GMAT Verbal : Correcting Pronoun Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for GMAT Verbal

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Example Questions

Example Question #41 : Other Pronoun Usage 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.

The questions have only been seen by myself.

Possible Answers:

been seeing myself.

being seen by myself.

been seen myself.

been seen by myself.

been seen by me.

Correct answer:

been seen by me.

Explanation:

The use of "myself" is incorrect in the sentence, as it is a reflexive pronoun and needs the first person pronoun "me" to precede it. Therefore, "myself" must be changed to the first person pronoun "me," making the correct answer "been seen by me."

Example Question #24 : 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 game score was reported directly to myself as soon as the contest was over.

Possible Answers:

was reported direct to myself

was reported directly to me

was reported directly for myself

was reporting directly to myself

was reported directly to myself

Correct answer:

was reported directly to me

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in this sentence, as there is no previous usage of the first person pronoun for it to be referring to. "Myself" should be replaced by the simple objective pronoun "me." The correct answer is the only answer choice that does this, "was reported directly to me."

Example Question #51 : Correcting Usage 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.

The group has already expressed thanks both to the senator and myself.

Possible Answers:

both to me and the senator.

both to myself and the senator.

both to the senator and I.

both to the senator and myself.

both to the senator, and myself.

Correct answer:

both to me and the senator.

Explanation:

Using the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in this sentence. A reflexive pronoun needs to follow a previous use of the regular pronoun, and so this pronoun needs to become the simple first person objective pronoun, "me." The only answer choice that uses the correct pronoun is "both to me and the senator."

Example Question #51 : Other Pronoun 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.

Every item was inspected by myself before it left the warehouse.

Possible Answers:

inspecting by myself before it left

inspected by myself before leaving

inspected by myself before it left

inspected by myself before it leaves

inspected by me before it left

Correct answer:

inspected by me before it left

Explanation:

The use of "myself" in the sentence is incorrect, as a reflexive pronoun always needs to be preceded by a previous pronoun to which it can refer. The reflexive pronoun "myself" needs to be replaced by the simple objective first person pronoun "me." Therefore, the correct answer choice is "inspected by me before it left."

Example Question #21 : Correcting Word Usage 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.

The news report was first read by myself, then by everyone else in the room.

Possible Answers:

first reading by myself,

first read by myself,

first read by me,

first read to myself,

first read for myself,

Correct answer:

first read by me,

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in the sentence, as it needs to refer back to a previous use of the pronoun, and this sentence does not contain one. The pronoun that is appropriate in the sentence is the simple objective first person pronoun "me." Therefore, "first read by me," is the correct answer choice.

Example Question #11 : Correcting Pronoun Errors: Incorrect Usage

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.

These presents were all given to myself by my family as birthday gifts.

Possible Answers:

were all given to myself from my family

were all giving to myself by my family

were each given to myself by my family

were all given to me by my family

were all given to myself by my family

Correct answer:

were all given to me by my family

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun in the sentence is incorrect, as it does not have a previous first person pronoun to which it can refer back. "Myself" should be changed to the simple first person objective pronoun, "me." Therefore, the correct answer choice is "were all given to me by my family."

Example Question #54 : Other Pronoun Usage 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.

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

Possible Answers:

The conditions in the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

The conditions, of the agreement, were always offensive to themselves.

The conditions of the agreement was always offensive to themselves.

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to them.

Correct answer:

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to them.

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "themselves" in this sentence is incorrect, as "themselves" needs to refer to a previous usage of the third person plural pronoun. As none exists in the sentence, "themselves" should be changed to the simple third person plural pronoun, "them." Therefore, the correct answer choice is "The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to them."

Example Question #55 : Other Pronoun Usage 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.

The entire procedure was carefully laid out by each participant directly to myself.

Possible Answers:

directly for myself.

directly toward myself.

directly to myself.

directly to me.

direct to myself.

Correct answer:

directly to me.

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in this sentence, as it has no previous usage of the first person pronoun to refer back to earlier in the sentence. The reflexive pronoun needs to be changed to the simple first person objective pronoun, "me," making the correct answer choice "directly to me."

Example Question #21 : Correcting Pronoun Errors: Incorrect Usage

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 assistant always read the paper completely to myself every morning.

Possible Answers:

completely to myself every morning.

completely to my own self every morning.

completely for myself every morning.

complete to myself every morning.

completely to me every morning.

Correct answer:

completely to me every morning.

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in this sentence, as it has no previous first person pronoun to refer to. The simple first person objective pronoun is the only pronoun that should be used in this instance. Therefore, the correct answer choice is "completely to me every morning."

Example Question #21 : Correcting Pronoun Errors: Incorrect Usage

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 news came as a complete surprise not only to me, but to himself as well.

Possible Answers:

but for himself as well.

but also to himself as well.

but to him as well.

but to himself just as well.

but to himself as well.

Correct answer:

but to him as well.

Explanation:

The use of "himself" is incorrect in this statement, as it is a reflexive pronoun with no previous third person pronoun to which it can refer back. The simple third person pronoun is all that is needed in this spot. Therefore, the correct answer choice is "but to him as well."

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