Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Cuz I'm smart like that...

I totally kicked ass on this Americans Civics quiz.

Supposedly, college educators averaged 55%.

While I scored a totally rocking 87.88% (29 out of 33), and I don't even have a degree.

Via Kevin Drum


CrypticLife said...

Average citizen -- 49%
Elected officials -- 44%

Ugh. Revolting, even though the officials are probably largely local.

One of the findings is also that someone who keeps up with events and teaches themselves often ends up with more civics knowledge than those with much higher degrees.

My score was 96%, but I have a law degree.

nbosch said...

My score was 78.6% and I'm a school teacher---I did as well as I did because I spent so much time watching CNN, MSNC and FOX in the last 3 months.

Parentalcation said...

I agree Cryptic... you can teach all you want, but it's no substitution for natural inquisitiveness.

I imagine that we are a bias sample nbosch. I am guessing the average blog reader is much more informed than the average citizen. I am guessing that the majority of fellow teachers would of scored much lower, as did the majority of the sample.

nbosch said...

I moved to a new school at the beginning of last year. It was a school where I knew almost everybody there--I can't find ONE person to have a discussion with, all they seem to do is whine about kids and curriculum. Luckily my husband and sons enjoy a good arguement now and again, I learn from them.

Anonymous said...

I got a 97%, but I would argue that the question on a public good has no correct answer.

A public good is nonrival, which means that consumption of a public good by one person does not affect another person's ability to consume that good. It has nothing to do with who pays for the good.

That was not the question I missed...it was not difficult to pick out the "correct" answer for the public good question.


P.S. I have a PhD in economics.

mazenko said...


I agree. I scored a 94%, but I disagree with the wording of the answers on #27 and #31. In terms of "civic literacy," I don't see those as valid questions.

The problem with a quiz like this is, of course, bias. While the average American may only get half of these right, it probably isn't necessary for "an educated electorate" to know FDR's response to the Supreme Court.

I don't see national averages on this as "the end of civilization." Regardless of what the average American can do, I still trust the system to survive. Anyone worried about civic knowledge should simply check out what the kids in AP Government, AP U.S. History, and AP European History know.

NYC Educator said...

I also got 87.88%, so maybe it wasn't worth getting that degree after all. My mom was pretty impressed by it though, so I guess it wasn't a total loss.

Careen said...

Well, I feel just a bit under-educated (both traditionally and socially) and I have a post-graduate degree (not in economics, law, politics......). Sigh. I am an average American with a slightly higher-than-average score of 60.61%. Hubby got 54.55% so, between the two of us, we are just about average (almost literally if you do the math).

That means I have some studying to do seeings as we have young children coming up through the ranks of the education system.

Off to the books...... Wait, they don't have books in school anymore. Budget cuts. Thank goodness there are computers now. LOL!!!!!!