ACT English : Pronoun-Antecedent Gender Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for ACT English

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Example Questions

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Example Question #163 : Agreement Errors

Correct the italicized portion of the following sentence.

The student left they're study materials in the cafeteria.

Possible Answers:

her

them

NO CHANGE

their 

his/her

Correct answer:

his/her

Explanation:

The correct choice is "her" because "they're" is plural and a contraction for "they are." "Student" is singular, so the pronoun referring to it must be singular as well. The answer is not "their" because "their" is plural. His/her refers to a non-specific subject, but, in this sentence, the subject is clearly a singular person, so a singular, gender-specific pronoun was assigned. 

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