VCLA Reading Practice Test (Free PDF)

VCLA Reading Practice Test (Free PDF): Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment VCLA Reading test prep. The Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment® (VCLA™) is composed of two subtests—a reading subtest and a writing subtest. This document provides a full-length sample VCLA reading subtest consisting of 40 multiple-choice questions.

VCLA Reading Practice Test

Test Name VCLA Practice Test 2022
Section Reading
Test type Sample Reading Practice Test
Total MCQs 30
VCLA Web site www.va.nesinc.com

Forget Me Not
Ann Plato
When in the morning’s misty hour,
When the sun beems gently o’er each flower;
When thou dost cease to smile benign,
And think each heart responds with thine,
When seeking rest among divine,
Forget me not.
When the last rays of twilight fall,
And thou art pacing yonder hall;
When mists are gathering on the hill,
Nor sound is heard save mountain rill,
When all around bids peace be still,
Forget me not.
When the first star with brilliance bright,
Gleams lonely o’er the arch of night;
When the bright moon dispels the gloom,
And various are the stars that bloom,
And brighten as the sun at noon,
Forget me not.
When solemn sighs the hollow wind,
And deepen’d thought enraps the mind;
If e’er thou doest in mournful tone,
E’er sigh because thou feel alone,
Or wrapt in melancholy prone,
Forget me not.
When bird does wait thy absence long,
Nor tend unto its morning song;
While thou art searching stoic page,
Or listening to an ancient sage,
Whose spirit curbs a mournful rage,
Forget me not.
Then when in silence thou doest walk,
Nor being round with whom to talk;
When thou art on the mighty deep,
And do in quiet action sleep;
If we no more on earth do meet,
Forget me not.
When brightness round thee long shall bloom,
And knelt remembering those in gloom;
And when in deep oblivion’s shade,
This breathless, mouldering form is laid,
And thy terrestrial body staid,
Forget me not.
“Should sorrow cloud thy coming years,
And bathe thy happiness in tears,
Remember, though we’re doom’d to part,
There lives one fond and faithful heart,
That will forget thee not.”

Q1. A theme of the poem is

  • A. the sorrows of death
  • B. how love can endure separation
  • C. the difficulties of travel
  • D. family bonds and their importance
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q2. You can infer that the speaker in the poem is addressing a

  • A. sister
  • B. parent
  • C. child
  • D. loved one
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D

Q3. The first three stanzas of the poem describe

  • A. the passing of time
  • B. the loss of love
  • C. the death of a beloved
  • D. the power of love
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q4. Why does the poet change the refrain in the last stanza of the poem?

  • A. to show that the speaker forgives her beloved
  • B. to demonstrate that the speaker will remain faithful
  • C. to reveal a surprise about the speaker
  • D. to indicate the vast difference between the speaker and her beloved
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q5. Read this stanza from “Forget Me Not.”

When brightness round thee long shall bloom,
And knelt remembering those in gloom;
And when in deep oblivion’s shade,
This breathless, mouldering form is laid,
And thy terrestrial body staid,
Forget me not.

What is the speaker asking?

  • A. to be buried beside her beloved
  • B. to be remembered in brightness and in gloom
  • C. for her beloved to remember her even after death
  • D. for her beloved not to die
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C

Q6. Read this stanza from “Forget Me Not.”

When solemn sighs the hollow wind,
And deepen’d thought enraps the mind;
If e’er thou doest in mournful tone,
E’er sigh because thou feel alone,
Or wrapt in melancholy prone,
Forget me not.

Which words help create a tone of sorrow?

  • A. solemn, mournful, melancholy
  • B. hollow, deepen’d, enraps
  • C. sighs, wind, e’er
  • D. thought, mind, alone
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q6. What is the meaning of the word dispels in the third stanza?

  • A. brings together
  • B. destroys
  • C. chases away
  • D. scorns
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Read this text. Then answer the questions.

