English Usage Practice Questions

English Usage

Most standardized tests have an English usage section, often combined with a grammar section – get up to speed with these practice test questions.

Practice Questions

1. Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. The ceremony had an emotional effect on the groom, but the bride was not affected.
b. The ceremony had an emotional affect on the groom, but the bride was not affected.
c.
 The ceremony had an emotional effect on the groom, but the bride was not effected.
d. The ceremony had an emotional affect on the groom, but the bride was not affected.

2. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. Anna was taller then Luis, but then he grew four inches in three months.
b. Anna was taller then Luis, but than he grew four inches in three months.
c.
 Anna was taller than Luis, but than he grew four inches in three months.
d. Anna was taller than Luis, but then he grew four inches in three months.

3.  Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. Their second home is in Boca Raton, but there not their for most of the year.
b. They’re second home is in Boca Raton, but they’re not there for most of the year.
c.
 Their second home is in Boca Raton, but they’re not there for most of the year.
d. There second home is in Boca Raton, but they’re not there for most of the year.

4.  Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. They’re going to graduate in June; after that, their best option will be to go there.
b. There going to graduate in June; after that, their best option will be to go there.
c.
 They’re going to graduate in June; after that, there best option will be to go their.
d. Their going to graduate in June; after that, their best option will be to go there.

5.  Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. You’re mistaken; that is not you’re book.
b. Your mistaken; that is not your book.
c.
 You’re mistaken; that is not your book.
d. Your mistaken; that is not you’re book.

6. Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. You’re classes are on the west side of campus, but you’re living on the east side.
b. Your classes are on the west side of campus, but your living on the east side.
c.
 Your classes are on the west side of campus, but you’re living on the east side.
d. You’re classes are on the west side of campus, but you’re living on the east side.

7. Choose the sentence with the correct usage. 

a. Disease is highly prevalent in poorer nations; the most dominant disease is malaria.
b. Disease are highly prevalent in poorer nations; the most dominant disease is malaria.
c.
 Disease is highly prevalent in poorer nations; the most dominant disease are malaria.
d. Disease are highly prevalent in poorer nations; the most dominant disease are malaria.

8. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. Although I would prefer to have dog, I actually own a cat.
b. Although I would prefer to have a dog, I actually own cat.
c.
 Although I would prefer to have a dog, I actually own a cat.
d. Although I would prefer to have dog, I actually own cat.

9. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. The principal of the school lived by one principle: always do your best.
b. The principle of the school lived by one principle: always do your best.
c.
 The principal of the school lived by one principal: always do your best.
d. The principle of the school lived by one principal: always do your best.

10. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. Even with an speed limit sign clearly posted, an inattentive driver may drive too fast.
b. Even with a speed limit sign clearly posted, a inattentive driver may drive too fast.
c.
 Even with an speed limit sign clearly posted, a inattentive driver may drive too fast.
d. Even with a speed limit sign clearly posted, an inattentive driver may drive too fast.

11.  Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. Except for the roses, she did not accept John’s frequent gifts.
b. Accept for the roses, she did not except John’s frequent gifts.
c.
 Accept for the roses, she did not accept John’s frequent gifts.
d. Except for the roses, she did not except John’s frequent gifts.

12. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. Although he continued to advise me, I no longer took his advice.
b. Although he continued to advice me, I no longer took his advise.
c.
 Although he continued to advise me, I no longer took his advise.
d. Although he continued to advice me, I no longer took his advise.

13. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.

a. In order to adopt to the climate, we had to adopt a different style of clothing.
b. In order to adapt to the climate, we had to adapt a different style of clothing.
c.
 In order to adapt to the climate, we had to adopt a different style of clothing.
d. In order to adapt to the climate, we had to adapt a different style of clothing.

14. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.  

a. When he’s between friends, Robert seems confident, but between you and me, he is really very shy.
b. When he’s among friends, Robert seems confident, but among you and me, he is really very shy.
c.
 When he’s between friends, Robert seems confident, but among you and me, he is really very shy.
d. When he’s among friends, Robert seems confident, but between you and me, he is really very shy.

15. Choose the sentence with the correct usage.

a. I will be finished at ten in the morning, and will be arriving at home at about 6:30.
b. I will be finished at about ten in the morning, and will be arriving at home at 6:30.
c.
 I will be finished at about ten in the morning, and will be arriving at home at about 6:30.
d. I will be finished at ten in the morning, and will be arriving at home about 6:30.

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Answer Key

1.  A
“Affect” is a verb, while “effect” is a noun.

2.  D
“Than” is used for comparison. “Then” is used to indicate a point in time.

3. C
“There” indicates a state of existence. “Their” is used for third person plural possession. “They’re” is the contracted form of “they are.”

4.  A
“There” indicates a state of existence. “Their” is used for third person plural possession.  “They’re” is the contraction of “they are.”

5. C
“Your” is the possessive form of “you.” “You’re” is the contraction of “you are.”

6. C
“Your” is the possessive form of “you.” “You’re” is the contraction of “you are.”

7. A
Disease is a singular noun.

8. C
Both “dog” and “cat” in this sentence are singular nouns and require the article “a.”

9. A
The word “principal” is a synonym for primary or major.  “Principle” means a fundamental truth.

10. D
The article “a” come before a noun that begins with a consonant, while “an” comes before a noun that begins with a vowel.

11. A
“Except” means to exclude something. “Accept” means to receive something, or to agree to an idea.

12. A
“Advise” is a verb that means to offer advice, which is a noun.

13. C
“Adapt” means to change or accommodate. “Adopt” means to accept, embrace, or to assume responsibility or ownership for something or someone.

14. D
“Among” is used with more than two items, while “between” is limited to two items.

15. B
“At” refers to a specific time or location, while “about” is approximate.

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    5 Comments

  1. anon
    September 1, 2018
    Reply

    I would argue that a is more appropriate for 15. While it is entirely possible to know specifically when you could be finished something, (work for example), it seems unlikely that you could accurately time your arrival to the minute. There is far too much variation in travel to make a definitive statement rather than an approximate one.

    • Brian
      September 2, 2018
      Reply

      You may be right if we were talking about a life and death situation but this is a multiple choice question and Choice D is clearly the BEST choice of the 4 choices.

      • Mark
        October 8, 2018
        Reply

        I also agree that A should be the answer instead of D.

        • January 9, 2019
          Reply

          I believe both A and D could work for 15.
          I’d most likely use “I’ll be finished at ten in the morning, and will be arriving home around 6:30” in this situation.

  2. Hello
    January 17, 2019
    Reply

    Too easy

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