Reading Language and Style Practice Test (page 3)

Updated on Sep 20, 2011


  1. c. The first sentence is the topic sentence, which establishes that the shopping mall will be bad for residents of the town. The remaining sentences support that idea.
  2. a. The style of the article is businesslike and formal, and is targeted to a sophisticated reader who would be capable of understanding a word such as displacement. Therefore, displacement is compatible with the style of the article. Choices b and c are not correct. The words remove, move, or replace are less sophisticated, less formal word choices and therefore would not be preferred word choices for this article even though they communicate the intended concept. The writer is not attempting to impress the reader by choosing words based solely on their length, or to create an impression of superiority.
  3. e. The writer warns the readers of the effects that a shopping mall will have on residents of the town and arranges those effects in order of importance, saving the most important effect for last.
  4. a. The first-person point of view is reflected in the use of the pronouns us and we.
  5. a. The writer says that the shopping mall will have "dire consequences" for the residents and then uses the pronouns us and we which identifies the writer with the residents—when listing those dire consequences.
  6. c. The effects the writer includes here are all very serious, especially the third effect—displacement. The writer has chosen the word dire to emphasize that seriousness.
  7. c. The passage avoids any unnecessary description or details and uses formal rather than casual language.
  8. b. Each sentence explains a negative effect that the shopping mall will have on the residents and the negativity of this passage is heightened by the word dire and the phrase avoided at all costs. Though the shopping mall itself might be described as threatening, (choice c), the writer is not threatening anybody.

TIP: Acquaint yourself with different styles of writing and diction by comparing and contrasting articles in magazines targeted towards different audiences. Some types of magazines that you might want to explore are

  • literary and small press magazines such as Poetry.
  • regional magazines such as Time Out New York.
  • news magazines such as Newsweek.
  • travel magazines such as Culture & Travel.
  • research journals such as The New England Journal of Medicine.
  • scientific magazines such as Popular Science.
  • entertainment magazines such as Interview.
  • special interest magazines such as Vogue and American Photo.
  • business magazines such as Business Week.


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