SAT Writing : Identifying Sentence Fragment and Sentence Combination Errors

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT Writing

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Identifying Sentence Fragment And Sentence Combination Errors

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

We could swear Bessie the cow was always happy she always had a smile on her face whenever we saw her. No error

Possible Answers:

No error

happy she

could swear

on her face 

we saw 

Correct answer:

happy she

Explanation:

The above sentence is a compound sentence, and therefore, there needs to be a semicolon between "happy" and "she" to properly denote the beginning of the second independent clause. 

Example Question #2 : Identifying Sentence Fragment And Sentence Combination 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 scientists grappled with the theoretical physics problem all night they emerged exhausted from the lab in the morning without an answer. No error

Possible Answers:

from the lab

night they

grappled with 

without

No error

Correct answer:

night they

Explanation:

The above sentence is a compound sentence, and therefore we need to include a semicolon between "night" and "they" in order to properly separate the two independent clauses.

Example Question #3 : Identifying Sentence Fragment And Sentence Combination Errors

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

Jessica threw the flying disc over to Daniel and he spun around in a big circle before throwing it back over Jessica's head. No error

Possible Answers:

over Jessica's head

Daniel and

in a big circle

No error

throwing

Correct answer:

Daniel and

Explanation:

The above sentence is a compound sentence, and therefore needs a comma in between "Daniel" and "and" to properly separate the two independent clauses of the sentence. 

Example Question #4 : Identifying Sentence Fragment And Sentence Combination Errors

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

After her brother ate her sandwich, Andrea was angry. And frustrated. No error 

Possible Answers:

frustrated. 

No error

angry. And 

After

sandwich,

Correct answer:

angry. And 

Explanation:

"And frustrated" is a sentence fragment because it does not contain a subject. Since "and" is not being used as a coordinating conjunction in this instance no punctuation, not even a comma, is needed between "angry and frustrated."

Example Question #136 : Identifying Phrase, Clause, And 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. 

Although jaguars and leopards are similar in appearance, the jaguar is the larger animal and the leopard is the fastest. No error

Possible Answers:

the fastest 

Although

No error

are similar 

the larger 

Correct answer:

the fastest 

Explanation:

When comparing only two things, in this case, the jaguar and the leopard, the suffix “-er” should be used instead of the suffix “-est.” The sentence should end “the faster,” not “the fastest.”

Example Question #137 : Identifying Phrase, Clause, And 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. 

Many of the students who dislike Ms. Simmons would likely learn a lot less if they were to have a more relaxed teacher. No error

Possible Answers:

would

No error

a more

who dislike

they were

Correct answer:

No error

Explanation:

Every aspect of this sentence is grammatically correct and there is no error. "Who" is correctly used, rather than whom, in this instance; "would" is the correct verb in the correct case.

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