PSAT Writing : Identifying Sentence Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for PSAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #881 : Identifying 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.

Upon the discovery that she couldn’t completely open her right eye, Joanna decided it was finally time to visit a doctor. No error

Possible Answers:

No error

Upon the discovery

eye, Joanna

completely

was

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “Upon the discovery” is an appropriate idiomatic use of a preposition, “completely” is an adverb that modifies a verb, the comma between “eye” and “Joanna” is grammatical, and “was” is a verb in the correct tense.

Example Question #882 : Identifying 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.

Seeking radical change in the way his second grade classroom was run, Joey tried to mobilize the students and motivate them to form a student union. No error

Possible Answers:

Seeking

No error

in the way

was run

them

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “Seeking” is a gerund verb that starts a correct modifying phrase, “in the way” is a conventional prepositional phrase, “was run” is an appropriate use of the passive voice, and “them” is a pronoun that agrees with its antecedent “the students.”

Example Question #63 : Identifying No Error Questions

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

Margaret was full of nagging doubts; she couldn’t remember if Wednesday or Thursday was the last time she had seen her pet tarantula. No error

Possible Answers:

doubts; she

had seen

Wednesday or Thursday

full of

No error

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “Full of” is a conventional combination of adjective and preposition, the semi-colon between “doubts” and “she” is grammatical, “Wednesday or Thursday” is coordinated correctly, and “had seen” is in the correct tense.

Example Question #81 : Psat Writing Skills

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

She found the cheerful, busy atmosphere of the café to be energizing, but her favorite place to spend time remained the reading room of the library. No error

Possible Answers:

to be

cheerful, busy

remained

but

No error

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “Cheerful, busy” is a correct combination of adjectives modifying a noun, “to be” is a conventional way to follow the very “found,” “but” is a logical conjunction, and “remained” is a verb in the correct tense.

Example Question #41 : Identifying Sentences That Contain No Errors

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

She wrote all day and all night, and she only stopped when she had run out of words. No error

Possible Answers:

all day and all night

she

No error

had run out 

stopped

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “All day and all night” are correctly coordinated adverbial phrases, “she” is a pronoun that agrees with the previous pronoun, “stopped” is a verb in the correct tense, and “had run out” is a correct combination of verb and preposition.

Example Question #42 : Identifying No Errors Or Other Errors

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

Joey chose to eat ice cream for every meal for a week, and now he is complaining that he feels ill. No error

Possible Answers:

week, and

for every meal

he

feels

No error

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

This sentence is correct as written. “For every meal” is an appropriate prepositional phrase, the comma between “week” and “and” is grammatical, “he” is a pronoun that agrees with “Joey,” and “feels” is a verb in the correct tense.

Example Question #892 : Identifying 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.

"Don't speak to me like that ever again," Connie warned. "I'll tell on you next time." The boy, once so antogonistic, backed off immediately. No error

Possible Answers:

boy, once

,"

tell on you

antagonistic

No error

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

There are no errors in the sentence, all the subjects agree with their verbs, and the tenses line up. The commas are in their correct places as well.

Example Question #72 : Identifying 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.

She leapt over tables, wiggled through corridors, sprinted around three, tall tree trunks, and finally sat down in a heap to catch her breath. No error

Possible Answers:

three, tall

sat down

leapt

No error

through corridors

Correct answer:

three, tall

Explanation:

Normally you'd want to separate a list with commas, but that's not the case here. To know why, imagine that each comma in a list is the word "and." You'd never say "three and tall tree trunks" here.

Numbers will commonly do this in English; thus "I saw four red birds," etc.

Example Question #51 : Identifying Sentences That Contain No Errors

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

Sea salt, especially when paired with chocolate or caramel, has an interesting flavor and is becoming increasingly popular in baking. No error

Possible Answers:

No error

increasingly

chocolate or caramel

when

and is

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

Nothing in this sentence needs to be changed.

Example Question #52 : Identifying Sentences That Contain No 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 new exhibit at the history museum provides a surprisingly fascinating look at the milling industry in the American MidwestNo error

Possible Answers:

in the American Midwest

surprisingly

No error

new

provides

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

Nothing in this sentence needs to be changed.

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