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SAT #12 Reading Answer Explanations, Full

SAT #12, Reading 1

Passage Outline

● a scene of reading, page by page without many breaks


● the narrator will remember these moments in the future with a crushing, heartbreaking
nostalgia
● how he treats customers, and a particular customer
● the narrator slipping into characters, probably like his dad
● the stories his father invented
● the narrator performing characters in the Brothers Karamazov

1.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer, because the Passage most clearly breaks down into
two parts where the first focuses on the experience of reading between Naomi and the narrator,
while the second focuses on the narrator’s past and the role reading played in it. Answer Choice
C most clearly matches this, when it says that the main shift in focus in the Passage is from “a
description of an emotionally significant activity to a reflection on the narrator’s early
experiences with that activity.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because neither the first nor the last
part of the Passage recounts an amusing event. Answer Choice B is incorrect because there’s
no foreshadowing of the future demise of the relationship in the Passage. Answer Choice D is
incorrect because the first part of the Passage doesn’t give a character sketch of Naomi or the
narrator, and doesn’t show how either changed over time.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Over the course of the passage, the main shift in focus
is from [...]?” Because this is a [Big Picture] Question focusing on shifts in the Passage, to solve
this we should both have a general understanding of the Passage and its structure, and go back
to try and identify any possible logical breaks. Generally, the Passage can be organized like
this:

● a scene of reading, page by page without many breaks


● the narrator will remember these moments in the future with a crushing, heartbreaking
nostalgia
● how he treats customers, and a particular customer
● the narrator slipping into characters, probably like his dad
● the stories his father invented
● the narrator performing characters in the Brothers Karamazov
More specifically, if we try to identify shifts in focus, we might identify the following:

● the experience of reading with Naomi


● how the narrator treats customers while reading
● embodying characters like his father, and his father
● specifically embodying characters within the novel

We don’t have to identify all of these breaks in advance to solve this question, but noticing them
helps. At this point, we should go back to the answer choices given.

Answer Choice A says the passage shifts in focus from “an anecdote about an amusing event to
a recollection of similar events from the narrator’s childhood.” This answer choice might seem
plausible, if we take the scene with the man and the toilet paper roll as an amusing anecdote.
Although it’s plausible to read it that way, the test itself doesn’t give us enough evidence to call
the scene amusing. Moreover, the second part of this answer choice fails because the Passage
doesn’t recollect similar events from the narrator’s childhood, so we should eliminate this
answer. Answer Choice B says the passage shifts in focus from “an account of the early stages
of a friendship to a foreshadowing of that friendship’s ultimate demise.” This answer choice
might also seem plausible, since the first part of the Passage does seem to discuss the
friendship between Naomi and the narrator, and because in Lines 19-24, the narrator comments
on how “years from now I would remember this with a crushing, heartbreaking nostalgia,
because of course I knew even then that I would eventually find myself standing here alone,”
which might qualify as that friendship’s ultimate demise. However, three elements within this
answer choice: that it’s the “early stages” of a friendship, involves a “foreshadowing,” and leads
to the friendship’s “ultimate demise,” make this answer choice both stronger and more specific,
and therefore more liable to be incorrect. We can keep this answer choice, but will see that
compared to one of the other options, it fails for these reasons. Answer Choice C says the
passage shifts in focus from “a description of an emotionally significant activity to a reflection on
the narrator’s early experiences with that activity.” Because the first part of the Passage which
describes the experience of reading between the narrator and Naomi can correctly be called an
emotionally significant activity, and because the later part of the Passage does reflect on the
narrator and his father’s experience reading, we should keep this option. Moreover, because of
how general the choice is, we should consider this choice a strong candidate. Answer Choice D
says the passage shifts in focus from “a character sketch of an individual to a consideration of
how that individual has changed the life of the narrator.” Because the first part of the Passage
doesn’t focus especially on Naomi or the narrator and sketch their character, but instead
focuses on their experience of reading together, we can eliminate this option as well.

That leaves us with Answer Choice B and C. We should note how general Answer Choice C is,
especially compared to Choice B which has more detail, and should ultimately choose Answer
Choice C as our correct answer.
2.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Lines 35-38 say that the narrator “kept one
man, who came to the counter with a single roll of toilet paper under his arm, waiting for more
than a minute while I finished reading a page I had just started.” After this, the man gets
frustrated and leaves the store. These lines most clearly show that “reading to Naomi interferes
with some of the narrator’s responsibilities.” Answer Choices A is incorrect because it only tells
us how many pages the narrator read. Answer Choice B is incorrect because it shows how
Naomi takes the narrator out of his negative thoughts of the future, not how reading interferes
with his business. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it shows the narrator focusing on his
responsibilities at the expense of his reading.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Which choice best supports the conclusion that
reading to Naomi interferes with some of the narrator’s responsibilities?” To solve this, we
should go back through each of the answer choices, looking for any texts that show this kind of
interference. Answer Choice A says [...].

● Break them down


● Show how only D most clearly talks about responsibilities
● Done.

3.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because Lines 10-12 say, “I looked up every couple of
pages to see if Naomi was still paying attention, and of course she was. Her attention, in fact,
never seemed to waver.” This most clearly matches Answer Choice B, that Naomi is notable for
her “ability to concentrate and observe.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because the Passage
doesn’t show enough interaction between Naomi and others for us to say that she has empathy
towards others. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it is the narrator, not Naomi, who
dramatizes fiction. Answer Choice is incorrect because we’re not told about any of the hardships
that Naomi experiences.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The narrator’s descriptions of Naomi suggest that she
is notable for her [...]?” To solve this, we should go back to the Passage and try to identify a
specific Text which gives us a description of Naomi and explains why she is notable. Using the
[Question Order Rule], we can predict that our Text will most likely come towards the beginning
of the Passage, before Line 34. For this Question, finding our specific Text can be hard and
might require us to go back to our answer choices first before we can identify it. However, we
should eventually settle on Lines 10-16, which most clearly give us a description of Naomi. The
Lines tell us that her attention “never seemed to waver” and that she was absorbing the scene
that her and the narrator had created together.
Answer Choice A says that the narrator describes Naomi as notable in her “empathy toward
other people.” Because neither the Passage nor our Text show Naomi being empathetic
towards others, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says that the narrator
describes Naomi as notable in her “ability to concentrate and observe.” Because our Text does
describe Naomi’s focus, that her attention never wavered, as well as her being observational
and taking the whole scene in, we should keep this answer choice. Answer Choice C says that
the narrator describes Naomi as notable in her “talent for dramatizing fiction.” However,
because it’s the narrator and not Naomi who dramatizes the stories told, we should eliminate
this option. Answer Choice D says that the narrator describes Naomi as notable in her “optimism
despite many hardships.” Because the Passage doesn’t tell us about any of the hardships that
Naomi experienced, and therefore none of her optimism despite them, we should eliminate this
option. That leaves us with Answer Choice B, which we should choose as our correct option.

Answer Choices D and B ​are the correct answers because Lines 17-23 say, “Every time I
looked at her I became aware of just how seemingly perfect this time was. I thought about how
years from now i would remember this with a crushing, heartbreaking nostalgia, because of
course I knew even then that I would eventually find myself standing here alone.” These lines
most clearly tell us about the narrator’s perspective on his reading to Naomi, and most closely
match Answer Choice D for Question 4, which says that the narrator is “somewhat ambivalent,
because he knows that his reading time with Naomi will inevitably end.” For Question 5, Answer
Choice A is incorrect because it only describes Naomi, and not the narrator’s thoughts about his
reading to her. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it describes a scene involving a man at
the store, and doesn’t clearly tell us about the narrator’s feelings toward reading to Naomi.
Answer Choice D is incorrect because they only describe the narrator performing as Fyodor
Karamazov, and not his thoughts in general towards reading to Naomi. For Question 4, Answer
Choice A is incorrect because it doesn’t match our Text and because the Passage doesn’t tell
us that the narrator needed a creative outlet. Answer Choice B is incorrect, because neither the
Text nor the Passage tell us that the narrator didn’t expect Naomi to be so enthusiastic. Answer
Choice C is incorrect, because we’re never told that the narrator feels regret for not being as
skilled a reader as his father.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks “Which choice best reflects the perspective of the
narrator regarding his reading to Naomi?” Because this is a Paired Question, to solve it we
should begin by going through the answer choices for Question 5, looking for any texts that tell
us about the narrator’s perspective on his reading to Naomi. Using the [Question Order Rule]
we can predict that the Text is most likely to come before Line 34.

For Question 5, Answer Choice A says, “I looked up every couple of pages to see if Naomi was
still paying attention, and of course she was.” Because this answer choice only tells us about
Naomi’s attention, and not how the narrator feels about reading to her, we should eliminate this
option. Answer Choice B says “Every time I looked at her I became aware of just how seemingly
perfect this time was. I thought about how years from now I would remember this with a
crushing, heartbreaking nostalgia, because of course I knew even then that I would eventually
find myself alone.” Because the “this” in the lines refers to their act of reading together, we
should keep this option because it tells us clearly how the narrator feels about reading to Naomi.
Answer Choice C says, “The charm wore off when I refused to acknowledge him. He responded
by slamming the roll on the counter, inches from my face, and storming out. Naomi and I read
on.” Because this answer choice doesn’t tell us directly how the narrator feels about reading to
Naomi, and only shows us a scene between them and a customer, we should eliminate this
option. Answer Choice D says, “When Fyodor Karamazov spoke, I waved my hands wildly in the
air. I grumbled in a deep baritone and tried as hard as I could to do my father proud.” Because
this answer choice only shows the narrator performing a certain character in the novel and not
how he felt about reading to Naomi in general, we should eliminate this option. That leaves us
with Answer Choice B which we should keep as our correct answer.

