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Added on: 09/19/2007 @ 5:40:07 PM
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Civic Literacy Report

These things come out every so often, and I figured I would post the link so anyone who wanted to could see how they stacked up against the college kids of today.

It's a 60 question quiz on "America's history and institutions". The average for college seniors who took the quiz was 54.2%
View External Link [www.americancivicliteracy.org]
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matt.jpgMatt - Ombudsman
09/19/2007 @ 05:59:56 PM
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Not to toot my own horn here, but *beep, beep*.

I scored 54/60 for 90%, but to be fair, I am a few years older than most college seniors, so I've had more time to come across this stuff, and I have a strong interest in the subject matter so I've learned most of this on my own.

But, I guess that's kind of the point of this quiz, that a lot of this stuff (though probably not all in my opinion) should have been taught in high school and college, so students should know it regardless of their age or interests.
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newalex.jpgAlex - But let history remember, that as free men, we chose to make it so!
09/19/2007 @ 11:11:30 PM
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I only got 40 out of 60. I attribute about 4 wrong simply to taking the thing too fast cause I was in a hurry and therefore didn't read all the choices (took this quickly before going out to Buffalo Wild Wings for supper), and then there were another 7 or so that I should've gotten right. I'm impressed with 54 because I think there were more than 6 that I had no clue on. Honestly my bad score doesn't bother me much, because some of these were straight memorization questions. And I've actually always been really good at those, but in this day and age you can google those things in .5 seconds so I don't think all the trivia type memorizing is really that important. Also, I have no doubt that had I taken this 3 years ago I would've done better since some of the ones I missed were things that I "learned" in college. Plus I beat the average anyway. Still, given sufficient time and motivation (both of which were lacking) I probably should've had 50 or there abouts.
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Alex messed with this at 09/20/2007 1:01:35 pm
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8821 Posts
09/20/2007 @ 12:47:20 AM
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40/60 here too. My thoughts in the morning.
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scott.jpgScott - No, I did not change your screen saver settings
09/20/2007 @ 07:27:33 AM
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I got 45/60. I will expand on this later as well, maybe.
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face.bmpCarlos44ec - 2078 Posts
09/20/2007 @ 10:00:13 AM
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I didn't do the best [excuses suck!]
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Carlos44ec messed with this at 09/20/2007 10:25:47 am
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8821 Posts
09/20/2007 @ 10:41:28 AM
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Ok, basically I got the same as Alex and agree what he had to say about it. I went into the test expecting "Jaywalking" type questions. (i.e. Insanely easy so anyone that knew the existence of newspapers would know. Like when Jay can go to a campus and ask who the current U.S. president is and find 10 students that don't know.)

Those were way more trivia type then I expected. Also some of them were poorly worded, there were like 3 of the answers that could be right sometimes.

This was way too detailed, I was expecting "How many years does a senator serve per term?" type questions. These were way too "Trivial Pursuit" type questions to imply the average person should know them.

edit: Also, for some odd reason, when I first started I flipped into "they are trying to trip me up" mode.
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Jeremy perfected this at 09/20/2007 10:59:25 am
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8821 Posts
09/20/2007 @ 10:51:44 AM
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For example, the "Why is the Military considered a public good?" question (which I did get right, unless I'm remembering incorrectly in which case ignore the following rant).

The answer "a resident can benefit from it without directly paying for it." is worded sort of stupidly. Sure, we don't cut a check to the Army, the DOT, our Congressmen, ect, but we pay for the military as "directly" as anything else.

At any rate what does how it's payed for effect anything? It's a public good because we all get equal "use" of it.
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scott.jpgScott - On your mark...get set...Terrible!
09/20/2007 @ 12:30:12 PM
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but if you don't pay your taxes, you still are protected by the military. I remember that definition specifically from ECON 104 for Ed Young.
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vignette.bmpCarlos44ec - "Always remember that you are unique. Just like everybody else."
09/20/2007 @ 12:40:24 PM
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you're still protected by the military because you will be under the "protection" of the powers of the IRS
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Carlos44ec edited this at 09/21/2007 9:54:51 am
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - I hate our freedoms
09/20/2007 @ 12:56:12 PM
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Oh, I see. I guess I didn't think about it like just not paying at all cause one way or another you "pay" your taxes. That makes sense though.
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sarah.jpgSarah - So's your face
09/20/2007 @ 07:46:57 PM
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That was hard. I got 42/60. No comments to add but that it may have hurt my brain. I should go back to school.
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thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - Ombudsman
09/20/2007 @ 08:19:31 PM
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According to Principles of Economics 2nd edition by N. Gregory Mankiw (N. Gregs to his friends), a public good is a good that is neither excludable nor rival. In otherwords, no one can be prevented from using the good, and one person's use of the good doesn't reduce anyone else's ability to use the good.
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - Always thinking of, but never about, the children.
09/20/2007 @ 10:33:10 PM
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Where would overfishing public waters fall into that definition then?
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matt.jpgMatt - Washington Bureau Chief
09/20/2007 @ 11:05:08 PM
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It would be considered a common resource, as it is rival, but not excludable.

The other two categories are: private goods (rival, excludable), and natural monopolies (non-rival, excludable).

As I was looking through the examples in the book, I found it interesting that something like a road could be put into all four categories depending on the circumstances.

Congested toll road = Private Good
Uncongested toll road = Natural Monopoly
Congested nontoll road = Common Resource
Uncongested nontoll road = Public Good
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Matt screwed with this at 09/20/2007 11:06:06 pm
thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - Washington Bureau Chief
11/23/2008 @ 08:55:47 AM
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I saw this article about how a group of elected officials scored poorly on a U.S. civics quiz (they averaged 44%, ordinary citizens scored 49%). It reminded me of this thread I posted last year, and sure enough, the quiz was from the same group.

The quiz is shorter this year and has the same type of questions (some may even be, essentially, the same as last year). If you want to give it a try go here: http://www.americancivicliteracy.org/resources/quiz.aspx

NOTE: Don't read the Yahoo! article if you plan on taking the quiz, as it gives away some questions and answers (I saw one question, but knew the answer anyway).
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Matt perfected this at 11/23/2008 9:01:03 am
thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - Ombudsman
11/23/2008 @ 08:59:50 AM
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Matt Wrote - 09/19/2007 @ 05:59:56 PM
Not to toot my own horn here, but *beep, beep*.


emoticon 33/33 for me.
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8821 Posts
11/23/2008 @ 11:40:33 AM
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29/33, but I way over-thought a couple I knew.
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scott.jpgScott - No, I did not change your screen saver settings
11/24/2008 @ 08:55:18 AM
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26/33. The questions that were longer I sort of just picked an answer for without thinking too hard.

edit: I already found 3 that I flat out goofed on. For crying out loud, I pretty much have the gettysburg address memorized, how did I not answer with that answer!?
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Scott edited this at 11/24/2008 8:59:02 am
vignette.bmpCarlos44ec - 2078 Posts
11/24/2008 @ 10:03:25 AM
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I bit it hard. Might be the lack of coffee or maybe I'm just "ignorate"
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images.jpgcraig - is going to test the free agent market.
11/24/2008 @ 12:38:57 PM
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31/33

Clearly I should have read the the thread first, stupid Gettysburg address!
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