ACT English : Other Adjective and Adverb Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for ACT English

varsity tutors app store varsity tutors android store varsity tutors amazon store varsity tutors ibooks store

Example Questions

Example Question #11 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Adapted from The Varieties of Religious Experience by William James (1902)

In the matter of religions, it is particularly easy distinguishing the too orders of question. Every religious phenomenon has its history and its derivation from natural antecedents. What is nowadays called the higher criticism of the Bible are only a study of the Bible from this existential point of view, neglected to much by the earlier church. Under just what biographic conditions did the sacred writers bring forth their various contributions to the holy volume? What had they exactly in their several individual minds, when they delivered their utterances? These are manifestly questions of historical fact, and one does not see how the answer to it can decide offhand the still further question: of what use should such a volume, with its manner of coming into existence so defined, be to us as a guide to life and a revelation? To answer this other question we must have already in our mind some sort of a general theory as to what the peculiarities in a thing should be which give it value for purposes of revelation; and this theory itself would be what I just called a spiritual judgment. Combining it with our existential judgment, we might indeed deduce another spiritual judgment as to the Bibles’ worth. Thus, if our theory of revelation-value were to affirm that any book, to possess it, must have been composed automatically or not by the free caprice of the writer, or that it must exhibit no scientific and historic errors and express no local or personal passions, the Bible would probably fare ill at our hands. But if, on the other hand, our theory should allow that a book may well be a revelation in spite of errors and passions and deliberate human composition, if only it be a true record of the inner experiences of great-souled persons wrestling with the crises of his fate, than the verdict would be much favorable. You see that the existential facts by itself are insufficient for determining the value; and the best adepts of the higher criticism accordingly never confound the existential with the spiritual problem. With the same conclusions of fact before them, some take one view, and some another, of the Bible's value as a revelation, according as their spiritual judgment as to the foundation of values differ.

What is an acceptable replacement for the underlined word, "still"?

Possible Answers:

remaining

hidden

even

silent

Correct answer:

even

Explanation:

The word "still" does have an adverbial use, having meanings that include:

(1) Until now as formerly, as in: "It is still hot outside."

(2) Nevertheless, as in: "Still, I do not agree with you at all!"

(3) Even (used for emphasis): "With time almost being up, the student began to write still more quickly."

Since the author offers a comparatively "further" question, the sense of "still" in this sentence is "even," as in "an even further" question.

Example Question #12 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Choose the word or phrase that best completes the sentence.

He ran __________.

Possible Answers:

slow

weird

quickly

real fast

real quickly

Correct answer:

quickly

Explanation:

This sentence requires a description of the way in which "he" ran. Thus, it needs an adverb, a word that modifies a verb. "Slow" and "weird" are both adjectives rather than adverbs. Most adverbs end in "-ly," including the correct answer, "quickly." However, "real fast" and "real quickly" are both incorrect because the word "real" is misused, taking the place of the word "very" ("He ran very quickly" would be correct).

Example Question #2171 : Correcting Grammatical Errors

Choose the answer that best corrects the underlined portion of the sentence. If the underlined portion is correct as written, choose "NO CHANGE."

Hans had fallen quick when the wind caught his ladder.

Possible Answers:

quickest

NO CHANGE

quickly

quicker

pretty quick

Correct answer:

quickly

Explanation:

The word “quickly” is an adverb that is used to modify the verb “fallen” (by explaining HOW the falling had taken place).

Example Question #11 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Choose the answer that best corrects the underlined portion of the sentence. If the underlined portion is correct as written, choose "NO CHANGE."

Aerin's beautiful written speech brought tears to the eyes of his fellow classmates at graduation.

Possible Answers:

beautifully

NO CHANGE

beautifully written

beautifully wrote

beautiful wrote

Correct answer:

beautifully written

Explanation:

The adverb necessary here is "beautifully," which modifies the past participle, "written." Participles are verbs acting as adjectives. Adverbs can modify verbs or adjectives.

Example Question #15 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Choose the answer that best corrects the underlined portion of the sentence. If the underlined portion is correct as written, choose "NO CHANGE."

She was surprisingly quick on the uptake.

Possible Answers:

surprised quickly

surprised quick

NO CHANGE

quick

surprisingly quickly

Correct answer:

NO CHANGE

Explanation:

The sentence is correct as is. "Surprisingly" is an adverb modifying the verb, “quick,” so it correctly ends in “-ly.” The other options change the meaning of the sentence.

Example Question #16 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Many people watch football however (1) some do not. With (2) those who do not watch this sport (3) football is an incomprehensible pastime. Non football (4) fans cannot understand what is so exciting about watching two packs of grown men running away or toward each other, while (5) clinging for dear life to a piece of pigskin. It also makes from little to no sense (6) why those whom (7) play the sport gets (8) paid the exorbitant amounts that they do, even though he is (9) in effect doing the same thing that high school and college students do on a daily bases (10). But as the French would say, "Chacun à son goût" (11) though its (12) highly doubtful that most football fans (or even people who are not fans) would know what that means.

Choose from the following four options the answer that best corrects the underlined mistake preceding the question number. If there is no mistake or the original text is the best option, choose "NO CHANGE."

Possible Answers:

Non, football

Non-football

"Non" football

NO CHANGE

Correct answer:

Non-football

Explanation:

A hyphen is generally used when two adjectives are combined to form a new one, but only before a noun.