Lines 17-23 say, “Every time I looked at her I became aware of just how seemingly perfect this
time was. I thought about how years from now I would remember this with a crushing,
heartbreaking nostalgia, because of course I knew even then that I would eventually find myself
alone.” These lines tell us that although the narrator feels intensely positive about the
experience of reading to Naomi, he also feels sadness at the thought that one day the
experience will go away, and we should expect our answer choice to correspond to this.

For Question 4, Answer Choice A says the narrator feels “unequivocally delighted, because
reading to Naomi has provided him with a much-needed creative outlet.” Because this answer
choice doesn’t match our Text, nor does the Passage mention the narrator’s need for a creative
outlet, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says that the narrator feels “pleasantly
surprised, because he did not expect Naomi to be so enthusiastic about reading.” Because this
answer choice also doesn’t match our Text, nor does the Passage ever say that the narrator
expected Naomi to be unenthusiastic about reading, we should eliminate this option. Answer
Choice D says that the narrator feels “somewhat ambivalent, because he knows that his reading
time with Naomi will inevitably end.” Because this answer choice does match our Text, that the
narrator feels both that their reading together is “perfect” and also that “one day the experience
will go away,” we should eliminate this option.
6.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because the word “concluded” in Line 32-34 most
nearly means “finished,” because the narrator explains that he has just read or finished a word
or sentence.

● She would take the book out of my hand, put her finger on the exact word or sentence I
had just concluded, and hold it there until I returned.
● She would take the book out of my hand, put her finger on the exact word or sentence I
had just finished, and hold it there until I returned.

Answer Choice A is incorrect because it doesn’t make sense to say that the narrator had just
“decided” a word. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it doesn’t make sense to say that the
narrator had just “inferred” a word. Answer Choice A is incorrect because it doesn’t make sense
to say that the narrator had just “dismissed” a word. ///

7.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because in Lines 43-47 say, “I slipped into the
characters as I read. I grumbled and bellowed, slammed my fist onto the counter, and threw my
arms wide open. I knew this was exactly what my father would have done had he been the one
reading.” These lines show us that the narrator’s storytelling style comes from and is influenced
by his father, and most closely match Answer Choice C which says that the narrator’s father
influenced him by “providing a model for the dramatic recounting of a story.” Answer Choice A is
incorrect because the Passage doesn’t tell us that the narrator’s father created an environment
conducive for young people to express themselves. Answer Choice B is incorrect because the
Passage doesn’t tell us directly that the narrator’s father tried to emphasize “what was most
important in a life well lived.” Answer Choice D is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t tell us
that the narrator’s father exposed him to classic novels written by renowned authors.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “It can reasonably be inferred from the passage that
the narrator’s father influenced him by [...]?” To solve this, we should go back to the Passage
and look for a Text that tells us how the narrator’s father influenced him. Using the [Question
Order Rule] we can expect that our Text is most likely to come between Line 34 and 53. Going
back to the Text, we find the first instance of the narrator’s father being mentioned in Lines
43-47, which read, “I slipped into the characters as I read. I grumbled and bellowed, slammed
my fist onto the counter, and threw my arms wide open. I knew this was exactly what my father
would have done had he been the one reading.” The Passage continues to describe the
narrator’s father on him for the next several lines, although always in the context of the father as
a storyteller. It can be difficult to tell in advance which Text in particular if any will best answer
our question, but we should note that everything mentioned about the father concerns his
storytelling as well as what the Passage doesn’t say about him.
Answer Choice A says that the narrator’s father influenced him by “creating an environment that
encouraged young people to express themselves.” Because the Passage doesn’t describe the
narrator’s father creating such an environment, we should eliminate this option. [...].

● Continue to describe from here.

8.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Lines 48-55 say “He must have told me
hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of stories, not just at night, but throughout the course of
any given day [...]. There was no wrong time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough
for me to see it.” These lines tell us that the narrator’s father clearly viewed storytelling as
something that “was part of the fabric of the family’s everyday life.” Answer Choice A is incorrect
because the Passage doesn’t tell us that the narrator’s father was continuing a long-standing
family tradition. Answer Choice B is incorrect because the stories the narrator’s father tells are
primarily fictional. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t specify how the
narrator’s father viewed storytelling as something that “helped children to distinguish good
choices from bad ones.”
How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The passage indicates that the narrator’s father
viewed storytelling as something that [...]?” To solve this we should go back to the Passage and
try to identify any texts that will tell us clearly how the narrator’s father viewed storytelling. Using
the [Question Order Rule] we can predict that our Text is most likely to come before Line 53.
Because the part of the Passage that discusses the narrator’s father is rather long, it can be
hard to identify a specific text that tells us how the father viewed storytelling, and we may not be
able to do so until looking at the answer choices for guidance. However, if we read carefully, we
can note in advance that the only lines which tell us about the father’s views on storytelling
come in lines 48-55, where the narrator explains how his father told stories “throughout the
course of any given day” and that “there was no wrong time with him.’

Answer Choice A says the narrator’s father viewed storytelling as something that “continued a
long-standing family tradition. [...], etc.

● continue it from here.


9.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because Lines 52-55 mean that, for the narrator’s
father, every time was a good time to tell a story, or that there was no “inappropriate” time.
Answer Choices B, C and D are incorrect because [...].

● There was no wrong time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough for me to
see it.

● There was no inappropriate time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough for
me to see it.
● There was no unjust time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough for me to
see it.
● There was no immoral time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough for me to
see it.
● There was no inaccurate time with him, or if there was, he didn’t live long enough for me
to see it.

10.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because Lines 66-68 describe how if the narrator’s
father begins telling him a story he had heard before, he lets him tell it again. “His performance
was that good, his love of a story that obvious,” the narrator says. This describes a scenario
where a person likes a performance or story so much that they’ll rewatch it happily, which most
clearly matches Answer Choice C, which says “A moviegoer happily sees a particularly
memorable film for a second time.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because it describes a viewer
eager to see a new episode of a favorite television show, not rewatch one that they’ve seen
before. Answer Choice B is incorrect because a painter who paints at different times a day
wants to capture a moment under different conditions, not recreate or consume the same thing
over. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it only describes an actress rehearsing lines in
order to memorize them, not consume a favorite story for the enjoyment of it.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks “Which situation is most similar to the one described in
lines 66-68?” To solve this, we should first go back to the situation described and try to
characterize it generally. Lines 66-68 read, “If I had heard the story before, I let him tell it to me
again. His performance was that good, his love of a story that obvious.” These lines describe a
scene where someone loves a performance or show so much, that they’ll happily rewatch it, and
we should go back to our answer choices looking for a choice that most clearly matches this.

[...]. Keep going from here.


SAT #12, Reading 2

Passage

● introduce a study that shows that humans perform better when being watched
(paragraph one)
● the details of the study (paragraphs two and three)
● another study that contradicts the first (paragraph four)
● another study that found a solution between the first contradictory experiments
● the details of this last study

11.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because the Passage looks at three separate studies
that examine the effect that an audience has on human performance. This most closely
matches Answer Choice C, which says that the main purpose of the passage is to “show how
various experiments helped establish and refine the understanding of an audience’s effect on
performance.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t focus on human
learning, and especially not whether people learn better in groups or not. Answer Choice B is
incorrect because the studies concern human performance and not learning. Answer Choice D
is incorrect because, compared with C, it’s too narrow. The Passage doesn’t focus on broad
theories of social interaction, but more specifically on how experiments about the effect of an
audience on human performance. It also only shows three experiments over time, and not
general historical development.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The main purpose of the passage is to [...]?” For these
types of questions, we should have both a general understanding of the passage based on our
first reading, as well as a more specific understanding based on information in the beginning
and the end of the Passage. From there, we should just go directly into the answer choices and
try to eliminate and select our answer. In general, the Passage is organized like this:

● introduce a study that shows that humans perform better when being watched
(paragraph one)
● the details of the study (paragraphs two and three)
● another study that contradicts the first (paragraph four)
● another study that found a solution between the first contradictory experiments
● the details of this last study

More specifically, we can pay attention to the title, “Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected
Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave,” which doesn’t tell us much, except that
the passage concerns forces that influence human behavior and thought. The introduction tells
us about the first experiment, which “suggests that humans are often faster and stronger when
they test their speed and strength in the company of other people, rather than alone.” The
conclusion explores a final experiment that looks at the effect of a “cockroach audience” on the
performance of cockroaches on certain tasks. Taking all these together, we can say generally
that the Passage focuses on several experiments that explore this question about the effect of
audiences on performance.