Inaugural Address of Andrew Johnson, after the
assassination of Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865
(From the Sunday Morning Chronicle, Washington, April 16, 1865, and The Sun, Baltimore, April 17, 1865. )

GENTLEMEN: I must be permitted to say that I have been almost overwhelmed by the announcement of the sad event which has so recently occurred. I feel incompetent to perform duties so important and responsible as those which have been so unexpectedly thrown upon me. As to an indication of any policy which may be pursued by me in the administration of the Government, I have to say that that must be left for development as the Administration progresses. The message or declaration must be made by the acts as they transpire. The only assurance that I can now give of the future is reference to the past. The course which I have taken in the past in connection with this rebellion must be regarded as a guaranty of the future. My past public life, which has been long and laborious, has been founded, as I in good conscience believe, upon a great principle of right, which lies at the basis of all things. The best energies of my life have been spent in endeavoring to establish and perpetuate the principles of free government, and I believe that the Government in passing through its present perils will settle down upon principles consonant with popular rights more permanent and enduring than heretofore. I must be permitted to say, if I understand the feelings of my own heart, that I have long labored to ameliorate and elevate the condition of the great mass of the American people. Toil and an honest advocacy of the great principles of free government have been my lot. Duties have been mine; consequences are God’s. This has been the foundation of my political creed, and I feel that in the end the Government will triumph and that these great principles will be permanently established.

In conclusion, gentlemen, let me say that I want your encouragement and countenance. I shall ask and rely upon you and others in carrying the Government through its present perils. I feel in making this request that it will be heartily responded to by you and all other patriots and lovers of the rights and interests of a free people.

Q7. What is the “sad event” to which Andrew Johnson refers?

  • A. the Civil War
  • B. the death of Abraham Lincoln
  • C. the recent election
  • D. slavery
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q8. Which of these statements most strongly supports the idea that President Johnson plans to continue President Lincoln’s policies?

  • A. I feel incompetent to perform duties so important and responsible as those which have been so unexpectedly thrown upon me.
  • B. The course which I have taken in the past in connection with this rebellion must be regarded as a guaranty of the future.
  • C. I must be permitted to say, if I understand the feelings of my own heart, that I have long labored to ameliorate and elevate the condition of the great mass of the American people.
  • D. I shall ask and rely upon you and others in carrying the Government through its present perils.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q9. What is President Johnson’s main purpose in this address?

  • A. to inform the audience that he will reunite the North and South
  • B. to explain to the audience why he will not be as good a president as Lincoln
  • C. to defend his past record in government to the audience
  • D. to assure the audience that he will do his best for the country
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D 

Q10. What does President Johnson mean when he refers to his “political creed”?

  • A. the political party to which he belongs
  • B. his writings about government
  • C. his beliefs about government
  • D. his political enemies
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Q11. Read this excerpt from the address.

I must be permitted to say that I have been almost overwhelmed by the announcement of the sad event which has so recently occurred. I feel incompetent to perform duties so important and responsible as those which have been so unexpectedly thrown upon me.

How do you think Andrew Johnson feels about becoming president?

  • A. proud
  • B. uneasy
  • C. pleased
  • D. capable
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q12. Read this excerpt from the address.

My past public life, which has been long and laborious, has been
founded, as I in good conscience believe, upon a great principle of
right, which lies at the basis of all things.

What is the most likely meaning of laborious?

  • A. requiring much effort
  • B. causing physical pain
  • C. difficult to explain
  • D. done in a laboratory
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q13. In the final paragraph, what hope does President Johnson express about his government?

  • A. that it will be better than Lincoln’s government
  • B. that it will reject the demands of the South
  • C. that it will survive the Civil War
  • D. that it will ban slavery
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Read this text. Then answer the questions.

Excerpt from “On Memory”
Jerome K. Jerome

Life altogether is but a crumbling ruin when we turn to look behind: a shattered column here, where a massive portal stood; the broken shaft of a window to mark my lady’s bower; and a moldering heap of blackened stones where the glowing flames once leaped, and over all the tinted lichen and the ivy clinging green.

For everything looms pleasant through the softening haze of time. Even the sadness that is past seems sweet. Our boyish days look very merry to us now, all nutting, hoop, and gingerbread. The snubbings and toothaches and the Latin verbs are all forgotten—the Latin verbs especially. And we fancy we were very happy when we were hobbledehoys and loved; and we wish that we could love again. We never think of the heartaches, or the sleepless nights, or the hot dryness of our throats, when she said she could never be anything to us but a sister—as if any man wanted more sisters!

Yes, it is the brightness, not the darkness, that we see when we look back. The sunshine casts no shadows on the past. The road that we have traversed stretches very fair behind us. We see not the sharp stones. We dwell but on the roses by the wayside, and the strong briers that stung us are, to our distant eyes, but gentle tendrils waving in the wind. God be thanked that it is so—that the ever-lengthening chain of memory has only pleasant links, and that the bitterness and sorrow of to-day are smiled at on the morrow.

