modified or discarded

Spring tides
A)occur only in the spring
B)occur when the sun and moon are in line with the earth
C)have a low range between high and low water
D)occur when the sun and moon are 90° apart relative to the earth

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Refer to the above drawing to answer multiple choice questions 10-12


The points corresponding to the positions of the tacks are called

The sun would occupy a position
A)at either point F1 or F2
B)at the center of the ellipse
C)at the pencil
D)somewhere on the circumference of the ellipse

The drawing is a visual representaion of
A)Newton’s law of gravity
B)Kepler’s first law of planetary motion
C)Kepler’s second law of planetary motion
D)Kepler’s third law of planetary motion

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Refer to the above drawing to answer multiple choice questions 13-15. Let the amount of time it takes the planet to travel the distance from a to b, from c to d, and from e to f to be the same.


Section C is
A)greater in area than section A
B)greater in area than section B
C)lesser in area than either section A or B
D)the same in area as section A or B

The planet would be traveling the fastest along that portion of its orbit represented by the distance between the letters.
A)a and b
B)c and d
C)e and f
D)none of the answers is correct because of the planet’s speed remains constant along its orbit

If the average orbit radius of the planet is increased, the period of the planet will
C)remain unchanged
D)decrease or increase depending on the mass of the planet

The Physical Universe, 11eOnline Learning Center

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