Answer Choice A says that the main purpose of the Passage is to “assert that the majority of
people learn more effectively in a group than they do alone.” Because the Passage doesn’t
make or center on this claim, and because it focuses on the effect of audiences on human
performance and not learning, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says that the
main purpose of the Passage is to “present the contradictory results of two studies about
learning that have each been considered groundbreaking.” Because, again, the Passage
doesn’t focus on learning but on the effect of an audience on human performance, we should
eliminate this option. Answer Choice C says that the main purpose of the Passage is to “show
how various experiments helped establish and refine the understanding of an audience’s effect
on performance.” Because the Passage does focus on several experiments, which do look more
and more closely at the question of how audiences affect performance, so we should keep this
option. Answer Choice D says that the main purpose of the Passage is to “chronicle the
historical development of competing theories of social interaction.” This answer choice might
seem plausible since it talks about “development” and “social interaction,” both things which the
passage concerns. It’s also general, which is usually an asset for an answer choice. In this
case, however, the answer choice is too general, since the Passage doesn’t quite focus on
historical development but only looks at three experiments, and doesn’t focus on general
“theories of social interaction,” but instead looks at the specific effect of an audience on human
performance, so we should eliminate this option as well. That leaves us with Answer Choice B,
which we should choose as our correct answer.

12.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because “easy” and “straightforward” best replace the
word “simple” in Lines 27 and 36. In Line 27, the sentence “The task was simple but novel, and
none of the children had played with fishing rods before the experiment,” emphasizes the
simplicity or ease of the task. In line 36, the sentence, “Science doesn’t always tell simple
stories, and other researchers challenged Triplett’s groundbreaking results well into the
twentieth century,” makes the point that science often tells a complex, or multi-faceted story

Answer Choice B is incorrect because the first task given isn’t “mindless,” but simply easy to do,
and the second sentence doesn’t make the point that science is insincere. Answer Choice C is
incorrect because the first task isn’t described as “effortless,” and the second sentence doesn’t
make the case that science is sometimes not humble. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it
doesn’t make sense to describe the first task as “innocent.”
13.R.12 & 14.R.12

Answer Choices B and C ​are the correct answers because Lines 27-29 say “The task was
simple but novel, and none of the children had played with fishing rods before the experiment.”
This sentence tells us that Triplett designed his experiment so that effects from the children’s
prior experience with the rods would be eliminated. This most closely matches Answer Choice B
which says that the design of the study eliminated the potential objection that “Variations in
performance among the subjects under either audience condition may be attributed to variations
in the subjects’ ages and physical development.” For Question 14, Answer Choice A is incorrect
because it appears before Triplett’s fishing rod experiment is mentioned. Answer Choice B,
while plausible because it matches Answer Choice C from Question 13, less directly states
something Triplett did in the design of his study. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it
explains the actual performance of the task in the study and doesn’t tell us anything about its
design that would preclude objections. For Question 13, only Answer Choice B matches Lines
27-29, which tell us that none of the subjects had experience with the fishing rods.

How to solve this? ​Question 13 asks, “Based on the passage, the design of Triplett’s
fishing-reel experiment most likely ruled out which potential objection to his findings?” Because
this is a Paired Question, to solve it we should go first the answer choices for Question 14,
looking for any texts that tell us about what objection the design of Triplett’s experiment would
have ruled out. Because we’re talking about a scientific experiment, we should expect our
answer choice to have to do something with how the experiment controlled for certain variables
by making things standard (like age, weight, experience, etc.). We should also expect our
answer choice to come earlier in the Passage, where the methodology of the experiment is
discussed.

For Question 14, Answer Choice A says, “Triplett acknowledged that his observations were far
from rigorous, so he conducted an experiment to show that the effect persisted in a tightly
controlled lab study.” Because this answer choice comes before the mention of his fishing-reel
experiment, which begins in the following lines, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice
B says, “Triplett recruited forty children, ages eight to thirteen, to complete his study in 1897.”
Because this answer choice does tell us that Triplett selected children in a certain specific age
range, it may work as a text about how Triplett designed his study with proper controls, so we
should keep this option. Answer Choice C says, “The task was simple but novel, and none of
the children had played with fishing rods before the experiment.” Because this answer choice
also tells us about a possible control in the design Triplett’s experiment, that none of the
children had played with fishing rods before, we should keep this option. Answer Choice D says,
“They performed the task both alone and in the presence of other children, and Triplett noticed
that they wound the reels faster in the presence of others.” Because this conclusion tells us
more about the actual performance of the experiment, and not its design, we should eliminate
this option.
That leaves us between Answer Choices B and C. If we look back at Question 13, we notice
that each has a corresponding answer choice that could work, making it even harder to decide
between the two. Ultimately, however, we should Answer Choice C, because it more directly
highlights and focuses on a feature of the experiment that controlled for the results. It tells us
directly that “none of the children had played with fishing rods before the experiment,” while the
Choice B only mentions as a kind of aside the ages of the children. So, we should Answer
Choice C for Question 14.

For Question 13 [...]. Go on to match it.

15.R.12 & 16.R.12

Answer Choices D and B ​are the correct answers because Lines 32-35 say that Triplett
“concluded that an audience enables people to ‘liberate latent energy’ not normally available
when they perform alone,” which most closely matches Answer Choice D from Question 15
which says that Triplett would agree that human beings “possess abilities that they are not
always able to exploit.” For Question 16, Answer Choice A is incorrect because it doesn’t tell us
anything that Triplett believes about human beings, only about the types of experiments he
performed. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it only tells us about science in general and
how other researchers challenged Triplett, not any thoughts that Triplett has about human
nature. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it introduces the fact that researchers performed
experiments that suggested the opposite of Triplett’s conclusions, not any thought that Triplett
has about human nature in general. For Question 15, only Answer Choice D matches our Text.

How to solve this? ​Question 15 asks, “As presented in the passage, Triplett would most likely
agree that human beings [...]?” Because this is a Paired Question, to solve ti we should begin by
going through the answer choices for Question 16, looking for any texts that tell us something
about how Triplett views human beings.

For Question 16, Answer Choice A says, “In dozens of experiments he pushed cyclists to ride
as fast as they could on stationary bikes.” Because this answer choice only tells us about the
experiment Triplett performed, and not any thoughts he has on human beings, we should
eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says, “He concluded that an audience enables people to
‘liberate latent energy’ not normally available when they perform alone.” Because this answer
choice does tell us a possible general view that Triplett has about people, we should keep this
option. Answer Choice C says, “Science doesn’t always tell simple stories, and other
researchers challenged Triplett’s groundbreaking results well into the twentieth century.”
Because this answer choice also doesn’t tell us anything that Triplett believes about human
beings, we should eliminate this option as well. Answer Choice D says, “While some
researchers replicated Triplett’s effect — now known as the social facilitation effect — others
found the opposite effect, known as social inhibition.” Because this answer choice only tells us
about other researcher’s findings, and not Triplett’s views, we should eliminate this option as
well.
[For Question 15, Answer Choice A says …]

17.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because Lines 86-89 say, “But the cockroach athletes
responded very differently to an audience when they were faced with the complex maze,
reaching the goal seventy-six seconds more quickly when they were alone.” These lines tell us
that “when the cockroaches in Zajonc’s experiment attempted to complete the complex maze in
front of a cockroach audience” they performed it slower than when they did without. This most
closely matches Answer Choice B which says that the “cockroaches completed the maze more
slowly than they had without an audience.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because the Passage
doesn’t tell us that the cockroaches became less hesitant in making choices and because,
although we don’t this for sure, if anything the audience made the cockroaches more hesitant,
since they finished the maze more slowly. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Passage
doesn’t tell us that the cockroaches appeared to communicate with their audience. Answer
Choice D is incorrect because the Passage only tells us that the cockroaches performed slower
in the complex maze, and not that they sought out the simpler one.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Based on the passage, which choice best describes
what happened when the cockroaches in Zajonc’s experiment attempted to complete the
complex maze in front of a cockroach audience?” To solve this, we should go back to the
Passage and look for where Zajonc’s experiment occurs and how the cockroaches in the
complex maze performed.

Looking in the final paragraph of the Passage we should notice that Zajonc runs two
experiments, one with a complex maze and the other with a simple one. So, we should make
sure we double check which experiment the question is asking about, which, in this case, is the
one involving the complex maze. Lines 86-89 tell us that, “[...].” Answer Choice A says [...].

18.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because it makes the most sense relative to the other
answer choices. Answer Choice A is incorrect because using the terms “athletic cockroaches”
and “roach spectators” doesn’t directly show how Zajonc’s two experiments are similar. This
answer choice might seem plausible if it’s taken to mean that the terms show the similarity
between Zajnoc’s experiments and Triplett’s experiment with the children. However, this choice
fails in strength relative to some of the others. Answer Choice B says that the author most likely
uses the terms to “stress the skepticism with which the author views the design of the
experiment.” Because these terms don’t show any skepticism, we should eliminate this option.
Answer Choice C says that the author most likely uses the terms to “create a casual tone that
offsets the seriousness of the work being done.” This answer choice might seem plausible,
since these words describe the cockroaches in human terms, which might be said to create a
casual tone, however it fails in strength relative to Answer Choice D.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The author uses the terms ‘athletic cockroaches,’
‘roach spectators,’ and ‘cockroach athletes’ in the last paragraph of the passage most likely to
[...]?” To solve this, we should go back to the Passage where the terms are used and try to
determine what role they play in context and why the author might have included them. Going
back, we find [...]. [Not too much in fact.]

Answer Choice A […]

19.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because the graph shows the first two columns
demonstrating the average time that participants the task while alone, and the first, darker
column shows their performance on the easy task. It rises to about 16 seconds, which falls
between the 15-20 seconds described by Answer Choice B.

