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Multiple Choice
Identify the choice that best completes the statement or answers the question.
 

 1. 

What is a fossil?
a.
any dead organism
b.
the preserved remains or traces of an organism
c.
a perfect copy of a rock
 

 2. 

How do most fossils form?
a.
Living things die and their remains are quickly buried by sediments.
b.
The hard parts of an organism dry out in the air.
c.
The soft parts of an organism change to stone.
 

 3. 

The relative age of a rock is
a.
its age compared to the ages of other rocks.
b.
less than the age of the fossils the rock contains.
c.
the number of years since the rock formed.
 

 4. 

The law of superposition states that, in horizontal layers of sedimentary rock,
a.
the youngest layers are on the bottom
b.
all layers are the same age
c.
the oldest layers are at the bottom and the younger layers are on top
 

 5. 

The fossils of organisms that were widely distributed but only lived during a short period of time are called
a.
trace fossils.
b.
petrified fossils.
c.
index fossils.
 

 6. 

Gaps in rock layers are called ____.
a.
unconformities
c.
half-lives
b.
index fossils
 

 7. 

The time it takes for half of the radioactive atoms in a sample of a radioactive element to decay is the element’s
a.
relative age.
b.
potassium-argon date.
c.
half-life
 

 8. 

The geological principle stating that the same processes that operate today also operated in the past is called
a.
mechanical weathering.
b.
chemical weathering.
c.
uniformitarianism.
 

 9. 

Igneous rocks that form ____ the Earth are intrusive.
a.
above
c.
on
b.
inside
 
 
nar001-1.jpg
Figure 4-1
 

 10. 

The ____ in Figure 4-1 shows how one rock changes into another.
a.
rock cycle
c.
formation of crystals
b.
melting process
 

 11. 

Igneous rocks form from ____ when it cools.
a.
magma
c.
both a and b
b.
lava
 

 12. 

The molten material deep inside Earth from which igneous rocks form is called ____.
a.
magma
c.
neither a nor b
b.
lava
 

 13. 

Lava that cools quickly forms ____ rocks.
a.
extrusive metamorphic
c.
intrusive metamorphic
b.
extrusive igneous
 

 14. 

Heat and pressure deep beneath Earth’s surface can change any rock into
a.
chemical rock.
b.
gemstones.
c.
metamorphic rock.
 

 15. 

Sedimentary rocks are ____.
a.
formed from magma
b.
a type of foliated igneous rock
c.
formed when loose materials become pressed or cemented together or when minerals form from solutions
 

 16. 

A rock is always ____.
a.
made of molten material
b.
a mixture of minerals, organic matter, volcanic glass, or other materials
c.
formed by heat and pressure
 

 17. 

When magma cools deep inside Earth, ____ igneous rocks are formed.
a.
extrusive
c.
intrusive
b.
fine-grained
 

 18. 

Soil is a mixture of weathered rock, mineral fragments, water, air and ____.
a.
sand
c.
moss
b.
decayed organic matter
 

 19. 

The layer of soil that contains the most organic material is called the ____ horizon.
a.
A
c.
C
b.
B
 

 20. 

When earthworms add their wastes to the soil, then die and decay in the soil, they are contributing to the formation of
a.
silt.
b.
litter.
c.
humus.
 

 21. 

All of the following cause mechanical weathering EXCEPT ____.
a.
carbonic acid
c.
burrowing animals
b.
tree roots
 

 22. 

Litter often covers the ____ horizon.
a.
A
c.
C
b.
B
 

 23. 

Chemical weathering is more rapid in a ____ climate.
a.
warm, dry
c.
cold, dry
b.
warm, wet
 

 24. 

Mechanical weathering is more rapid in a ____ climate.
a.
dry
c.
cold
b.
hot
 

 25. 

Ice wedging causes mechanical weathering of rock by means of
a.
freezing and thawing of water
b.
plant growth.
c.
animal actions.
 

 26. 

The organic matter in humus is made of ____.
a.
dead worms
c.
both a and b
b.
leaves, stems, twigs
 

 27. 

Minerals found in the B horizon were dissolved in water and carried there by a process called ____.
a.
oxidation
c.
weathering
b.
leaching
 

 28. 

Mechanical weathering ____.
a.
breaks apart rocks by physical processes
b.
occurs when chemical reactions dissolve or change the minerals in rocks
c.
occurs when iron is exposed to oxygen and water
 

 29. 

When water mixes with carbon dioxide gas in the air or soil, ____ forms.
a.
carbonic acid
c.
calcite
b.
lactic acid
 

 30. 

A mineral is inorganic, which means that
a.
it was never alive
b.
it has materials made by humans.
c.
it has parts of living things.
 

 31. 

The repeating pattern of a mineral’s particles forms a solid called a(an)
a.
crystal.
b.
element.
c.
compound.
 

 32. 

What is the hardest known mineral?
a.
talc
b.
quartz
c.
diamond
 

 33. 

Most minerals do NOT split apart evenly. Instead, they have a characteristic type of
a.
cleavage.
b.
fracture.
c.
crystal.
 

 34. 

The softest mineral on the Mohs hardness scale is
a.
quartz.
b.
talc.
c.
apatite.
 

 35. 

Muscovite mica will peel off in flat sheets. This is an example of the physical characteristic called ____.
a.
hardness
c.
cleavage
b.
streak
 



 
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