Grammar - 13-15 Style, Tone, and Clarity

This is a quiz for style, tone, and clarity in the 13-15 ACT range.


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For all its problems, the first 10 years of the 21st century were in fact humanity's finest, a time when they1 lived better, longer, more peaceful, and more prosperous lives than ever before.

Consider2 that in 1990, roughly half the global population lived on less than $1 a day; by 2007, the proportion had shrunk to 28 percent -- and it will be lower still by the close of 2010. That's because, though the financial crisis briefly stalled progress on income growth, that same crisis3 was just a hiccup in the decade's relentless GDP climb. Indeed, average worldwide incomes are at their highest levels ever, at roughly $10,600 a year -- and have risen by as much as a quarter since 2000. Some 1.3 billion people now live on more than $10 a day, suggesting the continued expansion of the global middle class. Even better news is that poor people like those who live in sub-Saharan Africa have had faster growth4 than across the world as a whole.

There are still 1 billion people who go to bed each night desperately hungry, but prices for cereal are now only a mere fraction of what they were5 in the 1960s and 1970s. That, alongside continued income growth, is why the proportion of the developing world's population classified as "undernourished" fell from 34 percent in 1970 to 17 percent in 2008, even at the height of a global spike in food prices. Agricultural productivity6, too, continues to climb: From 2000 to 2008, cereal yields increased at nearly twice the rate of population growth in the developing world. And though famine continues to threaten places such as Zimbabwe, a whole lot of people are eating more7 -- and better -- each day....

The overwhelming global picture is of better health: From 2000 to 2008, child mortality dropped more than 17 percent, and the average person added another two years to their life expectancy8, now just one shy of the biblical standard of three score and 10. We can thank improved literacy, which has played a role in spreading vital knowledge in low-income societies, for some of these health gains. More than four-fifths of its population9 can now read and write -- including more than two-thirds of Africans.The proportion of the world's young people who go on to university climbed from below one-fifth to above a quarter from 2000 to 2007 alone. And progress in education has been particularly rapid for women, one sign of growing gender equity....

Even the wars of the last 10 years, tragic as they have been, are minor compared with the violence and destruction of decades and centuries past. The amount of armed conflicts10 -- and their death toll -- has continued to fall since the end of the Cold War. Worldwide, combat casualties fell 40 percent from 2000 to 2008.

Perhaps technology also helps account for the striking disconnect between the reality of worldwide progress and the perception of global decline. We're more able than ever to witness the tragedy of millions of our fellow humans on television or online. And, rightly so, we're more outraged than ever that suffering continues in a world of such technological wonder and economic plenty.

Nonetheless, if you had to choose a decade in history in which to be alive, the first of the 21st century would undoubtedly be it. More people lived lives of greater freedom, security, longevity, and wealth than ever before.

1. Which is the best choice?


B. more people

C. the great addition of more people

D. just about every single person

2. Which is the best choice?


B. You really need to consider

C. One must take heed to consider

D. In consideration

3. Which is the best choice?


B. he

C.the previously mentioned crisis

D. it

4. Which is the best choice?


B. growth has been faster in Africa

C. growth has been faster in poor places like sub-Saharan Africa

D. poor people have seen faster growth

5. Which is the best choice?


B. people used to get so much less for what they spent on things like cereal

C.they are not paying as much as they once paid for cereal

D. cereal prices are now a fraction of what they were

6. Which is the best choice?


B. It

C. The amount of production in agriculture

D. The productivity of agricultural endeavors

7. Which is the best choice?


B. hundreds of millions of people are eating more

C. they are eating more

D. many more people all over other places in the world are eating more

8. Which is the best choice?


B. the average people added another two years to their life expectancy

C. the average person added another two years to his or her life expectancy

D. the average life expectancy added another two years to the average person’s life

9. Which is the best choice?


B. the population of the world

C. the world’s population

D. the people living in the world

10. Which is the best choice?


B.The number of people involved in armed conflicts


D. The number of armed conflicts