SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 85: Answer and Explanation

Next steps

Question: 85

10. The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible -------.

A. enduring . . hardship
B. flaunting . . prosperity
C. undermining . . image
D. calculating . . successes
E. moderating . . consumption

Correct Answer: E

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer E :

Choice (E) is correct. "Complexity" means intricacy. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible complexity." Since the word "instead" indicates that what follows will contrast in meaning with "solving nature's mysteries," it makes sense to say that biology has not solved nature's mysteries but has instead uncovered new, perhaps unexplained, intricacies.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Tranquility" means freedom from commotion or disturbance. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible tranquility." Since the word "instead" indicates that what follows will contrast in meaning with "solving nature's mysteries," it makes sense to say that biology, rather than solving nature's mysteries, has uncovered nature's lack of commotion or disturbance.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Immobility" means to be motionlessness. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible immobility." Since the word "instead" indicates that what follows will contrast in meaning with "solving nature's mysteries," it makes sense to say that biology, rather than solving nature's mysteries, biology has uncovered nature's lack of movement.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer C :

Choice (C) is incorrect. "Consistency" means uniformity. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible consistency." Since the word "instead" indicates that what follows will contrast in meaning with "solving nature's mysteries," it makes sense to say that biology has uncovered nature's uniformity, or predictability, rather than solving its mysteries.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Desirability" means pleasing. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The study of biology, once considered the key to solving nature's mysteries, has instead served to emphasize nature's incredible desirability." Since the word "instead" indicates that what follows will contrast in meaning with "solving nature's mysteries," it makes sense to say that biology has uncovered nature's pleasing qualities rather than solving its mysteries.

Previous       Next