20.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because the graph describes results for both attentive
and inattentive audiences, which the Passage doesn’t. Answer Choice A is incorrect because
the Passage does talk about the different times in which participants completed tasks. Answer
Choice B is incorrect because the Passage does compare the effects of an audience on
participants performing complex, or difficult tasks. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the
Passage does compare how individuals performed under conditions where they were alone
compared to when they were being watched by an audience.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Information about which of the following is presented
in the graph but NOT discussed in the passage?” To solve this, we should go back to the graph
and look at the answer choices given, and try to find which items were and were not discussed
in the graph. We can either rely on memory or search through the Passage to determine this.

Answer Choice A says that “the time needed to complete tasks” is not discussed in the
Passage, but throughout it we find mentions of the differences in time that individuals took to
finish tasks. For example, Lines 49 to 51 describe how some participants performed “more
quickly” when they were alone than being watched by an audience, so we should eliminate this
option. Answer Choice B says that information about “difficult tasks” is not discussed in the
Passage, but most of the experiments in the Passage depend on the distinction between easy
and complex, or difficult tasks, so we should eliminate this option as well. Answer Choice C says
the Passage doesn’t provide information about “tasks performed alone,” which is also a central
feature of the experiments in the Passage since they focus on differentials in performance time
when participants are alone versus being watched, so we should eliminate this option as well.
Answer Choice D says that the Passage doesn’t provide information about an “inattentive
audience.” Going back, we should find that indeed it doesn’t, but only compares differences
between results with and without an audience, without focusing on the degree of attention for
these audiences. So, we should Answer Choice D as our correct answer.

SAT #12, Reading 3

Passage Outline

Passage One

“Why Do Zebras Have Stripes? New Study Offers Strong Evidence.”

● the question about why zebras have stripes, and the five possible hypotheses that may
explain it (paragraph one)
● scientists played these out in a statistical model, finding that only one factor consistently
emerged — “to ban biting flies.” (paragraphs two and three)
● how the team conducted their study (paragraphs four to seven)
● the results, which show that stripes emerge where biting flies are most active (paragraph
eight)
● another biologist’s critique of the study for being too broad and belief that the idea will be
developed (paragraph nine and ten)

Passage Two

“Why Do Zebras Have Stripes? It’s Not for Camouflage.”

● another group of researchers conducted a large study about zebra stripes (paragraph
one)
● found that stripes have more to do with temperature than with flies (paragraph two)
● one of the motivating questions for the study (paragraph three)
● more about why the researchers believe zebras need to regulate temperature in
particular (paragraphs four and five)
● further things to research to make their conclusion stronger (paragraphs six and seven)
21.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Lines 31-34 say, “The results showed that the
range of striped species overlaps with where biting flies are most active — regardless of species
and where the stripes occur on the body, according to the study.” This point about striped
species that holds “regardless of species,” most clearly “supports the idea that Caro’s team’s
study may be relevant to animals other than zebras.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because it
focuses specifically on zebras, introducing the question of why they have stripes to begin with
and noting the five main hypotheses offered in answer. Answer Choice B only offers the
conclusion of the study that focused specifically on zebras, and doesn’t offer anything relevant
to other species.. Answer Choice C is incorrect because it only tells us about the methodology
of Caro’s study of zebras, and not anything relevant to other species. [...].
How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Which choice best supports the idea that Caro’s
team’s study may be relevant to animals other than zebras?” To solve this [...].

22.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because Lines 35-39 show a scientist saying of Caro’s
study that its “approach is ‘broad brush,’ and that more specific research may be needed,”
where “broad brush” most nearly means “too general.” This most closely matches Answer
Choice B, which says that the term “revealed that further research will require a specialized
focus.” It especially matches the latter part about “specialized focus,” a point which the Text
itself highlights. Answer Choice A is incorrect because, although the term “broad brush” does
mean “general,” the term isn’t used in the lines to say that the results will be relevant to other
scientific disciplines. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Lines don’t tell us that
unanswerable theoretical questions were raised. Answer Choice D is incorrect because the Text
doesn’t tell us that more data than can be analyzed was collected.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “In describing the new study’s approach as ‘broad
brush’ (line 38), Larison suggests that the study [...]?” To solve this, we should go back to the
Lines mentioned, and try to determine the use of the term in context. The Line reads, “Brenda
Larison [...] said the new study’s approach is ‘broad brush,’ and that more specific research may
be needed.” Because Larison claims that more specific research is needed, we can take her
point to mean that the Caro’s study was too general and unfocused, and we should expect our
answer choice to have something to do with that.

Answer Choice A says that Larison suggests that the study “produced results that are relevant
to an array of scientific disciplines.” Although this roughly matches the designation of “general,”
it too specifically says that she thinks the findings are applicable to other scientific disciplines
which the Text or Passage never say, so we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says
that Larison suggests that the study “revealed that further research will require a specialized
focus.” Because this answer choice does match our understanding of the term, and because the
Text does emphasize the need for more “specific research” or “specialized focus,” we should
keep this option. Answer Choice C says that Larison suggests that the study “raised theoretical
questions that proved unanswerable.” Because this is both a strong and specific claim that
neither the Passage nor the Text tell us, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice D says
that Larison suggests that the study “collected far more data than could be analyzed properly.”
Because this answer choice is also specific, and because neither the Passage or Text tell us
that there was too much data to be analyzed properly, we should eliminate this option. That
leaves us with Answer Choice B, which we should choose as our correct option.

23.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because Lines 65-69 say that “zebras may especially
benefit from an extra cooling system because they digest food much less efficiently than other
grazers in Africa. As such, zebras need to spend longer periods of time out in the heat of the
midday sun, eating more food.” These Lines most clearly tell us why strips are “particularly
beneficial” to zebras, and most nearly match Answer Choice A which says that zebras “endure
greater exposure to the midday sun than other grazers do.” Answer Choice B is incorrect
because the Passage doesn’t tell us that zebras can’t escape predators as easily as other
grazers can, and, moreover, because the Passage doesn’t tell us that stripes would benefit
animals who need to escape predators. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Passage
doesn’t tell us that hot, dry climates that zebras live in doesn’t provide an adequate food supply,
but that they digest food less efficiently and need to spend more time in the sun. Answer Choice
D is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t tell us anything about how zebras defend
themselves against predator attacks.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “According to Larison in Passage 2, the reason stripes
are particularly beneficial to zebras is probably because zebras [...]?” We should note that this
question asks about why stripes are “particularly beneficial” to zebras, and not why they may be
beneficial in general. To solve this question, we should go back to the Passage and look for a
Text that tells us why stripes are particularly beneficial to zebras.

Paragraph Four in Passage Two explains why zebras “may especially benefit from an extra
cooling system” like stripes. It says that, “because they digest food much less efficiently than
other grazers in Africa. As such, zebras need to spend longer periods of time out in the heat of
the midday sun, eating more food.” So, the reason why stripes are particularly beneficial to
zebras is because they have to spend longer hours out in the sun, and we should expect our
answer choice to have something to do with this.

Answer Choice A says [...].


24.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because the fourth paragraph begins by saying, “Other
animals also need to regulate body temperature, or thermoregulate, Larison pointed out, but
zebras may especially benefit from an extra cooling system [...]” and continues to explain why
zebras in particular may need stripes. Because zebras “digest food much less efficiently than
other grazers in Africa,” they “need to spend longer periods of time out in the heat of the midday
sun, eating more food.” This tells us that zebras in particular benefit from stripes because their
digestive systems function less efficiently, and they need to spend more time in the sun. This
most closely matches Answer Choice B which says that the fourth paragraph mainly serves to
“suggest that a weakness in zebra physiology might be mitigated by stripes.” Answer Choice A
is incorrect because the Paragraph doesn’t compare zebras to other animals with stripes, but
only discusses why zebras in particular may need stripes. Answer Choice C is incorrect
because the Paragraph doesn’t tell us that Caro’s research is based on a false premise about
grazing behavior. Answer Choice D is incorrect because the Passage doesn't mention zebras in
warmer and cooler climates in this paragraph, but mentions them later.
How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “In Passage 2, the fourth paragraph (lines 63-69)
mainly serves to [...]?” To solve this, we should go back to fourth paragraph and try to identify its
function as a whole in its context. The first sentence of the paragraph begins by explaining that
other animals also need to regulate body temperature, but that only zebras have an inefficient
digestive system that requires them to spend long periods of time in the sun. This would explain
why zebras have stripes in the first place, because of their inefficient digestive systems, and we
should expect our answer choice to relate to this. Answer Choice A says [...].

25.R.12 & 26.R.12

Answer Choices D and D ​are the correct answers because Lines 77-81 say, “Still, the
researchers have not experimentally tested the theory that black and white stripes may
generate small-scale breezes over a zebra’s body, and some researchers don’t think stripes can
actually create this effect,” which most clearly tells us why Larison’s study “falls short of being
definitive.” These Lines most clearly match Answer Choice D for Question 25, which says that
the study falls short of being definite because Larison “has yet to confirm a key assumption
made in the study,” that stripes actually do allow for cooling. For Question 25, Answer Choice A
is incorrect because Lines 49-53 only tell us about the conclusions of Larison’s study and not a
reason why it they would fail to be definitive. Answer Choice B is incorrect because Lines 54-56
continue to elaborate on the findings of the study without offering a reason why they fail to be
definitive. Answer Choice C is incorrect because Lines 70-76 tell us about the differences
between the stripes of zebras living in cooler climates and those living in warmer ones, a point
that supports the thermoregulation explanation and not a reason for doubting its
conclusiveness. For Question 25, only Answer Choice D matches our Text that Larison’s team
has failed to make the connection between stripes and thermoregulation, a central assumption
behind their conclusion.
How to solve this? ​Question 25 asks, “Passage 2 implies that Larison’s team’s study falls short
of being definitive because Larison [...]?” Because this is a Paired Question, to solve it we
should begin by going through the answer choices for Question 26, looking for any texts that tell
us why Larison’s findings may fall short of being definitive. Also, because this is a scientific
passage, and we’re asked to look for a reason why a conclusion may be incomplete, we should
expect to find a Text that highlights [an unfounded assumption, an uncontrolled variable, etc.].