It seems as though the brightest side of everything were also its highest and best, so that as our little lives sink back behind us into the dark sea of forgetfulness, all that which is the lightest and the most gladsome is the last to sink, and stands above the waters, long in sight, when the angry thoughts and smarting pain are buried deep below the waves and trouble us no more.

It is this glamour of the past, I suppose, that makes old folk talk so much nonsense about the days when they were young. The world appears to have been a very superior sort of place then, and things were more like what they ought to be. Boys were boys then, and girls were very different. Also winters were something like winters, and summers not at all the wretched-things we get put off with nowadays. As for the wonderful deeds people did in those times and the extraordinary events that happened, it takes three strong men to believe half of them.

I like to hear one of the old boys telling all about it to a party of youngsters who he knows cannot contradict him. It is odd if, after awhile, he doesn’t swear that the moon shone every night when he was a boy, and that tossing mad bulls in a blanket was the favorite sport at his school.

It always has been and always will be the same. The old folk of our grandfathers’ young days sang a song bearing exactly the same burden; and the young folk of to-day will drone out precisely similar nonsense for the aggravation of the next generation. “Oh, give me back the good old days of fifty years ago,” has been the cry ever since Adam’s fifty-first birthday. Take up the literature of 1835, and you will find the poets and novelists asking for the same impossible gift as did the German Minnesingers long before them and the old Norse Saga writers long before that. And for the same thing sighed the early prophets and the philosophers of ancient Greece. From all accounts, the world has been getting worse and worse ever since it was created. All I can say is that it must have been a remarkably delightful place when it was first opened to the public, for it is very pleasant even now if you only keep as much as possible in the sunshine and take the rain good-temperedly.

Q14. In the first paragraph, what is the effect of the author’s use of Hyperbole?

A. It builds a sense of threat.
B. It creates a humorous tone.
C. It introduces an element of suspense.
D. It creates a serious tone.

View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q15. Read this excerpt from the text.

I like to hear one of the old boys telling all about it to a party of
youngsters who he knows cannot contradict him. It is odd if, after
awhile, he doesn’t swear that the moon shone every night when he
was a boy, and that tossing mad bulls in a blanket was the favorite
sport at his school.

What is the author saying about older people and their memories of the past?

  • A. They tend to exaggerate or make up stories.
  • B. They become more specific over time.
  • C. They remember only the amusing incidents.
  • D. They only like to relate their memories to youngsters.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q16. The author believes that the past looks good to us because

  • A. we suffer more when we get older
  • B. the present is full of strife and difficulty
  • C. we forget the pain and exaggerate the pleasures of the past
  • D. we are more likely to love when we are younger
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Q17. In which paragraphs does the author treat memory and time seriously?

  • A. the first and second paragraphs
  • B. the third and fourth paragraphs
  • C. the fifth and sixth paragraphs
  • D. the first and last paragraphs
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q18. Read this excerpt from the text.

Yes, it is the brightness, not the darkness, that we see when we look
back. The sunshine casts no shadows on the past.

What is the author saying about the past in this excerpt?

  • A. The sun shone more often in the past.
  • B. We forget the bad things that happened in the past.
  • C. The weather was different in the past.
  • D. It is difficult to remember the past.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q19. Read this excerpt from the text.

Take up the literature of 1835, and you will find the poets and
novelists asking for the same impossible gift as did the German
Minnesingers long before them and the old Norse Saga writers long
before that. And for the same thing sighed the early prophets and the
philosophers of ancient Greece.

What is the “impossible gift” that the author mentions?

  • A. the ability to live a long life
  • B. a life without difficulty or pain
  • C. the ability to remember the past precisely
  • D. the return to a past that didn’t really exist
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D 

Q20. In the final paragraph, what feeling does the author express about the present?

  • A. that it is better than the past
  • B. that it is very pleasant
  • C. that it is worse than the past
  • D. that it is unpleasant
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Read this text. Then answer the questions.

Food of the Future?
Diane Zahler

When you hear the term genetically modified food, what do you picture? A stalk of corn with poison lurking in its kernels? A thick, healthy field of wheat? The practice of genetically modifying crops has been going on for decades, but the controversy surrounding it has only grown stronger over the years.

