GRE Practice Test - Sentence Equivalence GRE Practice Test 3

Q. 1

The individuals of a __________ are like the crew of a foundered ship, and none but good swimmers have a chance of reaching the land.

  • A. Species
  • B. Community
  • C. Congregation
  • D. Crew
  • E. Variety
  • Answer: A and B
  • Explanation

    The sentence explains the similarity between individuals and a crew of a foundered ship. The author says that only the best swimmers survive a floundered ship and reach land. This is akin to saying that only those individuals survive a difficult situation or a catastrophe that have the physical and mental strength of doing so. Out of the given options, we reject ‘crew’ and ‘variety’ without discussion. Since a crew refers to a group of people who belong to a ship, we look for words representing a group of individuals. Hence, we select the options ‘species’ and ‘community’. The word ‘congregation’ refers to people together for a religious purpose, and hence we reject it.

Q. 2

Much of what goes by the name of ____________ is simply an effort to destroy consciousness.

  • A. Fun
  • B. Enjoyment
  • C. Guilt
  • D. Pleasure
  • E. Confession
  • Answer: B and D
  • Explanation

    The sentence says that we make efforts to destroy consciousness. The speaker does not mean this in terms of conscience and guilt. Hence, we reject the options ‘guilt’ and ‘confession’. The option ‘guilt’ is illogical and the option ‘confession’ does not justify the explanation. One cannot confess and destroy consciousness; confessions can destroy guilt though. Out of the remaining three options, we readily select ‘pleasure’. ‘Pleasure’ signifies a state of being pleased and in this state, we are unconscious of reality or problems. Out of ‘fun’ and ‘enjoyment’ we select the latter since ‘fun’ is associated with amusement and ‘enjoyment’ is closer to satisfaction and pleasure. This state of satisfaction and amusement defies consciousness.

Q. 3

The very first step in the scientific method is to state the _________.

  • A. Question
  • B. Solution
  • C. Requirement
  • D. Problem
  • E. Hypothesis
  • Answer: A and D
  • Explanation

    The sentence is about the first step of scientific method. The word ‘scientific’ is related with research and analysis. Hence, we have to see where a scientific method initiates. We can only analyze and research when we have a befitting situation in the form of a problem. A ‘hypothesis’ and a ‘solution’ come at the later stages of research and hence we select the option ‘problem’ and reject ‘solution’ and ‘hypothesis’. Since the discussion is not around an invention but around scientific method, we reject the option ‘requirement’ and select the option ‘question’. ‘Problem’ and ‘question’ are the obvious answers.

Q. 4

In Feb 2006, researchers reported that many women suffer from a __________ different heart disease from men and is easily missed from standard tests.

  • A. Distinctly
  • B. Mystifyingly
  • C. Fundamentally
  • D. Rationally
  • E. Irrationally
  • Answer: A and C
  • Explanation

    The option ‘irrationally’ is rejected since it does not fit in the sentence. The option ‘distinctly’ is taken as a correct option since the sentence shows clearly that the disease does not exist in men. Hence, it is a distinct problem. Out of the remaining options, we select ‘fundamentally’. The problem could be ‘mystifying’ and ‘rationally’ different but these points cannot be discussed when the author is merely introducing the existence of such a disease. He is only highlighting that such a problem exists in women and not in men. Hence, we select the option ‘fundamentally’.

Q. 5

Many women are still _____________ that heart disease and stroke have emerged as the top killers of women worldwide.

  • A. Confused
  • B. Unconcerned
  • C. Scared
  • D. Unaware
  • E. Wondering
  • Answer: B and D
  • Explanation

    The use of the word ‘still’ gives us the clue towards the answer. The author shows surprise and worry over the attitude or reaction of women over the findings. The suitable options for the blank are ‘unconcerned’, ‘scared’ and ‘unaware’. The other two options are clearly wrong. The option ‘scared’ is the most unsuitable among the three since the sentence brings out a problem with no hint towards the solution. Many women are unaware and many are unconcerned with the findings. They should be scared until a solution is found. Hence, ‘unconcerned’ and ‘unaware’ are the most suitable answer options.

Q. 6

They may wish to correct this from a _________ angle, but there is also the physical disability that often accompanies this condition; loss of eye-hand coordination; bumping into things when ascending, or descending stairs; crossing the street, driving, and playing

  • A. Cosmetic
  • B. Social
  • C. Personal
  • D. Psychological
  • E. Financial
  • Answer: A and B
  • Explanation

    The sentence highlights the physical aspects of the correction. He says that the physical angle is important and hints that it should be well thought over. The sentence is clearly discussing cosmetic surgery which can impair ones physical ability of clear vision and coordination. Had the treatment been for any other problem, the word ‘physical’ would not have been used by the author. We reject the option ‘personal’, since the physical condition is also going to affect the individual. The option ‘financial’ is also incorrect. Out of the remaining options, we choose ‘cosmetic’ and ‘social’ since the physical disability is also related with the ‘psychology’ of a person and the two angles cannot be disjoint. Hence, one might wish to correct some defect from a ‘cosmetic’ or ‘social’ angle.

Q. 7

Often, the first step in reaching out is dealing with our own _________.

  • A. Achievements
  • B. Shortfalls
  • C. Objections
  • D. Complexes
  • E. Hindrances
  • Answer: C and E
  • Explanation

    The sentence is suggesting the first step towards reaching out. The speaker says that we have to deal with our own selves initially to reach out to others. The option ‘achievement’ is clearly incorrect and hence we reject it. Out of the remaining options, we select ‘objections’ and ‘hindrances’. We can only reach out to others when we can deal with the things we have ‘objections’ to and with our ‘hindrances’, which could be because of our ‘complexes’ and ‘shortfalls’.

