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SAT Writing: Improving Sentences

Improving Sentences

Select the choice that results in the best sentence – the sentence that follows the requirements of standard written English and communicates effectively.

Since that restaurant requires for customers to pay in cash, we will have to stop by the ATM beforehand.

A. Since that restaurant requires for customers to pay in cash
B. Since that restaurant requires that customers should pay in cash
C. That restaurant has a requirement that customers pay in cash
D. When you go to that restaurant it is required for customers to pay in cash and therefore
E. Since that restaurant requires customers to pay in cash

Knowsys Method

Read the entire sentence carefully, listening for errors.  Then focus on the underlined part.  Evaluate it by checking it against the Big 8 Grammar Rules.  If you find an error, use that error to quickly eliminate any answer choices that do not fix the problem you found.

If you noticed that the underlined portion sounds “off,” then you have a good ear for idioms.  A restaurant does not “require for customers to pay in cash”, a restaurant “requires that customers pay in cash,” or it “requires customers to pay in cash.”  We need to find a choice that uses one of these idiomatically correct phrases.  

A.  Choice A is the same as the original sentence, which contains an error.  Eliminate this choice.

B.  This choice would work, except that it includes an unneeded word, “should.”  Eliminate this choice.

C.  There are two problems with this choice.  First, the wording of the phrase “has a requirement that customers pay in cash” is awkward and unnecessarily wordy.  Second, this choice creates a comma splice because it turns the sentence into two independent clauses joined by a comma alone.  Eliminate this choice.

D.  This choice is wordy, which you should always avoid.  Additionally, this choice results in an incorrectly punctuated sentence.  There needs to one comma after “restaurant” and another after “cash.”  Eliminate this choice.

E.  This choice uses an idiomatically correct expression, “requires customers to pay in cash,” and it does not introduce any new errors.  This must be the correct answer.  

The correct answer is (E).

This is an easy level question.

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