PRAXIS II General Science: Content Knowledge Exam (5435)

The PRAXIS II General Science: Content Knowledge Exam (5435) is designed for individuals who would like to teach science at the secondary school level. You will be given two hours and 30 minutes to complete this 135 question multiple-choice exam. There will be 15 questions, regarding science, technology, and society; 27 questions regarding earth sciences, 27 questions regarding life sciences, 51 questions regarding physical sciences, and 15 questions regarding science methodology, techniques and history.

Science, Technology, and Society
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of medical advances, society and health awareness, consumer products, management of natural resources, human and nature induced hazards, and the impact of science and technology on human affairs and the environment.

The Earth/ Space Sciences
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of astronomy, meteorology, oceanography, historical geology, and physical geology. The astronomy section of the test will cover the earth’s seasons, time zones, units of distance, satellites, space exploration, the structure of the solar system, origins and life cycles of stars, and theories regarding the origin and structure of the universe. The meteorology section of the test will cover forecasting, maps, frontal systems, climax and climatic change; high and low pressure systems, precipitation, air masses, humidity, clouds, winds, the structure and properties of the atmosphere, along with seasonal and latitudinal variation of solar radiation. The oceanography section of the exam will cover the chemistry of seawater, the ocean floor, currents, tides, and waves. The historical geology section of the test will cover fossils, time scales, uniformitarianism, straitgraphy and the history of the earth. The physical geology section of the test will cover minerals, rocks, earthquakes, volcanoes, weathering and erosion, plate tectonics, and the hydrologic cycle.

Life Sciences
The life sciences section of the test will cover ecology, animals, plants, evolution, genetics, and the cell. Under ecology the following topics will be covered: population and social behavior, community structure, ecosystems, energy flow and food webs, biomes, biogeochemical, and chemical cycles. In the animals section of the test the anatomy and physiology of systems, homeostasis, and responses to stimuli will be covered. The structure and function of plans, roots, stems, leaves, transport systems; and sexual and asexual reproduction will be covered in the section on plants. Additional sections of this exam will cover patterns, theories, and evidence of evolution; DNA replication, human genetic disorders, genetic mutations, heredity and genetic classification, protein synthesis, Mendelian and non-Mendelian inheritance and genetic engineering. The structure function of the cell, homeostasis, cell components, mitosis, meiosis, the cell cycle, and cellular bioenergetics will also be included in this exam.

PRAXIS II General Science: Content Knowledge Practice Questions

1. The Food and Drug Administration’s approval labels include:

A. accepts and approves
B. approvable
C. not approvable
D. All of the above

2. Which of the following is not covered by the Safe Medical Device Act of 1990?

A. Warfarin
B. Medical apparatus or implement
C. Medical machine
D. Implant

3. Bioethicists consider questions and controversies about:

A. distribution of treatment
B. authority of medical staff
C. confidentiality issues
D. All of the above

4. Which of the following is not covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act?

A. Employment
B. Public services
C. Health care
D. Transportation

5. Which of the following is not covered by the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act?

A. Reduced hours
B. Medical leave
C. Termination for misconduct
D. Legal separation

Answer Key For General Science Content Knowledge

1. Answer: D

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Its purpose is to ensure the safety, effectiveness, manufacturing, packaging, and labeling of food, medical, and cosmetic products used and/or consumed by humans, as well as food additives and drugs given to animals. The FDA has the power and authority to approve, ban, and control the marketing and distribution of these products. The agency charges fees to the manufacturers who have applied for approval. In return, the FDA is required to meet specific “performance benchmarks” during the approval process.

The FDA doesn’t actually test products; that is the manufacturer’s responsibility. The FDA reviews and verifies study data provided by the product’s sponsor. FDA doctors, statisticians, chemists, pharmacologists, and scientists review the data from clinical trials, manufacturing specifications, drug stability, and labeling and packaging designs. The agency accepts and approves the product (benefits outweigh risks), declares it approvable (minor problems need to be addressed before final approval), or declares the product not approvable because of concerns about the safety and/or effectiveness of the product.

2. Answer: A

The Safe Medical Device Act of 1990 was enacted to protect the public from dangerous devices that cause harm or do not do what the manufacturer claims they do. It requires users of medical devices report to the manufacturer and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services when the item has “caused or contributed to a death, illness, or injury.” This information cannot be used in a civil lawsuit unless the report contained false or misleading data. It requires that the DHHS keep records of how many times a user reports a problem, manufacturers’ responses and actions taken, and the cost of implementation.

The act covers instruments and machines that deliver some kind of health care, i.e., anything that is not a drug or other consumable metabolized by the body. The law describes these devices as “any apparatus, implement, machine, implant, or related article intended for use in diagnosing, treating, curing, or preventing disease or intended to affect the body’s function or structure.” This is a broad definition that includes virtually all medical devices used in patient care and treatment.

3. Answer: D

Medical ethics began with the Hippocratic Oath and its admonishment to “first do no harm.” In 1846 the American Medical Association (AMA) adopted its Code of Ethics. The horror of Nazi experiments during World War II was the impetus for the Nuremberg Code, which deals with the concept of informed consent from participants involved in any scientific or medical research study. During the 1970s there was an explosion of scientific breakthroughs in areas like genetic screening, fetal research, and gene splicing that contributed to an increased interest in medical and scientific ethics.

The International Association of Bioethics defines bioethics as “the study of the ethical, social, legal, philosophical, and other related issues arising in health care and the biological sciences.” Bioethics considers moral and ethical issues stemming from clinical practice, research, technology, and the use of limited funds. Bioethicists consider questions and controversies about the type, availability, and distribution of treatment; the authority of the patient, medical staff, and other interested parties; the concept of confidentiality; the parameters of intervention; and the consequences of genetic research and its potentially life-altering applications.

4. Answer: C

After years of effort by many different civil rights groups working together for a common cause, Congress passed The Americans with Disabilities Act. ADA became law on July 26, 1990. This landmark civil rights legislation is designed to prevent discrimination based on disability, which is defined as “a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity.” The act has several sections that address employment, public services, transportation, accommodations, telecommunications, and miscellaneous legal and technical provisions.

ADA gives disabled people legal recourse if they are discriminated against in these areas. However, many advocates believe one of the major weaknesses of ADA is that almost the entire burden of enforcement is on the disabled. The Department of Justice, the federal agency responsible for investigating and prosecuting all civil rights violations, either ignores ADA claims or is unable to pursue them due to budget constraints and/or inadequate staffing. So it falls to the individual to hire an attorney and sue the offender in civil court. Many believe this was not the intention of Congress when the law was passed.

5. Answer: C

The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985, commonly known as COBRA, mandates that covered companies offer qualified employees and immediate family members the opportunity to temporarily continue group health insurance coverage for a set period of time when a qualifying event occurs. The company must have twenty or more employees and offer the same coverage available to current employees. The former employee is responsible for the entire cost of the coverage, including any portion the company may have been paying. Qualifying COBRA events include:

Strike, lockout, and reduced hours
Medical leave and approved leave of absence
Death of the employee
Divorce or legal separation
Dependent child reaches age at which, under plan stipulations, coverage stops
Employee becomes eligible for Medicare
While terminations cannot be the result of gross misconduct, voluntary resignation, involuntary discharge, and a reduction in force due to a slowdown in available work are all qualifying events.