{The numbers in curves indicate credits for full answers} 

1.  (10).  Copy the following: but put in place of each query mark a 
representative of the sound cognate to that of the letter above or below 
the query mark.  How does a knowledge of the cognate relations of letters 
aid in teaching reading?

         p: ?: j: ?: v: ?: z: ?  ?: d: ?: k: ?: th: ?: sh.

2.  (10).  What is meant by "c soft"?  "g soft"?  Give the rule for c and
g, with exceptions, When should sion be pronounced shun?

3.  (10) What is the "word method" of teaching children to read?  The
phonic method"?  Mention a distinct claim that is set up for each; an
objection urged against each.
4.  (10).  Name four leading defects of reading as heard in the schools;
also name an aid in removing each of these defects.

5.  (10).  Give the derivation of five of the following words: enormous,
carnivorous, docile, graduate, legislate, cereal, astrologer, principle.

6.  (5).  Compare the degrees of force required on the different uses of
that in the sentence, "All that look for that result forget that the world

7.  (30).  Define dubious, fragile, allege, deliquesce, dissemble,
incarnate, council, placate, mediocrity, feint, erratic, insidious,
counsel, prophecy; give two meanings of essay, affect, precedent.

8.  (15).  Syllabicate the following words, mark the primary accent, and
indicate (by macron, or other fit sign) the sound of the accented vowel:
inquiry, acclimated, misconstrue, exquisite, irrefragable, museum,
mischievous, precedence, communist, peremptory.


1.  When it is one P. M. in Lon.  38o 15' 22" E., what time is it in Lon. 
68o 28' 89"W.?  Explain the work.

2.  How many half eagles, each weighing 5 pwt.  9 gr.  and made of gold
9/10 pure, are equivalent to 1,000 English sovereigns each weighing 5 pwt. 
3.274 gr.  and made of gold 11/12 pure?  Perform by analysis and show work.

3.  11/15 divided by 7/23 = what?  11/15 x 7/23 = what?  Give analysis of

4.  Troy weight.  Add 2 lbs.  62/3 oz; 1 3/4 lbs.; 12.68 pwt.; 11 oz.  13
pwt.; 19 1/5 grs.; 3/8 lb.; 15/16 oz.; 5/9 pwt.
5.  Date of note April 10, 1844.  Prin, $2,460.  Rate of mt.  8%. 
Endorsements: Aug.20, 1845 - $840.  Dec.26, 1847-$235.20.  May 2,
1848--$1,000.  What was due Aug.  20, 1849?  Show all the work.

6.  How many kinds of problems are there in commission?  Give and perform a
problem illustrating each kind.

7.  What is the difference between the compound interest (compounding
annually) and the annual interest at 71/2 % on $428.50 for 4 yrs.  6 mos. 
12 days?  Show all work.

8.  By proportion.  If 18 pipes, each delivering 6 gal.  per minute, fill a
cistern in 2 h.  16 min.., how many pipes, each delivering 20 gal.  per
minute, will fill a cistern 71/2 times as large as the first in 3 hr.  24

9.  Define ratio, complex fraction, G. C. D., average of accounts, decimal

10. The G. C. D. is the product of what?  The L. G.M. is the product of
what?  What does the inverted divisor show?  Why do you point off numbers
in the extraction of roots?  What is the meaning of : and of : : in


{The number in curves indicates the credit that will be given, if the
question is fully answered.]  

1.  (10).  Show fully the office of the underlined words in the sentence: 
The moment my business is arranged I must set about making you my clerk.

2.  (15).  To what phrase is each of the following words equivalent? 
There, hither, whence.  There are six other words kindred to these; write
them.  Remark on the infrequency of some of these.

3.  (15).  Correct the following, giving reasons: a.  "Let each
esteem others better than themselves."  b. "Two nouns, when they come
together and do not signify the same thing, the former must be in the
possessive case."  c. "It is not me that he is angry with."  d. "I
fear we will have rain.  e. "His wrath will consume ye."  

4.  (20). Analyze: "Spake full well in language quaint and olden, One who
dwelleth by the castled Rhine, When he called the flowers, so blue and golden, 
Stars, that in earth's firmament do shine."