For Question 26, Answer Choice A says [...].

Lines 77-81 tell us that, “Still, the researchers have not experimentally tested the theory that
black and white stripes may generate small-scale breezes over a zebra’s body, and some
researchers don’t think stripes can actually create this effect.” So, Larison’s conclusions fail to
be definitive because they depend on the fact that stripes provide cooling effects, but that’s a
fact that hasn’t yet been established, so we should expect our answer choice to have something
to do with this.

For Question 25, Answer Choice A says that Larision “disregarded facts that did not support her
conclusions,” a point that the Passage doesn’t make, so we should eliminate this option. Answer
Choice B says that Larision used “research methods that have not proved effective,” which is
also a point that neither our Text nor our Passage makes, so we should eliminate this option.
Answer Choice C says that Larison “did not build on the achievements of prior research on the
subject,” which again is not a point that either or Passage or Text makes, so we should
eliminate this option. Answer Choice D says that Larison “has yet to confirm a key assumption
made in the study,” which does match our Text that tells us that Larison doesn’t yet know if
stripes provide cooling effects, so we should keep this option. That leaves us only with Answer
Choice D which we should choose as our correct answer.

27.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because Lines 82-88 provide a quote by Caro that
saus, “‘I don’t think that you would want to have a lot of black hairs along the top of your back if
you wanted to try to keep cool [...]. It’s kind of the last color that you would want.’” This most
clearly tells us what Caro thinks about black stripes and matches Answer Choice B, which says
that such stripes “might hinder thermoregulation in animals.” Answer Choice A is incorrect
because Caro doesn’t describe black stripes as having an unknown genetic basis in the
Passage. Answer Choice C is incorrect because Caro doesn’t say that black stripes occur in
nature only rarely. Answer D is incorrect because Caro doesn’t say that black stripes are
“aesthetically unappealing.”

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Based on Passage 2, Caro would most likely agree
with which of the following statements about coloration patterns containing black stripes [...]?”
To solve this, we should go back to the Passage and look for any texts from Caro’s point of view
that describe his opinion on coloration patterns with black stripes. Using the Question Order
Rule, we should expect our Answer Choice to come before Line 90.

28.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because the final paragraph of Passage Two says,
“Caro said regions with warmer, wetter climates are particularly susceptible to several species of
disease-carrying flies other than the tsetse flies that the team considered in their study, and that
the relationship the researchers found may actually be a function of fly avoidance, not
thermoregulation.” This Paragraph, along with what we already know about Caro’s ideas, tells
us that Caro most likely uses the phrase to point out that the hot environment where zebras live
also have high rates of flies. This most closely matches Answer Choice B which says that the
phrase “particularly susceptible” serves to “emphasize the abundance of pests where some
zebras live.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because Caro doesn’t challenge Larison’s conception
of zebra’s geographic range. Answer Choice C is incorrect because Caro doesn’t make any
point about the relationship between the terrain which zebras inhabit and how it impacts their
avoidance of predators. Answer Choice D is incorrect because Caro doesn’t make a point about
the heat of zebra’s environment affects them more negatively than other grazers.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “In Passage 2, the phrase ‘particularly susceptible’ (line
90) mainly serves to [...]?” To solve this question, we should go back to the lines and phrase
referenced, looking for the role it plays in its immediate context. Lines 89-94 say that, “Caro said
regions with warmer, wetter climates are particularly susceptible to several species of
disease-carrying flies other than the tsetse flies that the team considered in their study, and that
the relationship the researchers found may actually be a function of fly avoidance, not
thermoregulation.” In context, then, the phrase “particularly susceptible” serves to point out that
warmer regions also happen to have a high rate of disease-carrying flies, favoring the
hypothesis that Caro supports, and we should expect our answer choice to have something to
do with this.

Answer Choice A says [...].


29.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because both Passages look closely at a theory which
explains why zebras have stripes, with the first favoring a theory about the benefits stripes
provide in avoiding flies and the second favoring a theory about the cooling benefits stripes
provide. This most clearly matches Answer Choice C, which says that the purpose of both
passages is to “explore the likely benefit that zebras derive from their stripes.” Answer Choice A
is incorrect because neither Passage explores the evolutionary process that caused stripes to
become widespread among zebra species, but simply takes it as a given fact. Answer Choice B
is incorrect because neither Passage disputes a misconception about zebra stripes, instead
simply offering explanatory theories themselves. Answer Choice D is incorrect because neither
Passage focuses on the specific coloration of zebra species, nor do they compare these
coloration patterns to other species.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The primary purpose of both passages is to consider
studies that [...]?” To solve this, we should have both a general and specific understanding of
each of the Passages. Generally, both Passages can be outlined like this:

Passage One

“Why Do Zebras Have Stripes? New Study Offers Strong Evidence.”

● the question about why zebras have stripes, and the five possible hypotheses that may
explain it (paragraph one)
● scientists played these out in a statistical model, finding that only one factor consistently
emerged — “to ban biting flies.” (paragraphs two and three)
● how the team conducted their study (paragraphs four to seven)
7187048174
● the results, which show that stripes emerge where biting flies are most active (paragraph
eight)
● another biologist’s critique of the study for being too broad and belief that the idea will be
developed (paragraph nine and ten)

Passage Two

“Why Do Zebras Have Stripes? It’s Not for Camouflage.”

● another group of researchers conducted a large study about zebra stripes (paragraph
one)
● found that stripes have more to do with temperature than with flies (paragraph two)
● one of the motivating questions for the study (paragraph three)
● more about why the researchers believe zebras need to regulate temperature in
particular (paragraphs four and five)
● further things to research to make their conclusion stronger (paragraphs six and seven)

Specifically, Passage One [...].

Answer Choice A says [...].

30.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because both researchers in Passage 1 and Passage
2 believe that zebra stripes developed for a purpose other than camouflage, with Caro believing
they evolved to deter flies and Larison believing they evolved to regulate temperature. Answer
Choice B is incorrect because both researchers believe that they have new statistical evidence
that explains the role of stripes, and that the question is less elusive than it was in the past.
Answer Choice C is incorrect because neither researcher believes that stripes developed in
response to predation. Answer Choice D is incorrect because both researchers do believe that
zebra’s geographic location influences stripe pattern, with Caro believing that the environments
in which zebras live have a high prevalence of disease-carrying flies and thus leading to the
evolution of stripes and Larison believing that the temperature of zebra’s environment plays a
role.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Based on the description of Caro’s study in Passage 1
and that of Larison’s study in Passage 2, with which claim regarding zebras would both
researchers most likely agree?” To solve this quickly we should have a decent understanding of
the claims of both researchers, both what they claim and don’t claim, and then eliminate and
select answers based on that. If we’re uncertain about one of the points, then we should go
back to the Passage to look for evidence for or against a claim.

Answer Choice A says that both researchers would agree that “stripes in zebras are used
primarily for a different purpose than to provide camouflage.” Because both researchers present
hypotheses about the purpose of zebra stripes different from camouflage, fly deterrence and
temperature control respectively, and therefore think that the stripes evolved for a purpose other
than camouflage, we should keep this option. Answer Choice B says that both researchers
would agree that “the role of stripes in zebras remains as elusive today as in the past.” Because
both authors believe that they have new evidence about the purpose that stripes serve, and
therefore that they don’t remain as elusive today as in the past, we should eliminate this option.
Answer Choice C says that [...].
31.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because both Caro and Larison build their arguments
based on statistical analysis of multiple variables. Lines 7-9 say, in reference to Caro’s study,
“scientists played all of these theories against each other in a statistical model” and Paragraph 7
of Passage 1 describes the variables Caro considered, ending by stating that “the data was then
entered into a statistical model to find out which variable best explains striping.” Lines 45-48
describe how Larison came to her conclusions by “examining how 29 different-environmental
variables influence the stripe styles of plains zebras at 16 different sites from south to central
Africa.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because neither researcher is described as relying on
experimental data. Answer Choice B is incorrect because neither researcher is said to have
conducted field observations. Answer Choice C is incorrect because, although Passage 1 does
mention that Caro used data from museums and old maps to make his conclusion, Passage 2
doesn’t describe Larison as doing the same. Moreover, even for Caro, the statistical correlations
are the central evidence behind his conclusions and not the specific data from the maps.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “In the passages, Caro and Larison defend their
conclusions by relying on [...]?” To solve this question, we can rely on memory, but it’s more
efficient to go back to the Passages first to identify the evidence or data their each Passage
relies on to build their conclusion. The second paragraph tells us in Paragraph 7 that Caro
looked at a variety of variables, like “where biting flies are found, the ranges of predators like
lions and hyenas, distribution of forests, and other environmental factors that could influence the
evolution of stripes,” and then entered these into a “statistical model to find out which variable
best explains striping.” For Passage 2, Paragraph 1 describes how Larison examined how “29
different environmental variables influence the stripe styles of plains zebras at 16 different sites
from south to central Africa.” Both researchers, then, relied on statistical analysis of multiple
variables to find out what patterns and correlations they could find in the data, and we should
expect our answer to have something to do with that.

