Yesterday, we posted a slightly disturbing GMAT Sentence Correction practice question on Facebook. It was mostly disturbing due to the content (creeeepy!), but there was also a lot going on in this particular sentence and the answer choices. Check it out.
As is often the case in GMAT Sentence Correction, this question tests several issues, which you can identify by verbally scanning the answer choices:
- “If Professor…is right” versus “Should Professor…(be) right”
- Verb tense: “is” versus “had been”
- “connection of X and Y” versus “connection between X and Y”
Let’s address these issues one at a time.
- “If Professor…is right” versus “Should Professor…(be) right”
The GMAT prefers “If Professor…is right” to “Should Professor…(be) right”. The former is simpler and uses the simple present tense to match the later verb “is (not merely coincidental)”. These two verbs must match tense since they describe events that happen simultaneously. Thus you can eliminate … Read full post
Hopefully you’ve already tried out our GMAT Sentence Correction quiz. If not, stop right now and do so! There’s great value in trying these questions on your own first before reading the explanations.
Now, on to the explanations to these questions…
GMAT Sentence Correction Quiz
Just like Congress is the legislative branch of the Federal government of the United States, so Parliament is the legislative body of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
- A) Just like Congress is the legislative branch of the Federal government of the United States, so
- B) As Congress is the legislative branch of the Federal government of the United States,
- C) As Congress is the legislative branch of the Federal government of the United States, in the same way
- D) Just as Congress is the legislative branch of the Federal government of the United States, so
- E) Just as the Federal
I’m always telling you to practice, even if it’s just for a couple of minutes. It’s true, all those short study sessions, over time, add up. To that end, I’ve made a short GMAT Sentence Correction quiz for you, designed to take just about five minutes. Ideally, when you’re at your Test Day Best, you’ll be running through Sentence Correction questions in an average of one minute each. Note the important words in that sentence: Ideally, Test Day Best, and average.
Today, you’ll set your timer for five minutes for this quiz, and it will give you a sense of how you’re doing on pacing with GMAT Sentence Correction questions. Don’t castigate yourself if you’re not done within five minutes – that just means that you need to devote more time and practice to this question type. This practice quiz is just practice, and will give … Read full post
The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is probably unlike any test you’ve ever taken in your academic career. The GMAT is a computer-adaptive test designed to provide a common yardstick by which business school admissions committees can measure applicants and their ability to succeed in their M.B.A. programs.
The test consists of three sections and is scored on a range between 200 and 800.
Your GMAT Score
GMAT scores are used by business schools to provide a common yardstick to compare candidates for admission. On the GMAT, you will actually receive four scores:
- A total score, ranging from 200-800
- A math subscore, ranging from 0-60
- A verbal subscore, ranging from 0-60
- A score for your AWA, ranging from 0-6
- An Integrated Reasoning subscore, ranging from 1-8
Your Percentile Rank
Each of the above scores will be accompanied by a percentile rank. The percentile rank highlights what proportion of test takers … Read full post
Once you put in the hard work to know and detect GMAT sentence correction errors, you’re going to catch those mistakes all around you.
A recent example: one of my British friends and I were watching futbol (I’ll go with the Spanish spelling so as to not confuse sports), and I picked up on a weird (but commonly accepted) verb agreement error in futbol journalism—using a plural verb/pronoun to refer to a single team.
If you are referring to a singular entity, regardless of what it contains, is the subject singular or plural? Perhaps a silly question, and here are some perhaps really obvious examples:
The coach is…
The league is…
This team is…
BUT, then, take a look at these actual news stories from the European press:
“Real Madrid have a golden opportunity to open up a huge lead in the Champions League group stage…”
“AC … Read full post
I need you to read this. It’s an official communiqué from GMAC regarding Sentence Correction questions on the GMAT. There are a couple of very important points that GMAC’s VP of research and chief psychometrician, Mr. Lawrence M. Rudner, has to say about what the GMAT is actually testing. Afterward, I’m going to underscore and expound on some major takeaways.
Mr. Rudner writes:
“Recently there has been some discussion and questioning about the role and place of idioms and sentence correction as they apply to the skills tested in the GMAT exam. Much of what has been written has been well-reasoned, but some of what has been written is only partially accurate or reflects some misconceptions. With this posting, I hope to put these two important pieces of the GMAT exam in their proper place within the context of what the exam measures and how.
The general categories … Read full post
The following GMAT sentence correction problem focuses on parallel structure. Remember, items in a list must be formatted in the exact same way in order to be correct on the GMAT.
The threatened railway strike would cause significant inconvenience to the city: not only do thousands of commuters rely on trains to get them to and from work, but also as a connection between other forms of public transportation, such as buses and subways.
(A) not only do thousands of commuters rely on trains to get them to and from work, but also as a connection between
(B) thousands of commuters rely on trains not only to get them to and from work, but also to connect with
(C) thousands of commuters rely not only on trains to get them to and from work, but also as a connection with
(D) not only thousands of commuters going to and … Read full post
The majority of grammatical errors that appear in the sentence correction questions on the GMAT fall into six categories. Today’s question focuses on verb errors; when a verb appears in a sentence correction problem, make sure it is correct in both tense and number.
Wolfgang von Kempelen, an 18th-century Hungarian baron, claimed to have invented a chess-playing automation he called “The Turk”; this mechanical illusion, which was actually operated by a hidden chess master who defeated Napoleon Bonaparte and Benjamin Franklin as well as many other well-known challengers, were destroyed in an 1854 fire.
(A) which was actually operated by a hidden chess master who defeated Napoleon Bonaparte and Benjamin Franklin as well as many other well-known challengers, were
(B) which a hidden chess-master actually operated, defeating Napoleon Bonaparte and Benjamin Franklin as well as many other well-known challengers, were
(C) which was actually operated by a … Read full post
Let’s consider the common category of GMAT Sentence Correction errors often called ‘usage and style.’ These errors are based on accepted usage and tend to deal with word choice and idioms. Because there are no universal rules, you need memorize any idioms you do not already know.
In symbiotic relationships, one organism may live on or inside another, or simply be related to the other by mutual behavior, but all types of symbiosis evolve because both organisms derive a benefit from the other.
(A) both organisms derive a benefit from the other
(B) both organisms derive a benefit from each other
(C) each organism derives a benefit from the other
(D) each organism derives a benefit from one another
(E) the organisms both derive a benefit from each other
The original sentence states, “both organisms derive a benefit from the other.” However, “both” and “from the … Read full post
Today we will be looking at a sentence correction problem that features a pronoun error. Pronoun errors are fairly common on the GMAT, so you want to be ready for them. Remember, when you see a pronoun, it must match its antecedent (the word it is replacing) in number and it must be unambiguous – that is, you must know without any doubt what the pronoun’s antecedent is.
During World War II, “code talkers” were Native American soldiers that were specifically recruited to develop codes based in the Navajo language; these codes made any intercepted communications virtually indecipherable.
(A) that were specifically recruited to develop codes based in the Navajo language
(B) who were specifically recruited to develop codes based in the Navajo language
(C) that used the Navajo language to develop the codes they were specifically recruited for
(D) that, when specifically recruited, developed codes based … Read full post