SAT Writing : Correcting Grammatical Errors in a Sentence Fragment

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #131 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Biographies exist in various specialized forms. 2 A hagiography is a biography that discusses a saint or other church leader. 3 Many hagiographies focus on a saint’s miracles, martyrdom, and divine connection. 4 They were especially common in the Middle Ages, often appearing as part of a larger collection or calendar of saints.

5 Historians today value these accounts not because the hagiographer is often too worshipful to be critical but also they include good insight into local history. 6 For example, the bestselling Golden Legend was a 13th century compensation of saint stories from more than a hundred different sources. 7 England, Ireland, and the Byzantine Empire were all fertile ground for medieval hagiographies and as such much is known about carnelian life there. 8 These hagiographies also changed focus over the years; shifting from heroic tales of holy warriors and sanctimonious moralistic lessons designed to instruct churchgoers. 9 And gradually fading in popularity.

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 8 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

sanctimonious moralistic lessons designed to instruct churchgoers (no change)

sanctimonious moralistic lessons, designed for instructing churchgoers

sanctimonious moralistic lessons, designed to instruct churchgoers

sanctimonious, moralistic lessons, designed to instruct churchgoers

sanctimonious, moralistic lessons designed to instruct churchgoers

Correct answer:

sanctimonious, moralistic lessons designed to instruct churchgoers

Explanation:

Generally speaking, commas separate lists of two or more adjectives that immediately precede the same noun. In this case, "sanctimonious" and "moralistic" are both modifying "lessons," and thus need to be separated with a comma.

Example Question #132 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.)8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 3 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

and the raw loud sound

and the raw, loud sound

and a raw loud sound (no change)

and these raw loud sounds

and a raw, loud sound

Correct answer:

and a raw, loud sound

Explanation:

The indefinite article “a” is correct here, but we need to remember to add a comma between the consecutive adjectives “raw” and “loud.”

Example Question #133 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.)8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 6 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Punk bands tended to convince

Punk bands tending to convince (no change)

Punk bands tended with convincing

Punk bands, tending to convince

Punk bands tending convincing

Correct answer:

Punk bands tended to convince

Explanation:

Since the first part of the sentence is followed by a comma, conjunction, and independent clause, we can infer that the first part of the sentence must itself be an independent clause. Switch the verb from a gerund to a past tense conjugation in order to make this change.

Example Question #134 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Leprosy: used to be a dreaded illness both in biblical times as well as more recently. 2 People endured its disfiguring effects until the invention of antibiotics in the 1950s. 3 Also known as Hansen’s disease, antibiotics will fictitiously cure leprosy today. 4 In the old days there exacted leprosy colonies to quarantine infected people, as the disease was then considered highly contagious. 5 Symptoms include skin lesions, nerve damage, numbness, tissue damage, and, in severe cases, deformation of fingers and toes. 6 Thanks to modern medicine, leprosy no longer needs to be a source of social skirmish. 7 In reality, it is transmitted through fluids, usually in the form of airborne particles.

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 4 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

to quarantine infected people, (no change)

quarantined infected people,

quarantining infected people

to quarantine infected people

were quarantined by infected people

Correct answer:

to quarantine infected people, (no change)

Explanation:

The correct verb tense here is the infinitive, and a comma is correct to separate this independent clause from the subsequent conjunction and independent clause. No changes need to be made.

Example Question #135 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.)8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 5 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

States and included the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

States, and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

States, included the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

States, and included the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones. (no change)

Correct answer:

States and included the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

Explanation:

Since the portion of the sentence after the conjunction (“and”) isn’t an independent clause (complete sentence), no comma is necessary before the conjunction; however, we do want the verb tense in both parts of the sentence to match, so we need to change “including” to match “came.”

Example Question #136 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.)8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 7 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

Later, in the 1990s, “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney

Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney (no change)

Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl,” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney

Later, in the 1990s “riot grrrl,” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney

Later, in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney

Correct answer:

Later, in the 1990s, “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney

Explanation:

Because “in the 1990s” is a parenthetical clause, it must have a comma on either side of it to set it off from the main part of the sentence. Any option that adds only one comma creates a comma error, and the option that includes no punctuation is not only grammatically incorrect but also confusing.

