SAT Writing : Correcting Grammatical Errors in a Full Sentence

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #91 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Lemon juice with cayenne pepper, cabbage soup, cookies, grapefruit. 2 What do these have in common?3 They are all key ingredients in recent fad diets; since these diets sound promising, few lead to any permanent weight loss.4 Some of the worst can even lead to health problems, such as, vitamin deficiencies or anemia. 5 Instead of being concerned with lasting weight loss, they are promoting radical changes that only last a short time. 6 Cutting out too many calories at once from your diet can lead to dizziness, heart palpitations, and even a slower metabolism.

7 Some thinkers suggest that fad diets are really a way for us to impose order on our chaotic world, hundreds of food choices, conflicting advice from various health experts. 8 So why diet at all?

How should Sentence 4 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems, such as vitamin deficiencies or anemia.

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems, such as, vitamin deficiencies or anemia. (no change)

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems such as vitamin deficiencies or anemia.

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems such as, vitamin deficiencies or anemia.

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems: such as, vitamin deficiencies or anemia.

Correct answer:

Some of the worst can even lead to health problems such as vitamin deficiencies or anemia.

Explanation:

The phrase “such as” generally does not require commas or other punctuation.

Example Question #92 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 What is to be done about the problem of shoplifting. 2 Small security devices hidden in the tags of expensive clothing, clearly posted signs vocalizing the penalties for shoplifting, and “spider tags” or wired alarm clips all measures that store owners can take. 3 However many can be removed turgidly with magnets, scissors, or other means.

4 Other solutions including using attentive employees, clear and wide aisles, security guards, and security cameras. 5 With self-checkouts, an additional degree of honesty comes into play. 6 Though, it might be more fruition to examine the motives for shoplifting, as more lugubrious social policies could prevent people from needing to shoplift in the first place.

How should Sentence 1 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

What is to be done about the problem of shoplifting?

What is to be done? About the problem of shoplifting, small security devices hidden in the tags of expensive clothing.

What is to be done, about the problem of shoplifting?

What is to be done about the problem of shoplifting. (no change) 

What is to be done about the problem of shoplifting, small security devices hidden in the tags of expensive clothing.

Correct answer:

What is to be done about the problem of shoplifting?

Explanation:

With the addition of a question mark, Sentence 1 is fine on its own and requires no rewriting, separating, or combining. Note that all questions must be punctuated with a question mark, this rule is 100% consistent.

Example Question #93 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Lemon juice with cayenne pepper, cabbage soup, cookies, grapefruit. 2 What do these have in common?3 They are all key ingredients in recent fad diets; since these diets sound promising, few lead to any permanent weight loss.4 Some of the worst can even lead to health problems, such as, vitamin deficiencies or anemia. 5 Instead of being concerned with lasting weight loss, they are promoting radical changes that only last a short time. 6 Cutting out too many calories at once from your diet can lead to dizziness, heart palpitations, and even a slower metabolism.

7 Some thinkers suggest that fad diets are really a way for us to impose order on our chaotic world, hundreds of food choices, conflicting advice from various health experts. 8 So why diet at all?

How should Sentence 1 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Lemon juice with cayenne pepper; cabbage soup; cookies; grapefruit.

Lemon juice with cayenne pepper, cabbage soup, cookies, grapefruit. (no change)

Lemon juice with cayenne pepper and cabbage soup; cookies and grapefruit.

Lemon juice with cayenne pepper – cabbage soup – cookies – and grapefruit.

Lemon juice: with cayenne pepper, cabbage soup, cookies, grapefruit.

Correct answer:

Lemon juice with cayenne pepper, cabbage soup, cookies, grapefruit. (no change)

Explanation:

While this is not a complete sentence, it’s a fine strategy to begin the passage. All of the above punctuation changes do not improve the sense of the sentence at all. The key here was recognizing that none of the other options made a change that was correct, or improved the style or concision of the sentence. Although they were all, technically, grammatically incorrect, the no change option was the most correct.

Example Question #94 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass. 2 They clean the air, and harbor wildlife. 3 There are nearly 200 million, protected acres of them in the United States. 4 Forests are a national treasure.

5 Since the late 1800s, Congress and Presidents have decorated various areas of the country as national forests, grasslands, and preserves. 6 Some well known National Parks include the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone, and the Great Smoky Mountains. 7 Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, it honors landscapes complex histories, and preserving the natural beauty for future generations.

How should Sentence 1 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately; Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass.

Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately while Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass.

Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass. (no change)

Thoreau went to them, he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass.

Thoreau, going to them when he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass.

Correct answer:

Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately; Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass.

