Varsity Tutors always has a different PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day ready at your disposal! If you’re just looking to get a quick review into your busy day, our PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day is the perfect option. Answer enough of our PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day problems and you’ll be ready to ace the next test. Check out what today’s PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day is below.

Question of the Day: PSAT Critical Reading

Adapted from "Taking a Second Look: An Analysis of Genetic Markers in Species Relatedness" by Joseph Ritchie (2014)

Phylogenetics is the study of genetic composition in various species and is used by evolutionary biologists to investigate similarities in the molecular sequences of proteins in varying organisms. The amino acid sequences that build proteins are used to construct mathematical matrices that aid in determining evolutionary ties through the investigation of percentage similarities. The study of these matrices helps to expose evolutionary relationships between species that may not have the same overt characteristics.

Species adapt and evolve based on the pressures that exist in their environment. Climate, food source, and habitat availability are only a few factors that act on species adaptation. These stressors can alter the physical characteristics of organisms. This divergence in evolution has made it difficult to determine the interrelatedness of organisms by analyzing their physical characteristics alone.

For instance, looking only at physical characteristics, the ghost bat resembles a pigeon more than a spider monkey; however, phylogenetics has found that the amino acid sequences that construct the beta hemoglobin molecules of bats are twenty percent more similar to those of mammalian primates than those of birds. This helps reject the assumption that common physical characteristics between species are all that is needed to determine relatedness. 

The differences produced by divergent evolution observed in the forest-dwelling, arboreal spider monkey and the nocturnal, airborne ghost bat can be reconciled through homology. Homologous characteristics are anatomical traits that are similar in two or more different species. For instance, the bone structure of a spider monkey’s wrist and fingers greatly resembles that of a bat’s wing or even a whale’s fin. These similarities are reinforced by phylogenetic evidence that supports the idea that physically dissimilar species can be evolutionarily related through anatomical and genetic similarities.

According to the passage, the hemoglobin structure of a bat is most similar to which of the following animals?

Eagle

Pigeon

Hummingbird

Spider monkey

When you are working toward a great college career and aiming for scholarships, you will need to prepare for the PSAT. This standardized test helps you qualify for the National Merit Scholarship, and is one of the points on your high school resume that proves to colleges that you are serious about your education. However, you shouldn’t cram at the last minute for this test, but instead, get in the habit of daily test practice with Varsity Tutors’ Learning Tools, including Question of the Day.

As you prepare for the PSAT, you will prepare for two sections of this test – the Critical Reading, and the Mathematics sections. The Critical Reading section involves reading passages from famous works, then asking multiple-choice questions based on your understanding. One of the best ways to prepare for this section of the exam is using Learning Tools. With Question of the Day, you get a new question every day of the week, so you can spend at least a few minutes on daily test review leading up to your exam. This question is also based on past PSAT Critical Reading questions, so you get the best understanding of how the PSAT Critical Reading section will be formatted.

After you answer PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day, you can immediately see whether you go the answer right or wrong. This alone is very helpful as you structure your PSAT Critical Reading test review, but it is not the only great study function that is offered. PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day also tracks your progress as you answer more and more questions each day. You can watch your test review improve as you work hard using this great tool, because Question of the Day will show you a pie chart on the answer page that tracks your percentage of right and wrong answers as you go. You can even compare your answers to those of other students using Question of the Day to prepare for this complex section of the exam.

If you scroll to the bottom of the answer page, you will see an explanation of the correct answer. Even if you answered the question right, you might get new information from this detailed explanation that will help you on the PSAT Critical Reading section of the exam.

Most importantly, Question of the Day has a timer feature. You can take as much time answering this practice question as you need, but the actual PSAT has time limits on both sections. In order to prepare for the high pressure environment of the exam, you can use the timer feature on PSAT Critical Reading Question of the Day to get used to answering multiple-choice questions fast, but correctly. You can also discover how hard certain types of literature are for you to understand, so you can focus your PSAT study sessions on improving your understanding of literary devices and reading comprehension.

The free PSAT Critical Reading practice offered with Question of the Day is just one of the great study tools offered through Varsity Tutors’ Learning Tools online.
 

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