Can You Get More Than 11 Right on This General Science Quiz?

By: Lauren Lubas
Image: Portra / DigitalVision / Getty Images

About This Quiz

When you were in school, you probably thought that you wouldn't need science for anything. It was dumb to know the parts of a cell, and it wasn't cool at all to look at rock formations. Perhaps little has changed, but what has changed is your thirst for learning. You like to know a little bit of everything, and having a general understanding of science is a great place to start. You don't necessarily have to be a scientist to pass this quiz, because it just covers the basics. From identifying parts of an atom to knowing why different liquids separate when they are put together, basic science can teach us a lot about our everyday lives (why do we have to shake the salad dressing anyway?). Nearly every human being has to have a general understanding of science to get by (no matter what your profession is). Architects need to understand physics and how weathering affects certain materials. Hairdressers need some pretty intense chemistry lessons if they are going to do their jobs properly (and even a few biology lessons to learn about skin conditions). 

No matter how terrible you think you are at science, you need to give this quiz a try. You may just get more than 11 right.

Which blood vessel carries blood AWAY from the heart?

Your arteries carry your blood around your body. They are the essential way the various parts of your body get the oxygen that they need. If an artery is blocked, it cannot pump the blood where it needs to go.

Why do reptiles lay eggs?

The majority of cold-blooded creatures lay eggs because they cannot keep their body temperature consistent. This means that they have to warm their progeny by sitting on it or creating warmth for it.

The liver produces which fluid?

While bile is made by the liver, it is stored by the gallbladder. It is an essential alkaline that helps with the digestion process. It also contains acids known as bile acids that help absorb fats and vitamins.

The heart has many functions. Which is NOT one of those functions?

It's true. A broken heart is all in your mind, not in your reproductive system. The heart is capable of a lot of things, and it can run really strongly if you remember to do your cardio activities.

Humans have sweat glands all over their bodies. Which part of the body has the most sweat glands?

If you don't suffer from sweaty hands, consider yourself lucky. There is nothing more embarrassing than offering someone a moist hand when you meet them. Here's a helpful tip: keep washing.

Which of these helps your body build muscles while it helps regulate your immune system?

Contrary to popular belief, your body cannot produce its own amino acids. That is why it's so important to include protein and amino acids in your everyday diet. While they aren't something we think about often, they help with major functions of our bodies.

Can you tell us the largest organ in the human body?

Skin is the largest organ you have. That is why it's so important to catch skin cancers as soon as possible. Please note that the liver is the largest organ that is within the human body, but the largest organ the body has is still skin.

How would you classify the common cold?

Viruses don't really have cures. While we have made large strides in anti-viral medications over the last 10 years, they are still very scary. The only way to get over a virus is for your body to understand it and defeat it.

What is the definition of a communicable disease?

While you can't get diabetes from kissing someone with diabetes, you can get a load of other communicable diseases. Diseases are classified by how they are spread and what they are made of.

Do you know what a mushroom is?

Mushrooms are not animals, they aren't even plants. They are fungi. They grow in some pretty gross situations, but they are mighty delicious (as long as you clean them off first, of course).

Table salt is great on food, but do you know what it's made out of?

Good old NaCl. We use it on basically everything we eat. Even those who are looking for a low sodium diet can't get away from the sheer amount of salt that we find in our everyday foods.

Can you tell us what the westerlies are?

The westerlies are actually caused by the jet stream. Prevailing winds are winds that come from a specific direction in a specific season or region. Each hemisphere has three different prevailing winds.

What would you use a barometer for?

Barometric pressure is how much pressure is in the atmosphere. Changes in this pressure can cause sudden, violent storms. Barometers are very useful if you are storm chasing in the Midwest.

Which of these is not a part of the digestive system?

The lungs are a part of the respiratory system. However, the stomach, large and small intestines and lungs are all parts of the digestive system. Your body is a well-oiled machine for turning food into energy.

Do you know which system helps deliver oxygen to our cells?

If this one stumped you, you can always think of circulation when you think of the circulatory system. If we don't have circulation, we aren't getting blood to the right areas of the body, and that means we aren't getting oxygen to the right areas of the body.

Which of these is a single-celled organism?