Example Question #17 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Ivan and Oscar, two little white mice living in Mrs. Wiggins house (1), were desperate for some cheese, but the only way to get to the kitchen was climbing down (2) the old suit of armor that Mrs. Wiggins brought (3) back from England after her honeymoon. Ivan had went down (4) to the kitchen many times before, but Oscar was new to it all and (5) he was more nervous than he would admit. They came out at the hole in the wall above the suit of armors (6) left shoulder, and Oscar watched as Ivan slipped fast (7) into the joins between the steel plates. He then heard Ivan scuttling down through the shoulder, chest, and the left leg (8) before emerging through the left foot below. "Come on down Oscar (9)" called the courageous mouse. Oscar made his way into the shoulder just as his friend had done, but (10) somehow got mixed up and ended up in the right arm. The twists and turns inside the armor were too complicated for his tiny, mousy (11) mind. Finally he called out, "Help, Ivan! Help! Wont (12) you help me make it through the knight?"

Choose from the following four options the answer that best corrects the underlined mistake preceding the question number. If there is no mistake or the original text is the best option, choose "NO CHANGE."

Possible Answers:

NO CHANGE

tiny; mousy

tiny mousy

tiny, mousy,

Correct answer:

tiny mousy

Explanation:

When two adjectives follow each other, a comma should separate them only if they can be read with "and" between them, and in this case, the phrase "his tiny and mousy mind" would sound awkward.

Example Question #18 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

The student the hand of whom was up (1) gave the wrong answer. She was asked what was a substantive adjective (2), and she answered that a substantive adjective is one that describe (3) a substance. "No!" (4) the teacher barked. "A substantive adjective takes the place of a noun in a sentence, as when someone talks about the rich and the poor (5). Did you learn nothing in this class?" He then asked what a superlative adjective was, to which she replied (6) that a superlative adjective was one that took the place of a noun in a sentence. "But thats (7) what I just said," the teacher screamed! (8) The student had said (9) that she had heard him, therefore (10) she answered his question. "You answered my question previously, (11)" he bellowed, "not the last one!" "Ah, you mean the latest one," the student replied, the moment at which (12) the teacher turned to the wall and started beating his head against it.

Choose from the following four options the answer that best corrects the underlined mistake preceding the question number. If there is no mistake or the original text is the best option, choose "NO CHANGE."

Possible Answers:

the hand of who was up

NO CHANGE

the hand of which was up

whose hand was up

Correct answer:

whose hand was up

Explanation:

The correct wording of the adjective clause above is "whose hand was up;" the other wordings are either incorrect or too wordy.

Example Question #19 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

The student the hand of whom was up (1) gave the wrong answer. She was asked what was a substantive adjective (2), and she answered that a substantive adjective is one that describe (3) a substance. "No!" (4) the teacher barked. "A substantive adjective takes the place of a noun in a sentence, as when someone talks about the rich and the poor (5). Did you learn nothing in this class?" He then asked what a superlative adjective was, to which she replied (6) that a superlative adjective was one that took the place of a noun in a sentence. "But thats (7) what I just said," the teacher screamed! (8) The student had said (9) that she had heard him, therefore (10) she answered his question. "You answered my question previously, (11)" he bellowed, "not the last one!" "Ah, you mean the latest one," the student replied, the moment at which (12) the teacher turned to the wall and started beating his head against it.

Choose from the following four options the answer that best corrects the underlined mistake preceding the question number. If there is no mistake or the original text is the best option, choose "NO CHANGE."

Possible Answers:

my previously question

my question from previous

my previous question

NO CHANGE

Correct answer:

my previous question

Explanation:

The adjective "previous" should be used here instead of the adverb "previously," and it should precede the noun it modifies ("question"). 

Example Question #20 : Other Adjective And Adverb Errors

Adapted from The Discourse on Method by René Descartes (1637; 1899, ed. Eliot)

From my childhood, I have been familiar with letters; and as I was given to believe that by their help a clear and certain knowledge of all that is useful in life might be acquired, I was ardently desirously for instruction in them. But as soon as I had finished the entire course of study, at the close of which it is customarily to be admitted into the order of the learned, I completely changed my opinion. I found myself involved in so many doubts and errors and was convinced that I had not advanced in all my attempts at learning. At every turn, ignorance and unknowing was to be discovered. And yet, I was studying in one of the most celebrated Schools in Europe. I thought there must be learned men in it, at least if such were anywhere to be found. I had been taught all that others learned there. However, not contented with the sciences actually taught us, I had, in addition, read all the books that had fallen into my hands, studying those branches that are judged to be the most curious and rare. I knew the judgment that others had formed of me. I did not find that I was considered inferior to my fellows, although there were among them some whom were already marked out to fill the places of our instructors. And, finally, our era appeared to me as flourishing and fertile with powerful minds as any preceding one. I was thus led to take the liberty of judging of all other men by myself. Furthermore, I concluded that there was no science in existence that was of such a nature as I had previously been given to believe.

Which is the best form of the underlined selection "I was ardently desirously for instruction in them"?

Possible Answers:

I was ardently desirous for instruction in them

NO CHANGE

I had been ardently desirously for instruction in them

I am ardently desirous for instruction in them

Correct answer:

I was ardently desirous for instruction in them

Explanation:

As written, the major issue with the sentence is its lack of a predicate nominative phrase or adjective. By using the verb "to be" (i.e. "was"), the author is describing himself. That is, he is saying, "I was X," where X is some description. The problem is the double use of adverbs directly after the verb. Among the options provided, the best answer is the one that replaces "desirously" with "desirous." Thus, "ardently" is an adverb modifying "desirous," which is a predicate nominative adjective describing "I."

Learning Tools by Varsity Tutors