Sentence Completion--2 Blanks
- Cover the answers.
- Read the sentence.
- Note trigger words (ex: conjunctions, prefixes, modifiers, negation) which change the meaning of the sentence.
- Read the sentence again, substituting your own word in the blank.
- Uncover the first column of words. Match them with your choice in the first blank (two answers should be retained, the other three should be dismissed).
- Not sure of the meaning? Look at the root--is similar the root similar to the root of a word that you know?
- Uncover the second column of words. Match them with your choice in the second blank (the target choices in the 1st blank are usually synonyms of each other; and the second blank is usually opposite of each other; OR the target choices in the 1st blank are antonyms of each other and the second blank is are synonyms).
- Remember: there is only one correct answer!).
Short Parassage (updated 1/25/2013)
- Read the questions first.
- The short passage questions are usually about the tone, main idea, or inference.
- There is usually one dual short passage set per SAT test.
- Each of the four questions compare/contrast both passages.
- Draw a quick Venn Diagram to organize the info.
- Remember WHAT the topic is about, and the AUDIENCE.
- Four Types of Dual Passages
- Pro / Con (opposite positions)
- General / Specific
- 2 different academic disciplines (ex: literary criticism / autobiography)
- Tone (objective / ironic)
- Dual passages can be combination of the Four Types
Long Passage (updated 1/25/2013)
- Read the Prompt
- Read the Quote
- Read the Prompt again.
- Think for 1 minute (don't write).
- Brainstorm. Focus, focus, focus your complementary examples and connect these specific examples to BIG CONCEPTS. Organize. (2 minutes)
- Write (20 min)
- Intro Paragraph:
- Thesis plus preview of your examples (Think DEVIL'S ADVOCATE--knock out objection to your thesis in your intro).
- 3 body paragraphs. Topic sentence plus 4-7 sentences of concrete detail.
- 2 body paragraphs is acceptable, but not advisable--write as much as you can to demonstrate the mastery of your tipic.
- Transition between paragraphs.
- LAST 2 MINUTES: Fix errors and upgrade vocabulary--(replace to be/to have with stronger verbs).
- Check out The Critical Reader: Essay Tips
Writing Section (multiple choice)
The Fist of No Error (see above and sidebar)
- Subject/Verb agreement (number)
- Tense (verb tense and aspect)
- Pronoun (number, case, antecedent)
- Adjective/Adverb (modifiers; infinitive/gerund)
- Diction (correct word ex: affect/effect;phrasal verb & correct preposition)
- Misplaced Modifiers (modifying phrases and clauses)
- "Patterns": comparison, parallelism, list made of similar parts of speech
- Conjunctions: coordinating, subordinating, correlative ; also relative pronoun clauses
The Critical Reader: Complete SAT Grammar Rules or General Grammar Tips (updated 1/25/2013)
Identifying Sentence Errors