Nickel and Dimed: On Not Getting by in America Test | Final Test - Hard

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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 does Barbara have to care for when she stays in a friend's house at the beginning of her adventure in Minnesota?

2. Despite the miraculous vacuum cleaner, Lori and Pauline's __________ are ruined and wrecked.

3. Because of the low wages that are paid in the area, people who are working at minimum wage are expected to ____________.

4. _____________ has to support her husband and an elderly relative on 30 to 50 dollars each week.

5. Barbara thinks the fact she is __________ will help her since she will not stand out from others.

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does the author decide to go to Maine for her next working assignment?

2. What is the one line of work that Barbara does not even apply for since she does not have the proper clothing?

3. What does Barbara decide about the entire hiring process after noticing she didn't even ask about salary at Menards?

4. When Barbara's skin breaks out in an odd rash, what does her boss seem to think the problem is?

5. What are the titles that Wal-Mart wants its employees to think of themselves as?

6. What is the one upside of the Twin Lakes apartment that compels Barbara to sign up for a lease there?

7. What is Barbara's living arrangement when she first gets into town in Minneapolis?

8. What surprises Barbara about the cleaning method of The Maids, as described in the book?

9. When Barbara goes back to Wal-Mart in order to fill out a new test, what happens when she gets a few wrong?

10. What does Barbara do as the focus of her job at Wal-Mart, as it becomes clearer on the first shift?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The management styles described in the book are commonplace for those who have already had minimum wage jobs, it seems.

Part 1: Why do you think managers in the book feel they need to be as demanding as they are?

Part 2: Do you think the managers are consciously trying to manipulate their workers? Why or why not?

Part 3: Do you think it's possible to be a fair and balanced manager when you are managing minimum wage workers? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

While it might be no surprise that Wal-Mart doesn't want to have labor unions in their store, it's more surprising that workers aren't more motivated to get involved

Part 1: Why do you think Wal-Mart doesn't want to have labor unions and organizations in their stores?

Part 2: Why do you think employees at Wal-Mart are scared to begin talks for labor union support in their stores?

Part 3: Is the risk of losing one's job worth it in order to get a labor organization in a store? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

The idea of a living wage is something that is hotly debated these days.

Part 1: Why do you think a living wage is necessary?

Part 2: What do you think a good living wage would be for your current location today? Why did you choose this number?

Part 3: If prices keep rising, but the living wage does not, how can a minimum wage worker ever get ahead? What might you suggest as a plan to keep people from living off of fast food and avoiding healthcare?

(see the answer keys)

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