Explanation:

We have two independent clauses in this sentence, so they need to be separated by a semicolon, not a comma. Note that using a comma to connect two independent clauses creates an error called a comma splice. Also, note that semicolons, when used in this manner, should never be followed by a coordinating conjunction.

Example Question #95 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass. 2 They clean the air, and harbor wildlife. 3 There are nearly 200 million, protected acres of them in the United States. 4 Forests are a national treasure.

5 Since the late 1800s, Congress and Presidents have decorated various areas of the country as national forests, grasslands, and preserves. 6 Some well known National Parks include the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone, and the Great Smoky Mountains. 7 Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, it honors landscapes complex histories, and preserving the natural beauty for future generations.

How should Sentence 2 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

They clean the air; harbor wildlife.

They clean the air, and harboring wildlife.

They clean the air and harbor wildlife.

They clean the air, and harbor wildlife. (no change)

They clean the air, harbor wildlife.

Correct answer:

They clean the air and harbor wildlife.

Explanation:

Because “harbor wildlife” is not an independent clause, no comma is required before the conjunction. Indicating a connection of independent clauses when two such clauses are not present is always an error.

Example Question #96 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Thoreau went to them when he wished to live deliberately, Whitman wrote about them in his book Leaves of Grass. 2 They clean the air, and harbor wildlife. 3 There are nearly 200 million, protected acres of them in the United States. 4 Forests are a national treasure.

5 Since the late 1800s, Congress and Presidents have decorated various areas of the country as national forests, grasslands, and preserves. 6 Some well known National Parks include the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone, and the Great Smoky Mountains. 7 Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, it honors landscapes complex histories, and preserving the natural beauty for future generations.

How should Sentence 7 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, honor landscapes complex histories, and preserves the natural beauty for future generations.

Protecting forests, which helps safeguard native plant and animal species, honor landscapes complex histories, preserves the natural beauty for future generations.

Protecting forests helps safeguarding native plant and animal species, honoring landscapes complex histories, and preserving the natural beauty for future generations.

Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, honor landscapes complex histories, and preserve the natural beauty for future generations.

Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, it honors landscapes complex histories, and preserving the natural beauty for future generations. (no change)

Correct answer:

Protecting forests helps safeguard native plant and animal species, honor landscapes complex histories, and preserve the natural beauty for future generations.

Explanation:

Remember that lists should always exemplify proper parallelism, and be very careful to match all the verb tenses. In the example sentence each item takes a different form, one extraneously including "it" as a subject, the other using an unnecessary and incorrect gerund.

Example Question #97 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Since its inception in the 19th century, photography has played various and complex roles. 2 Crude pinhole cameras first appeared in antiquity. 3 Silver salts, the colloidon process, and daguerreotypes were all developed during the 1800s as photography took form and it’s technology evolved.

4 By the 1900s, photography was often considered an equal of, or at least analgesic to, painting and other visual art forms. 5 In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip. 6 For example, on social media sites.

7 Photography can capture such minuet, intimate details that some aboriginal peoples famously believed cameras could steal the subject’s soul. 8 Perhaps this is why paparazzi are so victimized by others in their profession: Their intrusiveness may reveal more about the subject than he or she would like. 9 Celebrity photographers including Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition, who also works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait. 10 Photography serves to document war atrocities, famine, or other human rights issues. 11 For example, Nick Ut’s famous picture of Vietnamese children being burned by napalm helped turn American public opinion against the Vietnam War, while Dorothea Lange’s photographs of migrant workers during the Great Depression influenced public policy regarding the treatment of these workers. 12 In the end, photography can be journalistic or artistic, significant or intrusive or ephemeral.

How should Sentence 5 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions; for example, what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip.

In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip. (no change)

In much the same way, portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints and photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions; for example, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip.

In much the same way, portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints and photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip.

In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, possessions, and experiences, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip.

Correct answer:

In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, possessions, and experiences, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip.

Explanation:

Here we have a misplaced modifier. The modifier “what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip” describes “experiences,” not “possessions,” so it should appear next to “experiences” in the sentence.

Example Question #98 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Since its inception in the 19th century, photography has played various and complex roles. 2 Crude pinhole cameras first appeared in antiquity. 3 Silver salts, the colloidon process, and daguerreotypes were all developed during the 1800s as photography took form and it’s technology evolved.

4 By the 1900s, photography was often considered an equal of, or at least analgesic to, painting and other visual art forms. 5 In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip. 6 For example, on social media sites.

