Question of the Day (SAT & ACT): Nov. 14, 3013

If you are reading this in an email you received from me, do not click the link to 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: (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.)

Why do you do the SAT Question of the Day?  Why is it worth taking your time to do it?  It is not to see if you can get this particular question correct.  It is to see what you can learn about the test.  Let’s see how you can become a better test taker by analyzing this question.

The answer is B.  The Writing Test consistently tests the same set of grammar and composition concepts.  This question is an example of subject/predicate (verb) agreement.  Recordings is a plural subject and it has to have a plural predicate, come.  That is why B is the right answer: comes is singular and is, therefore, wrong–making it the right answer.  When you do these questions, ask yourself, “What mistakes are possible with this part of speech or construction,” as you encounter the underlined portions of the sentence.  For example, “used to make” should be examined to see if the proper tense has been used.  Is the infinitive “to make” properly constructed?  (They like to “split” them.)  When you see comes is underlined, check the tense and the noun with which it goes.  Present tense works just fine but comes is singular and the subject is plural making it wrong.

The test prep issue for the Writing Test is that you need to get your hands on a list of common errors that show up on the test.  Check out Video #9 for a full discussion of the mistakes that are popular with the test writers.  Take a look at the free list on my website.  Come to class or tutoring to get some practice with these questions while an expert test taker helps you improve your skills.

Let’s see what the ACT folks have for us this morning.

ACT Question of the Day: Use your “back” button to return to my website after reading the ACT Question of the Day.

The answer is K.  When you multiply the left side of the equation you get 3x – 12 which is equal to the right side of the equation.  That means x = x.  Any number can be plugged into the equation for x because it would be the same on both sides of the equals sign.  For example, 6 = 6.

Did you have trouble with the algebra?  Try the answers.  If you plugged in Answer F, 3, it worked.  If you plugged in Answer G, 0, it worked.  Both of these answers end up balancing the equation.  You can’t have two right answers!  Consequently, answers H and J are eliminated by checking out F and G.  That leaves K because you already know that there are two numbers that satisfy the equation.

There is almost always more than one way to do the math questions.  There is no single right way to do any question.  Practice will help you determine which strategies help you get the right answers as quickly as possible.  That’s why you need to practice.  You will learn what strategies are going to raise your score.

Do something today so that when you lie down on your bed tonight you can say to yourself, “I helped somebody have a good day today.”  What will it be?

The SAT & ACT 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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