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GRE: Revised sentence completion

Indraj M Sahi
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December 07, 2007

As part of our ongoing series on the GRE and how you can crack it, we published 15 sample questions on the revised GRE sentence completion pattern.

Today we publish the answers to the questions and an explanation on each.

1. The company's strategy __(Blank 1)__ focusing on the changing market, establishing __(Blank 2)__ distribution partnerships, making well timed investments and developing __(Blank 3)__ product features.

Blank 1: Combines is used to express the putting together of two or more different features or qualities; especially to enhance the outcome; as expressed in the sentence.

Amalgamates simply expresses a mixture; or a merging to form a bigger unit.

Considers expresses contemplation of one or more options

Blank 2: Crucial The phrase 'well-timed' indicates that the correct answer is crucial - i.e. important because it affects other things - that are a part of the ' company's strategy'. Constant expresses always and Essential more important.

Blank 3: Innovative. The context requires a word that clearly expresses improvement and development, thus innovative is the answer.  Novel is different and strange; and Experimental implies uncertainty.

2. Progressive business leaders welcome constructive __(Blank 1)__ as a __(Blank 2)__ that leads to __(Blank 3)__  improvements in the quality of their decision making process.

Blank 1: Dissent which means disagreement based on knowledge and analysis; whereas Dissonance and Discord express only conflict.

Blank 2: Process is one of the series of steps or stages to achieve a desired result; as a part of a larger System. Pattern means distinctive or decorative style.

Blank 3: Significant expresses that which makes a major or important difference. Ominous implies 'threat' and Prized' means valued.

3. The deal was a __(Blank 1)__ to show he had a gift for __(Blank 2)__  after years spent bringing order to __(Blank 3)__ groups of companies lacking strong coordination from the centre. 

Blank 1: Chance ie opportunity or occasion. Platform is used for a physical place or set of principles; and Coincidence expresses two things happening at the same time.

Blank 2: Cohesion correctly expresses a uniting and synergy of dissimilar elements within a group or mass; as opposed to coalition which expresses uniting for a political or particular purpose; and Coercion, meaning force

Blank 3: Disparate as it expresses the force that holds together separate and dissimilar parts of a mass or company. Diverse and different fail to express this.

4. Ultimately, in the __(Blank 1)__ against global poverty, it is the affected __(Blank 2)__,  that have to pull themselves up and out of the __(Blank 3)__ swamp.

Blank 1: War. In this sentence war correctly expresses struggle; an element lacking in both Strike and Initiative

Blank 2: Countries.  The clue word is 'global'; hence countries. 'Regions' describe a geographical area; and Provinces expresses parts within a country.

Blank 3: Penury correctly expresses a nation's lack of funds as the clue word is 'poverty'. A Pauper is a poor man so this expresses the poorness of a single person or family. Privation is hardship or misfortune as a result of poverty.

5. The current makeover addresses inferior __(Blank 1)__ of service and __(Blank 2)__, lack of appropriate training, poor time management and __(Blank 3)__ pricing.

Blank 1: Quality meaning typical or distinctive characteristic. Nature is the particular combination of inherent qualities of a thing or person and so would imply that 'all' services are inferior. Virtue means excellence of any/all kinds, so cannot be qualified by inferior

Blank 2: Product as it encompasses the entire output or produce, and also completes the phrase idiom; Material, at best, should read 'raw material' to convey the correct sense; and item means only one of the complete range of product.

Blank 3: Unrealistic.  The noun following the omitted word is pricing. Though the adjectives improbable and quixotic can describe it; only unrealistic conveys that it is too high, thus not competitive.

6. Some companies are __(Blank 1)__ on manufacturing industrial equipment in India with the objective of reducing cost and making the country their __(Blank 2)__ hub for __(Blank 3)__ equipment to neighboring countries.

Blank 1: Keen.  Both Dependent and Relying express that the purpose of the option is resettlement of 'companies'; whereas only this correctly expresses logical enthusiasm for a profitable course of action. 

Blank 2: Sourcing The closing phrase is 'equipment to neighboring countries'; thus from a source. Original contradicts the logic of the sentence; and recruiting applies to manpower rather than (produce) 'manufacturing'.

Blank 3: Exporting is the correct term to express movement and sale of goods from country of source to any other country. Distributing and transferring both fail to express the necessary element of sale and money.

7. The earliest known Greek __(Blank 1)__ are Mycenaean, written on clay tablets, and __(Blank 2)__ records, but cannot be __(Blank 3)__ literature.

Blank 1: Writings All three options can qualify the clue word 'written'. However, runic pertains to German and so contradicts Mycenaean; while transcript pertains to reproduction of (usually) the spoken or the written word.

Blank 2: Document as this also means to 'maintain' or 'keep' records. Register and Classify add an additional element to the sentence of 'officialdom' and 'grouping' respectively. 

Blank 3: Termed. Labeled is used for the physical action or for a derogatory connotation. Deemed means believed to be. Termed means named and logically correct. 

