SAT Writing : Correcting Pronoun Errors: Incorrect Usage

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #11 : Correcting 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.

The young woman brought her package directly to myself and no one else.

Possible Answers:

direct to myself

directly to myself

directly for myself

directly unto myself 

directly to me

Correct answer:

directly to me

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "myself" is incorrect in the sentence, as it needs a previous usage of the first person pronoun to refer back to. The correct pronoun is the simple "me." Therefore, the correct answer choice is "directly to me."

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.

The report was seen by yourself before anyone else was allowed to have it.

Possible Answers:

The report was seen by yourself

The report was seen by you

The report seen by yourself

The report was saw by yourself

The report being seen by yourself

Correct answer:

The report was seen by you

Explanation:

The use of the reflexive pronoun "yourself" is incorrect in this sentence, as it has no previous use of the second person pronoun "you" to refer to. "Yourself" should be changed to the simple second person pronoun "you." As this is the only issue in the sentence, the correct answer choice is "The report was seen by you."

Example Question #52 : 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.

The questions have only been seen by myself.

Possible Answers:

been seen by me.

been seeing myself.

been seen by myself.

being seen by myself.

been seen myself.

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 #53 : 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.

The game score was reported directly to myself as soon as the contest was over.

Possible Answers:

was reported directly for myself

was reported directly to myself

was reported directly to me

was reporting directly to myself

was reported direct 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 #54 : 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.

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

Possible Answers:

both to the senator and myself.

both to myself and the senator.

both to the senator, and myself.

both to me and the senator.

both to the senator and I.

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 #55 : 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:

inspected by myself before leaving

inspected by myself before it left

inspected by myself before it leaves

inspected by me before it left

inspecting by myself 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 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.

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

Possible Answers:

first read by myself,

first read for myself,

first read by me,

first reading by myself,

first read to 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 #22 : Correcting 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.

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

Possible Answers:

were all giving to myself by my family

were all given to me by my family

were each given to myself by my family

were all given to myself by my family

were all given to myself from 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 #23 : Correcting 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.

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

Possible Answers:

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

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to them.

The conditions of the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

The conditions of the agreement was always offensive to themselves.

The conditions in the agreement were always offensive to themselves.

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 #24 : Correcting 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.

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

Possible Answers:

directly for myself.

directly to me.

directly toward myself.

direct to myself.

directly 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."

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