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8 Grammar Tips to Help Kids on the SAT

Teens biting their nails over this portion of the College Board exam? Or simply looking for tricks to brush up on the ol' English? Get help here!

(page 7 of 9)

6. Who 'Dat: Indefinite pronouns

As you can probably surmise by now, the College Board is not your friend. Too many traps, too many trick questions. In many cases, it seems the test is rigged to lure students into making incorrect choices, setting them up to fail. This is nowhere more evident than with the vague and unnecessary pronouns that litter the grammar landscape. Check it out:

  • When Kate and Carol went for a winter walk, she forgot to bring her umbrella.
  • It was so expensive that no one wanted it.
  • In New York, they like bagels.

In the first example, who forgot her umbrella, Kate or Carol? In the second example, what was so expensive? A painting? A house? Be specific. A yacht! In the second example, keep this mantra in mind: It's not it! Define your terms. And finally, in New York, who likes bagels? Construction workers, NYPD, Radio City Rockettes? Use a picture word, something the reader can see, not a fuzzy indefinite pronoun.

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