# GMAT Sentence Correction Meaning

In this article, we’re going to explore a standard GMAT sentence correction question that involves the relationships between nouns and verbs from an Official Guide to the GMAT diagnostic exam practice problem. You can either read this article or watch this GMAT sentence correction video on YouTube.

## GMAT Sentence Correction Practice Question from GMAC

In 1995 Richard Stallman, a well-known critic of the patent system, testified in Patent Office hearings that, to test the system, a colleague of his had managed to win a patent for one of Kirchhoff's laws, an observation about electric current first made in 1845 and now included in virtually every textbook of elementary physics.

(A) laws, an observation about electric current first made in 1845 and

(B) laws, which was an observation about electric current first made in 1845 and it is

(C) laws, namely, it was an observation about electric current first made in 1845 and

(D) laws, an observation about electric current first made in 1845, it is

(E) laws that was an observation about electric current, first made in 1845, and is

As we delve into the problem, keep in mind that one of the most important concepts in sentence correction is comprehension. In other words, meaning takes precedence over grammar in this kind of problem.

### As is the case with every GMAT strategy, the first step is to set up your scratch pad.

To avoid confusion down the line, write down the question number first. Next, write the corresponding letters for each answer choice in a vertical line so you can easily mark them as you work through the process of elimination. Finally, draw a line to designate the space in which you will articulate the particular issue you will later identify within the sentence so that you don't lose sight of it as you work through the problem.

We can begin by noting that the subject of the sentence, as suggested by the placement of the underlines, is “one of Kirchhoff's laws.” With this in mind, we’ll need to make sure that our answer is built around this subject, which is defined as “an observation about electric current first made in 1845 and now included in virtually every textbook of elementary physics.” Evidently, there's nothing wrong with the intended meaning of the sentence as it's written, as represented by option (A).

Moving forward to the answer choices, note the recurring use of the pronoun “it,” in (B), (C), and (D). This repeating pattern suggests that the primary issue we are being asked to evaluate in this question is pronouns, which we can write down on the blank line we drew earlier to note the error type.

Looking at (B), the placement of the word “it” wrongly suggests that “is now included in virtually every textbook of elementary physics,” refers to the “observation,” rather than “one of Kirchhoff's laws.” This changes the intended meaning in a way that is absurd, so we can confidently eliminate this option from our pool of viable answers.

Moving on to (C), the placement of “it,” incorrectly indicates that the “observation about electric current first made in 1845” was the “patent,” rather than “one of Kirchhoff's laws.” Again, the flawed use of a pronoun in this question changes the sentence’s meaning in an absurd way. This answer is therefore also disqualified.

The placement of “it,” in option (D) insinuates that the “patent” was “included in virtually every textbook of elementary physics,” rather than “one of Kirchhoff's laws.” So for the same reason as the previous two options, this answer is not viable.

Finally, although answer (E) does not present us with a pronoun error, it nonetheless changes the meaning of the sentence by changing the order of the phrases in an erroneous way. We can therefore count this option out as well.

### Conclusion

Through the process of elimination, we can see that the correct answer is (A), which clearly conveys the intended meaning of the sentence.