Being is BAD!
No heroic adventure of epic proportions is complete without a bad guy. An ugly, terrible, maniacal mad-man villain. In this quest for standardized testing achievement, “being” is that bad guy.
“Being” is the villain because he looks like a good guy. He is going to sound like he fits ever-so-nicely into a sentence, but this is a trap! “Being” is almost always (90%) used incorrectly on both the SAT and the ACT. In the “Fix the Error” portion of the SAT and ACT do NOT pick an answer with the word “being.” And, in the “Find the Error” section of the SAT you need to pick “being” as the error.
Why is this villain so bad you ask? Well, I hate to say it, but the beauty of the ACT and SAT is you technically do not need to know the “why” – just stay away from this very bad word! However, I will tell you in case you need to impress someone with your test prep prowess. “Being” often indicates passive voice, and the SAT and ACT want, for the most part, an active voice. Passive voice occurs when the subject is not doing the action whereas with an active voice the subject is doing the action.
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Exercise of the Week
Part of the following sentence is underlined; beneath the sentence are five ways of phrasing the underlined material. Select the option that produces the best sentence.
Originally, cultured milk products were popular not so much for their nutritional value or flavor but for their being resistant to spoilage.
a. but for their being resistant to spoilage
b. the reason being their resistance to spoilage
c. the reason was their being resistant to spoilage
d. but for their being spoilage-resistant
e. as for their resistance to spoilage
Answer: The answer is E. All of the answer choices contain the word “being” except choice E. Other questions might not be as obvious. Meaning, only one, two, or three choices will contain the word “being,” but remember, always engage in the process of elimination. Eliminate these choices and then focus on the remaining choices.
Pristine – (adj.) pure; unspoiled
Suzy could not help but stare at Lizzy’s white collared shirt, wondering how she was able to keep the fabric pristine while eating a sloppy joe.
University of Colorado – Boulder, Boulder CO
Although known for academics, U of Co. – Boulder is a university for those who love the outdoors. There are numerous clubs and activities to keep athletes and hikers busy. If you like to ski, this is the school for you!
SAT: 530-640 verbal, 550-650 math
Strongest Programs: Physics and Psychology