ACT english practice test 2

DIRECTIONS: In the passages that follow, certain words and phrases are underlined and numbered. In the right-hand column, you will find alternatives for the underlined part. In most cases, you are to choose the one that best expresses the idea, makes the statement appropriate for standard written English, or is worded most consistently with the style and tone of the passage as a whole. If you think the original version is best, choose “NO CHANGE.” In some cases, you will find in the right-hand column a question about the underlined part. You are to choose the best answer to the question.

You will also find questions about a section of the passage, or about the passage as a whole. These questions do not refer to an underlined portion of the passage, but rather are identified by a number or numbers in a box.

For each question, choose the alternative you consider best and fill in the corresponding oval on your answer document. Read each passage through once before you begin to answer the questions that accompany it. For many of the questions, you must read several sentences beyond the question to determine the answer. Be sure that you have read far enough ahead each time you choose an alternative.

New Beginnings


As a junior in high school, I am very concerned about college. I'm trying to do everything right: when I keep16 my grades up, participate in a few extracurricular activities, prepare for standardized tests, even perform community service. I spend most days thinking about the future hoping17 that I'm on the right path, I do my best at everything I can.


[1] I'm interested in a career in nursing,18 I decided to try to secure a spot as a volunteer at the local hospital. [2] I accepted his offer immediately, thinking to myself that here lies19 all the opportunities I could ever want! [3] It would be the best of both worlds: helping people while gaining valuable on-the-job experience! [4] So I put on a nice pair of slacks, a blouse,20 and some comfortable shoes-don't all nurses wear comfortable shoes?-and went to visit the business office. [5] Fortunately, the hospital director was quite willing to let me help out, and he said I could start that summer as soon as I finished my finals.


The director gave me a brief tour of various departments as he told me about the primary focus of each, an expert himself in every facet of hospital administration,22 until we stopped right in front of the maternity ward. "This is where you're going to work," he said, ushering me through the brown double doors. Walking into the ward, my ears were immediately overwhelmed. Women23 yelled and newborns wailed. Nurses rushed around to adjust medical instruments that screamed for attention. I felt suspicious24 in the center of so much action and wondered if I had been too hasty in seeking out such a difficult service project.


Apparently my fear must have shown clearly on my face as25 I looked around because the director said, "Don't worry. You'll get used to the pace up here. You are going to help in the nursery." With that, we walked down the busy hallway past the numerous delivery rooms26 and into the most peaceful room I've ever seen. The pastel colors provided a quiet backdrop to the humming of machines and soft coos of sleeping infants. A whispering nurse, the one in charge of the nursery,27 welcomed me, thanked me for volunteering, and asked me to start folding some baby blankets and placing it28 in the appropriate drawer. The director gave me a questioning look, which I returned with a quiet nod. I got right to work.


G. I keep
H. I am keeping
J. I have kept


B. future, hoping
C. future. Hoping
D. future praying


G. nursing, therefore,
H. nursing, so
J. nursing, but


B. lays
C. lay
D. lie


G. pair, of slacks, a blouse,
H. pair, of slacks, a blouse
J. pair of slacks a blouse

21. For the sake of the logic and coherence of this paragraph, Sentence 2 should be placed:

A. where it is now.
B. after Sentence 3.
C. after Sentence 4.
D. after Sentence 5.


G. expert, himself in every facet of hospital administration,
H. expert, himself, in every facet of hospital administration
J. expert himself in every facet of hospital administration


B. my ears immediately felt overwhelmed, women
C. I was overwhelmed by the sounds. Women
D. hearing and overwhelmed. Women

24. Which choice would be most consistent with the figurative description provided elsewhere in this paragraph?

G. besieged
H. weak
J. defenseless

25. Which of the following alternatives to the underlined portion would be LEAST acceptable?

A. face while
B. face when
C. face at the same time that
D. face since

26. Given that all the choices are true, which one provides the most vivid description of the hospital hallway?

G. down a hallway filled with bright blue and pink balloons, beautiful flowers, and jubilant fathers
H. past a nurses' station and a handful of expectant fathers
J. under the yellowing ceiling of the dated hospital


B. nurse the one in charge of the nursery,
C. nurse the one in charge of the nursery
D. nurse, the one in charge of the nursery


G. place them
H. placed them
J. placing these

29. If the writer were to delete the phrase "which I returned with a quiet nod" from the preceding sentence and end the sentence with a period, the sentence would primarily lose:

A. a detail that expresses the narrator's ease while in the nursery.
B. a specific description of the narrator's anger toward the director.
C. information that indicates the narrator will quit the hospital as soon as the director leaves.
D. nothing at all, because this information had already been provided earlier in the passage.

30. This question asks about the preceding passage as a whole.

Upon reviewing the essay and realizing that some key information has been left out, the writer composes the following sentence incorporating that information:

Soon enough, I showed up for my first day at the hospital.

This sentence would most logically be placed before the first sentence in Paragraph:

F. 1
G. 2
H. 3
J. 4