SAT Writing : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, and Sentence Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence 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 old, faded rug ran the course of the entire empty room, it having been left untouched for fifty years. No error

Possible Answers:

it having been 

No error

old, faded

ran

untouched for

Correct answer:

it having been 

Explanation:

This sentence has some unnecessary words thrown in it. “It having been” is clunky and not needed. The corrected sentence reads: The old, faded rug ran the course of the entire empty room, left untouched for fifty years.

Example Question #2 : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence 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 freedom continually trumpeted by the Greeks as the defining characteristic of their society is juxtaposed from the overwhelming lack of individual freedom exhibited by Agamemnon, Clytemnestra, and Iphigenia; the Greeks’ portrayal of the Eastern foreigners as barbaric, incontinent rapists is meanwhile paralleled with the often equally violent and impulsive behavior of Greek men and, in particular, of the Greek army. No error

Possible Answers:

Iphigenia; the Greeks' portrayal

No error

continually

paralleled with

juxtaposed from

Correct answer:

juxtaposed from

Explanation:

“Continually” means “repeated regularly,” which fits the meaning of this sentence. The semicolon after “Iphigenia” correctly links two complete sentences. “Paralleled with” demonstrates the correct use of a preposition. “Juxtaposed from,” however, uses the wrong preposition. “Juxtaposed,” which means placed with or beside something in order to emphasize the contrast between the two things should be followed by the preposition “with,” as the two terms are being contrasted with each other.

Example Question #3 : Identifying 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.

Logan's high school puts on more plays than his sister.

Possible Answers:

as opposed to his sister's school

than his sister's school

than does his sister

compared to what his sister's school does

than his sister

Correct answer:

than his sister's school

Explanation:

This question is looking for a logical comparision between one school (Logan's) and another (his sister's) rather than a comparison between a school (Logan's) and a person (his sister). Although "as opposed to his sister's school" and "than does his sister's school" both express this concept, they are unnecessarily wordy, leaving "than his sister's school" as the correct answer.

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

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

Before school started, Patrick needed to check off many more items on his to-do list, including buying more pencils, finishing his summer reading packet, and practice trumpet for his audition. No error

Possible Answers:

and practice trumpet

list, including

No error

finishing

Before school started

Correct answer:

and practice trumpet

Explanation:

This question requires the three verbs listed to all be in the same grammatical form. Since the first two verbs are gerunds (verbs that end in "-ing" acting as nouns), the third verb ("practice") should be in that form as well: "practicing."

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

As it turns out, she told the riddle wrong, and there was no way I would have been able to answer based on the information that she gave me.

Possible Answers:

As it turns out

No error

wrong

that she gave me

would have been able

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written.

Example Question #6 : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

He shivered in the damp fog and wished that he had thought to bring a sweater, or maybe a parka.

Possible Answers:

had thought

and wished that

shivered in

No error

or maybe

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written.

Example Question #7 : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

 

While grizzly bears typically avoid contact with people, and anglers and bears often meet near streams during the fall salmon run.

 

Possible Answers:

No error

and anglers

contact with

typically

during

Correct answer:

and anglers

Explanation:

This sentence has a problem with coordination. The conjunction “and” does not make sense because the information that follows is contradictory to the information before. The corrected sentence reads: While grizzly bears typically avoid contact with people, anglers and bears often meet near streams during the fall salmon run.

Example Question #8 : Identifying Other Phrase, Clause, And Sentence Errors

Her sprawling collection of books is impressive, but the total lack of organization makes it difficult to find anything.

Possible Answers:

No error

is

makes it difficult

but

sprawling collection

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written.

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