Unit 51: Sentence Combination

You will likely have 1-3 of this question type in Section 2.  In the passage, there will be two sentences, either underlined in full or in part.  

The question will ask, “Which choice most effectively combines the underlined sentences?”

For example:

Which choice most effectively combines the underlined sentences? 

A) In fact, librarians’ training now includes courses on research and Internet search methods; many librarians teach classes in Internet navigation, database and software use, and digital information literacy is taught by them.

B) In fact, many librarians, whose training now includes courses on research and Internet search methods, teach classes in Internet navigation, database and software use, and digital information literacy. 

C) Training now includes courses on research and Internet search methods; many librarians, in fact, are teaching classes in Internet navigation, database and software use, and digital information literacy. 

D) Including courses on research and Internet search methods in their training is, in fact, why many librarians teach classes in Internet navigation, database and software use, and digital information literacy. 

Strategy:

  • Answering these questions is all about process of elimination – you want to find what is wrong with each answer.  Common errors they put in wrong answer choices are incorrect punctuation, misplaced modifiers, illogical wording, and extra words (concision).  

Back to our example:

In answer A), we see “information literacy is taught by them” rather than “they teach information literacy”.  The SAT HATES the passive voice – if you see this in an answer, it is incorrect.

Answer B) looks OK, for now.

Answer C) is grammatically correct, but due to the structure of the first clause it’s not clear who is getting the training – the librarians or the patrons?  Lack of clarity makes this wrong.

Answer D) has the logical structure wrong.  Librarians don’t teach because of courses on research and internet search methods, it’s what they do teach.  We’re left with B) as the best choice by far.

Traps

The emphasis

If the sentences originally have an implied emphasis (like the first sentence caused the second sentence to happen, or one sentence is used to introduce the more important second sentence’s idea) then your edited version must also have the same relationship.