Answer Choice A says [...].


SAT #12, Reading 4

Passage Outline

● the author wants to express his opinion on the American people (paragraph 1)
● they have many great qualities, especially when they are cultivated and refined. they
make great friends. (paragraph 2)
● but there are other influences at work (paragraph 3)
● suspicion or “Universal Distrust” is a negative quality of Americans, but one they take
pride in. (paragraph 4)
● an outsider would say that this distrust has negative consequences for the people. any
person in a high position is brought low. Americans are eager to believe negative
rumors. other negative consequences. (paragraph 5)
● how the Americans would answer — that every man thinks for himself. (paragraph 6)

32.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because Lines 39-43 tell Americans that, “by repelling
worthy men from your legislative assemblies, it has bred up a class of candidates for the
suffrage, who, in their very act, disgrace your Institutions and your people’s choice.” These
Lines most clearly match Answer Choice A , which says that Americans’ “wariness of their
elected representatives has led to poor judgment on the part of citizens and to inferior
candidates for public office.” Answer Choice B is incorrect because it is a strong and negative
claim, which is not entirely supported, and because in Line 9 Dickens describes some American
as being “refined.” Answer Choice C is incorrect because Dickens say that Americans’
independence and suspicion has actually led to poorly qualified elected officials. Answer Choice
D is incorrect because it is a strong, specific and negative claim that doesn’t find enough
support in the Passage — Dickens doesn’t go so far as to say the government is “undermined”
or that America has “widespread instability.”

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “One central idea of the passage is that Americans’?”
To solve this question effectively, we should already have a general understanding of the
Passage, so that we can quickly identify errors or correct assertions in the answer choices. We
can also go back to the Passage to try and identify “central ideas,” but because this question
asks about one of the important ideas and not the main idea, we might have trouble finding the
right text in advance.

Answer Choice A says that the Passage says that Amercians’ “wariness of their elected
representatives has led to poor judgment on the part of citizens and to inferior candidates for
public office.” Because this answer choice generally matches the spirit of the Text, a critical
stance towards Americans’ suspicion or wariness, and because we might remember a specific
Text that supports it, we should keep this option. Answer Choice B says that the Passage says
that Americans’ “distrust of both their fellow citizens and foreigners means that Americans will
remain insular and unrefined.” Because this answer choice makes a strong and negative claim,
we should be skeptical of it. Moreover, going back to the Passage, we should notice that in Line
9 Dickens describes some Americans as “refined,” so we should eliminate this option. Answer
Choice C says that the Passage says that Americans’ “perceptiveness and independence have
enabled Americans to be astute judges of their elected officials.” Because this answer choice
contradicts a point that Dickens makes in Lines 39-43, that Americans’ independence has
actually led to a poor choice of candidates, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice D
says that the Passage says that Americans’ “suspiciousness of their politicians has undermined
the government and contributed to widespread instability.” This answer choice is also a fairly
strong and negative claim. If we ask ourselves what could be wrong about this answer choice,
and compare it to Answer Choice A, which is supported by Lines 39-43, we should ultimately
eliminate this option. That leaves us with Answer Choice A, which we should choose as our
correct answer.

33.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Dickens spends Paragraphs 1-3 detailing
some of the positive qualities of Americans, before turning in Paragraphs 4-6 to discussing
some of the negative qualities of Americans, in particular their suspicion. This most closely
matches Answer Choice D, which says that Dickens’s focus shifts from “praising admirable
qualities identified with Americans to expressing concern about certain objectionable American
traits” and has the favorable quality of generality. Answer Choice A is incorrect because Dickens
doesn’t take a defensive stance towards Americans’ refinement, and because he doesn’t make
the specific point that Americans would be better off being more refined or present it as a kind of
concession. Answer Choice B is incorrect because, although Dickens does move towards
questioning why Americans are suspicious in the second half of the Passage, he doesn’t
describe “particular kindnesses shown to him” but only describes positive American qualities in
general terms. Answer Choice C is incorrect because, although Dickens does mention the
tendency of nations to take pride in their flaws, he doesn’t focus on this point and only makes it
to support his general claim about Americans. Moreover, he never makes any clear
recommendations towards Americans to view themselves more critically, even if it seems
plausible that he might.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Over the course of the passage, Dickens’s main focus
shifts from [...]?” To solve this, we should have a general comprehension of the Passage and
also try to identify specific places which could qualify as a shift in focus. Reading over the
Passage, and looking closer to the middle of the text, we can identify two possible logical shifts.
Between Paragraphs 3 and 4, the Passage shifts from positive qualities of Americans to
negative ones. And between Paragraphs 4 and 5, the Passage shifts from the narrator’s
perspective to the perspective of the “stranger” or responding “American.” We can’t know for
sure, but we should expect our answer choice to have something to do with this.

Answer Choice A says [...].


34.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because the word “character” in Lines 2 and 3 can best
be replaced by the word “nature,” since it refers to quality or characteristics of the American
people and their social system.

● But I may be pardoned, if on such a theme as the general ​character​ of the American
people, and the general ​character​ of their social system [...] I desire to express my own
opinions [...].
● But I may be pardoned, if on such a theme as the general ​nature​ of the American
people, and the general ​nature​ of their social system [...] I desire to express my own
opinions [...].

Answer Choice A is incorrect because the Lines aren’t referring to any symbol of the American
people. Answer Choice B is incorrect because the Lines aren’t referring to the rank or status of
the American people. And Answer Choice D is incorrect because the Lines aren’t discussing the
portrayal, or representation of the American people.

[Wow, very descriptive.]

35.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because Lines 52-57 say that “any man who attains a
high place among you, from the President downwards, may date his downfall from that moment;
for any printed lie that any notorious villain pens, although it militate directly against the
character and conduct of a life, appeals at once to your distrust, and is believed.” These Lines
most clearly express the idea that “Americans too readily accept unfounded criticism of their
elected leaders.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because it only describes some of the positive
qualities of Americans, and not that they too easily believe criticism about their leaders. Answer
Choice B is incorrect because it only continues to describe the positive qualities of American’s
and the connections Dickens made with them, without discussing the idea that Americans
accept unfounded criticism of their leaders. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it only asks if
Americans’ suspicion of their leaders is justified, but less directly states how readily they accept
unfounded criticism of their leaders.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Which choice provides the best evidence for the idea
that Americans too readily accept unfounded criticism of their elected leaders?” To solve this,
we should go through each of the answer choices, looking for any texts that tell us that
Americans “too readily accept unfounded criticism of their elected leaders.” Answer Choice A
says [...].
36.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because the word “regard” in Line 18 can be best
replaced by the word “appreciation.” The line most clearly means [...]

● I never was so won upon, as by this class; never yielded up my full confidence and
esteem so readily and pleasurably, as to them; never can make again, in half a year, so
many friends for whom I seem to entertain the regard of half a life.
● I never was so won upon, as by this class; never yielded up my full confidence and
esteem so readily and pleasurably, as to them; never can make again, in half a year, so
many friends for whom I seem to entertain the appreciation of half a life.

Answer Choice A is incorrect because

Answer Choice B is incorrect

Answer Choice D is incorrect

[...?]

37.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Lines 32-37 say that the “Universal Distrust”
or skepticism of the American citizen is something with which he “plumes himself [...] even when
he is sufficiently dispassionate to perceive the ruin it works; and will often adduce it, in spite of
his own reason, as an instance of the great sagacity and acuteness of the people, and their
superior shrewdness and independence.” This tell us that Dickens believes that the American
tendency toward suspicion works against him, “in spite of his own reason.” Answer Choice A is
incorrect because the Passage doesn’t say Americans’ suspicion causes them to be distrustful
of their neighbors or friends, but instead focuses on their distrust of public figures like politicians.
Answer Choice B is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t mention that Americans’ suspicion
emboldens them to challenge each other. Answer Choice C is incorrect because, while Dickens
certainly mentions Americans’ independence and suggests that its problematic, he never
directly qualifies it by saying that its “too great.”

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Dickens suggests that the tendency toward suspicion
exhibited by many Americans is especially problematic because it [...]?” Despite Americans’
suspicion being a general theme throughout the Passage, to solve this question we should go
back to the Passage to look for a specific text that will tell us why the American tendency
towards suspicion is especially problematic. Using the [Question Order Rule] we can expect that
our Text will come between Lines 18 and 35.
Lines 32-37 say that [...].
38.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because the word “reason” in Line 35 can best be
replaced by “judgment,” emphasizing that Americans exercise their suspicion in spite of it begin
a good decision, or against their better judgment.

● [The American citizen] will often adduce it, in spite of his own ​reason​, as an instance of
the great sagacity and acuteness of the people, and their superior shrewdness and
independence.
● [The American citizen] will often adduce it, in spite of his own ​judgment​, as an instance
of the great sagacity and acuteness of the people, and their superior shrewdness and
independence.

Answer Choices B, C and D are incorrect because the Lines don’t mean that Americans will be
suspicious despite their own “explanation,” “cause,” or “defense.”

