Question Explanations For

SAT Practice Test 1 (Reading Test)

1.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Glance over the topic sentence of each paragraph for helpful information about the primary purpose of the passage. (A) is tempting, but notice that the passage doesn’t explain why the phenomenon occurs. (B) is correct. Although other measures are mentioned, (C) is false because only one measure is the main subject of the passage. (D) is wrong because a scientific study is more than an anecdote.

2.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Like the question above, this question requires an understanding of the author’s purpose and stance. Look at topic sentences and conclusions. (A) is correct. (B) might be true but contradicts the general aim of the passage. (C) may also be true, but that only means that better measures are needed, which supports (A). (D) is too absolute.

3.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Look for evidence supporting the correct answer from above. (C) may not seem directly relevant, but it suggests that conventional measurements need replacing.

4.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Look for the quoted words, which are at the end of the first paragraph. (A) is too extreme. (B) accurately describes the U bend. (C) and (D) are not supported by the passage.

5.

The Correct Answer is (A) — In context, vein seems to refer somehow to Chevalier’s response. Plug in each option to see which fits best. (A) is correct. (B) implies that all older people will be as funny as Chevalier in their reply, which seems untrue. (C) and (D) are tempting but not as straightforward as (A).

6.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Read around the directed lines. (A) and (C) are each a logical stretch, since the quote talks about a 20-year-old’s perspective. (B) is correct. (D) may be true, but the passage more closely focuses on aging than conventionalism or radicalism.

7.

The Correct Answer is (C) — (C) best supports the answer above, showing that Townshend’s original quote is contrasted by his lasting sense of humor.

8.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Read around the directed lines. (A) is tempting; however, the passage is not about changed definition, but a new one. (B) is also tempting, but the next sentence reveals that the author’s purpose is to show how new the U-bend theory is. (C) is true, because it correctly shows the contrast between then (“ancient and conventional”) and now (“recent”). (D) is wrong because the seven stages do not comprise a “predictive model” in the scientific sense, only a useful image.

9.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Even without knowing the definition of nadir, the meaning can be understood when the sentence explains it later on as the point that is “most miserable” or “unhappiest” in the U-bend of happiness. All of the answer choices seem tempting, but the most straightforward is (B). (A) and (D) carry extra connotations that are not helpful to a scientific description of a graph. (C) implies absolute zero happiness, which the passage does not support.

10.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Most of the numbers the passage gives show the average age of least happiness for various countries. It can be reasoned that, in a given country, a person of any other age would be happier than one at the age of least happiness. Therefore, (A) is correct. (B) cannot be supported by the text, since maximum happiness is not given. (C) is not supported, since overall happiness is not given. (D) is not supported, since happiness at age 35 is not given for Ukrainians and Swiss.

11.

The Correct Answer is (D) — Since the passage does not refer to maximum happiness, (A) and (B) are incorrect. Specific levels of happiness are not discussed, so (C) is wrong. (D) is correct.

12.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Glance over the paragraphs’ topic and conclusion sentences for helpful information about the passage’s primary purpose. (A) is correct. While new applications of atomic weapons are discussed, the passage is more about controlling those weapons, so (B) is incorrect. While the novelty of the atomic weapon is referenced, it does not seem to be the focus of the passage, so (C) is incorrect. (D) is correct.

13.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Look for content that supports the answer above. (C) correctly references the danger of these weapons.

14.

The Correct Answer is (C) — (A) is incorrect, since nothing seems to express regret or wrongdoing on Eisenhower’s or the US’s behalf. Nothing suggests happiness or excitement, so (B) is incorrect. (C) is correct, since Eisenhower seems worried about the threat of nuclear warfare and proliferation. Nothing seems doubtful, so (D) is incorrect.

15.

The Correct Answer is (C) — The passage seems to be about protecting people from the threat of nuclear weapons and warfare. (A) and (D) seem contrary to the passage’s purpose. (B) is unrelated. (C) is correct.

16.

The Correct Answer is (D) — (D) is correct, especially because it supports agreements between the US and other countries.

17.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Read around the directed lines, which talk about the power of atomic weapons and the US stockpile of atomic weapons. (A) is correct. (B) is referenced, but unrelated to the main point. (C) and (D) are details not supported by the text.

18.

The Correct Answer is (A) — In context, material describes a type of damage. Plugging in answer choices, the only one that can reasonably describe damage is (A).

19.

The Correct Answer is (D) — In context, coupled refers to a person’s name and human degradation. (A) roughly means to put one on top of another, which doesn’t make sense. (B) is extreme. (C) is in the wrong context. (D) is correct.

20.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Read around the directed lines to find what “the book of history” refers to. Eisenhower describe it as a narrative of a quest for peace. (A) is correct. (B) is false, since Eisenhower suggests the overall course of history is already shaped towards peace. (C) seems too specific. (D) goes against the passage.

21.

The Correct Answer is (C) — The paragraph sums up Eisenhower’s and the US’s purpose to move towards peace. (A) is not supported. The paragraph is quite general, so (B) is incorrect. (C) is correct. (D) is not referenced in the paragraph.

22.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Check topic sentences and conclusions for the author’s stance. (A) is correct. (B) might be true, but there is little evidence to support that the author is a colleague; moreover, the author doesn’t quite seem excited. The author describes rather than questions the research in the passage, so (C) seems unlikely. While the passage is about creative writing, there is little evidence to support that the writer might be concerned or a creative writer, so (D) is wrong.

23.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Look for evidence to support your answer. (A) is correct. (B) may be true, but it is not supported by the text. (C) may also be true, but this doesn’t seem to be the main point of the passage. (D) seems extreme.

24.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) correctly shows that writers draw on their own factual information when writing.

25.

