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Exam: 986041RR – Writing Skills Part 2



1. Which of the following sentences is written in the passive voice?

A. They considered their options.

B. The effects of cyanide are well known.

C. Having left the building, Elvis never returned.

D. I would not provoke that man if I were you.


2. Which one of the following sentences is written in the active voice?

A. Accidents are considered by most people as unavoidable.

B. It is said that definite steps can be taken to prevent many accidents.

C. Accidents are witnessed every day.

D. Few people think seriously of doing something about accidents.


3. Find the sentence with the active voice.

A. The bill was passed by the legislature.

B. The chairman told me that the legislature passed the bill.

C. I was told by the chairman that the bill was passed by the legislature.

D. It was voted by the legislature to pass.


4. Which of the following words is most likely to carry a connotation?

A. Walk

B. Run

C. Stand

D. Stride


5. Read the word in parentheses; then decide which of these sentences most effectively translates an

abstract concept into a mental picture.

A. (Studious) Lucy lay on her bed reading a back issue of National Geographic.

B. (Freedom) On her twenty-first birthday, Lola declared herself a woman.

C. (Sunrise) The rising sun transformed the canyon into bright stone and deep shadow.

D. (Rumors) Whispers of doubt filled the empty halls like the reek of boiled cabbage.


6. Which one of the following sentences or phrases is most likely to be considered a cliché?

A. Look before you leap.

B. How dead is a dead doornail?

C. Are you a man or a moose?

D. When in doubt, pout.


7. When we speak of the flavor of a word, we’re talking about the extra understood meanings that it carries

in addition to its main meaning. These extra meanings are called

A. shadings.

B. denotations.

C. definitions.

D. connotations.


8. Which of the following words is the best close-up word?

A. Zucchini

B. Vegetable

C. Plant

D. Food


9. A thesaurus is a book that’s useful for finding

A. famous persons.

B. frequently misspelled words.

C. definitions.

D. synonyms.


10. Which of the following would be an appropriate way to add variety to your sentences?

A. Use more close-up words.

B. Make your sentences read like a spoken conversation.

C. Use questions and answers together.

D. Add personal anecdotes.


11. When using direct quotations in your writing, which of the following should be placed outside the set of

quotation marks?

A. Period

B. Semicolon

C. Question mark

D. Comma


12. Freewriting is an exercise in which you

A. write only grammatically correct sentences.

B. rewrite an article in a magazine or newspaper.

C. revise and polish an essay.

D. write whatever your thoughts are in no particular order.


13. An antonym is a word that’s

A. defined in a thesaurus.

B. pronounced the same.

C. the same in meaning.

D. opposite in meaning.


14. When writing, you can most effectively use a dash

A. to get the reader’s attention.

B. in place of an exclamation point.

C. in place of a semicolon.

D. to add a formal touch to a sentence.


15. Which one of the following statements about making your writing fun to read is not correct?

A. Give your writing a personal touch by showing that you’re interested in your subject.

B. The conversation you write must sound natural for the characters.

C. Direct quotations should be reserved for characters in stories.

D. An anecdote or humorous quotation is often more convincing than a strong argument.


16. Which of the following direct quotations is punctuated properly?

A. “Way to go, Sean,” the coach shouted. “That was a great run!”

B. “Way to go, Sean”, the coach shouted. “That was a great run!”

C. “Way to go, Sean,” the coach shouted. “That was a great run”!

D. “Way to go, Sean”, the coach shouted. “That was a great run”!


17. Which sentence best describes clustering?

A. You write down words or ideas in chronological order.

B. You write down words or ideas that occur to you in no particular order.

C. You’re generating words that suggest possible themes for an essay.

D. You’re generating words that suggest possible sentences or paragraphs.


18. A synonym is a word that’s

A. pronounced the same.

B. defined in a thesaurus.

C. similar in meaning.

D. opposite in meaning.


19. Anna is an exceptional young girl. _______ Anna does any job that needs to be done.

To vary the sentence structure, which one of the following sentences should you insert in the blank?