7 Photography can capture such minuet, intimate details that some aboriginal peoples famously believed cameras could steal the subject’s soul. 8 Perhaps this is why paparazzi are so victimized by others in their profession: Their intrusiveness may reveal more about the subject than he or she would like. 9 Celebrity photographers including Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition, who also works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait. 10 Photography serves to document war atrocities, famine, or other human rights issues. 11 For example, Nick Ut’s famous picture of Vietnamese children being burned by napalm helped turn American public opinion against the Vietnam War, while Dorothea Lange’s photographs of migrant workers during the Great Depression influenced public policy regarding the treatment of these workers. 12 In the end, photography can be journalistic or artistic, significant or intrusive or ephemeral.

Which of the following sentences contains a punctuation error?

Possible Answers:

Sentence 4

Sentence 3

Sentence 5

Sentence 6

Sentence 7

Correct answer:

Sentence 3

Explanation:

Sentence 3 uses “it’s,” which is a contraction for “it is,” instead of the correct “its,” which is a possessive.

Example Question #99 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Full Sentence

1 Since its inception in the 19th century, photography has played various and complex roles. 2 Crude pinhole cameras first appeared in antiquity. 3 Silver salts, the colloidon process, and daguerreotypes were all developed during the 1800s as photography took form and it’s technology evolved.

4 By the 1900s, photography was often considered an equal of, or at least analgesic to, painting and other visual art forms. 5 In much the same way that portrait painters used to memorialize their subjects in gilded frames and oil paints, photography now serves to document people’s daily lives, experiences, and possessions, such as what someone has eaten for dinner or seen on a road trip. 6 For example, on social media sites.

7 Photography can capture such minuet, intimate details that some aboriginal peoples famously believed cameras could steal the subject’s soul. 8 Perhaps this is why paparazzi are so victimized by others in their profession: Their intrusiveness may reveal more about the subject than he or she would like. 9 Celebrity photographers including Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition, who also works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait. 10 Photography serves to document war atrocities, famine, or other human rights issues. 11 For example, Nick Ut’s famous picture of Vietnamese children being burned by napalm helped turn American public opinion against the Vietnam War, while Dorothea Lange’s photographs of migrant workers during the Great Depression influenced public policy regarding the treatment of these workers. 12 In the end, photography can be journalistic or artistic, significant or intrusive or ephemeral.

How should Sentence 9 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Celebrity photographers including Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition and who works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Celebrity photographers, which include Annie Liebovitz who often favors a black and white composition and who also works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Celebrity photographers include Annie Liebovitz, often favoring a black and white composition, also working for a famous magazine, and attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Celebrity photographers include Annie Liebovitz, often favoring a black and white composition and working for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Celebrity photographers, which include Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition, who also works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Correct answer:

Celebrity photographers including Annie Liebovitz, who often favors a black and white composition and who works for a famous magazine, attempt to portray the essence of famous people through a single photographic portrait.

Explanation:

The only issue with the original sentence is that there are two dependent clauses in a row (“who often favors a black and white composition” and “who also works for a famous magazine”), which is clunky. The correct sentence combines these two dependent clauses into one.

Example Question #1 : Commas

There are two different ways to consider the so-called “Dark Ages.” On the one hand, you can think of the period directly after the fall of the Roman Empire, when civilization began to collapse throughout the Western Empire. On the other hand, you can consider the period that followed this initial collapse of society. It is a gross simplification too use the adjective dark to describe the civilization of either of these periods.

As regards the first period, it is quite a simplification to consider this period to be a single historical moment. It is not as though the civilization switched off like a lightbulb. At one moment light and then, at the next, dark. Instead, the decline of civilization occurred over a period of numerous decades and was, in fact, already occurring for many years before the so-called period of darkness. Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism, but instead, was a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a partition of Europe. Indeed, the Eastern Roman Empire retained much of it’s cultural status during these years of decline!

More importantly, the period following the slow collapse of the Western Empire was much less “dark” than almost every popular telling states. Indeed, even during the period of decline, the seeds for cultural restoration was being sown. A key element of this cultural revival were the formation of monastic communities throughout the countryside of what we now know as Europe. Although these were not the only positive force during these centuries, the monasteries had played an important role in preserving and advancing the cause of culture through at least the thirteenth century and arguably until the Renaissance.

How should the underlined section be changed

Possible Answers:

Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism but, instead, was a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a portion of Europe.

Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism but, instead, were a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a portion of Europe.

NO CHANGE

Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism, but instead was a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a portion of Europe.

Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism, but, instead, was a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a portion of Europe.

Correct answer:

Thus, the decline of civilization was not a rapid collapse into barbarism but, instead, was a slow alteration of the cultural milieu of a portion of Europe.

Explanation:

As written, this sentence has two issues. The first is its use of a comma directly before the conjunction "but." Such a comma is used only when you have two independent clauses being joined. Since the subject does not change, you do not have two wholly independent clauses. Secondly, the sentence needs a comma before the word "instead" to set that word off from the rest of the sentence, as it slightly interrupts the flow of the main idea.

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