SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 167: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 167

12. The professor's ------- lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material.

A. perspicacious
B. exhaustive
C. cogent
D. scintillating
E. disjointed

Correct Answer: E

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer E :

Choice (E) is correct. "Disjointed" means out of order and incoherent. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The professor's disjointed lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material." A "disjointed," or incoherent, lecture would most likely confuse the students more than it would help them to understand the difficult material.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Perspicacious" means keen or having acute mental abilities. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The professor's perspicacious lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material." It is unlikely that a lecture could be both "perspicacious" and confusing to the students.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Exhaustive" means thorough. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The professor's exhaustive lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material." There is no reason to believe that an "exhaustive," or thorough, lecture would confuse the students more than it would help them to understand the difficult material. On the contrary, an exhaustive lecture would be likely to clarify the material.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer C :

Choice (C) is incorrect. "Cogent" means relevant. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The professor's cogent lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material." There is no reason to believe that a "cogent," or relevant, lecture would confuse the students more than it would help them to understand the difficult material.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Scintillating" means lively and witty. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The professor's scintillating lecture on American history served more to confuse the students than to clarify the difficult material." There is no reason to believe that a "scintillating," or lively, lecture would confuse the students more than it would help them to understand the difficult material.

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