5.  (10).  What is the special use of mine, thine, etc.?  Complete the
list, in both numbers.  Remark on the word whereon and its clause in the
sentence: "I know a bank whereon the wild thyme grows.

6.  (15).  Describe and exemplify five uses of what.

7.  (15).  Remark on ellipses with as and than.  Use each of the following
words as an adverb, then as a connective: yet, then, when, otherwise.


1.  Define an axis, latitude, an isthmus, a promontory, a strait.  Give an
example for each of the last three.

2.  Bound fully Illinois and describe its surface.

3.  Name, in order, the States bounded by the Mississippi River, and name
the chief cities on its banks.

4.  Give the branches of the Illinois river and name the chief towns on its

5.  Name five famous volcanoes, and tell where each is situated.

6.  Describe the shelves of South America.

7.  What is a continent?  Name the six continents in the order of their

8.  What bodies of water would you pass over in making a voyage from
Chicago to St.  Petersburg?  Near what great cities would you pass?

9.  What countries produce large quantities of cotton?  Tea?  Silk?  Sugar? 

10. What changes did the France-Prussian war make in the map of Europe?


1.  What are the purposes of a public school, and how are these best

2.  Name the advantages of a system of public schools; of parochial or
religious-denominational schools; of private schools.

3.  What is meant by the organization of a school?

4.  What is the value of examinations at stated times, and what the best
method of conducting them?

5.  What differences, if any, should be made in conducting recitations and
giving instruction in primary and in advanced classes.

6.  Give a description of the methods of conducting recitations; as, the
memoriter, topical, catechetical and others, if you think of any.  Which is
best, and your reasons?

7.  What can a teacher do to secure and promote health and physical
culture, as well as social and moral culture among his scholars?

8.  What are the reasons for the State's requirement of certain
qualifications, literary and moral, in persons seeking to become teachers? 
What should be the minimum of these qualifications?

9.  How far should the text be followed in recitations, and how can a
teacher ascertain that his pupils have learned the lesson?

10. State, with reasons in brief, your opinion of the practice of giving
daily grades for recitations, and of averages summed up.  Also give your
opinion of percentages of absence and tardiness.  


1.  Give a brief account of the settlement of Plymouth.

2.  When and by whom was each of the Thirteen original Colonies settled?

3.  Give the chief causes of the Revolution.

4.  Give an account of the battle of Bunker Hill.

5.  Say what yon can about the "Articles of Confederation"?

6.  Give a list of the Presidents previous to 1886; in order, with dates.

7.  Mention the chief battles in the war with Mexico.

8.  Say what you can about the 18th Amendment to the Constitution.
9.  Say what you can about "Mason and Dixon's" line.
10. Say what you can about Andrew Jackson.


1.  Define algebra, equation, series, reciprocal, permutation.  

2.  Demonstrate that x2 + y2 is divisible by x + y when n is odd.  

3.  Factor 7x2-12x + 5.  Show work.  

4.  Simplify a+x a-x a-x a+x a+x a-x a-x a+x. Show work.  

5.  If A does a piece of work in 10 days, which A and B together can
do in 7 days, how long would it take B to do it alone?  

6.  Extract the cube root of x6 - 9 + 39x4-99x3 + 156x2 - 144x + 64.  Show

7.  In the equation, x + a= \[a2 + x\[b2 + x, x = what?  

8.  Write the forms of the two roots in each of the following equations.  
(a). x2 + px = q; (b).  x2 -px = q; (c).  x2+ px = -q; (d).  x2 - px = -q.  

9.  Expand, by the binomial formula, (1+x2)7.

10. Derive the formula for the sum of the terms of an
arithmetical progression, the first term, the last term and the number of
terms being given.

ESSAY. Subject:	"Death and Funeral of Abraham Lincoln."


[The number in curves indicates the credit that will be given, if the
question is fully answered.]  

1.  (10).  Define plane, perpendicular, perimeter, inscribed angle, 
sector of a circle.  

