Final Exam Practice Quiz
1. What is the chief source of energy for the hydrologic cycle?
a) Gravity
b) Radioactivity
c) The Sun
d) Water
2. Which is the correct sequence of processes as water moves from the ocean to land in the hydrologic
a) Evaporation, Condensation, Precipitation, Runoff
b) Evaporation, Precipitation, Runoff, Condensation
c) Runoff, Precipitation, Evaporation, Condensation
d) Precipitation, Evaporation, Condensation, Runoff
3. What happens to most of the water that falls as rain?
a) It stays in the soil
b) It runs off the land in rivers
c) It returns to the atmosphere by evapotranspiration
d) It sinks into the groundwater zone
4. Which of the following has occurred in this century, partly as a result of human activities?
a) Glaciers have expanded
b) Less water sinks into the ground as cities have spread
c) Sea level has fallen
d) All of the above have occurred
5. Which one of the following makes up about 2% of the world's water supply?
a) Groundwater
b) Oceans
c) Rivers
d) Glaciers
6. Which one of the following situations favors surface runoff rather than infiltration into the soil?
a) Gentle slopes
b) Thick vegetation
c) Heavy precipitation (rain)
d) Porous, sandy soils
7. Which two processes in the hydrologic cycle absorb heat and release water vapor to the atmosphere?
a) Precipitation and Runoff
b) Evaporation and Transpiration
c) Infiltration and Discharge
d) Percolation and Infiltration
8. Every time a cloud forms, heat is released into the atmosphere.
a) True
b) False
9. The movement of water throughout the hydrologic cycle is an example of a closed system.
a) True
b) False
10. Which one of the following is NOT one of the processes included in the hydrologic cycle?
a) Condensation
b) Precipitation
c) Evaporation
d) Erosion
e) Runoff
1. The feathery, wispy clouds that form at the highest altitudes are:
a) Cirrus
b) Stratus
c) Alto
d) Nimbo
3. Dew point is the temperature at which:
a) Water vapor condenses into a liquid
b) Hailstones are formed
c) Water in the liquid state changes into water vapor
d) Clouds produce rain
4. What is relative humidity?
a) The relative difference between saturation point and the temperature of the air
b) The temperature at which the air is saturated
c) The ratio of the air's water vapor content relative to its water vapor capacity
9. Why does a rain shadow occur in the lee (leeward) side of a mountain range?
a) No water vapor is left in the air.
b) Air is forced to rise and is warmed by the adiabatic process.
c) Condensation has a drying effect on the air.
d) As air descends, adiabatic warming causes clouds to evaporate.
11. When does frontal precipitation occur?
a) When cold air is in contact with the ground.
b) During the passage of a cold air mass.
c) When air masses of contrasting temperatures and moistures meet.
d) When air rises above heated ground.
14. Which one of the following is essential before clouds can form (condensation)?
a) There must be water vapor in the atmosphere.
b) There must be a cooling process.
c) There must be condensation nuclei in the atmosphere.
d) All of the above are essential
15. Both temperature and humidity can be measured using a:
a) Thermometer
b) Seismograph
c) Sling psychrometer
d) Barometer
Air Masses and Storms Quiz
1. What scale is used to measure the intensity and danger of a hurricane?
a) Saffir-Simpson
b) Modified Mercalli
c) Doppler
d) Richter
e) Fujita-Pearson
2. Hurricanes form most frequently:
a) Over land masses in middle latitudes
b) Over the poles
c) Over warm tropical oceans
d) Over tropical land masses
3. Which one of the following has the strongest winds?
a) Hurricanes
b) Midlatitude cyclones
c) Typhoons
d) Tornadoes
4. Which one of the following is a FALSE statement about tornadoes?
a) They are most common in the Midwest and Great Plains states.
b) They occur mostly in late fall and winter.
c) They are associated with cumulonimbus clouds.
d) They often occur in advance of a cold front of a midlatitude cyclone.
e) They generally move from southwest to northwest.
8. What happens when a cold front overtakes a warm front?
a) The two fronts dissolve
b) Cloud formation ceases
c) An occluded front forms
d) A stationary front forms
9. Air masses that originate in the Gulf of Mexico are:
a) Continental Tropical (cT)
b) Maritime Tropical (mT)
c) Maritime Polar (mP)
d) Continental Polar (cP)
e) Equatorial (E)
11. A cold front is a:
a) Mass of cold air
b) Zone of below freezing temperatures
c) Zone of contact where warm air gains ground over a cold air mass
d) Zone of contact where cold air gains ground over a warm air mass
12. In what part of the United States are thunderstorms most frequent?
a) The Pacific Northwest
b) The Central and Southern States
c) Western Canada
d) California
15. Which one of the following fronts moves fastest?
a) Cold fronts
b) Warm fronts
Climate Regions Quiz
1. Which term best describes long term weather conditions?
a) Meteorology
b) Weather
c) Climate
d) Isotherms
2. Koppen's system of climate classification is based upon:
Relative humidity and hours of sunlight
Mean monthly temperatures and mean monthly precipitation
Atmospheric pressure and absolute humidity
Average annual temperature and pressure
Natural vegetation and soils
3. Highlands are not usually included in climate classification because:
a) Highlands have narrow belts of rapid climate change that become colder with altitude.