A single-celled organism, or a unicellular organism, is something that consists of only one cell. Diatoms are basically algae. They live in water like most single-celled organisms, and they can be found in nearly all of the oceans in the world.

Can you name the organ that is most essential for absorbing nutrients?

While it's called the small intestine, it's actually a pretty big organ. When it comes to the digestive system, the small intestine is where all of the broken-down food gets absorbed into your body.

How does your body communicate to your brain that it is in pain?

Your nervous system is your body's main communication system. The only way you know you're in pain is if your body is communicating with your brain properly to tell you that you're in pain. There are nerve disorders that consist of people not being able to feel pain at all.

If you suck all of the juice out of a celery stalk, what will you be left with?

Celery is a great thing to analyze when you are first beginning to learn about biology and science. Celery cells show up clearly on a slide, and you can easily identify all of the parts of the cell. The juice you're sucking out of celery is all of the internal workings of celery cells.

How would you define ecosystem?

Pretty much everything can be considered an ecosystem. Basically, when scientists research ecosystems, they take a sample of the world and analyze it very carefully. They see how all of the living things interact with each other and their environment.

What is the chemical symbol for gold?

Au comes from the Latin term aurum, or gold. Gold is a metal that is found naturally on Earth. These days, gold is worth quite a bit of money, and people are finding new ways to extract it without spending too much money.

How long does it take for the sun to go around the Earth?

The sun stays where it is (respectively), and the Earth orbits the sun. While there are debates (for some reason) that Earth is the center of the solar system, the truth is, we are orbiting the sun. It's just science.

What force keeps the Earth close to the sun?

Gravity is a force to be reckoned with (just ask anyone who has ever fallen down or had something fall on them). Gravity is what keeps our feet on the ground and our planet spinning around the sun.

How do we have seasons on Earth?

Because the Earth is tilted on its axis, portions of it are closer to the sun at various points during the year. This makes it warmer in some areas and colder in others. Planets that are not tilted do not have seasons.

Pluto is no longer considered a planet. What is it now classified as?

Poor Pluto. It didn't do anything wrong. It was just sitting there, being all small and icy when someone decided that it wasn't a planet any longer. It had its planet status for less than 100 years, but we still love Pluto.

What is inertia?

To get an understanding of inertia, consider throwing a ball up in the air. Now imagine that the ball continuously goes up without gaining or losing speed and without falling to the ground. That is inertia.

Can you name the planet with the biggest gravitational pull?

Jupiter is considered a gas giant, because it is mainly made of gas. Few know that Jupiter actually has rings. However, the planet is so huge, they are difficult to see unless you are on the other side of the planet (with the sun as a back light).

Which animals only eat plants?

Herbivores only eat plants. Omnivores will eat anything, and carnivores only eat other animals. This might seem like a simple way to remember it; however, there are animals that are thought to be herbivores that will turn into omnivores if necessary.

What is permafrost?

Permafrost is usually found closer to the poles of the Earth. These are the coldest places, where the ground and ground water temperature stays frozen all year. There are also parts of Russia that have permafrost.

Why would an animal migrate or adapt in its environment?

Animals have few choices when it comes to changes in their environment. Some will simply die, because they don't have what they need. Others will start migratory patterns or adapt to the environment around them.

Which of these is NOT a form of adaptation?

There are a lot of ways that animals can adapt to the changes in their environments. While behavioral adaptaions are the easiest and most innate, physical adaptations can take generations and are completely up to chance.

Migration is an example of what form of adaptation?

Many birds have migratory patterns due to their love of cold places in the summertime. However, when the weather starts to turn, the birds head south, because there is more food and nicer weather.

Which scientist studies weather patterns?

It is important to remember that weather and climate are not the same thing. While weather is what is happening right in front of you, climate is the pattern of that weather over specific periods of time.

What are the three things all animals need to survive?

Always remember to W.O.F. it down. You will always need oxygen, food and water to live. The human body can go specific time periods without these things. While you can go a few minutes without oxygen, your body will shut down after days without food and water.

Do you know what it's called when an animal blends in with its surroundings?

There are several animals throughout the animal kingdom that use camouflage to protect themselves as well as hunt. By blending in with their surroundings, they are able to go unnoticed by predators (or prey for those looking for a meal).

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