Mar 26 ACT & SAT Question of the Day

If you are reading this in an email you received from me, do not click the link to sat.collegeboard.org below. Use the link to my website that is farther down on the email. If you are seeing this in my blog, do the SAT Question of the Day by clicking on this link:

http://sat.collegeboard.org/practice/sat-question-of-the-day?src=R&questionId=20130326 (This link takes you to today’s question. If you use my archive, you will see the question related to my SAT explanation for that date.)

The answer is B.  f(x) simply means the value of y on a coordinate grid when x is a certain amount.  (If you haven’t learned this yet, my online course and DVD #8 explains it to you.)   So, think of f(x) as y and all the answers are turned into the form of the standard slope-intercept equation: y=mx+b in which m (the coefficient of x) is the slope and b is a constant.  Then, since m tells us the slope of the line, only Answer B has a slope of 2.

Let’s see what learn about the  ACT test from their QotD.

http://www.act.org/qotd/ (The ACT staff does not put a date on their questions so if you click on an archived blog, you’ll get today’s question and the old explanation. Sorry. The SAT staff has dated their questions; so, the archive is helpful. The ACT folks simply don’t do that.)

The answer is D.  Bessie didn’t learn French to settle her affairs!  That eliminates B and C.  Answer A doesn’t make sense.  That leaves D.  “Settled” works well since we now know that Bessie did three things: took a course, settled her affairs, and sailed for Europe.  All three actions are in the past tense and are consistent with the subject of the sentence, Bessie Coleman.

The test writers love to test you on your knowledge of “parallel structures.”  In this case, it was getting the three verbs consistent or parallel to one another.  Here we had the past tense.  However, they could have been in a different form.  For example, “taking a course, settling her affairs, and sailing for Europe,” would also have three parallel verbs.  You couldn’t have, “taking a course, settling her affairs and then sailed for Europe.”  Sailed would not be parallel to the the first two verbs.  When taking the test, make sure that all the underlined verbs in a sentence are parallel or consistent with the non-underlined verbs.  That’s just one of the mistakes the test writers include in their tests.  The others are explained in my online course and DVD #9.  I’ll also explain them to you when we see examples on future ACT and SAT Questions of the Day.

I hope you have a wonderfully productive day.

The Wizard

About Bob Alexander

Bob has been a professional educator starting with teaching biology, becoming a school administrator, and then working as an education lobbyist in Washington, DC. He got his start in national testing by becoming a consulting test writer, later joining Kaplan as a director, and finally starting his own business in 1995. He has written numerous books, consulted for school districts and colleges, developed his website and been featured on a DVD set. He offers SAT and ACT prep classes and tutors individuals and small groups of students in central Florida.
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