GMAT Sentence Correction Handbook (1/5)


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This is the first part of a 5-Day Handbook on the Basics of Sentence Correction that will help you brush-up your basic grammar, especially that required to ace the SC section on the GMAT.

This is a required pre-read for our Sentence Correction course at CrackVerbal.

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GMAT Sentence Correction Handbook (1/5)

  1. 1. Sentence Correction Basics For The GMAT: A 5-Day Handbook Day 1(Please read this Prep Material before attending your Sentence Correction Classes)
  2. 2. On CrackVerbal For professionals who want to advance their careers, CrackVerbal provides GMAT Training and MBA Admissions Consulting of superior quality along with unmatched support. Unlike other test prep companies, CrackVerbal has made a no-compromise commitment to meeting our students MBA needs. This is what has helped CrackVerbal grow from 6 students in a coffee shop in 2006 to Indias fastest-growing test prep company, helping more than 1000 students every year!
  3. 3. IntroductionThis 5-Day Handbook will help you brush-up yourbasic grammar, especially that required to ace theSentence Correction section on the GMAT.This is a required pre-read for our SentenceCorrection course.
  4. 4. ExpectationsIn this guide, we will discuss concepts as elementary as parts of speech, parts ofsentences, tenses, idioms etc, but they will all be dealt with from a GMATperspective. You need not memorize numerous grammatical terms and rules to score 700+ on the GMAT. These are mentioned here only to help you understand concepts. You simply need to understand how to apply grammatical concepts to crack SC problems! You need not go through the entire deck in one sitting. This material has been organized day-wise rather than section-wise on purpose. Every day, spend time reading and digesting only the pertinent section and nothing more.
  5. 5. The 7 Concepts Tested On GMAT SCHere‟s the good news – GMAT Sentence Correction tests you on only 7 grammarconcepts, namely: 1. Subject Verb Agreement 2. Pronouns 3. Modifiers 4. Parallelism 5. Tenses 6. Comparison 7. Idioms
  6. 6. Contents of SC Pre-ReadDay 1: Parts of Speech  Nouns  Pronouns  Adjectives
  7. 7. Parts Of SpeechThe English language consists of just 8 basic Parts of Speech.Some words portray the name of a person or place. Some describe actions.Some join two or more words and others describe the quality of an object.Let us look at this sentence:Wow! Sophia and her little sister sang beautifully at the party.This sentence is composed of all the 8 parts of speech:Nouns: Sophia, sister, party Adverb: beautifullyPronoun: her Preposition: atAdjective: little Conjunction: andVerb: sang Interjection: Wow!
  8. 8. #1: NounsA noun is a „naming word‟. It is used to name an object, place, person,animal, trait or action.Examples: Names of objects and things – book, door, curtain, glass, bag Names of places, people or animals – Eva, boy, Indian, house, Sweden, sister, tiger, sparrow Names of actions – sleeping, eating, sailing, watching Names of traits/qualities – loyalty, splendor, happiness, courage, coldnessBy adding suffixes to words, we can make them nouns.For example, prosper-prosperity, aspire-aspiration,exclaim-exclamation etc.Common noun suffixes are - ness, -ity, -ure, and –ition
  9. 9. Proper Nouns & Common Nouns: A proper noun refers to the name of a particular person, place or thing. An important characteristic of a proper noun is that it always begins with a capital letter. Woman Common Examples: Australia, Carl, Taj Mahal, Noun California, Cisco Oprah Proper NounA common noun refers to a class of person, place or thing.Examples: mirror, table, woman, village, town, taxi, pencil
  10. 10. Countable & Uncountable NounsA countable noun refers to nouns that can becounted. Therefore, it has both a singular and a pluralform.Examples: Paul kept the book under the table. The computers are installed in the last room.An uncountable noun refers to nouns that cannot becounted. Therefore, it has only the singular form.Examples: Susan prefers eating rice at home. She attended art and music classes daily.As we can see, rice, art, music etc are not countable. More examples:furniture, air, oil, yogurt, news, water, liberty, money, power, cleverness, butter,electricity and so on.
  11. 11. Countable & Uncountable NounsAmusingly, the same noun can sometimes be countable anduncountable, leading to different meanings.Examples:Light (countable): Can you switch off the lights?Light (uncountable): There‟s too much light in the room - please close the curtains.Work (countable): Her most famous works were composed in this very room.Work (uncountable): Without any work, William felt bored. Are you clear about countable and uncountable nouns? Test yourself with this mini exercise drill!
