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.

More people choose to visit the beach than hiking through the forest.

A.  than hiking through the forest

B.  than going to forested areas  

C.  over going to forested areas

D.  than to hike among the forest

E.  than to hike through the forest


The 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.

The grammar rule that is tested here is parallelism.  Two different activities are compared: "to visit the beach" and "hiking through the forest"  The problem is that whenever you compare two things, you need to use a similar grammatical form.  You cannot change the "to visit the beach,"  so you need to change "hiking" to "to hike."  Mark this error and look down at your answer choices.

A.  This answer choice matches the original sentence.  Eliminate it.

B.  This answer choice changes the "hiking," but it still keeps the "ing" form.  The change does not fix the error that you found.  Eliminate this choice.

C.  This answer choice still keeps the erroneous "ing" form.  Eliminate it. 

D.  This answer choice fixes the error that you found by changing "hiking" to "to hike."  However, it makes an unnecessary change when it uses the word "among."  This use of the word "among" is awkward, particularly because the word "forest" is singular when the word calls for a plural object (Your Knowsys handbook reminds you in the idioms section that the word "among" refers to three or more things).

E.  This answer choice matches your prediction.


The correct answer is (E). 

This is a medium level question.


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