2.  (25).  Complete the following and prove: "if from a point without a 
straight line, a perpendicular be let fall on that line, and oblique lines 
be drawn to different points in the same line;- 1.  

The perpendicular will be - - -

Any two oblique lines that meet the given line at equal - - --

Of any two oblique lines, that which - - -"

3.  (20).  "Through three given points not in the same straight line, one
circumference of a circle can be made to pass, and but one.  Prove.

4.  (20).  "If a straight line be drawn in a triangle parallel to one of
the sides, it will divide the other two sides proportionally."  Prove.

5.  (20).  Write all you can in fifteen minutes of the meaning and
derivation of the formula pi R2.

6.  (5).  Define each of "the three round bodies."  Give the rule for
finding the volume of each.


1.  What is a zone?  How many degrees wide is the temperate zone?  The
torrid zone?  On what condition would the temperate zone be 100 wide?

2.  Give briefly, but clearly, as many reasons as you can for believing
that the earth is flattened at the poles.

3.  Explain the tides as fully as you can.

4.  Why are the days longer in the summer than in the winter?  Explain

5.  Describe the Appalachian mountain system.

6.  Describe briefly the Highlands of Asia.

7.  What can you say about volcanoes?

8.  Describe fully the monsoons.

9.  Describe the rains in the tropics.

10. Tell all you can about the Gulf Stream.


1.  State fully the condition that must be complied with before one can
make a valid contract to teach a public school operated under the general
school law.

2.  What facts must the schedule show?  State the law regulating the
keeping, the delivery and the filing of schedules.

3.  Upon what conditions may pupils of lawful school age, residing in one
district, have free tuition in another district?

4.  When do teachers' orders begin to draw interest, and for what time can
interest on them be collected?

5.  What authority of law, if any, is there for teaching algebra in the
public schools?

6.  For what purposes and to what extent are school directors authorized by
law to levy taxes?

7.  For what purposes and upon what conditions may directors borrow money?

S.  What school officers by law hold the title to school houses and school

9.  Give the most important of the duties of the county superintendent of
schools; three of the township treasurer.

10. Name the various sources of the revenue provided by law for the
support of the public schools of the State.  


1.  Define an embryo, and state the functions of each of its parts.  

2.  What is a stolon?  A sucker?  An herb?  Illustrate.  

3.  Name the parts of an exogenous stem,  from centre to circumference.  

4.  State four ways of telling an endogenous plant.  

5.  Distinguish between the natural and artificial systems in the
classification of plants.  

6.  When does a plantlet become a plant, and an ovule a seed?  

7.  Through what parts of an exogenous stem does the sap move in its 
upward course?  In its downward conrse?  What is the character of the
sap in each case?  

8.  Explain the following terms: "Calyxinferior," "central placentae," 
"stigma sessile," "stamens epipetalous." 

9.  Give botanical names for five orders of plants, and name two species
for each order.  

10. State the leading characteristics of labiatae and compositae.  

11. Why is it impossible to invent a "perpetual motion" machine?  
What is the depth to which a suction pump will work?  Why?  

12. Explain the construction and use of the barometer.


1.  Define molecule, element, acid.  

2.  Show the symbolic uniting of any five compounds, and give the 
molecular weight of each.  

3.  In what way would you liberate hydrogen?  Show the chemical equation 
and the reaction. 

4.  How produce the musical flame?  Explain.  

5.  What is soda water?  Explain its preparation.  

6.  Of what is the air composed?  How show its analysis?  How much of each 
gas in 100 parts?  

7.  Explain the formation of iron rust, carbonic acid, chalk.  

8.  What compounds are most unstable? Give three illustrations.  

9.  Show the symtolic writing for water.  State the relative amount of each 
gas by weight.  and by volume.  Say what you can of the value of water to 
work in chemistry.  

10. In the burning of a candle state what processes belong to philosophy 
and what to chemistry.  What products are formed?


