ACT english practice test 12

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.

A Diamond in the Rough

Beginning around 1963, when people became able to buy cassette recorders with built-in microphones, amateur songwriters were able to record songs that had been formerly16 undocumented. One guitarist and saxophonist, Bruce Diamond, recorded nearly a hundred songs from his home in Lexington, Kentucky. Recently, hundreds of these rough recordings have been re-mastered. They have captured the attention of musicologists for a number of reasons.

First, it is seemingly apparent that Diamond's songs were17 influenced by many different popular artists of the day. One song sounds very similar to a complicated jazz song by Charlie Parker. However, another song is the opposite of the song sounds18 like the straightforward rock of Buddy Holly. The lyrics are very similar as well, and one is led to wonder what inspired them.19 One music critic observed that Diamond found it completely effortless20 to switch back and forth between very different musical genres.

Diamond's recordings are noteworthy for their unique artistic voice—an interesting combination of jazz, bluegrass, and gospel styles. In one piece, Diamond starts with a long soulful intro leading into an upbeat verse. The verse's21 tempo and tone provide an interesting contrast to the mournful opening. The chorus combines elements of both in an unexpected but balanced way. Diamond seems to express in this song that he has overcome some emotional wounds but that one remains conflicted.22

While24 sources of music from major music towns like New Orleans, Detroit, and Nashville are abundant, little is known about Lexington's music scene because the town lacked a real recording studio. Therefore, since they were recorded on two-inch tape,25 Diamond's songs in a city like Lexington26 offer music historians a rare taste of the musical culture in the 1960s.

No one knows how much Diamond was effected by27 other musicians in Lexington, but he did perform regularly at a local blues bar and less frequently at a jazz dance hall.28 One thing, though, is for sure: he records29 an interesting portfolio of songs, and he may soon be a famous saxophonist.30


G. have been formerly
H. are now being
J. are formerly

17. Which of the following choices provides the most stylistically effective and concise wording here?

B. there is the impression given by Diamond's songs that he was
C. Diamond's songs suggest that he was
D. it is the impression Diamond's songs give that he was


G. opposite of the song is sounding
H. opposite; the song sounds
J. opposite the song sounds

19. Given that all the choices are true, which of the following would best provide further detail about the lyrical subject matter?

B. dealing mostly with dating and automobiles.
C. and he mostly uses rhymed couplets and alliteration.
D. which are easy to understand because of Diamond's enunciation.


G. without any strain or effort
H. relatively simple and free of struggle
J. totally free of complication


B. verse,
C. verses'
D. verses


G. he remains conflicted.
H. they were conflicted.
J. he is conflicting.

23. At this point, the writer is thinking of adding the following sentence:

We have all experienced sad events and know very well what it is like to feel conflicted.

Should the writer make this addition here?

A. Yes, because it shows the writer's compassionate feelings toward Diamond's difficult situation.
B. Yes, because it adds extra emphasis to the subject matter of one of Diamond's most well known songs.
C. No, because it strays from the paragraph's main focus on Diamond's unique songwriting voice.
D. No, because it encourages readers to think about sad events in their own lives.

24. Which of the following choices would NOT be an acceptable alternative to the underlined portion?

F. Despite the fact that
G. Although
H. Since
J. Whereas


B. because a built-in microphone recorded them,
C. being that he played the songs into the recorder,
D. DELETE the underlined portion.

26. The best place for the underlined portion would be:

F. where it is now.
G. after the word historians.
H. after the word taste.
J. after the word culture.


B. affected by
C. affected with
D. effected with


G. at a dance hall where jazz was played.
H. as a musician at a jazz dance hall.
J. playing jazz music at a dance hall.


B. recorded
C. is recording
D. has recorded

30. Given that all the choices are true, which of the following would provide the best conclusion to this essay in relation to one of its main points?

G. and now they provide scholars with an example of Lexington music.
H. and he probably never had to buy another cassette recorder.
J. and he may have performed in other cities besides Lexington.