SAT Writing : Correcting Other Conjunction Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Correcting Other Conjunction 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.

The last time it snowed, that was in February, my dad lost control of his car and hit a tree.

Possible Answers:

snowed, which was in February,

snowed, February was the month,

snowed, it was in February,

was snowing, that was in February,

snows, that was in February,

Correct answer:

snowed, which was in February,

Explanation:

This is a case in which we need to decide whether to use the word "which" or "that" to introduce the clause set apart from the rest of the sentence by commas. "That" is used to introduce information absolutely necessary to the sentence's meaning, whereas "which" is used to introduce information that would not change the sentence's meaning if it were removed from the sentence. Information that is not crucial to the sentence's meaning is usually set apart by commas.

In this case, the sentence "The last time it snowed, my dad lost control of his car and hit a tree" still makes sense, so we know that the information included between the commas isn't absolutely necessary to the sentence's meaning. Plus, the information in question is being set apart from the rest of the sentence by commas. So, we should use "which," and not "that."

Example Question #918 : Improving Sentences

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.

The weather forecast predicted snow for today, and it is raining.

Possible Answers:

predicted snow for today, and it is

predicted snow, for today and it is

predicted snow around today, and it is 

predicted snow for today, but it is

predicted it to be snowing today, and it is

Correct answer:

predicted snow for today, but it is

Explanation:

Because the second independent clause contradicts the first in this compound sentence it is more correct to separate the two with the conjunction "but," not "and."

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