KAPLAN NURSING ENTRANCE EXAM-WRITING SECTION

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commas
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can be used in a list -can set apart unnecessary info -can be used to link an incomplete and complete idea. Example (in a list): My favorite foods are ice cream, macaroni and cheese, pancakes and string cheese. Example (unnecessary info): Her Aunt Shelley, married to her Uncle Eric, had a great voice. Example (incomplete idea): After the movie, I went to the late-night diner. Example (complete idea): I am a good soccer player, but my sister is much better.
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semicolons
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can be used to combine two independent clauses or to separate items in a list when the items already contain commas. Example (combining clauses): We went up in the hot air balloon; the view from that high up was amazing. Example (separating items): I wanted to study drawing, painting and sculpting in the Art department; French and Spanish in the Languages department; and biology, chemistry and anatomy in the Science department. If you see a semicolon in the middle of sentence and it is not part of a list, make sure that the two clauses on either side of the semicolon are independent (meaning they form a complete sentence on their own). You cannot separate a dependent and an independent clause with a semicolon. Both must be independent!
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colons
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used before a list of items, especially after expressions. *colons can link a complete idea to either an incomplete idea or another complete idea. the complete idea MUST come first and the second idea will be a DEFINITION, EXPLANATION OR LIST. *THEY ARE ALWAYS USED WITH AT LEAST ONE COMPLETE IDEA. are used to introduce information, commonly a list, definition or explanation. Example (introducing a list): Here is what is in my closet: three sweaters and two pairs of jeans. Example (introducing a definition): After school he joined the French foreign legion: a unique unit in the French army open to foreign nationals. Example (introducing an explanation): Here is how to succeed on the SAT: learn strategies for each question type, practice as much as possible and stick to a study schedule.
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dashes
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can be used to indicate a change in thought or to set aside nonessential information (much like the comma!) Example (indicating a change): My favorite color is green – no, blue! Example (with a nonessential clause): My favorite store is Sears – which is officially called Sear’s, Roebuck’s and Co. – but I also shop at Macy’s. Make sure that two dashes are used to set apart nonessential information. Don’t set off information with dashes that is important to the understanding of the sentence.
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apostrophes
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are used to indicate possession or to make a contraction. Example (as possession – singular): Shirley’s scarf was bright purple. Example (indicating possession – plural): The students’ scores were very strong. Example (as a contraction): We won’t sleep in on Saturday. If an apostrophe is being used to make a contraction, it always replaces one or more missing letters. Make sure you understand the difference between “Its” and “It’s.” “Its” is the possession form, and means “belonging to it,” so you would not need an apostrophe if you were using “its” to indicate possession. “It’s” means “it is” or “it has” and does not show possession. If you are confused whether a sentence should have “its” or “it’s” in it, re-read the sentence with “it has” or “it is”. If it makes sense, you can use the apostrophe. single nouns add ‘s, and with plural nouns, add just the apostrophe. For trick plurals that don’t end in s, add s (ex men= men’s) * note if you see its’ if you see this, it’s wrong*
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Subject-verb agreement
Subject-verb agreement
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A subject is the PERFORMER of an action. A verb is an ACTION, FEELING or STATE of BEING. Verbs have to be consistent with their subjects. Singular subjects take the singular form of the verb, and plural subjects take plural forms
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Subject-verb agreement RULE
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As a general rule, singular verbs end with S and plural verbs do not. Ex: singular verb:Ryan PLAYS soccer plural verb: Mary & Allison PRACTICE every day.
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Verb tense
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The tense of the verb changes with the time of the event. tells the time of the action (past, present, future)
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Simple tense
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Test your ability to choose from among three simple tenses: Present, past and future
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Irregular verbs
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change their form when changing from present to past tense (e.g. ‘swim’/’swam’)
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Perfect tense
Perfect tense
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Provides additional ways to place an event in time. when the verb phrase contains a form of the verb to have
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Pronoun
Pronoun
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A word that takes the place of a noun
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pronoun case
pronoun case
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refers to the “form” of a pronoun; there are three forms – 1st, 2nd, and 3rd person
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modifiers
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Describes or modifies someone or something in the sentence. ex: No one took her warnings serious =No one took her warnings seriously.
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adjectives
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modify nouns (gives more of a description)
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adverbs
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Describe actions (verbs); often end in -ly
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comparisons and superlatives
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For most adjectives an -er at the end makes a comparison, and a -est makes a superlative. ex: Farid is BUISER than Wesley is.
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superlatives
superlatives
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end in -est
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complete ideas
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A complete idea can stand on its own. Whether it’s the entire sentence or just one part. Complete ideas must have a subject and a verb.
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its
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possessive
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it’s
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contraction for it is
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An incomplete idea can’t stand on its own
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“the batter who hit second” (makes no sense)
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stop punctuation
stop punctuation
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Period (.) semicolon (;) question mark (?) exclamation point (!)
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GO punctuation
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Use a comma to slow down, but not stop ideas. If you don’t need to stop or slow down, don’t use ANY punctuation.
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FANBOYS
FANBOYS
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for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so (coordinating conjunctions)
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unnecessary info
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use a pair of commas around unnecessary info. *if info is necessary to the sentence in either meaning or structure, don’t use the comma. It the meaning would be exactly the same but the additional info makes the sentence more interesting, use a PAIR of commas or a pair of DASHES-around the information.
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Conjunctions
Conjunctions
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A word that joins words or groups of words. There are three kinds of conjunctions: coordinating, correlative, and subordinating. Coordinating conjunctions include and, but, or, not, yet, for, and so.