Example Question #137 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.)8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 7 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

drawing attention on feminist concerns

to draw attention to feminist concerns

to draw attention with feminist concerns

to draw attention on feminist concerns (no change)

drawing attention to feminist concerns

Correct answer:

to draw attention to feminist concerns

Explanation:

The infinitive form “to draw” is correct, but attention is always drawn “to” a subject, not “on” it. Note also that the change to the gerund is unnecessary, and thus incorrect.

Example Question #138 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 Punk rock developed in the mid-1970s. 2 It was a musical movement that arose out of antiauthoritarian garage bands.3 It was characterized by fast-paced songs, sedimentary lyrics, and a raw loud sound. 4 And often its lyrics were also political. 5 Some of the most famous punk rock bands came from England and the United States and including the Clash, the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones.

6 Punk bands tending to convince a liberal, anti-establishment, sensibility,and they were proponents of individualism, freedom, and nonconformity.7 (Later in the 1990s “riot grrrl” bands like Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney used their punk music to draw attention on feminist concerns.) 8 Now you can find, punk bands in cities all around the world.9 By the 1980s, the public was beginning to accept punk music, slowly becoming mainstream. 

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 9 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

whereas it slowly became mainstream

slowly becoming mainstream (no change)

and it will slowly become mainstream

with a slow becoming mainstream

and it slowly became mainstream

Correct answer:

and it slowly became mainstream

Explanation:

Change this part of the sentence from a dependent clause/ambiguous modifier to an independent clause that can stand on its own. The example sentence does not adequately signal who or what was "slowly becoming mainstream."

Example Question #139 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 If you’ve watched any environmental news reports in the last few years, it’s likely you’ve stumbled among the idea of fracking. 2 The word is short for “hydraulic fracturing” and involves injecting liquid into rock to create fractures and fractals, there allowing natural gas to be extracted more querulously.3 Proponents say the method facilitates oil drilling and allows countries, like the United States, to cut back on their foreign oil dependence. 4 Amateurs say that fracking, causes significant and sometimes irresponsible environmental damage.

5 Fracking can require sonorous quantities of water, and leach dangerous carcinogenic chemicals into the groundwater. 6 Some people have even inquired minor earthquakes to fracking: as the process thought to spurn tremors.7 Perhaps most worrisome, fracking allows governments to continue depending on fossil fuel rather than exploring renewable energy. 8 These sources could include wind turbines, solar panels, even hot springs and waterwheels.

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 6 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

to fracking, as the process thought to spurn tremors.

to fracking, as the process is thought to spurn tremors.

to fracking as the process is thought to spurn tremors.

to fracking: as the process thought to spurn tremors. (no change)

to fracking; as the process thought to spurn tremors.

Correct answer:

to fracking, as the process is thought to spurn tremors.

Explanation:

No colon is needed, since we’re simply separating an independent clause from a dependent one. We do need to add an “is” to make the dependent clause grammatical, however. The key word that signals this dependent clause is "as."

Example Question #140 : Correcting Grammatical Errors In A Sentence Fragment

1 By now it’s common knowledge that a food may be considered unctuous in one culture may be gleaned repulsive in another. 2 Octopus is one such food. 3 It valorizes its audiences, with some gourmands claiming its rubbery texture is unpalatable, others enjoying the unusual taste. 4 It’s cousin, squid, is known as “calamari,” and is also popular in many countries. 5 Octopus can be fried in batter, roasted with herbs, steamed and sprinkled with paprika, serve it raw in sushi, or even eat it alive. 6 But be careful: The head of the octopus’ can be poisonous!

How should the underlined portion of Sentence 4 be rewritten?

Possible Answers:

is known as “calamari”; also popular in many countries

is known as “calamari”: and is also popular in many countries

is known as “calamari” and is also popular in many countries

is known as “calamari,” and is also popular in many countries (no change)

is known as “calamari”; and it is also popular in many countries

Correct answer:

is known as “calamari” and is also popular in many countries

Explanation:

Commas are usually only necessary before conjunctions if the coordinating conjunction is being used to separate two independent clauses. In the underlined sentence "is also popular in many countries" is not acting as an independent clause (because it cannot), so the comma before "and" must be removed.

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