ACT REVIEW RUN-ONS A complete sentence contains a subject, a verb, and a complete thought. If any of the three is lacking, the sentence is called a fragment. Example: Angel, who is part greyhound and part rottweiler. A fragment because it doesnt express a complete thought!
Fixes: Add what the sentence is missing (either a subject, a verb, or something to make the idea complete). FRAGMENTS A run-on contains too much information, usually because two independent clauses (two complete thoughts) are being improperly combined. Example: After owning Angel for eight years, we got another dog, her name was Elsa. Run-on because Her name was Elsa is a second independent clause. A comma is not strong enough to connect the two ICs. Fixes: Acceptable ways to cure a run-on sentence would be separating the
Independent Clauses with A period A semicolon A comma + FANBOYS (for, and, not, but, or, yet, so) A colon SUBJECT-VERB AGREEMENT The ACT English section often includes long sentences in which the main subject and the verb are separated by lots of words or clauses. If you identify the subject of each sentence and make sure the verb matches it, you can ace this grammar rule. In addition, the ACT tests your knowledge of past,
present, future, past perfect, present perfect, and future perfect tenses. Example: Changes for the new and improved ACT Writing section is going to be implemented soon.] The ACT tried to trick you by putting for the new and improved ACT Writing section in between the subject (changes) and the verb (is). But youll notice this. You would put the correct sentence, which would read Changes for the new and improved ACT Writing section ARE going to be implemented soon. Strategy: cross out the words that separate the subject and verb. VERB TENSES
Verb Tense Present George listens to Miley Cyrus songs. Simple Past Yesterday, George listened to Miley Cyrus songs for seven hours. Present Perfect
When to Use Things that are currently happening or things that are considered a fact. Describing a completed action. Actions that started in the past but are still going on. Has/have + past participle For the past seven hours, George has listened to Miley Cyrus songs.
Past perfect Had + past participle By the time his Mom came home from work, George had listened to Miley Cyrus songs for 7 hours. When a sentence describes two completed actions, the past perfect is used to describe the action completed first. George listened to the Miley songs before his
Mom got home from work, so we use the past perfect for listen, had listened PUNCTUATION Commas, apostrophes, colons, semicolons, dashes, periods, question marks, and exclamation points are all tested on the ACT. Refer to the Gellerisms handouts to review http:// www.educationfortesting.com/Gellerisms/WritingSkills/Gelleris ms-WritingSkills.aspx
IDIOMS Simply put, an idiom is an expression, which consists of at least two words that naturally seem to go together. It is something that native speakers of a language can usually quickly recognize, but is often challenging for those learning English as a secondary language, or for those who grew up speaking an English dialect that frequently breaks conventional idiom rules. I recommend viewing this website that lists all the ACT idioms you need to know http://blog.prepscholar.com/all-the-act-idioms-you-need-complete-list Or this one https://magoosh.com/hs/act/act-strategies/2014/idioms-on-the-act-english-test/
WORDINESS As long as there are no new grammar errors introduced, the shortest answer choice is often correct. Redundancy is a type of wordiness where the same thing is said twice such as happy and joyful. Keep it simple, to the point, and dont repeat yourself. PARALLEL STRUCTURE When you join two or more ideasin the form of words, phrases, or even clausesin a sentence (usually with the help of a conjunction), the ideas you connect must be parallel. In other words, the grammatical structure of each one
must be the same. PRONOUNS The most common error associated with pronouns is pronoun-antecedent agreement. The antecedent is the word the pronoun is replacing. A pronoun must have a clear antecedent in the sentence; the lack of an antecedent is itself an error. The antecedent may often be present, but will disagree with the pronoun in number. A less common error is the ambiguous pronoun in which a pronoun could represent more than one noun. For example, The president and his adviser spoke for hours before he reached a decision. The pronoun he could be referring to the president or the adviser, so it is incorrect.
Answer: C. They are Kayaks is the antecedent, so we need a plural pronoun. Not D because which creates a dependent clause and usually comes after a comma, not a period.
MODIFIERS Modifiers are words and phrases that describe nouns. Adverbs can only modify verbs, while adjectives modify nouns. Be on the lookout for suspicious adverb-noun and adjective-verb pairings. Also be aware that many sentences will begin with a modifying phrase and a comma. The subject after the comma must be the person or thing doing the action of the modifying phrase. Wrong: Though exhausted, it would be several hours before Zoe got home. Right: Though exhausted, Zoe wouldnt get to go home for several hours. WORD CHOICE You want to pay attention to transition words and phrases to make sure they
reflect the authors purpose. Transitions can demonstrate continuation, contrast, or cause-and-effect. In addition, the ACT may try to fool you by using words that sounds similar to the intended words, but does not make sense in context (for example, replacing could have with could of). Its important not to rush on the ACT. I recommend going over this list of commonly confused words: http://blog.prepscholar.com/act-english-word-choice-and-diction-errors ORGANIZATION The ACT English section will ask you to determine the order and focus of
sentences or paragraphs. You will also be asked about adding, revising, or deleting sentences as well as how a sentence fits with the purpose, audience, and focus of a paragraph or the essay as a whole. This video goes over and gives some tips on the organization/order/structure questions: https:// www.sophia.org/tutorials/organization-on-the-act-english-test?playlist=act-engli sh-videos READING TIPS
The attached blog is entitled How to Get a 36 on the ACT Reading. While Im not sure a perfect 36 is assured after reading it, it does a great job of summing up the tips for this section. http:// blog.prepscholar.com/how-to-get-36-on-act-reading-11-strategies-from-a-perf ect-scorer
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