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and
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ALWAYS put a comma before “and” at the end of a list with three or more items.
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Coordinating Conjunctions
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One type of conjunction is a coordinating conjunction – these conjunctions help link ideas together and describe how two clauses relate to one another. To remember them, use the FANBOYS mnemonic device! FANBOYS stands for: For – And – Nor – But – Or – Yet- So! Let’s look at a sample ACT question involving a coordinating conjunction: The Roman Senate was dominated by the patricians, or the descendants of the original senators from the time of Romulus. NO CHANGE nor and for The correct answer is (A). Here the second clause (“the descendants…”) explains what the word “patricians” means, so we need a conjunction that helps describe that relationship. “Nor” would require the word “neither” or “not” in front of the word “by.” That’s because “nor” and “neither” make up a two-part idiom (or expression) when you’re giving two negative attributes to a subject. For example: Coffee is not very healthy, nor does it taste very good. “And” makes it sound like “patricians” and “descendants” are different groups of people. “For” is usually used to offer an explanation, but that is not the meaning of this sentence. Conjunctions are also used right before the last item in a list (notice how a comma is used BEFORE the conjunction): My favorite things to do at camp are hiking, swimming, and sailing.
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Subordinating Conjunctions
Subordinating Conjunctions
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a conjunction that introduces an adverb clause (ex: after, because, since, until, even though). There are also conjunctions called subordinating conjunctions. Examples include: because, after, although, before, until, when, etc. These are used when a sentence has two independent clauses, but one is clearly most important than the other. Using a subordinating conjunction creates a clearer relationship between the two clauses. Don’t worry if this is hard to imagine. On ACT Test Day, you’ll know which conjunction is correct because only one will make logical sense for the structure of the sentence. Let’s look at a few examples: Because I had a high fever, I took some cold medicine. I took my vacation to Paris after I found out about my bonus check.
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Prepositional phrases
Prepositional phrases
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prepositions are little words that show a relationship between nouns. Ex: at, between, by, in, of, on, to and with. *always look to the left of the preposition to find your subject.
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active voice VS. passive voice.
active voice VS. passive voice.
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Active voice: Expresses an action done by its subject. Passive voice: the passive voice is used to show interest in the person or object that experiences an action rather than the person or object that performs the action. In other words, the most important thing or person becomes the subject of the sentence.
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pronouns
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Pronouns makes writing more concise. Replaces a noun. A pronoun is a word that replaces a noun in a sentence. Pronouns are used so that our language is not cumbersome with the same nouns being repeated over and over in a paragraph. Some examples of pronouns include I, me, mine, myself, she, her, hers, herself, we, us, ours and ourselves.
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Syntax
Syntax
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Sentence structure
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who verses whom
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Who is the subject pronoun, whom is the object pronoun. Whenever you see who and whom, replace with he and him in their place.
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Transitions
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used to link words, phrases or sentences. They help the reader to progress from one idea (expressed by the author) to the next idea. Thus, they help to build up coherent relationships within the text. The transition words like also, in addition, and, likewise, add information, reinforce ideas, and express agreement with preceding material. Transition phrases like but, rather and or, express that there is evidence to the contrary or point out alternatives, and thus introduce a change the line of reasoning (contrast).
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concise writing
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Writing clearly and concisely means choosing your words deliberately, constructing your sentences carefully, and using grammar properly. By writing clearly and concisely, you will get straight to your point in a way your audience can easily comprehend
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antecedent
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is the word or phrase to which a pronoun refers. The antecedent and pronoun must agree in gender and person. Ex: the MAN used HIS glasses.
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subject of a sentence
subject of a sentence
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who or what the sentence is about
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Accept Vs. Except
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Accept: to receive something. Except: usually means “unless” or “excluding,” but it’s sometimes used as verb “to leave out.”
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Affect Vs. Effect
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affect is a verb. It means to influence something. Effect is mostly commonly used as a noun meaning the result or impact of something, an outcome. If there’s “a/an/the” in front of it, it’s an effect. If affect is used as a verb: verb, action, to influence ex. The fire affected the entire family ex. The storm affected Brad’s itinerary. ex. Patricia hopes to affect her father’s decision about pet adoption by showing how he and she could set an example for her youngster sister. ex. Roberta determined the bruise in her arm affected her sleep whenever she was lying on her side. it’s a noun if you see an article shortly before it. noun (a result) or verb when it means to cause or produce ~ change doesn’t always mean effect ~ ex.The treat had a significant effect on Fido’s behavior. ex. We may never know the full effect we have on others. ex. Whoever has spent much time in Florida waters knows that motorboats can have a harmful effect on manatees.
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Capitalization
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The 1st word of every sentence is capitalized. When citing poetry, the first word in every line should be capitalized. The 1st word in formal statements or direct quotations should be capitalized. Calendar terms should be capitalized. Proper names and title are capitalized. the name of seasons are not capitalized unless they are part of a literary quote;. The name of geographical places should be capitalized. Ex: Houston, Texas is by the Gulf of Mexico. Directions, north/south should be capitalized if their referring to a region. BUT not capitalized if referring to parts of states or when they are points on a compass. The name of religions are capitalized.
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declarative sentence
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A declarative sentence states a fact. This word can be used to describe any action or speech that makes a statement. Ex: “I love the Red Sox!” is a declarative sentence.
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Imperative sentence
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Tells someone to do something and ends with a period. Ex: “Go to the store and buy milk.”
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Interrogative sentence
Interrogative sentence
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Asks a question and ends with a question mark. Ex: “Are you crazy?”

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