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Psat Nmsqt Student Guide

Psat Nmsqt Student Guide

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Questions of this type ask you to find errors in sentences
provided. Below are the directions you will see on the
test.

The following sentences test your ability to recognize
grammar and usage errors. Each sentence contains
either a single error or no error at all. No sentence
contains more than one error. The error, if there is one,
is underlined and lettered. If the sentence contains
an error, select the one underlined part that must be
changed to make the sentence correct. If the sentence is
correct, select choice E. In choosing answers, follow the
requirements of standard written English.

EXAMPLE:

Theother
A

delegates and him
B

immediately
C

accepted the resolution draftedby
D

the

neutral states. Noerror
E

A

C

D

E

4. The huge Amazon River, which stretchesacross
A

Brazil,

hasmany
B

islands; oneofthese
C

is so large that its area

exceedsSwitzerland
D

.

Noerror
E

This sentence contains a logical comparison error. In
choice (D) the area of an island is compared with
Switzerland itself rather than with the area of
Switzerland. The corrected sentence reads: The huge
Amazon River, which stretches across Brazil, has many
islands; one of these is so large that its area exceeds
that of Switzerland.

◾ There is no error in choice (A) or in choice (B). The
singular verbs stretches and has agree with the
sentence’s singular subject, Amazon River.

◾ There is no error in choice (C). The phrase one of
these properly refers to a particular island.

Tip: Comparisons should always be between things of a
similar nature. Beware of sentences that compare a part
of one thing with the whole of another.

5. Crabs livingin
A

polluted waters will come

incontactwith
B

large numbers of disease-causing

microorganisms because itfeeds
C

byfiltering
D

nutrients from water. Noerror
E

This sentence contains a noun-pronoun agreement error
at (C). The pronoun it is singular, while the noun to
which it presumably refers, Crabs, is plural. The
corrected sentence reads: Crabs living in polluted waters
will come in contact with large numbers of disease-
causing microorganisms because they feed by filtering
nutrients from water.

◾ There is no error in choice (A). The words living in
begin a phrase that appropriately modifies the noun

Crabs.

◾ There is no error in choice (B). The phrase in contact
with idiomatically complements the verb come.

◾ There is no error in choice (D). The words by filtering
properly introduce a phrase that modifies the verb feeds.

Tip: When you encounter a pronoun (like he, she, it,
him, her, they, them, his, hers, its, or theirs), ask yourself
what it refers to and whether it is singular or plural.
What the pronoun refers to (its antecedent) must always
match the pronoun in number (singular or plural).

6. Whatever price the company finally sets
A

for the fuel

will probably be
B

determined as much by
C

politics

as by a realistic appraisal of
D

the market. Noerror
E

32 PSAT/NMSQT Official Student Guide: Prepare for the Test

There is nothing wrong with this sentence. The correct
answer is choice (E), No error.

◾ In choice (A), the adverb finally appropriately
qualifies the verb sets.

◾ In choice (B), the adverb probably is correctly placed
between the helping verb will and the main verb be.

◾ In choice (C), the phrase as much by properly initiates
a comparison that continues with the words as by
later in the sentence.

◾ In choice (D), the preposition of is idiomatically used
to complement the noun appraisal.

Tip: Choose A, B, C, or D only if you think the sentence
contains a grammar or usage error. DO NOT choose A,
B, C, or D, simply because you can think of an alternate
phrasing for one of the underlined portions of the
sentence. If you find no grammar or usage error in the
sentence, choose E.

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