SAT Writing : Identifying Other Verb Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

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Example Question #425 : Identifying Word Usage Errors

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

Even though the runners were clearly exhausted and had even begun to limp, the coach wouldn’t let them rest until they had ran the entire course. No error

Possible Answers:

limp,

had even begun

they had ran

No error

Even though

Correct answer:

they had ran

Explanation:

Here we have an error with the present perfect. The correct conjugation is “they had run,” not “they had ran.”

Example Question #11 : Identifying Other Verb Errors

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

Although the weather habecame terribly cold and dry of late, a warm front with showers was on its way. No error

Possible Answers:

had became

Although

of late

No error

was

Correct answer:

had became

Explanation:

The error here lies in the verb agreement. Because the past participle is called for, the verb should employ both the past form of the verb "have" (i.e., "had," as it does) and the present form of the verb "become" (i.e., "become," as it does not). Thus, the past form of "become" is incorrect and must be changed to the present form.

Example Question #11 : Identifying Other Verb Errors

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

We anticipated that John and Michael would want to quickly solve the assigned problems so that they could go home and rest. No error

Possible Answers:

quickly

anticipated

No error

problems

and 

Correct answer:

quickly

Explanation:

The phrase "to quickly solve" is an example of what is called a split infinitive: the infinitive form of the verb ("to solve") interrupted by another word. In general, modifiers should not interrupt the infinitive structure. The phrase should be corrected to move the word "quickly" to a new position in the sentence (eg., "...John and Michael would want to solve the assigned problems quickly...").

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