GMAT Study Material-sentence Correction From Ron - GMAT - Assignment

3626 words - 15 pages

SC Tips By Ron
Wednesday, September 26 2012, 8:45 PM
Importance of Meaning in Sentence Correction & How to study SC :
You should ALWAYS check the meaning, before you look at ANYTHING in the sentence. almost every one of
the major SC error types is easier to identify if you are using the meaning of the sentence, and most of
them are impossible to understand fully *without* the meaning.
for instance:
verb tense -- completely impossible without meaning
verb voice -- completely impossible without meaning
modifiers -- can be assigned according to grammar rules, but detemining whether the assignment is *correct* is
impossible without meaning
pronouns -- are subject to grammar rules, but detemining whether the pronoun is *correct* is impossible without
parallelism -- sometimes based on grammar, but you need meaning to figure out which items *should* be parallel in
the first place
this is actually why the GMAT SC emphasizes these particular concepts -- because it is NOT MEANT to be a test
of rules that can be memorized! it's meant to be a reasoning test that emphasizes ... reasoning (which is based
upon the intended meaning of the sentence).
this is also why the GMAT SC largely *avoids* testing things that ARE purely mechanical, rules-based, and subject
to memorization (e.g., spelling).
if you are approaching these sentences without FIRST determining the meaning of the sentence, then you are using
exactly the whole kind of reasoning for which the test isintentionally designed NOT to work .
this post may be uncharacteristically blunt, but this is a point that needs to be made over and over and over and over
and over again, because way too many people on this forum approach SC as if it were a giant math puzzle that's
subject to entirely arbitrary rules.
it's not -- if you start to base your thinking around what the sentence is clearly intended to mean (all sentences
will have a common-sense interpretation, regardless of how many errors are in the original version), then you will
suddenly find most SC issues much easier to identify and understand.
These are *NOT* grammar issues!
make sure that you understand the significance of the passive voice vs. the active voice.
the active voice means that the subject is the doer or agent of the action.
i moved to chicago --> i made the decision to move to chicago myself, for my own reasons.
i moved to chicago --> i made the decision to move to chicago myself, for my own reasons.
the passive voice means that the subject is the target or recipient of the action -- i.e., that the action is done
to the subject.
i was moved to chicago --> someone else, e.g., my employer, made me move to chicago; it wasn't my decision.
How to Study SC :
for EVERY SC problem,
* you should be able to go through the CORRECT sentence -- including the non-underlined part -- and justify
EVERY construction in that sentence.
-- if there'...

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