PSAT Writing : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, and Sentence Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for PSAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Replace the underlined portion with the answer choice that results in a sentence that is clear, precise, and meets the requirements of standard written English. One of the answer choices repeats the underlined portion as it is written.

However many people attend a music festival, promoters will always want to attend more people.

Possible Answers:

want attend more people

people want to attend more

want to attend more people

want to attend people more

want more people to attend

Correct answer:

want more people to attend

Explanation:

The underlined portion of the sentence is awkwardly and confusingly worded, especially as concerns verb transitivity. The way the sentence is written makes it seem as if the promoters want to attend more people instead of them wanting more people to attend any given music festival. To make the sentence clear and sensible, the words can be rearranged to make it more understandable. "Want more people to attend" is the best choice among the answers.

Example Question #2 : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Replace the underlined portion with the answer choice that results in a sentence that is clear, precise, and meets the requirements of standard written English. One of the answer choices reproduces the underlined portion as it is written in the sentence.

That card game is Brad's favorite, but none of his friends like the game either.

Possible Answers:

none of his friends like the game too.

none of his friends like the game either.

his friends don't like it.

he doesn't have any friends who like it.

his friends do not like it either.

Correct answer:

his friends don't like it.

Explanation:

The correct answer choice is concise, fluid and unambiguous. 

Example Question #3 : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Replace the underlined portion with the answer choice that results in a sentence that is clear, precise, and meets the requirements of standard written English. One of the answer choices reproduces the underlined portion as it is written in the sentence.

Until showing a video of his guitar playing, only Eric's closest friends knew he had such a strong passion for music.

Possible Answers:

Being that he showed a video of his guitar playing

Having shown a video of his guitar playing

Until showing a video of his guitar playing

Until he showed a video of his guitar playing

Until showing a video about his guitar playing

Correct answer:

Until he showed a video of his guitar playing

Explanation:

In the question sentence, the word, showing, is out of order, and is not in the correct tense.

Example Question #4 : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Replace the underlined portion with the answer choice that results in a sentence that is clear, precise, and meets the requirements of standard written English. One of the answer choices reproduces the underlined portion as it is written in the sentence.

Thoughts and feelings about faith during the holidays change over time as one grows older and sometimes wiser.

Possible Answers:

As we grow older, our thoughts and feelings on faith sometimes change during the holidays.

Thoughts on faith sometimes change as we grow different and find ourselves changed. 

During the holidays, our thoughts and feelings on faith sometimes change as we grow older and wiser and find ourselves changed. 

Our thoughts and feelings on faith sometimes change as we grow older and wiser and find ourselves changed. 

Faith during the holidays change over time as one grows older and rarely wiser. 

Correct answer:

As we grow older, our thoughts and feelings on faith sometimes change during the holidays.

Explanation:

The option to rewrite this sentence should clarify, but not change, its meaning. The correct answer: "As we grow older, our thoughts and feelings on faith sometimes change during the holidays," allows the ideas to flow more smoothly without altering the content: each fact is still relayed (the time of year; things that are changing, etc.), but the tone is much clearer. 

Example Question #5 : Correcting Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Replace the underlined portion with the answer choice that results in a sentence that is clear, precise, and meets the requirements of standard written English. One of the answer choices reproduces the underlined portion as it is written in the sentence.

Many people have trouble understanding the complexing elements of policy decisions made by elected officials.

Possible Answers:

a complex elements

the more complex elements

the complexly elements

the complexing elements

a complexing elements

Correct answer:

the more complex elements

Explanation:

The main issue with the underlined portion of the sentence is that "complexing" is not actually a word. The correct answer will appropriately change the word into the best form of "complex" to fit the sentence. To describe the elements best involves making the word into the phrase "more complex."

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