To create a genetically modified food, scientists introduce changes into the DNA, or genetic material, of a plant. The changes might help the plant resist disease, grow faster or better in bad weather conditions, resist insect infestation, produce extra nutrients, or resist the effects of herbicides. In 1994, tomatoes became the first genetically modified plants to be sold to consumers. Now, the majority of corn, soybean, canola, and cotton seed crops in the United States are genetically modified. Other foods that might be grown or produced with genetic modification include papayas, potatoes, zucchini, sugar from sugar beets, and cheese. Flour, cornstarch, and corn syrup are made from genetically engineered corn. Genetically modified soy products can be found in many prepared foods, as can modified vegetable oils.

There are several major objections to the use of genetically modified foods, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The first is allergenicity, or the possibility of allergic reactions in people as a result of gene modification. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the WHO do some testing of genetically modified foods for allergenicity. So far, they have found no allergic effects.

The second objection involves the transfer of modified genes to cells or bacteria in the body. Some of the modified genes are unaffected by, or resistant to, the drugs known as antibiotics. Transferring these antibiotic-resistant genes to humans is a possibility. Antibiotic resistance is already a problem for human populations. There are many diseases that are becoming or have become resistant to treatment with antibiotics. The WHO has suggested that genetic modification not include antibiotic-resistant genes.

Outcrossing, or the movement of genes from genetically modified plants into other crops or related plants in the wild, is the third problem raising objections. In the United States, this danger has become a reality. A type of genetically modified corn that was approved only for animal feed crossed into corn products raised for human consumption.

A fourth objection involves the effects of genetically modified crops on biodiversity. Because these crops are generally stronger and often faster-growing than other plants, they tend to overtake and push out weaker plants. This leads to a decrease in the variety of plant life. Outcrossing makes this even more of a problem.

Because genetically modified foods have been available only for a short time, the results of long-term testing of their effects in both the human and animal populations and on the environment are not yet available. The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Medical Association, the National Academies of Sciences, and the Royal Society of Medicine have stated that there have been no negative health effects on humans proven to date. However, many individuals and groups such as Greenpeace and the Organic Consumers Association protest the use of genetically modified crops. They want foods produced from these crops to be banned until more tests are done. At the very least, they want genetically modified foods to be labeled. The European Union, Australia, New Zealand, China, India, and several other countries require labeling. The United States, however, does not. The question of whether genetically modified food is the answer to food shortages and famine or a threat to people and the environment is still unanswered, and is likely to be controversial for many years to come.

Q21. According to this article, why might genetically modified food be a threat to the environment?

  • A. It might cause antibiotic resistance.
  • B. It might create allergic reactions.
  • C. It might decrease plant variety.
  • D. It might create plants that grow too fast.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Q22. Read this excerpt from the text.

A type of genetically modified corn that was approved only for
animal feed crossed into corn products raised for human consumption.

How does the author use this statement to support the argument that genetically modified food might be dangerous?

  • A. She provides an example of outcrossing, which might affect people’s food.
  • B. She provides a contrast to experts’ statements that no ill effects have been proven.
  • C. She describes a scenario in which genetic modification causes injury.
  • D. She raises doubts about whether changes in genes can be controlled.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q23. In the fourth paragraph, what does the term antibiotic resistance mean?

  • A. the ability of humans to refuse antibiotic treatment
  • B. the presence of antibiotics in plants and animals
  • C. the use of antibiotics to fight disease
  • D. the ability of germs to resist antibiotics
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D 

Q24. Which of these sentences best expresses why genetically modified food might be useful?

  • A. Because these crops are generally stronger and often faster-growing than other plants, they tend to overtake and push out weaker plants.
  • B. The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Medical Association, the National Academies of Sciences, and the Royal Society of Medicine have stated that there have been no negative health effects on humans proven to date.
  • C. The changes might help the plant resist disease, grow faster or better in bad weather conditions, resist insect infestation, produce extra nutrients, or resist the effects of herbicides.
  • D. Because genetically modified foods have only been available for a short time, the results of long-term testing of their effects in both the human and animal populations and on the environment are not yet available.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Q25. In the second paragraph, what is the meaning of the word modified?

  • A. modernized
  • B. improved
  • C. strengthened
  • D. changed
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D 

Q26. In the sixth paragraph, what is the meaning of biodiversity?

  • A. the interactions of animals and plants
  • B. the variety of organisms in an environment
  • C. the ability of organisms to change
  • D. the number of plants in an environment
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Q27. What is the most likely reason for the WHO’s recommendation that antibiotic-resistant genes not be used in genetically modified food?

