PRAXIS II Government/Political Science Exam (5931)

The PRAXIS II Government/Political Science Exam (5931) is designed for individuals who would like to teach government and political science at the secondary level. You will be given to two hours to complete this 120 multiple-choice exam. There will be 20 questions in the comparative politics section, 24 questions regarding United States politics, 34 questions regarding the United States government, 19 questions about civil rights, and 26 questions regarding the development and theory of the United States Constitution.

Comparative Politics and International Relations
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of the definition and process of public policy, ideologies such as nationalism, fascism and Marxism, the relationship between supranational and national organizations, economic systems such as Communism, Socialism, capitalism, and mixed systems, the nature of political systems such as presidential systems, parliamentary systems, authoritarian systems, and democratic systems.

United States Politics
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of public opinion, political socialization, political participation, campaigns and elections, interest groups, and political parties. Under the public opinion section of the test your knowledge of the impact of opinion on the political process, mass media and the government, measurements of public opinion, and types of public groups and individuals will be assessed. The political socialization section of the test will cover liberalism, conservatism, American political culture, and utilization of the media to presents political values. The political participation section of the test will cover protests, petitions, grass-roots organizations, financial contributions to campaigns, being a candidate, and voting. The campaigns and elections section of the test will cover candidate nomination and recruitment, types and structures of elections, funding of campaigns, voting, and state and federal laws concerning elections.

United States Government: Federal, State, and Local Institutions
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of the relationships between federal, state and local branches of government, the responsibility of state and local government for education, health, public safety, and interstate relations. The judicial section of the test will cover legal appeals, provisions and reviews, legal power and limitations, legal reasoning standards, the politics of judicial selection, and the qualifications for consideration to be elected as a judge. The section of the test covering the legislative branch of government will include qualifications for election, limitations, powers, and roles of the members of the legislative branch of government. The executive branch section of the exam will cover the role of bureaucracy, qualification and selection of bureaucrats, qualifications for the presidency, and limitations and powers of the president of the United States.

United States Constitution
This section of the exam will assess your knowledge of the Constitution, constitutional convention, and the foundations of constitutional development. In the constitutional section of the exam the Bill of Rights, amendments, ratification of amendments, separation of power, checks and balances within the government and, federalism will be covered. The constitutional convention section of the test will cover compromises, issues, and participants in the constitutional convention. The foundations of constitutional development section will cover 16th through 18th-century political philosophy, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, Anglo-Saxon tradition and common law.

Civil Rights and Civil Liberties
The civil rights portion of the test will cover civil rights, civil liberties and, landmark civil rights decisions.

PRAXIS II Government Political Science Practice Questions

1. The responsibilities of being a citizen include:

A. paying taxes
B. obeying the laws
C. voting
D. All of the above

2. Forms of government include:

A. republic
B. theocracy
C. dictatorship
D. All of the above

3. The motto of the United States is E Pluribus Unum. Which of the following does it not symbolize?

A. Unity
B. A second chance
C. A closed society
D. Combination of many nationalities

4. Which of the following is not part of socialism?

A. Free-market economy
B. Transitional economic system
C. Government ownership of most industries
D. Government provision of health and welfare benefits

5. Which mass media source is the latest addition to public communication?

A. Books
B. Blogs
C. Internet
D. Magazines

Answer Key For Government Political Science

1. Answer: D

The American Heritage College Dictionary defines citizenship as “the status of a citizen with its attendant duties, rights, and privileges”; citizen is “a person owing loyalty to and entitled by birth or naturalization to the protection of a state or nation.” These definitions need to be used in tandem because both are important to understanding the term. Teaching citizenship means explaining the benefits of pledging allegiance to a country, but also outlining the responsibilities that accompany such privileges and protection of that country. Specific responsibilities include paying taxes, serving in the armed forces when needed, and obeying the laws as enacted by duly elected governing bodies, even when out of the country.

Moral and ethical duties are a little more difficult to define. A citizen should be committed to his community, exercise his right to vote, work to improve the quality of life for everyone, and offer constructive criticism when warranted. A citizen has a responsibility to respect and be prepared to defend his rights and the rights of others against those who would abuse or deny those rights.

2. Answer: D

A REPUBLIC is governed by representatives freely elected by the people for a specific period of time. In a democratic republic the majority of the population has the opportunity to help decide who will govern their country.

A PARLIAMENTARY form of government is run by representatives who are chosen from a particular political party. Each stays in office as long as his party is in power.

In a MONARCHY, the king or queen has power because of his or her lineage. The title is passed through family ties. Sometimes the monarch is merely a figurehead, while at other times he or she has absolute power.

A THEOCRACY is a system of government based on the tenets of one religion or an agent of a particular deity. Frequently, other religious beliefs are not allowed or tolerated.

A DICTATORSHIP is rule by one person who has not been elected. He may have come to power as the result of a coup or revolution of some kind. Force is frequently used to maintain control through fear and intimidation.

3. Answer: C

E Pluribus Unum means “from many, one.” Found on coins and paper money and seen on public buildings, the phrase was first used to unify the original thirteen colonies during the American Revolution. As the country grew and opened its doors to welcome immigrants from hundreds of different nations, it came to symbolize what this country is about: a second chance that comes from hard work and respect for the differences that make up the American experience.

These new citizens found ways to assimilate into a free and open society while keeping the best of their native lands. American culture is a combination of traditions, foods, arts, and religious practices of many different nationalities. Never in history has another nation been created from so many different languages, histories, and cultures. What is the glue that holds all the various parts together? Alexis de Tocqueville decided it is the unique political participation system formed from the belief that government derives its power from the people as defined in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.

4. Answer: A

CAPITALISM is a free-market economy. In this free-enterprise system, people own businesses and property and buy goods and services. Because of the establishment of monetary systems and legal rules, mercantilism provided the foundation for the formation of capitalism.

MERCANTILISM relied on government regulation to control the flow of goods and services between rivals. The worth of the economy and the power of the government were based on how much gold and silver was in the treasury. This led to trade treaties designed to increase the possession of precious metals.

SOCIALISM is considered a transitional state between communism and capitalism. The government owns most large industries and provides mass education, as well as health and welfare benefits. The citizens are given some choices, but control of systems and structures rests in the hands of the government body. The Soviet Union is an example of centralized socialism. Denmark and Sweden are examples of noncommunist socialism.

COMMUNISM is a system where the community owns all assets, and resources are divided according to need. In practice, the government owns all property and industries and controls production allocation based on strict class divisions and status.

5. Answer: B

The American Heritage College Dictionary defines mass media as, “a means of public communication to a large audience.” The term was coined in the 1920s when radio networks and some newspapers and magazines become available nationwide and began to influence society at large, rather than just the local population. In today’s world, news and entertainment can be broadcast in a variety of formats, some of which are printed (books, newspapers, magazines) and some of which are electronic (radio, television, films, the Internet).

The Internet, podcasts, and blogs have had a profound effect on society. Information is abundant and easily accessible. Individuals use it, and companies rely on it. People are turning to the World Wide Web for news of the day, analyses of current events, health information, financial transactions, and security. With the advent of so many electronic formats, it is critical students are taught to dissect and discriminate the digital data and learn to scrutinize the sources from which it comes. They need to understand the benefits and the risks and how to evaluate information found on the Internet, rather than accepting all information at face value.