  12. 12. Collective NounsA collective noun refers to a group of things, animals, or persons. The individualelements of the group can be counted, but the group is treated as one single entity.Examples: The army has played a significant role in the war. The company is ready to take up new projects. The family is going on a long vacation to Paris.More examplesAssociation, audience, class, club, college, committee, community, company, crowd,department, electorate, enemy, family, firm, generation, government, group, jury,orchestra, population, press, public, school, staff, team, university, and the names ofspecific organizations such as the Royal Bank of Scotland, the AIR, Oracle, Maruti. You can check out a huge list of Collective Nouns here!
  13. 13. Possessive NounsA possessive noun is used to illustrate that something belongs to somebody orsomething. We generally add (s) to a singular noun and an apostrophe () to aplural noun to make it a possessive.Examples: The girl’s dress (one girl) The girls‟ dresses (two or more girls) Watch this short interactive presentation to learn more about Possessive Nouns!
  14. 14. Compound NounsCompound nouns are constructed from two or more words. They may bewritten as a single word or joined with a hyphen.Examples:newspaper, toothpaste, father-in-law,dry-cleaner, underpass, whiteboard,paper-clip, check-in, eyeball, moonlight,rainbow, bodyguard, houseboat, joystick,well-being, and so on Try out this mini-drill to see how well you have understood Compound Nouns!
  15. 15. Concrete NounsConcrete nouns can be experience with at least one of the five senses. Thesenouns can be touched, seen, heard, felt or smelled.Examples: This perfume has a captivating fragrance. Learn how to eat with a knife and fork. The teacher shouted at the students.More examples:sugar, wall, window, plate, rainbow, fire, curtains, computers, employees, cat,butterfly, noise and so on.
  16. 16. Abstract NounsAbstract nouns are conceptual in nature. These nouns cannot be heard, seen,felt, tasted or smelled. Abstract nouns display philosophies, concepts, and ideasthat are intangible in nature.Examples: Love conquers the world! He was awarded for his bravery. Her dedication towards her work got her the Best Employee Award.More examples:independence, power, trust, happiness, intelligence,sympathy, anger, hatred, compassion, beauty, skill,integrity, misery, beliefs, pain, knowledge, and so on.
  17. 17. Singular & Plural Nouns On the GMAT, one of the most vital noun-related questions includes the differences between singular and plural nouns.  A Singular noun refers to one entity only. For e.g. a pen, a dog, the moon, a girl, etc.  Plural nouns refer to more than one entity. For e.g. flowers, dresses, tables, hands, lamps, etc.  Usually, plural nouns end in „s‟ or „es‟ but this is not a thumb rule. Not all nouns ending with „s‟ or „es‟ are plural nouns For e.g. Thomas Gates. Read more about Singular and Plural Nouns here!
  18. 18. #2: PronounsA pronoun works as a substitute for a noun. It is used to replace a noun oranother pronoun and thus avoid awkward repetition of words.Example:Instead of writingSam is my best friend. Sam is an only child.Sam’s father is a doctor. I like Sam a lot.We can use pronouns to write:Sam is my best friend. He is an only child.His father is a doctor. I like him a lot.More examples of pronouns: I, my, us, she, we, you, thou, these, those, this, that,they, it, everyone, each, all, both, such, who, your, his, her, our, their, somebody,everybody, etc.
  19. 19. Subject & Object Pronouns1. Subject Pronouns Subject pronouns refer to those pronouns that are used as a subject.Examples: They will reach the party hall in half an hour. She is a teacher.2. Object Pronouns Object pronouns refer to those pronouns that are used as an object.Examples: The politician lied to all of us. Please return the book to me in two days. Test your knowledge of Subject and Object Pronouns here and here!
  20. 20. Possessive & Singular Pronouns3. Possessive PronounsPossessive pronouns refer to those pronouns that replace possessive nouns.For e.g. my, mine, your, yours, her, hers, his, our, ours, its, their, theirs, whose.Examples: Your dress is very pretty. Take a mini-test on Our team will win this match. Possessive Pronouns!4. Singular PronounsSingular pronouns are those pronouns that appear to be plural, but are reallynot. In fact, only singular verbs are used after these pronouns.Examples: Each of these students was involved in the prank. Nobody has submitted the assignment.A few more examples: any, anybody, everybody, everyone, anything.
  21. 21. Relative Pronouns5. Relative PronounsRelative pronouns refer to those pronouns that connect one phrase or clause toanother phrase or clause. As their name suggests, they relate to the word thatthey modify.Relative ModifiesPronounWhich Things, SituationsThat Things, SituationsWhose PeopleWho PeopleWhom PeopleWhere PlaceWhen Time
  22. 22. Relative Pronouns (Contd.)Examples: The judges that passed the sentence…This sentence is incorrect as “judges” are people and therefore, “that” cannotmodify “judges”. The garden where his mother was buried...This sentence is correct because “where” can modify garden, a place.“In which” is typically used to describe situations or circumstances.Example: My friend and I had an argument yesterday in which she nearly lost her temper. Test yourself on Relative Pronouns!