  • A. They might introduce new diseases into humans.
  • B. They might increase the problem of antibiotic resistance in humans.
  • C. They might cause humans to become allergic to antibiotics.
  • D. They might cause other crops to be antibiotic-resistant.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: B 

Volcanoes are formed when materials from deep inside the earth, such as molten rock, hot ash, and gases, escape through an opening in the earth’s crust. Such openings are called volcanic vents. Some volcanoes have only a single vent; others may have a main vent along with numerous subsidiary vents. Geologists typically classify volcanoes into four types: cinder cones, shield volcanoes, lava domes, and composite volcanoes. Each type has a characteristic eruption pattern and a characteristic shape.

Cinder cones are the simplest kind of volcano. They are formed when pieces of molten rock saturated with gases explode from a widening volcanic vent. Cinders result when the particles harden and drop to the earth. The rain of cinders during an eruption eventually creates a very steep-sided cone of loose material. Rarely more than 1,000 feet in height and with broad craters at the top, cinder cones erupt only once and are often grouped around a larger volcano. One of the most well known and highest cinder cones is Paricutín in Mexico, which erupted in 1943 from a small vent that appeared in a farmer’s cornfield. The fissure quickly expanded, spewing molten rock into the air. Over a period of nine years, the volcano grew continuously until it had reached 3,000 feet in height and had blanketed 100 square miles with ash.

By contrast, shield volcanoes are formed almost entirely from molten rock flows called lava. Their shape, as suggested by their name, resembles a broad, slightly domed warrior’s shield. Repeated eruptions of lava over many thousands of years can create formations of huge size. For example, Mauna Loa in Hawaii rises almost 30,000 feet from its base on the seafloor to its summit. Many Pacific islands originated from shield volcanoes, as did many mountains in California and Oregon. Shield eruptions typically spurt fountains of lava or ooze lava from central or peripheral vents in the mountain. The lava flows downslope, traveling up to ninety miles before hardening into a thin layer of rock. Because these lava flows generally move slowly, shield volcanoes are usually less dangerous than other volcanoes.

When the lava is too thick to flow any distance, lava domes are formed. The hardening lava piles up over the volcano’s central vent, creating an irregular dome that gradually expands from lava continuing to well up from inside the earth. Meanwhile, the dome’s exterior often cracks and sheds large fragments of stone. Lava domes are found singly and in groups, as independent volcanoes or as spin-off structures in the craters of composite volcanoes. Their initial eruption can be extremely violent, as was the case at Mount Pelée in Martinique, where an explosive eruption in 1902 killed all but two of the 28,000 inhabitants of the town of St. Pierre.

Composite volcanoes, which are formed by lava and by ejected volcanic materials, are probably the most familiar form of volcano. They can reach great heights and have wide, gently sloping bases culminating in steepsided, symmetrical summits. They also have an internal system of vents that bring molten rock to the surface from deep in the earth. Well-known volcanoes of this type include Mount Rainier in the state of Washington and Mount Fuji in Japan. Composite volcanoes may erupt violently and without warning, sending molten rock thousands of feet into the air and blanketing miles of adjacent countryside with burning ash. When the ash is mixed with superheated gases, the result is catastrophic: a glowing cloud rushes down the volcano and destroys everything in its path over distances up to sixty miles.

In sum, two basic processes are involved in volcano formation: the flow of lava and the violent ejection of volcanic materials. Shield volcanoes and lava domes are primarily built from lava flows, while cinder cones result mainly from explosive episodes. Composite volcanoes represent a fusion of these two basic processes. The kind of volcano-building process in turn dictates the shape of each type of volcano, as well as the danger posed to the surrounding countryside and the people who live there.

Q28. Which of the following is best synonym for the phrase well up as it is used in the fourth paragraph of the passage?

  • A. rise
  • B. expand
  • C. explode
  • D. circulate
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: A 

Q29. From the information presented in the passage, it is reasonable to conclude that people generally have the greatest amount of time to respond to eruptions involving which of the following types of volcanoes?

  • A. lava dome volcanoes
  • B. cinder cone volcanoes
  • C. shield volcanoes
  • D. composite volcanoes
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: C 

Q30. Which of the following assumptions most influenced the author’s argument in the passage?

  • A. Most natural disasters occur suddenly and with little warning.
  • B. Volcanoes cause much greater destruction than most people imagine.
  • C. No spectacle on Earth is as awesome as a volcanic eruption.
  • D. Many natural processes have consistent and identifiable patterns.
View Correct Answer
Answer Key: D