Sentence Completions

Link of the Day

Finding a balance in life can be difficult.  When is it most important to make money?  When is it most important to spend time with family?  Read this article about how stores and restaurants are staying open during the holidays.  Try to think about this issue from a variety of perspectives.  Be sure to realize that many people observe holidays, religious or otherwise, that are not recognized by major companies in the United States.  If this topic interests you, write down the facts involved and use it as a current event for your SAT essay.

Critical Reading: Sentence Completions

Choose the word or set of words that, when inserted in the sentence, best fits the meaning of the sentence as a whole. 

Always cover up the answer choices before reading the sentence so that wrong answers will not affect your thought process.  Read the sentence carefully and use context clues to predict a word to fill the blank.  Match your prediction to the correct answer choice, eliminating any word that does not match.  Be sure to look at all of the answer choices before selecting your answer.

He felt like a ------- at the meeting when his coworkers failed to acknowledge either his ideas for or his opinions of the new business plan.

How does a person feel when his ideas are not acknowledged?  This person probably feels worthless or undervalued.  You don’t have to come up with an exact word to fill the blank; you can simply predict that he felt like a “worthless person.”  Look down at your answer choices.

(A) magnate
(B) cohort
(C) nonentity
(D) bigwig
(E) lackey

(A) The Latin root “magn” means great or large – think of the word magnificent.  This is the opposite of your prediction.  Eliminate it.  (B) The Latin prefix “co” means together, but this person feels undervalued by others, a very isolating feeling.  Eliminate this choice.  (C) An entity is just something.  If this person feels like a “nonentity,” he feels completely worthless.  This answer choice matches your prediction.  Keep it.  (D) Even if you don’t know what a “bigwig” is, you know that the person in the sentence feels “small” rather than big.  Eliminate this choice.  (E) This looks like a good choice because it seems to contain the word “lack.”  However, you may have watched a movie in which a mob boss has a lackey.  The lackey runs around doing menial things for his boss, which does not really match your prediction.  Instead of trying to talk yourself into this answer, eliminate it.

The correct answer is (C).

Words used in this SC:
Magnate: Powerful person, usually in industry
Cohort: A person supporting the same thing, an accomplice
Nonentity: an unimportant person or thing
Bigwig: an important person
Lackey: a servant or servile follower

On, 62% of the responses were correct.

For more help with SAT vocabulary, visit!