  23. 23. Indefinite Pronouns6. Indefinite PronounsIndefinite Pronouns refer to those pronouns that do not pertain to any particularperson or place or thing. They replace nouns without specifying which noun theyare replacing.Examples: Each player was given a second chance. Many people will attend this seminar.Examples of Singular Indefinite pronouns : each, every, everyone, anyone,someone, nobody, etcExamples of Plural Indefinite pronouns : few, many, others, several, etcExamples of Indefinite pronouns that can be both Singular and Plural : Most, Any,None, All, Some (MANAS).
  24. 24. MANAS Indefinite PronounsFor the MANAS indefinite pronouns, examine the “of” phrase following the pronounto determine whether it is singular or plural: Most of the boys are unwell. “Boys” is the word that follows the “of” phrase and therefore, we need the plural verb “are”. Any kind of music goes. “Music” is singular and therefore, we use the singular verb “goes”. All of the money was stolen. “Money” is singular and requires the verb “was”. None of the ships have returned. “Ships” is plural and therefore, we use “have”.
  25. 25. Interrogative Pronouns7. Interrogative PronounsInterrogative pronouns are used to commence or establish interrogative sentences.For e.g. who, whom, whose, what, and which etc.Though they are similar to relative pronouns, they are used differently.Examples: What is the capital of Sweden? Who was the first President of the United States?
  26. 26. Intensive Pronouns8. Intensive PronounsIntensive pronouns or emphatic pronouns end with „self‟ or „selves‟ and highlight anoun or another pronoun.Examples: She finished solving the question paper herself. („herself‟ emphasizes „she‟) The driver himself carried the luggage at the counter. („himself‟ emphasizes „driver‟)Other examples include myself,yourself, himself, herself, itself,oneself, ourselves etc.
  27. 27. #3: AdjectivesAdjectives are “describing words” that qualify a noun/noun phrase, and give moreinformation about it.Examples: He looks handsome in formals. Sandra is a short girl. It was a pleasure seeing a skilled artist at work The green leaves swayed in the breeze.
  28. 28. Comparative & Superlative Adjectives1. Comparative adjectives help us compare two things. They usually end with „-er‟.Examples: Peanuts are cheaper than cashews. Pebbles are smaller than rocks.2. Superlative adjectives illustrate the extreme orhighest degree of a quality of one thing in a group ofthree or more things. They typically end with „-est‟.Examples: Peter is the richest guy in his locality. Antarctica is one of the coldest places on earth.
  29. 29. Demonstrative Adjectives3. Demonstrative AdjectivesDemonstrative adjectives are used to demonstrate or indicate specific things. Fore.g. this, that, these, those etc.Examples: Please pass me that book, I need to note down something important. If you feed this dog, he will stay by your side always! Test yourself on Demonstrative Adjectives!
  30. 30. Indefinite Adjectives4. Indefinite AdjectiveIndefinite adjectives do not point out specific things.They are formed from indefinite pronouns such as no, any, many, few,several etc.Examples: Many offices will be closed on next Friday. Very few people will agree to this.
  31. 31. Nouns As AdjectivesWhen one noun is used to describe another, the former acts as an adjective (adescribing word). For e.g. tennis ball, race horse, dress exhibition, school shoes,chocolate box, etc.Examples: This love story has a happy ending. Please go to the bicycle shop.What kind of story? A love story.Which shop? A bicycle shop.In some cases, you may even comeacross multiple nouns acting as adjectives.Example: American airways traffic investigation centreThe nouns „American‟, „airways‟, „traffic‟ and „investigation‟ are describing the noun„centre‟.
  32. 32. Copyright Notice And Legal DisclaimerCopyright NoticeAs of 2012, CrackVerbal Edutech Pvt. Ltd. is the copyright holder of this study material. It is under our discretion to demandconsideration in exchange for waiver of any of the conditions listed.Where the study material or any of its content is already in the public domain under law currently applicable in India or any locationwhere the study material is used, that status is in no way affected by the license.Legal DisclaimerThe information contained in these slides is for general information purposes only. We endeavor to keep the information up to dateand correct, however, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness,accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the slides or the information, products, services, or related graphicscontained on the slides for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.In no event will CrackVerbal be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage,or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of these slides.Through these slides you may be able to link to other websites which are not under the control of the owner of the slides.The owner has no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links does not necessarilyimply a recommendation or endorsement of the views/information expressed within them.GMAT™ and GMAC™ are registered trademarks of the Graduate Management Admission Council™. GMAC does not write, sponsor,or endorse this product, nor is it affiliated in any way with the owner of these slides.