In brief: Pew's survey consisted of 10 tech-based general knowledge questions administered to 4,272 adults in the US between June 3 and June 17 of this year. Of them, the median number of correct answers was four and only one in five adults got seven or more questions correct.

Americans' understanding of technology-related matters varies wildly depending on the topic in question, the results of a new Pew Research Center survey show.

While most surveyed could correctly answer questions about website cookies, advertising's role in social media and phishing scams, there was far less certainty with subject matter involving two-factor authentication, encryption and public figures.

Only three questions were answered correctly by the majority of those surveyed. Just two percent of respondents answered all 10 questions correctly.

As has previously been observed, a respondent's level of education and age tend to factor into how many questions they got right. For example, those with a high school diploma or less got just three questions right while adults with a college degree answered a median of six questions correctly.

Younger adults also generally scored higher than their older counterparts. Respondents between the ages of 18 and 29 got a median of five questions correct while seniors ages 65 and older scored a median of just three correct answers.

Masthead credit: E-learning by