Q. 8

Bear in mind that if you're paying someone your hard-earned money, you have a right to feel __________ about whatever you're getting in return.

  • A. Objective
  • B. Associated
  • C. Possessive
  • D. Happy
  • E. Concerned
  • Answer: D and E
  • Explanation

    The first correct option is clearly ‘happy’. When you give money to someone you intend to get happiness in return. This is a right that the author is highlighting as a basic requirement. The second correct option is ‘concerned’. One will feel concerned with the returns when ones hard-earned money is involved in a deal. If the returns are not concrete, we need not be ‘associated’ and ‘possessive’ and hence we reject these options. However, we shall be concerned about the returns. The option ‘objective’ is clearly incorrect.

Q. 9

In order to __________ or at least control stress, it is vital to know and understand the causes of stress.

  • A. Deflect
  • B. Manage
  • C. Eliminate
  • D. Overpower
  • E. Decrease
  • Answer: C and E
  • Explanation

    A careful look at the sentence shall make the answer options clear. The author uses the words ‘or at least control’. These signify the least possible alternative, which is to ‘control’. Hence, the author says that the least possible that you can do with stress is to control it; the alternative option is to ‘eliminate’ or ‘decrease’ it. These two words are the correct answer options. ‘Deflect’ is clearly wrong, ‘manage’ means the same as ‘control’ and ‘overpower’ is not as suitable as the other selected options.

Q. 10

The constant pressure of schoolwork, friends, teachers, tests, quizzes, papers, and everything else can be enough to make anyone feel like they are trapped in a ________.

  • A. Prison
  • B. Trap
  • C. Maze
  • D. Vice
  • E. Loop
  • Answer: C and D
  • Explanation

    We reject the option ‘trap’ because it is trivial. The option ‘loop’ signifies repetition of a sequence and similarly, the option ‘prison’ signifies a binding. Once we break the loop or the prison, we can be free and the ‘trap’ will end. This is not what the author is trying to show. He is bringing out the helplessness of the student, which is evident in the options ‘maze’ and ‘vice’. The sentence shows that the constant pressure makes the student helpless as if he has got caught in some unending, torturous maze or in a vicious trap.

Q. 11

Unfortunately, spouses, children and sometimes parents can often remind us of our ____________ and they will often increase the stress.

  • A. Misfortunes
  • B. Imperfections
  • C. Failures
  • D. Shortfalls
  • E. Intensions
  • Answer: B and D
  • Explanation

    We reject the option ‘intensions’ since it is illogical and need not be true in every situation. The author is listing a reason for increasing stress. He says that our family can often increase our stress. One does not get stressed over something that can be helped easily, nor with something of the past; one can feel stressed though with something for which one feels helpless. It is the presence of a weakness that is disturbing, since it is a reason for failure. Hence, the most suitable answer options are ‘imperfections’ and ‘shortfalls’.

Q. 12

Just remember that your children will, eventually, become ________ and they will probably try to act in a way that may shock you.

  • A. Insolent
  • B. Adults
  • C. Rebellious
  • D. Liberated
  • E. Adolescent
  • Answer: C and E
  • Explanation

    In this sentence, there are two points of significance, which tell us about the answers. The author says that the situation is ‘eventual’ and the children will ‘try to act’. This means that the stage shall ultimately come and that the behavior is not natural but intentional and staged. The two most suitable words to fit in the sentence are ‘rebellious’ and ‘adolescent’. The behavior can rationally be called ‘rebellious’ and it is during adolescence that such behavior is displayed. All other answer options are relatively unconvincing

Q. 13

The funny thing about presenting and public speaking is that the ________ of people will tell you they don't enjoy it and/or aren't very good at it.

  • A. Worst
  • B. Majority
  • C. Dearest
  • D. Best
  • E. Least
  • Answer: B and D
  • Explanation

    The option ‘dearest’ is not logical and hence we reject it. The author is discussing the ‘funny’ thing about public speaking. Hence, he is disclosing something about public speaking that is not expected and is bizarre. When the ‘worst’ or the ‘least’ of people tell you that they don’t enjoy public speaking it is expected and hence not funny. Whereas, when the ‘best’ and ‘majority’ of people make the confession, it is definitely unexpected and funny. The correct answer options and hence ‘best’ and ‘majority’.

Q. 14

I could feel from her she wasn't getting any better and we were also preparing ourselves for the worst but still keeping _____________.

  • A. Positive
  • B. Hopeful
  • C. Brave
  • D. Cheerful
  • E. Composed
  • Answer: A and B
  • Explanation

    The sentence describes how she was not keeping well and her health was deteriorating. The speaker says that they were preparing for the worst. This shows that she was very ill. However, he says, they were still keeping ‘positive’ and ‘hopeful’. The option ‘brave’ is not as suitable since the situation does not demand valor. Moreover, here the speaker does not discuss his demeanor but his state of mind. This is why we select the chosen words over ‘cheerful’ and ‘composed’.

Q. 15

When you know your talk by rote, it gives you the freedom to change it around, to add, to subtract without losing your ________.

  • A. Composure
  • B. Mind
  • C. Logic
  • D. Memory
  • E. Direction
  • Answer: A and E
  • Explanation

    Out of the given options, we readily reject ‘mind’. When you have memorized what you have to say, you can make changes in your speech without losing track of what you are saying. Hence, you do not lose your ‘direction’; you know what you are driving towards and hence can reach the conclusion. Out of the remaining options, we select ‘composure’. When you know your talk well, you can change it around without losing confidence and getting confused. Thus, you maintain your composure. All other options are relatively unsuitable.

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