Freakonomics Test | Final Test - Hard

Steven Levitt
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What class range does the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study cover?

2. What was the name of the Communist dictator of Romania who banned abortion in 1966?

3. Which of the following factors is revealed to have a correlative effect on a child's school performance?

4. A Head Start teacher earns half as much annually as what?

5. Who does Levitt point out has a nearly quadrupled likelihood of dying every year than a death row inmate has of being executed?

Short Essay Questions

1. In what two ways do larger prisons affect less crime in a community?

2. What determination do the authors make regarding parenting in this chapter?

3. How does Ceausescu create an opposite ripple effect in Romania than what occurs in America at the same time?

4. What policy recommendations do the authors make regarding their theories?

5. What theory guided Rudolph Giuliani and William Bratton in their policing strategies of the Nineties?

6. To what extent does every chapter in FREAKONOMICS involve a closed system?

7. By what rational do Levitt and Dubner reason that even a cynical person would not consider abortion a reasonable deterrent to crime?

8. How do the authors address the moral outrage their theories may elicit?

9. How does Robert Lane's child-naming scheme work out?

10. What is the history behind the emergence of distinctly black names in America?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay on the subject of honesty. What drives human beings either to act honestly or to cheat, according to the authors of FREAKONOMICS? What systems do they study in order to uncover trends and motivations behind honesty and deception? How do these systems create a dynamic in which cheating is incentivized?

Essay Topic 2

FREAKONOMICS is at heart a challenge to conventional wisdom. The authors regard conventional wisdom as something to be wary of and questioned. Write an essay on the subject of conventional wisdom in three parts:

Part 1) How did the term "conventional wisdom" enter the common lexicon? According to the authors, why is conventional wisdom comforting to people? What purpose does it serve?

Part 2) Why dot he authors deem it so important to challenge conventional wisdom? What does it add to the common discourse, and how does it illuminate the enigmatic world?

Part 3) Analyze one of the topics of any chapter in the book. What conventional wisdom are the authors challenging? How are they going about challenging it, and what conclusion do they reach?

Essay Topic 3

Dubner and Levitt regularly analyze "consumer patterns" in American culture. This allows them to see how trends shift from group to group - particularly between socioeconomic groups - and what this says about societal influences. Write an essay about consumer trends in two parts:

Part 1) How are nylon stockings similar to crack cocaine? To what extent is each a more affordable and mass-produced version of a luxury good? Explain in this section how both of these products represent a trend shift from high-end consumers to low-end consumers.

Part 2) How are child names a commodity that regularly move from one group to another? What are the driving forces behind the national trends regarding baby names? How do baby names shift from one group to another?

(see the answer keys)

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