Physical Science

This portion of the AFOQT is designed to measure your knowledge of concepts that are central to the physical sciences. Each of the questions or incomplete statements is followed by five answers. Mark that which best answers the question or completes the statement. Use the process of elimination whenever possible. Remember, there are no penalties for guessing!

Subtest Information: Time: 10 MinutesItems: 20

Physical Science

Example questions:

1. Resistance is the tendency for a material to oppose the flow of electrons and is measured in:

A) Ohms

B) Watts

C) Volts

D) Amperes

E) Currents

2. What is the energy called that is derived from Earth’s internal heat?

A) Solar

B) Thermal

C) Dynamic

D) Geothermal

E) Volcanic

3. Herpetology is the scientific study of:

A) Mammals

B) Reptiles

C) Dogs

D) Diseases

E) Dinosaurs


Answers: 1:A, 2:D, 3:B

Practice Questions:

1) The outer shell of an atom is the_______ shell:

A. Electron

B. Valence

C. Ion

D. Particle

E. Proton

2) Metal alloy is an example that contains more than one substance that is not chemically bonded. Brass is a/an:

A. Solute

B. Solvent

C. Reactant

D. Mixture

E. Product

3) Dry ice, solid CO2, is an example of the following process:

A. Freezing

B. Deposition

C. Melting

D. Sublimation

E. Evaporation

4) The following chemical equation represents an acid-base reaction that produces potassium chloride, a common table salt substitute: HCl + KOH → KCl + H2O. This is an example of which type of chemical reaction?

A. Synthesis

B. Sublimation

C. Combustion

D. Oxidation

E. Neutralization

5) Which of the following examples represents a physical change?

A. Striking a match

B. Dissolving sugar in water

C. Heating sugar to make caramel

D. Rusting iron

E. Digesting food

6) A solution that exhibits very little change in pH when small amounts of acid or base are added is a/an:

A. Neutral

B. Hydroxide ion

C. Buffer

D. Absorbent

E. Vinegar

7) Which of the following types of energy operates most efficiently in a vacuum?

A. Heat

B. Radiation

C. Kinetic

D. Convection

E. Conduction

8) Which of the following waves has the highest frequency?

A. Radio waves

B. Ultraviolet

C. Infrared

D. Gamma

E. X-rays

9) Which of the following can be seen during a solar eclipse?

A. Corona

B. Vortex

C. Solar flare

D. Syzygy

E. Harvest Moon

10) Electricity is the movement of electrons through a:

A. Voltage

B. Current

C. Circuit

D. Insulator

E. Conductor










  1. B (The valence shell hold electrons and signifies the atoms ability to combine or interact with another atom).
  2. D (A combination of two or more substances can be homogenous or heterogenous. Brass is an example of a homogenous mixture of copper and zinc).
  3. D (Sublimation is the process of solids becoming gas).
  4. E (Neutralization is the reaction of an acid with a base to form salt and water).
  5. B (When dissolving sugar, the form sugar changes but the sucrose, sugar molecules stay the same).
  6. C (A buffer can be acidic or alkaline and is not very reactant to solutions being added).
  7. B (Radiation does not require a medium).
  8. D (Gamma rays have the shortest wavelengths with the highest frequency).
  9. A (A corona is a gaseous envelop that surrounds a star. A halo effect can occur during a solar eclipse when the moon is blocking the sun. The corona is a ring of light around the outside of the moon).
  10. E (Conductors are materials that allow the movement of electricity through them).


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