1.  Describe the hip joint.

2.  Describe the circulation of the blood in the liver.

3.  Explain the phenomena of suffocation.

4.  What are the functions of the lymphatic vessels and glands?

5.  Describe the course of a sound-wave through the ear, mentioning the
structures affected by it.

6.  Describe the mucous membrane of the stomach.

7.  Explain the digestion and final use of starchy food.

8.  What substances are normally excreted by the skin?  By the lungs?

9.  Define "reflex action," "secretion."  Give examples of each.

10. Mention some of the dangers due to organic impurities in drinking


1.  Describe the different forms of the nervous systems of animals.  

2.  Describe briefly the principal modifications of the anterior extremities of

3.  Describe the principal forms of locomotor apparatus among mollusks.  

4.  Give the general and the minute anatomy of any fish.  

5.  Write an outline of the systematic arrangement of the classes and orders
of vertebrates.  

6.  Write what you can of the classification of any shark and of any
star fish, defining two of the groups to which each is assigned. 

7.  What are the leading differences and resemblances between a crawfish
and a grasshopper?  

8.  Briefly describe any protozoan.  

9.  Define "homology," "parthenogenesis," "natural selection."  What 
constitutes the scientific name of an animal?  By whom is it generally given.  

10. Give an outline of the development of any animal.


1.  What is astronomical latitude?  The ecliptic?  An equinox?  A node? 

2.  At London, 51 1/2 o n.  lat., how many degrees below the northern 
horizon is the sun at midnight on Jane 21st?  Explain by a figure. 

3.  In how many days does the sun make one revolution on its axis?  How is
this determined?  

4.  How many years would an express train, traveling without cessation 
at the rate of 30 miles an hour, require to pass from the earth to the 
sun?  Show work.  

5.  Which is the largest planet?  Which has the most moons?  Which travels 
most rapidly?  Which is the most distant from the earth?  Which approaches 
nearest to the earth?  

6.  Do we ever see Venus at midnight?  Explain fully. 

7.  What is meant by the "precession of the equinoxes"?  
What are some of the most important effects of this movement? 

8.  What is a "leap year"?  How often does leap year occur? State exactly.  

9.  Describe as fully as you can the constellation Orion.  

10. State as many facts as you can about comets.


1.  Define natural philosophy, momentum, elasticity, gravitation.  Give the
atomic theory.  

2.  Give tbe laws of gravity A., wt.  7 1/2 lbs., is 8 ft. from C. B. wt.  
3 1/2 lbs., is 4 b1/2 ft.  from C. A's attraction for C is what part of B's?  
Show work.  

3.  Why is it impossible to invent a "perpetual motion" machine?  
What is the depth to which a suction pump will work?  Why?  

4.  Explain the construction and use of the barometer.  

5.  How great a pressure is produced by a Hunter's screw, the power being 50
lbs., the circumferenee of the circle in which the power moves being 75
inches, the threads of the larger screw being 1/2 an inch apart and of the
smaller screw 1/3 of an inch apart, 33 1/3% being deducted for friction? 
Show work.  

6.  Explain the use of salt in freezing ice cream.  

7.  Describe the two kinds of steam engines.  

8.  Describe the spectroscope. 

9.  Give the laws of vibrations of cords.  

10. Explain an ordinary telegraphic instrument.


Upon consultation with President Hewitt and President Allyn, who, by law,
are joined with me in the duty of arranging for the examinations for State
certificates, it was determined to hold the examination in 1879 for three
days, and at seven different places, on the same days, and to use at each. 
point the same questions, and to follow the same general directions.  At my
an suggestion the papers were all given, after the examination, to one
committee of three to read.  Prof.  M. L. Seymour, of Normal, Prof.  John
Hull, of Carbondale, and Mr.  E. C. Smith, of Dixon, were selected for this
committee, and the certificates were issued in accordance with the
recommendations of the committee.  

In 1880 the examinations were held at ten different places, and continued 
through four days; and, in order that the results of the plan adopted 
might be the better compared with those for the previous year, the same 
committee was employed to grade the papers. Four certificates were issued 
in 1879, and sixteen in 1880-the better results of the last year being due, 
in - a great measure, to the fact that one hour and a quarter was given 
to each branch, instead of an hour, and to the further fact that six 
obtained  certificates who had previously passed a part of the examination.  

