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Test PrepSATWritingDiction

SAT Writing Skill Review: Diction

Sometimes you will have to identify words that are misused rather than grammatically incorrect. For example, a sentence may use the word imply where it should use infer. This grammar concept is tested most commonly on the Error ID multiple-choice questions.

Here is a brief list of commonly confused words. Many more are available in grammar texts and online. Develop your own list based on words you often confuse.

accept (v.): to agree or take something


except (prep.): excluding

disinterested (adj.): impartial


uninterested (adj.): not interested

imply (v.): to indirectly suggest meaning


infer (v.): to draw a conclusion

disperse (v.): to scatter


disburse (v.): to pay out

than (conj.): used for comparison 


then (adv.): next

farther (adj.): more distant; more advanced


further (adj.): in addition; extending beyond a certain point

affect (v.): to produce an effect or change


effect (n.): a result

who (pron.): referring to a person or to people


which (pron.): referring to a singular or plural thing

who or which (pron.): see above


that (pron.): referring to things or a group of people

conscience (n.): sense of right and wrong


conscious (adj.): awake; aware

So, when you see one of these words (or one like them) underlined in an Error ID question, ask yourself, “Is this word being used correctly?


Answer and Explanation

  1. The correct answer is A. In this sentence, we need there (used as a pronoun) rather than their, which is used to indicate possession.

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