A. Anna is always working hard at home.

B. Anna is a hardworking and versatile person.

C. Anna works hard every day of her life.

D. Have you noticed how hard she works?


20. Which of the following statements about vocabulary building is not correct?

A. The best way to improve your vocabulary is to memorize lists of vocabulary words.

B. Pronunciation is an important part of adding new words to your vocabulary.

C. Using the dictionary is only one step in the process of vocabulary building.

D. Reading on a daily basis is very important for building your vocabulary.




Exam: 986042RR – Writing Skills Part 3



1. What is one problem you should keep in mind when researching information on the Internet?

A. Information is seldom available on the Internet.

B. Information found on the Internet may be unreliable.

C. You should avoid using search engines when you’re searching for information on the Internet.

D. Library staff usually keep Internet computers locked.


2. A disadvantage of using a sentence outline instead of a topic outline is that a sentence outline is often

A. time-consuming.

B. factually grounded.

C. rigid.

D. underdeveloped.


3. What is the most reliable way to get the opinions of experts on any writing topic?

A. Call them to set up interviews.

B. Do research at a library.

C. Write to them and hope for an answer.

D. Contact them on the Internet.


4. To make sure your reader remembers the point of your essay, which of the following is most important?

A. Choosing an interesting subject

B. The order in which you present your ideas

C. The ending

D. The introduction


5. The World Almanac is a book of

A. facts and statistics.

B. synonyms.

C. living notable Americans.

D. articles published in magazines.


6. Which of the following skills is most important in learning how to write?

A. Knowing how to use the Readers’ Guide before you write

B. Knowing proper grammar before you write

C. Knowing how to plan before you write

D. Knowing proper punctuation before you write


7. Once you acquire these two basic skills, you’ll be able to transform a vague idea in your mind into a

coherent piece of writing.

A. Describing people and writing conversation

B. Using the Internet and the on-line catalog

C. Doing interviews and browsing through books

D. Doing research and organizing your ideas


8. The position from which you write about your subject is called your

A. point of view.

B. plan.

C. outline of ideas.

D. advantage.


9. A CD-ROM is a compact disk that

A. generates random essay topics.

B. allows you to borrow books from any library.

C. regulates the Library of Congress.

D. contains stored information that can be read on a computer.


10. Where would you look to find an article on recent fashion trends?

A. Card catalog

B. Readers’ Guide

C. Encyclopedia

D. Who’s Who


11. What do we call an idea that will make the reader take notice and want to read on?

A. Point of view

B. Hook

C. Card

D. Summary


12. You need to write an essay about hot air ballooning. You know you’ve seen a good book on this topic,

but you can’t remember the name of the book or the name of the author. How could you most easily find

this book in the library?

A. Look under “balloons” in the Readers’ Guide.

B. Locate the author card for the book in the card catalog.

C. Locate the title card for the book in the card catalog.

D. Locate the subject card for the book in the card catalog.


13. You’ve settled on an idea for an essay to write. What should you do next?

A. Ask the reference librarian to help you make a plan and prepare your outline.

B. Look up your topic in the Readers’ Guide and use an article you find as a basis for your plan and outline.

C. Plunge right in and start writing. Then create your outline from what you’ve written.

D. Conduct interviews, do some research, ask questions, and make a plan.


14. Because the subject of a composition is like a crystal with many facets, you should

A. offer a positive idea for every negative one.

B. be very critical of your sources.

C. pick one point of view and stay with it.

D. offer your reader ideas from several sides.


15. The on-line catalog is a computerized index of

A. library patrons.

B. library telephone numbers.

C. reference librarians.

D. books in a library.


16. The most important difference between an outline and finished writing is the

A. order of events.

B. source of ideas.

C. details.

D. grammatical structure.


17. The Dewey decimal system is the classification system used by

A. most research and university libraries.

B. scientific articles in magazines.

C. most public libraries in the United States.

D. the Internet.


18. You are least likely to feel that an Internet source is reliable if the information is posted

A. on the U.S. Department of Labor Web site.

B. on the Web site of your local police department.

C. from a university department.

D. without a specific source.


19. Where should you look to find quick information on the causes of the American Civil War?

A. Dictionary

B. Readers’ Guide

C. Encyclopedia

D. Concise Dictionary of American Biography


20. When assembling a writing plan for an essay, which of the following should come first?

A. The general idea of your essay

B. The first section of the body of your essay.

C. A brief summary of your conclusion

D. Material that catches the reader’s interest

Exam: 986040RR – Writing Skills Part 1


1. In the metaphor of language as a layer cake given in your study unit, which of the following words could

be considered to be a frosting word?