39.R.12

Answer Choice B ​is the correct answer because Dickens adopts the perspective of “the
stranger” in order to explore the suspicion he finds characteristic of Americans. This most
closely matches Answer Choice B, which says that he adopts the point of view in order to
“dramatize a strong view of a certain American intellectual tendency in an imaginary
conversation.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because it too strongly characterizes the view of the
stranger as “harsh,” and misrepresents Dickens who is sympathetic with the point of view of the
stranger. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t tell us that Dickens has
abandoned his perspective on Americans’ suspicion. Answer Choice D is incorrect because the
exchange between the stranger and the American is an imaginary, dramatization of an idea, not
an actual incident.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “Dickens most likely adopts the point of view of ‘the
stranger’ (line 38) in order to [...]?” To answer this, we should have a general understanding of
the part of the passage where “the stranger” is mentioned, and then work through the answer
choices to eliminate and select from the answers. The stranger is introduced in Line 38, where
the text says, “‘You carry,’ says the stranger, ‘this jealousy and distrust into every transaction of
public life,’” and continues to discuss the character and consequences of American suspicion.
Line 65 seems to present an American answer to the claims the stranger makes. It can be hard
in advance to predict what our answer choice will look like, but we can say that this scene
involving the stranger doesn’t appear to be an actual incident, but seems to be created to
illustrate Dickens’ points, and we might expect our answer choice to refer to that.

Answer Choice A says Dickens adopts this point of view in order to “expose harsh criticisms of
Americans that he believes to be unfounded.” Because this answer choice makes a strong and
negative claim without the requisite support, and because Dickens seems to be sympathetic
and not opposed to the point of view of the stranger, we should eliminate this option. Answer
Choice B says that Dickens adopts this point of view in order to “dramatize a strong view of a
certain American intellectual tendency in an imaginary conversation.” Because this answer
choice does match our understanding of the Text, that Dickens creates an imaginary
conversation to illustrate the quality of American suspicion, we should keep this option. Answer
Choice C says that Dickens adopts this point of view in order to “articulate a view of Americans
that he previously held and has since abandoned.” Because the Passage doesn’t tell us that
Dickens has changed his mind on the issue of American suspicion, we should eliminate this
option. Answer Choice D says that Dickens adopts this point of view in order to “report on a
conversation that he had with a particular American citizen.” Because the scene involving the
stranger isn’t presented as an actual incident, but as an imaginary scene, we should eliminate
this option. That leaves us with Answer Choice B which we should choose as our correct
answer.

40.R.12 & 41.R.12

Answer Choices B and A ​are the correct options because Lines 39-43 say that, “By repelling
worthy men from your legislative assemblies, it has bred up a class of candidates for the
suffrage, who, in their very act, disgrace your Institutions and your people’s choice,” which tells
us clearly something that Dickens thinks about American political leaders. This text, especially
the claim that “worthy men” are repelled, most closely matches Answer Choice B from Question
40. For Question 41, Answer Choice B is incorrect because it tells us more about the fickleness
of American citizens than something about their leaders. Answer Choice C is incorrect because
no answer choice matches the claim that American political leaders are always brought down
after being established. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it has no answer choice to match
it and because it more clearly talks about American citizens than their leadership. For Question
40, Answer Choice A is incorrect because neither our Text nor any part of the Passage
specifically claim that Amercina political leaders are “unresponsive,” even if it does characterize
them as unworthy. Answer Choice C is incorrect because neither our Text nor our Passage tell
us that American political leaders are “too changeable in their judgments.” Answer Choice D is
incorrect because neither the Text nor the Passage takes a positive stance towards American
political leaders, or says specifically that they’re “well positioned to wield their authority.”

How to solve this? ​Question 40 asks, “In the passage, Dickens implies that American political
leaders are often [...]?” Because this is a Paired Question, to solve this we should begin by
going through the answer choices for Question 41 and looking for a text that tells us something
about American political leaders.

For Question 41, Answer Choice A says, “By repelling worthy men from your legislative
assemblies, it has bred up a class of candidates for the suffrage, who, in their very act, disgrace
your Institutions and your people’s choice.” Because this answer choice does tell us something
about American political leaders, we should keep this option. Answer Choice B says, “It has
rendered you so fickle, and so given to change, that your inconstancy has passed into a
proverb.” Because this answer choice more clearly tells us about the American citizens than the
political leaders they choose, we should discount against this option unless no other choices
work. Answer Choice C says, “because you directly reward a benefactor, or a public servant,
you distrust him, merely because he is rewarded; and immediately apply yourselves to find out,
either that you have been too bountiful in your acknowledgment, or he remiss in his deserts.”
Because this answer choice does tell us something about American political leaders, we should
keep this option. Answer Choice D says, “You will strain at a gnat in the way of trustfulness and
confidence, however fairly won and well deserved; but you will swallow a whole caravan of
camels, if they be laden with unworthy doubts and mean suspicions.” This obliquely tells us
something about American political leaders, but only indirectly so we should eliminate this
option unless none of the other choices work.

At this point, we have two possible Texts, either from Answer Choice A or Answer Choice C. We
should make a mental note of the point of either Text, and then bring those with us to Question
40 to help us decide. Answer Choice A, again, tells us that American political leaders are
unworthy men, who disgrace America’s political institutions, so we might expect an answer
related to that. Answer Choice C tells us that American political leaders, once elevated, are
quickly torn down by their citizens, so we might expect an answer choice to relate to this.

For Question 40, Answer Choice A says that Dickens implies that American leaders are
“unresponsive to their constituents.” Because neither of our Texts or Passage tell us that
political leaders are “unresponsive to their constituents,” we should eliminate this option. Answer
Choice B says that Dickens implies that American leaders are “undeserving of the positions they
hold.” Because this answer choice does match one of our Texts, we should keep this option.
Answer Choice C says that Dickens implies that American leaders are “too changeable in their
judgments.” Because none of our Texts match this option, we should eliminate it. Answer
Choice D says that Dickens implies that American leaders are “well-positioned to wield their
authority.” [We should eliminate as well…]

42.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is incorrect because Lines 47-49 say that, “because directly you reward a
benefactor, or a public servant, you distrust him, merely because he is rewarded,” which most
clearly tells us why Americans quickly turn against the elected leaders. This Text most clearly
matches Answer Choice A which says that Americans turn against their elected leaders
because Americans “are suspicious that anyone who is elected might not be worthy of the
honor.” Answer Choice B is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t tell us that Americans have
learned that elected representatives are corrupt, just that they believe that they are. Answer
Choice C is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t say that elected officials abandon their
political platforms after being elected, or that Americans believe that they do. Answer Choice D
is incorrect because, although the Passage does tell us very clearly that American are
distrustful, it doesn’t specifically say that they’re distrustful of the institutions of American
government, but that they’re distrustful of the specific political leaders.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “According to the passage, Amecians quickly turn
against the elected leaders they had recently idolized because Americans [...]?” To solve this
question, we should go back to the Passage to find any texts that tell us why Americans turn
against their elected leaders. Because this is the last question for the Passage, we should
expect our text to come later in the Passage.

Lines 45-59 tell us about the American tendency to go against their elected leaders, while Lines
47-49 tell us precisely why they do, saying “because directly you reward a benefactor, or a
public servant, you distrust him, merely because he is rewarded.” This tells us that Americans
turn against their political leaders simply because they distrust anybody who’s been reward, and
we should expect our answer choice to have something to do with this option.

Answer Choice A tell us that [...].

SAT #12, Reading 5

Passage Outline

● “Gut Bugs May Boost Flu Shot’s Effects”


● new study shows that immune response of vaccines depend on gut bacteria (paragraph
1)
● how this evidence was first found (paragraph 2)
● questions about how this effect works and some hypotheses (paragraph 3)
● another study to determine which hypothesis is true (paragraphs 4 and 5)
● another study which supports the finding (paragraph 6)
● further experiments and questions to answer (paragraph 7)

43.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because the Passage discusses the experiments
behind and questions surrounding the finding that gut bacteria affects a vaccine’s effectiveness.
Answer Choice A most clearly matches this and says that the purpose of the passage is to,
“discuss research on a factor that influences vaccine effectiveness.” Answer Choice B is
incorrect because the passage doesn’t discuss focus on the development of vaccines
themselves or their safety and efficacy. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the Passage
looks at the effect of bacteria on a vaccine’s effectiveness and not its role in causing illness.
Answer Choice D is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t discuss the genetic components of
the flu virus.
How to solve this? ​Question 43 asks, “the primary purpose of the passage is to [...]?” To solve
this, we should have both a general understanding of the Passage as well as identify any
specific sentences that tell us the purpose of the passage. In general, the Passage can be
broken down like this:

● new study shows that immune response of vaccines depend on gut bacteria (paragraph
1)
● how this evidence was first found (paragraph 2)
● questions about how this effect works and some hypotheses (paragraph 3)
● another study to determine which hypothesis is true (paragraphs 4 and 5)
● another study which supports the finding (paragraph 6)
● further experiments and questions to answer (paragraph 7)

Specifically, we can look at the title of the Passage, “Gut Bugs May Boost Flu Shot’s Effects,” as
well as the introduction which ends by telling us that, “the findings could help explain variation in
the response to the vaccine and suggest ways to maximize its effectiveness.” Taking all these
together, then, we can say in advance that the purpose of the Passage is to look at findings that
describe how gut bacteria affects the effectiveness of vaccines, and should expect our answer
choices to have something to do with this.