b) Highlands do not have seasons.
c) Highland climates are identical to the nearby lowlands.
d) All of the above
4. In the Koppen climate classification system, "B" climates are:
a) Polar climates
b) Dry climates
c) Tropical moist (humid) climates
d) Mild winter midlatitude climates
e) Severe winter midlatitude climates
5. In the Koppen climate classification system, tropical moist climates are:
a) "A" climates
b) "B" Climates
c) "C" Climates
d) "D" Climates
e) "E" Climates
6. The best general indicator of the climate of a place is its:
a) Bedrock
b) Natural vegetation
c) Soil
d) Atmospheric pressure
7. Using the Koppen climate classification system, which climate is NOT found in the southern
"A" climates
"B" climates
"C" Climates
"D" Climates
"E" Climates
8. The Mediterranean climate is unique because it has:
a) Hot summers
b) Most of its precipitation occurs in winter
c) Extremely high precipitation
d) Low pressure all year
e) A wide annual temperature range
9. The regions with the most changeable weather are Midlatitude climates near the Polar Front:
a) True
b) False
10. Maritime (or Marine) climates are noted for their wide annual temperature ranges.
a) True
b) False
11. The reason for the dry climate of the Sahara and Kalahari deserts is:
a) The distance from the ocean
b) The rainshadow effect
c) The sinking of air in the subtropical high pressure area
d) The intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ)
12. The climate of Northern California and the San Francisco Bay Area is classified as:
a) Marine West Coast
b) Humid Subtropical
c) Semi-arid Steppe
d) Mediterranean
The Rock Cycle Quiz
1. Rocks are classified according to:
a) Their hardness
b) Their age
c) How they were formed
d) The minerals that they contain
2. According to the rock cycle, which one of the following DOES NOT produce sediment as a result of
weathering and erosion?
a) Igneous rocks
b) Magma
c) Sedimentary rocks
d) Metamorphic rocks
3. Rocks that are changed by heat, pressure, and chemical alteration are called:
a) Igneous
b) Metamorphic
c) Sedimentary
d) Magma
4. At the earth's surface, the process that slowly disintegrates and decomposes rock is called:
a) Metamorphism
b) Lithification
c) Sedimentation
d) Weathering
5. Magma that COOLS SLOWLY is likely to form:
a) Granite
b) Basalt
c) Obsidian
d) Pumice
6. Molten rock that cools and crystallizes at or near the earth's surface is described as:
a) Clastic and bedded
b) Volcanic and extrusive
c) Plutonic and intrusive
d) Foliated and nonfoliated
7. Which one of the following best describes what causes sediments to become lithified (turned into
a) They are compacted and cemented
b) They are subjected to heat and pressure
c) They are covered with other sediments
d) They come into contact with magma
10. Coal is an example of a ________ sedimentary rock.
Clastic (detrital)
11. What sedimentary rock is composed of rounded gravel-sized particles?
a) Sandstone
b) Shale
c) Limestone
d) Conglomerate
12. Volcanic rocks such as pumice that have small cavities left by escaping gas bubbles are described as
'coarse-grained' in texture.
a) True
b) False
13. Salt and gypsum are chemically-formed sedimentary rocks.
a) True
b) False
Plate Tectonics Quiz
1. Which one of the following islands was formed as a result of volcanic activity along a mid-ocean ridge?
a) Iceland
b) Japan
c) Hawaii
d) The Aleutians
2. At a divergent plate boundary, lithospheric plates:
a) Grind past each other
b) Collide with each other
c) Rift apart
d) Move under each other
3. The San Andreas fault between the Pacific and North American plates is an example of a:
a) Continent-continent convergent plate boundary
b) Transform fault boundary
c) Ocean-continent convergent plate boundary
d) Divergent plate boundary
4. What happens when oceanic crust collides with continental crust?
a) Compression causes both crusts to fold into mountains
b) The two lithospheric plates grind past each other
c) The lighter oceanic crust overrides the continental crust
d) The heavier oceanic crust is subducted into the earth's mantle
5. Oceanic trenches are formed by:
a) Sea-floor spreading
b) The collision of continents
c) The subduction of oceanic crusts into the earth's mantle
d) The subduction of continental crust into the earth's mantle
9. The Himalaya Mountains are believed to be the current location of a(an):
Continent-continent convergent plate boundary
Ocean-continent convergent plate boundary
Divergent continental plate boundary
10. The rigid layer of the earth's crust and the upper mantle together form the:
a) Lithosphere
b) Asthenosphere
c) Continents
d) Core
11. The asthenosphere is best described as:
a) A rigid rock layer
b) Semi-molten
c) Composed of basaltic rock
d) Liquid like the earth's outer core
13. According to Alfred Wegener, 250 million year old mountains in Eastern North America are likely to be
similar to those in:
a) South America
b) Europe
c) South Africa
d) Antarctica
14. Which one of the following was NOT presented by Alfred Wegener as evidence of continental drift?
a) Jig-saw puzzle fit of the continents
b) Fossil similarities
c) Past climates
d) Similar rock structures
e) Paleomagnetism
15. The supercontinent composed of all the continents proposed by Alfred Wegener is called:
a) Atlantis
b) Pangaea
c) Gondwanaland

Final Exam Practice Quiz 1. What is the chief source of energy for

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