It is believed that all the certificates were impartially awarded by the 
committee and fairly earned by those who received them.  To give those who may be 
interested in the subject an idea of the examinatiomn, the circular issued, 
and the questions used in 1880, are inserted below.  The circular offered 
a certificate to those who reached an average of 70 on the whole examination, 
provided they did not fall below the minimum fixed in each of the groups into 
which the branches selected or the examination were divided.  The effect of 
the limitation was, that no certificate was issued on an average below 78.  
As something of interest to many, I add the names of those to whom State 
certificates have been issued, with dates, and the places and dates of 
examinations, so far as they can be ascertained from the records of this office.  
(These are listed later in the document) 

CIRCULAR SPRINGFIELD, ILL., January 10, 1880. State certificates are granted 
to teachers of approved character, scholarship and successful experience, 
by virtue of authority conferred by section 50 of the school law.  
The clause of said section which confers said authority is as follows:

Law Concerning State Certificates "The State Superintendent of Public
Instruction is hereby authorized to grant State certificates to such
teachers as may be found worthy to receive them which shall be of perpetual
validity in every county and school district in the State.  But State
certificates shall only be granted upon public examination, of which due
notice shall be given, in such branches and upon such terms, and by such
examiners as the State Superintendent and the Principals of the Normal
Universities may prescribe.  Such certificates may be revoked by the State
Superintendent upon proof of immoral or unprofessional conduct."  After a
careful consideration of, what is believed to be the true intent and spirit
of the kw; and consultation with the Presidents of the State Normal
Universities, it has been decides that applicants for State certificates
should be required to comply with the following:

Terms and Conditions.

1.  To furnish to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, prior to
examination, satisfactory evidence of good moral character.

2.  To furnish to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction satisfactory 
evidence of having taught, with decided success, not less than three years, 
at least one of which shall have been in this State.  The year in this State 
shall have been at a time not more than five years previous to time of 

3.  To pass a very thorough examination in Orthography, Reading,
Mental and Written Arithmetic, English Grammar, Modern Geography, History
of the United States, Algebra, the Elements of Plane and Solid (not
including Spherical) Geometry, and the Theory and Art of Education.  

4.  To pass a satisfactory examination in Natural Philosophy, Physical Geography,
Anatomy and Physiology, Botany, Zoology, Astronomy and Chemistry, as these
are deemed essential to the highest success in some of the improved methods
of primary instruction, and as most of these branches are now required for
county certificates.  But the examination in these branches will embrace
the rudimentary principles only.  

5.  To pass a satisfactory examination in the School Law of Illinois, 
especially in those portions thereof which relate to the legal rights and 
duties of teachers.  

6.  To write a brief essay upon some familiar topic announced at the time.


In respect to moral character, the only object is to be sure that the
applicant is, in this respect worthy.  No set form of evidence is required,
so that the fact of good character appears.  If an applicant is personally
known to the State Superintendent, or the President of either Normal
University, as of good character, it will be sufficient to state the
fact-no other testimonial will be necessary.  If not, written testimonials
from one or more responsible persons acquainted with the applicant, will be
required.  In respect to the length of time that an applicant has taught,
his own declaration, giving the time, place and kind of school, will be
sufficient.  Touching the question of success in teaching, written
testimonials from employers, or other responsible and competent persons
acquainted with the facts, will be required.  The evidence upon this point
is vital, and must be clear and erplicit.  By "three years" teaching is
meant three ordinary school years less than seven months each.

Condition Precedent.

Satisfactory evidence relative to character, length of time taught, and
success, must be furnished before a candidate can be admitted to the
examination-it is a condition precedent, and should be transmitted to the
State Superintendent, by each candidate, along with his application for
examination, so that, if defective, due notice may be given, and that there
may be no disappointment nor loss of time in the inspection of credentials
when the day of examination arrives.  Any one whose credentials are
unsatisfactory, will be promptly informed of the fact, and wherein, that
the deficiency may be supplied, if practicable, and if not, he will be
declared ineligible, and saved the expense of attendance..  Attention to
these preliminaries is important.  There is no time to inspect testimonials
during the examination, and none can be examined without them.  Persons who
have attended an examination for State certificates at some previous time
and propose attending this year again, must furnish testimonials of
character and teaching covering the time since they were last examined. 
Papers forwarded as testimonials must in all cases be originals.  If any
teacher wishes the originals returned, copies thereof, for filing in this
office, must be sent with the originals.  When copies are so sent,' the
originals will be returned, but not otherwise.

