ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills Test

Below is our free ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills practice test. There are 2 types of ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills questions. The first type are sentence correction questions. These test your understanding of sentence structure. You need to choose the best phrase to replace the underlined portion of the sentence. The second type are construction shift questions. With these you must rewrite the sentence according to the criteria shown, while retaining the same general meaning of the original sentence.

Directions for questions 1-10: A portion of each sentence is underlined. Select the best version of the sentence. Answer (A) is always the same as the original sentence.

Directions for questions 11-20: Figure out the best way to rewrite each sentence. The new sentence must be written correctly and retain the meaning of the original sentence.

Congratulations - you have completed . You scored %%SCORE%% out of %%TOTAL%%. Your performance has been rated as %%RATING%%
Your answers are highlighted below.
Question 1
To swim, to jog, and spinning are my aunt’s favorite ways of maintaining her health.

A
To swim, to jog, and spinning
B
To swim, to jog, and spin
C
Swimming, jogging, and to spin
D
Swimming, jogging, and spinning
Question 1 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). Each of the verbs in this option are in the same, parallel form (the “-ing” verb form). The other choices do not have all three verbs in the same form. (B) comes close, but missed the word “to” before the final verb, “spin.” However, since we are treating the verbs as subjects, they should be in the gerund format (-ing).
Question 2
Although he was quite accomplished in playing the violin, he had some work to do when it came to playing the piano.

A
Although he was quite accomplished in playing the violin,
B
Although, he was quite accomplished in playing, the violin,
C
Quite accomplished was he in playing the violin, although,
D
Although the violin was something he was quite accomplished in playing,
Question 2 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). This sentence structure is correct and needs only one comma. Answer (B) has one too many commas, and answers (C) and (D) are too long and confusing.
Question 3
Returning to his old job, everything there looked the same as John remembered.

A
Returning to his old job,
B
As he was returning to his old job,
C
When he returned to his old job,
D
To have returned to his old job,
Question 3 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). This answer matches the past verb tense of “looked” later in the sentence. Answer (A) is a subject-verb mismatch. Answers (B) and (D) are incorrect tenses.
Question 4
Mount Kilimanjaro is a dormant volcano in Tanzania, being the highest mountain in Africa.

A
being the highest
B
and is the highest
C
higher than any
D
the most high
Question 4 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). The word “being” is passive voice and unnecessary for this sentence. Since the first clause uses the simple present tense verb “is,” the second clause should mirror this simple expression: the mountain IS….and IS…. The other choices are unclear or grammatically incorrect.
Question 5
I was alarmed by the noise looking through the window to see who was outside.

A
I was alarmed by the noise looking
B
The noise alarmed me, looking
C
I was alarmed by the noise, looked
D
Alarmed by the noise, I looked
Question 5 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). This is the only answer choice that correctly matches subject and verb. In all the other answers, the verb “look” is applied to the noise when it should be applied to the speaker.
Question 6
Scientists have found evidence that acid rain was a major cause of the largest extinction on Earth 250 million years ago.

A
Scientists have found evidence that acid rain was a major cause of the largest extinction
B
The largest extinction, caused by acid rain, was found by scientists to have happened
C
Scientists have been finding evidence that acid rain is being a major cause of the largest extinction
D
The largest extinction, which was found by scientists happening, could have been a major cause
Question 6 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). This answer is the most concise. Answer (B) splits up scientists and extinction, which confuses the meaning. Answer (C) has an incorrect tense- “is being.” Answer (D) changes the verb of happening from extinction to the scientists.
Question 7
Rushing to the scene, the frightened cat was stuck high in the tree and had to be pulled down by the firemen.

A
the frightened cat was stuck high in the tree and had to be pulled down by the firemen.
B
the cat that was frightened and stuck high in the tree was pulled down by the firemen.
C
the firemen had to pull down the frightened cat that was stuck high in the tree.
D
the firemen pulled down the frightened cat and were stuck high in the tree.
Question 7 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). This sentence begins with an opening modifying phrase, “rushing to the scene.” Whatever comes after the comma must be the person doing the action of the phrase. Ask yourself: who is rushing to the scene? Logically, it is the firemen, not the cat! Only (C) corrects this error without introducing an additional error.
Question 8
Since blank it appeared to the naked eye, a piece of paper that contains a message written in invisible ink is clever.

A
Since blank it appeared to the naked eye,
B
Since it appears blank to the naked eye,
C
Naked and blank though it appears to the eye,
D
Because to the naked eye it will appear blank,
Question 8 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). Answers (A) and (C) have incorrect tenses. Answer (D) has correct tenses, but is wordy. Answer (B) is the only one that is concise and says “appears”, a tense that correctly matches the latter tense of “contains” in the sentence.
Question 9
Double-checking her timer, the chef turned the beef wellington in the oven.

A
Double-checking her timer,
B
To double-check her timer,
C
She double-checked her timer and
D
By double-checking her timer,
Question 9 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). The original sentence is the clearest option here. (B) and (D) create a confusing meaning. It is likely that the chef turned the beef while she was double-checking the timer. It doesn’t make sense that she would turn the beef TO or BY double-checking the timer since they are separate actions. Choice (C) makes it seem like the chef is a different person than the “she” referred to in the sentence.
Question 10
For a lizard, losing their tail in an accident is not detrimental to their health since they can grow back.