The Correct Answer is (B) — In context, churning seems to reference how brains are doing something. Plug in each answer choice. The only that that can correctly apply to both writers and basketball players is (B). (A) is tempting, since writers produce, but doesn’t make sense for basketball players. (C) doesn’t make too much sense. (D) seems out of place.

26.

The Correct Answer is (A) — The final sentence of this paragraph is helpful in indicating the paragraph’s purpose. (A) is correct. (B) is not supported by the rest of the passage. There is no apparent question, so (C) is wrong. (D) is tempting, but the sentence doesn’t provide proof.

27.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Look for content about both novice and expert writers, such as lines 50-53 and 58-68. (A), (B), and (D) can be ruled out, since overall brain activity or intensity is not mentioned. (C) is the only answer supported by the passage.

28.

The Correct Answer is (D) — (D) best supports the answer above.

29.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) is supported by lines 32-34. (B), (C), and (D) are not supported by the passage.

30.

The Correct Answer is (B) — In context, coordinate refers to how certain brain regions affect the brains activity. Plug in the answer choices to see which fits best. (A) and (C) don’t make much sense. (B) is correct. (D), meaning to reach a deal or to navigate, seems unrelated.

31.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Look for information about Steven Pinker (lines 75-78). He seems skeptical about the conclusions of the study. (A) seems extreme. (B) is correct. Pinker wasn’t specific about what he is skeptical of, so (C) is hard to support. (D) seems unrelated.

32.

The Correct Answer is (D) — Region 5 is “associated with motor control and automatic skills,” so look for those key words in the passage. (D) is correct, and supported by the last two paragraphs of the passage.

33.

The Correct Answer is (C) — The passage seems most like a funny story. The author doesn’t seem to be trying to persuade the reader, so (A) is wrong. Rule out (B), since nothing seems frightening for the reader. (C) is correct. While symptoms are described, the diseases aren’t all common, and description of symptoms doesn’t seem to be the main purpose, so (D) is wrong.

34.

The Correct Answer is (A) — The introductory sentence explains that reading sways the author’s self-diagnoses. (A) is correct. (B) is wrong, since it implies that the diagnoses are based on symptoms alone. (C) and (D) are not supported by the text.

35.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) most accurately explains that reading influences the author’s self-diagnoses.

36.

The Correct Answer is (D) — (D) is correct. The author is conveying a humorous story with a funny tone.

37.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) is correct. The author never mentions medical practice or seeing a medical expert, so (B) and (C) are wrong. (D) is not supported by the passage.

38.

The Correct Answer is (C) — (C) accurately conveys the author’s desire to have each disease he encounters in the book.

39.

The Correct Answer is (C) — In context, plodded describes how the author goes through the book. (A) and (B) suggest he made his way with difficulty, which the passage doesn’t support. (C) is correct. (D) is not supported by the passage.

40.

The Correct Answer is (A) — In context, slight seems to refer to how the author was hurt by his lack of ailments. (A), meaning injury to one’s dignity, is correct. It doesn’t seem like a lack of ailments can criticize, so (B) is wrong. There is no extreme anger, so rule out (C). (D) is tempting, but the sentence is more about personal pride than feeling ashamed in front of others.

41.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Read around the directed lines. (A) is correct. The author suggests he could be an academic resource, not a hospital administrator, so (B) is incorrect. (C) may be true, but the paragraph focuses on the fact that the author believes he has the diseases already. The author doesn’t talk about other patients, so (D) is wrong.

42.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) is correct. (B) seems extreme. (C) may be true, but ignores the first sentence that describes how the author was initially healthy. The author doesn’t say whether this happens often or not, so (D) cannot be supported by the text.

43.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Check for evidence used in each passage. (A), (B), and (D) only apply to Passage 2. (C) is correct.

44.

The Correct Answer is (A) — Passage 1 focuses on protecting coral reefs, while Passage 2 addresses “marine protected areas” in general.

45.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Look for information about difficulties with Passage 2’s “five essential characteristics” (lines 64-69) in Passage 1. Passage 1 (lines 31-37) references the challenge of enforcing fishing bans and no-take policies. The reference to “no-take” in (A) is tempting, but designating the areas is not referenced as a major challenge. (B) is correct. Deep water isolation is not mentioned in Passage 1, so (C) is wrong. (D) is not one of the “five essential characteristics,” so rule it out.

46.

The Correct Answer is (D) — In context, transportable has something to do with applying Glover’s Reef’s successful model worldwide. Since the model was successful, it does not need to be addressed, so (A) is wrong. (B) is tempting, but it refers to diseases or messages, not practices. (C) is wrong, since the researchers would probably still want Glover’s Reef and their practices to remain at Glover’s Reef, even if they were used elsewhere. (D) is correct.

47.

The Correct Answer is (C) — Read around the directed lines, which explain how sharks aid reef health by keeping other populations in check. Only (C) references how bears keep ecosystems healthy through population control.

48.

The Correct Answer is (D) — Look for statements about the results of designating a marine protected area. (A) and (B) are extreme, so rule them out. (C) may be true, but it is not supported by the passage. (D) is correct.

49.

The Correct Answer is (C) — (C) best supports the answer above.

50.

The Correct Answer is (B) — Look at introduction and conclusion sentences to make sure the answer supports the author’s stance. (A) and (D) seem too extreme. (B) is correct. (C) may be correct, but the author doesn’t mention other methods, so rule it out.

51.

The Correct Answer is (A) — (A) best supports the answer above.

52.

The Correct Answer is (C) — In context, intact seems to be contrasted with being “left barren by … overfishing,” and both describe marine protected areas. Plug in the answer choices to see which fits best. Fishing and being solid have little to do with each other, so (A) is wrong. (B) seems unrelated. (C) is correct. It’s hard to describe an environment as complete or incomplete (or, finished or unfinished), so rule out (D).