Effective writing strategies
Commonly tested areas
This area deals with one or more paragraphs or even the whole passage. You need to recognize effective writing strategies. If you are not good at this, practice more on this part. Through the practice, you will understand what effective writing strategies are. Remember to apply these to your writing too.
Examples 1-4 are based on following passage.
(Remark: In the real SAT Improving paragraphs, out of the six questions, there are only one or two questions on overall writing strategies. The questions in the real exam follow the order of the paragraphs.)
(1) Twice this month children committed suicide due to intolerable school and parental pressure. (2) Parents need to be aware of their children and the various situations that arise at their school. (3) Parents should be familiar with the challenges a child faces. (4) But he or she should also take responsibility.
(5) A significant number of problems is caused by the parent’s insufficient concern about children’s need. (6) One typical situation is the concern of parents for the academic excellence above all else. (7) Often unreasonably high demands are imposed on children to satisfy the parents. (8) This results from a parent’s lack of consideration for children. (9) How can a child not become resentful of a parent who is unconcerned about their true needs? (10) Sometimes the parent does not listen fully to children’s suggestions this can make them feel undervalued.
(11) Many times parents must deal with a child who surfs the Internet for hours or goes out with friends until late at night. (12) If children would take more responsibility, a parent might feel more secure and less worried.
(13) There are a lot of problems to be solved when raising a child. (14) To achieve a happy balance between parents and children, parents should show more concerns to children’s needs and children should learn to take more responsibility. (15) Parents should listen to children’s ideas about their needs.
a) Identify writing strategy and writer’s attitude
This kind of questions calls for your attention to a paragraph or the whole passage. Don’t worry that it may take you a lot of time to find out the answer. Most of these questions appear at the end. By the time you have answered 5 questions, you have read the entire passage two or three times. So, you can easily eliminate some options. A quick skim of the passage is usually enough to confirm your choice.
b) Improve relevance and balance of content
Only 1 main idea should be introduced in 1 paragraph. All sentences in the same paragraph should elaborate or support the main idea. The amount of elaboration should be similar for equally important content.
Topic sentence ->Supporting sentences (->Concluding remark for the whole paragraph)
c) Improve flow and unity of organization
One single sentence can greatly help to improve flow of content, giving an improved sense of unity and completeness to the organization and development.
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