Posted by: Bill | November 20, 2008

Civic Literacy

Like many of you out there, I will take just about any test/quiz for which I have time. Today, one popped up on my radar for one of my favorite topics-civic literacy/awareness. I have been known to get upset about the average citizen’s lack of such knowledge. While I understand that our first priority in life is to ourselves and our families, most of us remain painfully ignorant of how the government functions or, to be more accurate, functions poorly.

In some ways, this quiz was more difficult than others I have taken because it includes a splash of economics and some history. On the other hand, it does not require the test-taker to know all 27 amendments. I was disappointed with myself for not getting a perfect score. However, the average person scoring about 50% doesn’t worry me that much due to the trivial nature of some of the questions.

Civics Quiz Results

Which one did I get wrong? The one on the Lincoln-Douglas debates which is embarrassing considering I am reading Team of Rivals.

Take the quiz yourself and let me know your thoughts (H/T to The Core Knowledge Blog).


  1. […] Guess This Should Not Have Surprised Me By Bill You remember that Civic Literary quiz from last week? The elected officials scored worse than the average Joe/Jane. The article does not […]

  2. Well you are smarter than your father in law. I only got 24 correct.
    3 answers I had no clue total guess (wrong)
    6 answers I was torn between 2 choices and got them all wrong.

    1 of them (33 about revenue and spending), I took as a trick question. If they said “ave ” tax per person equal spending per person I would agree. I was reading it as tax paid per person actually paying, and since not everyone pays taxes, I concluded it couldn’t be the right answer.

  3. I agree with you that some of the questions were not worded well. I remember the one you are talking about and, after narrowing it to 2 options, guessed the right one.

    As a developer of standardized tests, I would give this one a low grade overall based on the wording of many of the questions. You still did much better than the average in their sample.

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