ACT english practice test 23

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.

The Space Race


Writer and political commentator Robert Heinlein, writing31 about politics,31 stated that mankind needs to venture out into space as a matter of necessity: "The Earth is just too small and fragile a basket for the human race to keep all its eggs in." In the 1960s, the Russians and the Americans were in a fierce political competition with one another, and this competition was the backdrop for the explosive race to the moon. However, this was only the first step from our inner world33 on Earth toward outer space. A longer-lasting, and some say more important, achievement has been the development of the International Space Station.


However, the International Space Station was not created overnight. It can trace it's34 lineage back to Salyut 1, the35 very first space station launched in 1971 by the Russians. In most respects, Salyut 1 was actually a failure. For example, before plummeting, to Earth, it orbited36 the planet for less than six months and was plagued by mechanical problems that ultimately resulted in the deaths of three cosmonauts. Yet, the Salyut experiment proved that extraterrestrial habitation was possible and allowed the Russians to develop other, more technically successful space stations in the years that followed, the most famous of which was called Mir.


Not to be outdone, the Americans looked to the mixed success the Russians enjoyed with Salyut 1 and launched their own space station in 1973 called Skylab. Like the Russian space station, however, Skylab too had operational difficulties. Hit by debris, severe damage was suffered by it39 during the launch and was inoperable until astronauts repaired it during numerous spacewalks. Once it was repaired, however, astronauts focused on conducting mainly40 scientific experiments, and three separate crews successfully docked there throughout 1973 and 1974. Though41 additional missions were planned, none were ever launched, and Skylab fell back to Earth in 1979 after about six years in orbit.


[1] This space station was successful and42 launched in 2000 and has hosted more than 17 crews from numerous countries since then. [2] The end of the Cold War in the 1990s meant that both nations43 could work together on the goal of achieving a sustainable habitat in outer space. [3] Ultimately, the Russian stations Salyut and Mir and the American Skylab laid the groundwork for the International Space Station.


B. Heinlein
C. Heinlein who was writing about politics
D. Heinlein—writing about politics—

32. The writer is considering adding the following phrase to the end of the preceding sentence (replacing the period after Americans with a comma):

because both the Russians and the Americans wanted to reach the moon first.

Should the writer add this phrase here?

F. Yes, because it specifies that both groups were competing.
G. Yes, because it emphasizes to the reader the ultimate goal of the race.
H. No, because it is clear from earlier in the sentence that both groups were competing to reach the moon.
J. No, because it provides additional information that distracts the reader from the primary focus of the passage.


B. inside the atmosphere
C. within our planet
D. the interior


G. its'
H. its
J. their


B. Salyut 1 the
C. Salyut 1; the
D. Salyut 1. The


G. plummeting to Earth, it orbited
H. plummeting to Earth. It orbited
J. plummeting to Earth; it orbited

37. The writer is considering adding the following clause to the end of the preceding sentence (replacing the period after the word cosmonauts with a comma):

who were honored as heroes at their funerals.

Should the writer add this clause here?

A. Yes, because it was not the cosmonauts' fault that they were killed.
B. Yes, because it provides information that is not mentioned elsewhere in the passage.
C. No, because it distracts the reader from the main focus of the paragraph.
D. No, because no description of the funeral is provided.

38. Which of the following true statements, if added here, would best point out how successful Mir was?

F. Mir, in fact, orbited the Earth for 14 years and hosted more than two dozen long-duration crews.
G. The name Mir actually means peace in Russian.
H. Unfortunately, Russian cosmonauts would stay on Mir for so long that they were unable to walk when they returned to Earth.
J. Mir fell to Earth in 2001 and ended in a way reminiscent of Salyut thirty years earlier.


B. it suffered severe damage
C. severely damaged it suffered
D. it was suffering from severe damage

40. The best placement for the underlined portion would be:

F. where it is now.
G. after the word Once.
H. after the word focused.
J. after the word three.


B. and 1974 though
C. and 1974, though
D. and 1974 though,


G. successfully
H. successfully and
J. successful

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

A. countries
B. states
C. lands
D. cities

44. Which of the following sequences of sentences will make Paragraph 4 most logical?

G. 2, 1, 3
H. 3, 1, 2
J. 3, 2, 1

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

Suppose the writer had intended to write a brief essay about Robert Heinlein's contributions to space exploration. Would this essay fulfill that purpose?

A. Yes, because the essay quotes Heinlein on the importance of space exploration.
B. Yes, because the essay describes the development of space stations.
C. No, because the essay is about Mir, which Heinlein did not explicitly discuss.
D. No, because the essay offers a broader focus on the development of space stations.