Board of Examiners.

None but practical teachers, of high character and distinguished
professional ability, will be appointed upon the State Board.  of
Examiners.  So far as possible the holder of State certificates will be
chosen for members of that board.

For each examination one conductor will be appointed, who will have charge
of the class and will make the oral examinations.

There will also be appointed a board of three or more, who will meet at
some central point and receive from the different conductors the written
work of all the candidates and pass upon it after careful examination.

Mode of Examination Both oral and written methods will be employed.  The
questions to be answered under each topic embraced in the examination, will
be printed on slips of paper, and consecutively numbered.  Each applicant
will be furnished with one of these slips, and with pen and paper.  A
definite time will be allowed to each topic.  Each answer must bear the
number of the corresponding question.  In questions requiring demonstration
or analysis, the entire work should be given, and not merely the result or
answer, so that the several steps of the process may appear, and the board
be the better enabled to judge of the teacher's habits of thought and
reasoning.  In addition to written answers to the printed questions,
candidates will also be examined orally in reading and mental arithmetic.

When an examination, both written and oral, is made in any branch, the
applicant's standing in that branch will be the result of both
examinations; but the written examination will have double the weight of
the oral in determining the standing


It will not make the smallest diference what text books teachers have
studied in any particular branch or science, so that they have prerequisite
knowledge thereof.

Mode of Award.

The greatest care will he taken to make the examination and final judgment
strictly impartial.  To this end, all candidates will be known during the
examination by numbers, and not by their real names.  In examining the
papers, the board will note the grade of merit of each one opposite the
number found thereon; and in like manner, after all the papers have been
examined and the result summed up, said result will be placed after the
proper number.  Each set of papers - will be disposed of in the same way. 
After all the papers have been marked definitely and finally, the marks of
the oral examinations will be combined with the marks of the written work. 
Diplomas wm be awarded only to those candidates who are unanimously
recommended for them by the board of examiners.  In determining the merits
of the papers the examiners will be guided by the following principles. 
The work of the candidates will be marked on a scale of 100; and 70 is
fixed as the average to be required for the whole examination.  The
branches have been arranged in groups, and the minimum for those in each
group fixed, as indicated below.  If a candidate gains the required
average, and does not in any branch fall below the minimum fixed for it, he
will receive the certificate.  If a candidate reaches the required average
for the examination, but falls below the minimum in one or more branches,
he will be admitted to another examination in those branches, and will be
awarded a certificate when he has passed in each with a mark as high as the
average for the examination.  Other candidates.  who fail will not receive
any credit for work done.

General Remarks.

Punctual atttendance upon all four of the days will be very important.  The
rules governing the examination will be stated at the beginning of the
examination, and certain general directions given, which there will not be
time afterwards to repeat.  Moreover, there will be full work for the class
for the whole time, and a teacher arriving after a portion of the topics
have been written upon, cannot make np for lost time without protracting. 
the examination, which it will not be practicable to do.  A State
certificate entitles the holder to teach in any county and school district
of the State, without further examination, and is valid for life, or so
long as the personal and professional reputation of the holder remains
untarnished.  It is, therefore, not only the highest known to our system of
public education, and an honor to those receiving it, but it has also an
important business value to all professional teachers: It is the object of
the law under which these examinations are held, specially to recognize and
honor those experienced.  and successful teachers who have given character
and dignity to the profession in this State, and to furnish to young
teachers a proper incentive to honorable exertion.  James P. Slade,
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Dr. Arthur Hu emailed me this copy; he got it from someone who found it "tucked away in the library." I added a few html tags for legibility.

These 1880 exams wasn't as "rigorous" as those in previous years--applicants were allowed a quarter hour more for each section. Do any of you contemporary state legislators out there interpret this as "dumbing down" the test?