SAT Writing : Identifying Ambiguity and Redundancy Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all.

Our physics teacher is famous for distributing papers to students while at the same time chewing his gum quite loudly. No error

Possible Answers:

at the same time

loudly

distributing 

No error 

physics

Correct answer:

at the same time

Explanation:

“At the same time” means the same thing as “while.” Therefore, it is redundant, and doesn't need to be included in the sentence.

Example Question #2 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all.

Certain colors are associated with certain emotions in our minds, and while certain smells are associated with certain memories. No error

Possible Answers:

are

associated

and while

No error

with

Correct answer:

and while

Explanation:

Either "while" or "and" could be used as a proper transition between the two sections of the sentence, but the phrase "and while" is overly wordy and therefore incorrect. 

Example Question #3 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all.

Our Algebra homework this week was definitely without a doubt the most challenging assignment yet, so it was gratifying to get a perfect score on it. No error

Possible Answers:

yet, so

No error

Algebra

most

without a doubt

Correct answer:

without a doubt

Explanation:

"Without a doubt" means the same thing as "definitely" and therefore does not need to be included in the sentence.

Example Question #4 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

When Lonnie stepped onto the field, he was definitely without a doubt the most confident member of our high school marching band. No error

Possible Answers:

When Lonnie stepped

No error

our

 most confident 

definitely without a doubt

Correct answer:

definitely without a doubt

Explanation:

"Without a doubt" means the same thing as "definitely," and is therefore redundant when used in the above sentence. 

Example Question #5 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

While when Rachel was cleaning her apartment, she found her long-lost high school yearbook beneath her cat's bed. No error

Possible Answers:

beneath

long-lost

when

No error

found

Correct answer:

when

Explanation:

In the sentence above, "when" is redundant since "While" is already used. 

Example Question #5 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

Jonah was really thirsty during the day, but however he didn't have enough money to buy a bottle of water from the vending machine. No error

Possible Answers:

No error

from

to buy

however

really

Correct answer:

however

Explanation:

In the sentence above, "however" is redundant, since "but" is already used. 

Example Question #6 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

April's pencils were not all sharpened, even though although she had run them through the sharpener several times. No error

Possible Answers:

although

run them

several

were not

No error

Correct answer:

although

Explanation:

In this instance, "although" means the same thing as "even though" and is therefore redundant. 

Example Question #7 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

Calvin would often tell Jimmy that Jimmy was his best friend, while simultaneously at the same time he would tell Steve that he was his best friend. No error

Possible Answers:

he

No error

would often

Jimmy

simultaneously

Correct answer:

simultaneously

Explanation:

"Simultaneously" means the same thing as "at the same time" in this sentence, and is therefore redundant. 

Example Question #8 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all. 

The kitten is very shy around most people, yet but he immediately runs up to play with Daisy whenever she comes into the house. No error.  

Possible Answers:

whenever

around

but

to play

No error

Correct answer:

but

Explanation:

"But" is a redundant word in the above sentence, as it is a synonym of "yet" and is not required for the sentence to be grammatically correct.

Example Question #9 : Identifying Ambiguity And Redundancy Errors

Select the underlined word or phrase that needs to be changed to make the sentence correct. Some sentences contain no error at all.

As the substitute teacher wrote the homework assignment on the board, the last bell began to ring as well. No error

Possible Answers:

No error

as well

board, the last bell

on

wrote

Correct answer:

as well

Explanation:

Since the use of "as" in the introductory clause already establishes that another action is happening at the same time, the "as well" is redundant and should be omitted.

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