A
their tail in an accident is not detrimental to their health since they
B
its tail in an accident is not detrimental to its health since it
C
their tails in an accident is not detrimental to their healths since they
D
its tails in an accident is not detrimental to its health since they
Question 10 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). Since “a lizard” refers to only one lizard, the pronouns that replace it should be singular. “Their” and “they” are incorrectly plural. The pronouns should be “its” and “it.” The other answer choices all contain incorrect plural pronouns.
Question 11
Although the horse is easily startled by sudden noises, it can be trained to ignore distractions and remain calm even in parades.

Rewrite, beginning with

The horse is easily startled by sudden noises,

The next words will be

A
but it can be trained
B
and it will be trained
C
even if it were trained
D
nevertheless being trained
Question 11 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). This maintains the contrast in the sentence. Answer (D) has contrast, but is not correct to place after a comma- it needs its own sentence.
Question 12
If I had enough money, I would buy an enormous mansion.

Rewrite, beginning with

I cannot buy an enormous mansion

The next words will be

A
without enough
B
when missing
C
although there
D
because I
Question 12 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). This answer is correct because it maintains the meaning of the sentence while retaining the original cause and effect relationship. Answers (B) and (C) don’t make grammatical sense. Although (A) makes sense grammatically, it does not mean the same thing as answer (D).
Question 13
Though rattlesnakes do not bite humans out of a malicious nature, most rattlesnakes will attack if they feel threatened.

Rewrite, beginning with

Rattlesnakes do not bite humans out of a malicious nature,

The next words will be

A
yet they will attack if they feel threatened
B
and they will attack if they feel threatened
C
they will attack if they feel threatened
D
because they will attack, however only if they feel threatened
Question 13 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). The original sentence presents a contrast. Only (A) and (D) provide contrasting keywords (“yet” and “however”). Choice (D) includes the unnecessary and confusing word “because.” (C) becomes a run-on sentence, since two complete thoughts cannot be separated by only a comma.
Question 14
It began to snow, and all the children ran outside to build a snowman.

Rewrite, beginning with

All the children ran outside to build a snowman

The next words will be

A
it began to snow
B
since it did snow
C
because it had begun to snow
D
as snowing had begun
Question 14 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). The word “because” clearly shows the best meaning between the ideas in the sentence. It explains WHY all the children ran outside. (D) also does this, but its construction is awkward. (B) makes it sound like the snowing happened before the children built their snowman. Logically, the snow falling was the impetus for the children to run outside.
Question 15
After a five mile hike, the couple felt in need of a break.

Rewrite, beginning with

The couple felt in need of a break

The next words will be

A
and they hiked for five miles
B
despite having hiked for five miles
C
hiking for five miles
D
after hiking for five miles
Question 15 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). This answer is correct because it explains WHY the couple needed the break: they hiked for five miles.
Question 16
Carl felt an amazingly warm feeling when he met his son for the first time.

Rewrite, beginning with

Meeting his son for the first time,

The next words will be

A
an amazingly warm feeling was felt
B
when Carl felt an amazingly warm feeling
C
Carl felt an amazingly warm feeling
D
feeling an amazing warm feeling
Question 16 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). This is the only answer where the correct subject matches the word “meeting.”
Question 17
If I want your advice, I will request it.

Rewrite, beginning with

I won’t request your advice

The next words will be

A
if I want it
B
if I don’t want it
C
if it is your advice that I want
D
if it is not your advice that I want
Question 17 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). The meaning of the original sentence is that WANTING advice leads to REQUESTING it. By that same logic, NOT REQUESTING advice, probably means that it is NOT WANTED. The only choice to follow this logic is (B). (D) unnecessarily repeats the word “advice” and makes an overly wordy sentence.
Question 18
Thanksgiving dinner was over, and everyone began to fall asleep on the couch.

Rewrite, beginning with

Everyone began to fall asleep on the couch

The next words will be

A
and Thanksgiving dinner was over
B
although Thanksgiving dinner was over
C
after Thanksgiving dinner was over
D
before Thanksgiving dinner was over
Question 18 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). Every other answer choice changes the meaning. (B) and (D) make sense grammatically, but alter the meaning of the original sentence. Answer (C) retains the meaning of the original sentence and is grammatically correct.
Question 19
Mary didn’t notice much bass guitar in the rock song when she heard the band’s encore.

Rewrite, beginning with

Hearing the band’s encore,

The next words will be

A
there wasn’t much bass guitar noticed by Mary in the rock song
B
the rock song Mary heard didn’t have much bass guitar
C
bass guitar wasn’t noticed in the rock song by Mary
D
Mary didn’t notice much bass guitar in the rock song
Question 19 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). This is the only option that makes it clear WHO is hearing the encore. By placing “Mary” directly after the comma, the meaning of the sentence becomes clear and concise. The other options are wordier and/or written in a passive construction.
Question 20
It is unusual to see many squirrels at the dog park, since they are often chased by dogs.

Rewrite, beginning with

Often chased by dogs,

The next words will be

A
it is unusual to see many squirrels at the dog park
B
since they are often chased by dogs
C
squirrels are not usually seen at the dog park
D
the dog park usually does not see too many squirrels
Question 20 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). Since the rewritten sentence begins with a modifying clause, the word after the comma must describe who or what is “often chased.” The only logical thing is the “squirrels.”
Once you are finished, click the button below. Any items you have not completed will be marked incorrect. Get Results
There are 20 questions to complete.
List
Return
Shaded items are complete.
12345
678910
1112131415
1617181920
End
Return