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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

2011, High School Technology/Engineering

  Question 45: Open-Response  
A student wants to place a 100 gal. aquarium on a 6 ft. by 1.5 ft. by 2.5 ft. wooden cabinet, as shown below.
Fish tank and cabinet showing dimensions.
The floor of the student’s bedroom is designed to hold 50 lb. per sq. ft. of load. The empty aquarium and cabinet weigh 30 lb. and 80 lb., respectively. One hundred gallons of water weighs 831 lb.
  1. Calculate the total load exerted on the floor by the cabinet and the aquarium filled with water. Show your calculations and include units in your answer.
  2. Can the floor of the student’s bedroom safely support the filled aquarium? Show calculations with units to justify your answer.
  3. Identify the type of load on the floor that the aquarium and cabinet represent. Explain your answer.

Scoring Guide and Sample Student Work
Select a score point in the table below to view the sample student response.

4 The response demonstrates a thorough understanding of live loads and dead loads. The response correctly calculates the load of the cabinet and the filled aquarium and shows mathematically that the floor cannot safely support the filled aquarium. The response also correctly identifies and explains the type of load represented by the aquarium and the cabinet.
3 The response demonstrates a general understanding of live loads and dead loads.
2 The response demonstrates a limited understanding of live loads and dead loads.
1 The response demonstrates a minimal understanding of live loads and dead loads.
0 The response is incorrect or contains some correct work that is irrelevant to the skill or concept being measured.

Note: There are 2 sample student responses for Score Point 4.

In 2011, the Department did not release any questions from the high school Chemistry and Technology/Engineering tests.
This was done in order to support the future development of tests in these subjects.

Return to the MCAS 2011 Student Work Directory

Last Updated: August 21, 2017
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