Outliers: The Story of Success Test | Final Test - Hard

Malcolm Gladwell
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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 the ground have to be like for a successful rice paddy?

2. What did early American educational theorists claim about education?

3. What do the pilots instruments indicate?

4. Who are the Howards and Turners?

5. What occasionally erupts into violence and murder?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do the students at KIPP Academy differ from those of other public schools?

2. What is KIPP and who are its students?

3. How does PDI explain the crash of the Colombian airliner?

4. Why is Flom willing to work proxy wars?

5. How does the crash of Flight 801 fit a pattern for Korean Airlines?

6. How does Harlan gain notoriety in its early days?

7. What is the second part of the experiment and the final result?

8. What are proxy wars?

9. How do Korean Airlines change their bad record of crashes?

10. What is Gladwell's general premise about the connection between growing rice and the success of Asian peoples?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The suggestion Gladwell takes from these numbers is that while efforts are being made to reduce class size and improve school facilities, the facts point to a simpler solution for children who are falling behind in school. They need more of it.

This is part of the philosophy behind the KIPP Academy. Students are at school until 5 o'clock in the evening. They attend class on Saturdays, and go for an extra three weeks in the summer. They spend on average fifty percent more time in class than students in the regular schools.

1. Discuss, in depth, why educators believe smaller class size would help students. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

2. Explain why you would or would not be willing to attend KIPP. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

3. Do you think education is the most important part of a child's life or do you think it is secondary to other areas? Why or why not? Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

Gladwell opens his book with a dictionary definition of the word "outlier." It is "something that is situated away from or classed differently from a main or related body," and also "a statistical observation that is markedly different in value from others of the sample." His first example of an outlier is the town of Roseto, Pennsylvania in the first half of the 20th century.

1. In your own words, give a definition of an outlier. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

2. Discuss the reasons you think outliers are valuable for research purposes. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

3. Explain, in your own words, why the town of Roseto, Pa. is an outlier and make-up another example of a town that would be an outlier. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Chapter 5 is called "The Three Lessons of Joe Flom." Joe Flom is a partner in a very successful New York law firm.

1. Discuss, in depth, the three lessons of Joe Flom. Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

2. How do you think the lessons of Joe Flom might relate to the idea of fate or destiny? Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

3. Do you think Joe's success, in his circumstances, was because he was Jewish or do you think any discriminated against minority might have fared the same? Why or why not? Use examples from Outliers to support your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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