A. Occasionally

B. Honestly

C. Prescient

D. Frequently


2. Which of the following sentences has a compound predicate?

A. She raced along the path to beat him to the beach.

B. While he swam, she collected shells.

C. She placed the shells in a plastic bag while he dried himself off.

D. She washed the shells and dried them in the sun.


3. Which of the following best illustrates a pair of sentences that are joined by an understood relationship?

A. Luke put three dollars into the office football pool. He was looking forward to vacation.

B. I don’t understand a word you said. Have you taken a course in English literature?

C. It rained for ten days and ten nights. Grandmother Grady called a company to drill a well.

D. Detective Smiley scanned the dim hallway. He pulled his pistol from its holster.


4. In which of the following sentences do you find a verb phrase?

A. June was a collector of memorabilia.

B. The crowd roared as the bull charged.

C. I shall be all that I am and more.

D. I believed every word he said.


5. Sentence (i) has been shortened in sentence (ii) by using a(n) _______.


(i) She likes a location that is in the sun.

(ii) She likes a sunny location.

A. phrase

B. prefix

C. adjective

D. connective


6. Which of the following is a way you could begin an essay that’s about the medical uses of iodine?

A. Silver iodide is used in photography. Photography is a widespread form of art, and it has become more popular than painting.

B. The Winter Olympics of 1980 took place in the beautiful area of Lake Placid, New York. Lake Placid is nestled in the

Adirondack mountains.

C. Last summer, a splinter in my brother’s leg became infected, which led to blood poisoning. He could have prevented the

problem with a few drops of iodine.

D. Although iodine is useful for medical treatments, so are other elements like oxygen, radium, and barium.


7. Two things to keep in mind when you’re deciding whether to use formal or informal English are the

A. reader and the audience.

B. occasion and the audience.

C. reader and the location.

D. opinion and the occasion.


8. Which sentence contains a prepositional phrase?

A. They tried, although they didn’t expect to win.

B. With the proper help, they’ll complete the project early.

C. Running all the way, he got there early.

D. They sang it, and sang it again.


9. Which of the following sentences has a dangling modifier?

A. The dog that is man’s best friend is cat’s worst enemy.

B. When the storm began to abate, we went home.

C. By the light of the moon, I tripped over a rock.

D. On the way to the bank, the interest rates went down.


10. For the greeting in a business letter when you don’t know the name of the person who will be reading

it, which of the following is least likely to conform to present-day usage?

A. Dear Mrs. Carleton

B. Dear Editor

C. Dear Mr. Givens

D. Dear Sir


11. Which of the following is the best opening sentence for a business letter that you want to sound fairly


A. This letter is to make you cognizant of our receipt of your order.

B. Please be advised that I’ve just received your order.

C. Your order of February 10 arrived in our office today.

D. I am in receipt of your order of February 10.


12. Which of the following is a complex sentence?

A. Check out the editorial page in today’s paper and you’ll notice the piece by Oscar Lewis.

B. I simply cannot make heads or tails of rap lyrics, but I suppose I’m just too old to understand them.

C. As Jake was reading the letter from June yet again, the flight attendant coughed gently to get his attention.

D. I would like to visit the Kinshasa, but I understand the city is unsafe for foreigners.


13. Choose the connective that belongs in the blank in the following sentence.


Everyone appeared to be having a good time. _______, my impressions may have been wrong.

A. Of course

B. In other words

C. In fact

D. Furthermore


14. Which one of these statements would be considered inappropriate in formal writing?

A. Next, he prepares to conduct his experiments.

B. He hates to be late.

C. He reviews the reports of his assistants.

D. Dr. Thomson arrives promptly each morning.


15. What is the name of the common error in the following sentence?


Having risen because of the rains, the hikers were unable to cross the river.

A. Infinitive phrase

B. Dangling modifier

C. Prepositional phrase

D. Run-on sentence


16. Which one of the following sentences contains two ideas joined by a connecting word?

A. Tina arrived at work earlier than usual.

B. Frank went fishing on Saturday he caught many fish.

C. Sally lives with her parents, although she could afford her own apartment.

D. Mike ran after the bus.


17. Which of the following topics would lend itself only to a formal style of writing?

A. Folk Songs I Have Sung

B. Why Living in the Country Is Better Than Living in the City

C. Psychological Effects of Nuclear Weapons

D. How I Lost 10 Pounds


18. Which one of the following sentences contains an unnecessary word?

A. Rich was angry, but he concealed his feelings.

B. She left early, though he told her not to.

C. Why don’t you leave before the crowd arrives?

D. The snake raised up its head and struck.



19. Choose the connective that belongs in the blank in the following sentence.


I like to play baseball. _______, I can’t throw a ball very well.

A. Besides

B. For instance

C. However

D. In fact


20. An interjection is always

A. preceded by preposition.

B. followed by an exclamation point.

C. intended to show feeling.

D. related to another word in the sentence.





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