Answer Choice A says that, [...].

44.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because the words “curious” and “unexpected” in the
second paragraph tell us that the scientists were surprised by their findings, and specifically
were surprised by the fact that, “in a long list of genes associated with strong vaccine response,
the researchers found an unexpected one: the gene that codes for a protein called toll-like
receptor 5 (TLR5).” This most clearly matches Answer Choice C which says that Pulendran and
his colleagues were “surprised to find a link between the expression of the gene coding for
TLR5 and relatively high counts of trivalent vaccine-specific antibodies.” Answer Choice A is
incorrect because, although it is true that Pulendran and his colleagues didn’t anticipate their
findings, it wasn’t because they were surprised by the prevalence of gene coding for those who
simply received the vaccine, but instead by the prevalence in those who had a strong immune
response. Answer Choice B is incorrect because the Passage doesn’t say that they had any
assumption about the gene-coding for TLR5 and an immune response, and especially not about
a weak response for those who have the gene. Answer Choice D is incorrect because the
Passage doesn’t tell us that they had previously overlooked this connection.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “In the second paragraph (lines 10-26), the author uses
the words ‘curious’ and ‘unexpected’ primarily to suggest that Pulendran and his colleagues
[...]?” To solve this, we should go back to the Passage to look for how those words operate in
context and the point that they help the second paragraph to make. Going back we see [...].
45.R.12 & 46.R.12

Answer Choices B and C ​are the correct answers because Lines 23-26 say that, “In a long list
of genes associated with strong vaccine response, the researchers found an unexpected one:
the gene that codes for a protein called toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5),” which tells us something
clearly about the subjects “who had strong immune responses to the trivalent vaccine.” This
Text most closely matches Answer Choice B from Question 45, which says that these subjects
“had a similar pattern of gene expression that was not found in subjects with weak responses to
the vaccine.” For Question 46, Answer Choice A is incorrect because it only tells us the
preliminary findings of the research study, without focusing clearly on the human subjects who
exhibited a strong immune response. Answer Choice B is incorrect because it only tells us
about what the researchers were originally looking for in their study and not something about
the subjects. Answer Choice D is incorrect because it only describes what TLR5 is, and not
about subjects with a strong immune response. For Question 45, Answer Choice A is incorrect
because, while the Passage does elsewhere imply that subjects with a strong immune response
have higher counts of white blood cells in response to the trivalent vaccine than other subjects,
it doesn’t compare their reaction to reactions from other vaccines. Answer Choice C is incorrect
because neither the Passage nor our Text tell us that these subjects showed immunity to other
flu strains. Answer Choice D is incorrect because, while the Passage does suggest that the
effect of bacteria on immune response occurs in both mice and humans, it never tells us that the
human subjects showed bacteria that had only previously been seen in mice.

How to solve this? ​Question 45 asks, “Which statement regarding subjects who had strong
immune responses to the trivalent vaccine can be most reasonably inferred from the passage?”
Because this is a Paired Question, to solve this we should first go through the answer choices
for Question 46, looking for any texts that tell us about the “subjects who had strong immune
responses to the trivalent vaccine.”

For Question 46, Answer Choice A says [...].


47.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Lines 32-35 say, “Maybe, the group thought,
B cells — the white blood cells that produce antibodies — receive a signal from bacteria that
boosts their activity,” and the following Lines tell us that, “to explore that possibility, the
researchers designed a new study using mice.” This most clearly tells us “the hypothesis that
Pulendran’s group tested in their experiment with mice” and matches Answer Choice D which
says that the group tested whether “the strength of the immune response following vaccination
is related to the white blood cells’ detection of signals from intestinal bacteria.” Answer Choice A
is incorrect because the Passage tells us that the scientists wanted to test whether gut bacteria
boosted B cells’ production of antibodies, not whether they required them. Answer Choice B is
incorrect because neither the Passage nor our Text tell us that the scientists wanted to find out
whether “vaccines containing active viruses must be accompanied by adjuvants” to activate a
strong response. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the mechanism the Passage describes
and which the scientists wanted to test doesn’t say that vaccines depend on TLR5 to stimulate
flagellin activity, but that vaccines are boosted when TLR5 can detect already existent flagellin
activity.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “According to the passage, which statement best
explains the hypothesis that Pulendran’s group tested in their experiment with mice?” To solve
this, we should go back to the Passage to find a text that tells us the hypothesis they wanted to
test with the mice. Using the [Question Order Rule], we should expect our Text to come before
Line 63 and probably somewhere after Line 20. Lines 36 tell us, “to explore that possibility, the
researchers designed a new study using mice,” which tells us what the scientists wanted to test
in their study with mice. Looking back at the previous sentence to find out what “that possibility”
refers to, we find Lines 32-35 which say, “Maybe, the group thought, B cells — the white blood
cells that produce antibodies — receive a signal from bacteria that boosts their activity,” and the
following Lines tell us that, “to explore that possibility, the researchers designed a new study
using mice.”
This tells us that [...].
48.R.12

Answer Choice C ​is the correct answer because the last paragraph makes the point that
uncertainties around the mechanism talked about remain, and the question about “where and
how the interaction happens ‘is a huge mystery [...].’” Answer Choice C most clearly matches
this and says that the main purpose of the last paragraph is to “emphasize the fact that further
research into the nature of the vaccine response is necessary.” Answer Choice A is incorrect
because no new discoveries are mentioned in the last paragraph and because the Passage
doesn’t ever question the importance of the vaccine response. Answer Choice B is incorrect
because the scientists express uncertainty about the exact mechanism at work, but not about
their data at large. Answer Choice D is incorrect because, although the last paragraph does
mention the need for further research, it never explicitly urges other scientists to continue the
work.

How to solve this? ​The Question asks, “The main purpose of the last paragraph is to [...]?” To
solve this, we should go back to the last paragraph, understand its meaning and then think
about its purpose in the Passage as a whole.

The last paragraph begins by making a claim about the uncertainty of the bacteria involved in
the vaccine response, and a possible explanation. Then Pulendran offers his own explanation,
until finally concluding that “where and how the interaction happens ‘is a huge mystery,’ he
says. ‘We don’t have the full answer.’” This paragraph then, raises some questions about the
topic of the study and makes the case that further research is required. This is common for the
conclusion of science-based Passages, and we should predict that our answer will have
something to do with the uncertainties that remain and the necessity for further study.

Answer Choice A says that the purpose of the last paragraph is to “question the overall
importance of the vaccine response in light of new discoveries.” However, because the question
in the last paragraph is about the mechanism behind the bacteria and immune response and not
about the overall importance of the vaccine, we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B
says that the main purpose of the paragraph is to “suggest that the researchers who studied the
vaccine response were uncertain about their data.” However, because the uncertainty in the
paragraph concerns the mechanism and not the overall data, we should eliminate this option.
Answer Choice C says that the purpose of the paragraph is to “emphasize the fact that further
research into the nature of the vaccine response is necessary.” Because this answer choice is
general, and tells us that the paragraph demonstrates the need for further research, we should
keep this option. Answer Choice D says that the purpose of the paragraph is to “urge other
scientists to consider furthering the existing work regarding the vaccine response.” Because the
paragraph never explicitly urges other scientists to continue the work, we should eliminate this
option as well. That leaves us with Answer Choice C which we should as our correct answer.
49.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because the word “prompting” in Line 63 means
starting, or “inciting,” and emphasizes which bacteria begins the vaccine response.

● No specific type of bacteria seemed more important than another in ​prompting​ the
vaccine response.
● No specific type of bacteria seemed more important than another in ​inciting​ the vaccine
response.

Answer Choice B is incorrect because it doesn’t make sense to say that bacteria are
“suggesting” a vaccine response. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the line doesn’t say
that the bacteria is “shortening” the vaccine response. And Answer Choice D is incorrect
because the line doesn’t say that the bacteria are “refreshing” the response.

50.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is the correct answer because the column which corresponds to “germ-free
mice 7 days after vaccination” is the fourth column, which rises to about .20.

51.R.12

Answer Choice A ​is incorrect because both the dotted and solid lines in Figure 2, which refer to
the mice without Tlr5 and control mice, respectively, show an increase in antibodies between 7
and 28 days. Answer Choice B is incorrect because the mice without Tlr5 showed a relative
decrease from their highest point at 85 days. Answer Choice C is incorrect because the control
mice continued increasing after 28 days. And Answer Choice D is incorrect because neither
type of mouse reached their lowest point 85 days after vaccination.

52.R.12

Answer Choice D ​is the correct answer because Figure 1 shows the relative concentration of
antibodies for different types of mice 7 days after vaccination. Figure 2 shows that from 7 days
onwards, both control mice and mice without Tlr5 continued to grow in their relative
concentration up to and past 14 days. This makes it most likely that the concentration levels for
all four mice would also be higher and most closely matches Answer Choice D which says, “The
bars for all four groups of mice would be higher.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because Figure 1
shows mice with Tlr5 increasing in their relative concentration of antibodies from 7 to 14 days,
not decreasing. Answer Choice B is incorrect because Figure 1 never shows mice with Tlr5
exceeding the control mice in terms of their relative concentration of antibodies. Answer Choice
C is incorrect because, while it is true that bar for the control mice would be higher, it’s not true
that it alone would be higher.