8. The Phoenician alphabet, a __(Blank 1)__ of the Semitic alphabet of the Canaanite area  was __(Blank 2)__ throughout the Mediterranean world by the traders sailing along the __(Blank 3)__ trade routes.

Blank 1: Variant. Genre and Category both express a specific form or type. The context expresses derived from but different.

Blank 2: Disseminated means widely shared or spread.  Not Exchanged as nothing is taken in return and Disbursed is usually used for money; or a scattering -- contrary to content.

Blank 3: Maritime i.e. along sea routes. Naval is specific to ships or war: and aquatic is an adjective for water.

9. A method suggested to enhance __(Blank 1)__ productivity is to build one's __(Blank 2)__ by working to the body's natural bio-rhythm of the __(Blank 3)__ and renewing of energy throughout the day.

Blank 1: Physical. While both tangible and material mean touchable and concrete; physical is the correct adjective to describe body and productivity.

Blank 2: Energy, is the correct adjective for the body's capacity; Power is too vast and vigour too narrow in meaning

Blank 3: Expending because it includes and correctly expresses outlay or consumption to balance the 'renewing' of energy. Using and Conserving express only consumption and maintenance, respectively.

10. Aristotle clearly __(Blank 1)__ that the __(Blank 2)__ plot is better than the simple one; in it there is the sudden reversal of situation and the __(Blank 3)__ of the truth.

Blank 1: Indicates. The context requires a word that simply means explains or shows. Concedes implies initial disagreement not indicated by the sentence; and Testifies introduces an unnecessary legal aspect.

Blank 2: Complex.  Usually used to describe a plot with several characters and sub-stories; also antonym of 'simple'.

Blank 3: Discovery - uncovering of the truth. Unveiling is used in the context of a physical revelation, as of a statue; and Exposition to describe an elaboration or exhibition.

11. The __(Blank 1)__ of feminist scholarship and funds for __(Blank 2)__,  gave a new __(Blank 3)__ to the new ways of thinking about women.

Blank 1: Fostering. All 3 words mean support, however, Advocacy and Patronage express support, only Fostering means to encourage to grow  for something 'new' or nascent.

Blank 2: Education. The clue words are 'scholarship' and 'funds'. Development is too wide in scope and Advancement implies a secondary or advanced stage as opposed to a beginning.

Blank 3: Impetus - Additional Force or Energy. Incentive and Stimulant add the necessity of motivation not indicated in the sentence.

12. The __(Blank 1)__ Indian Scriptures __(Blank 2)__ the original dance forms as the manifestation of the __(Blank 3)__ rhythmic energy.

Blank 1: Ancient.  Archaic has a derogatory connotation. Venerable, means highly respected and is not required by the context of the simple sentence.

Blank 2: Depict correctly conveys 'shown as'; Represent here conveys 'in place of'; Limn means to draw.

Blank 3: Primal i.e. original and powerful energy. Pristine fulfils the 'original' and untouched but lacks the 'power' of primal. Paramount only means of greatest importance.

13. Freud's work was __(Blank 1)__ by Rousseau's and the widely __(Blank 2)__ notion of hidden, __(Blank 3)__ forces at work in human nature.

Blank 1: Influenced. All three words imply 'affected by' but both the other words go beyond the extent of the sentence

Determined, implies that it is mainly guided by Rousseau's; and Stimulated implies that it is mainly because of Rousseau's

Blank 2: Prevalent. The omitted word needs to express that which is widespread yet abstract-'notion'. Asserted implies stated or argued and Ubiquitous that which is physically visible.

Blank 3: Mysterious i.e. not completely understood accurately complements 'hidden' and 'forces'. Occult adds an element of magic and Recondite is used to express profound or not widely known subjects rather than 'forces'

14. The corporation's __(Blank 1)__ franchise partner has decided to exit the mass production business and __(Blank 2)__ only on the __(Blank 3)__ brands.

Blank 1: Original A corporation's partner � person or organization can be described as the 'very first'.

Prototype would be more correctly used for a machine; Model as:  excellent example or person is not relevant to the context. 

Blank 2: Concentrate - 'devote greater attention to' is necessitated by the contrast of 'exit the mass production. Insist would be used to convey resistance; and 'Rely' carries the thought further than stated in the sentence.

Blank 3: Premium is the only word that directly contrasts with  'mass production'. Popular and Profitable may be adjectives to describe 'brands' but change the meaning of the sentence.

15. One __(Blank 1)__  of record breaking skyscrapers is that they can say as much about __(Blank 2)__ as they can about wealth,  __(Blank 3)__ and technology.

Blank 1: Perception correctly implies 'one view' based on logic or evidence. Notion has elements of prejudice and vagueness not indicated in the sentence; Impression is usually a physical imprint; or a feeling or effect. 

Blank 2: Hubris includes both Haughtiness and Arrogance and adds the element of pride and vanity that stems from great grand achievement

Blank 3: Ambition. Desire to constantly achieve and excel; as opposed to Intention and Purpose which express desire and objective.

Part 1: Changes introduced in November 2007

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