Free GMAT Sample Questions: GMAT Practice Test
The following is a complete practice test for GMAT verbal
Time: 75 Minutes
sciences are less likely
than other intellectual enterprises to
get credit for their accomplishments.
Arguably, this is so because the
(5) theories and conceptual constructs of
the social sciences are especially
accessible: human intelligence
apprehends truths about human affairs
with particular facility. And the
(10) discoveries of the social sciences,
once isolated and labeled, are
quickly absorbed into conventional
wisdom, whereupon they lose their
distinctiveness as scientific advances.
(15) This underappreciation of the social
sciences contrasts oddly with what many
see as their overutilization. Game
theory is pressed into service in studies
of shifting international alliances.
(20) Evaluation research is called
upon to demonstrate successes or
failures of social programs.Models from
economics and demography become
the definitive tools for examining the
(25) financial base of social security. Yet
this rush into practical applications
is itself quite understandable: public
policy must continually be made, and
policymakers rightly feel that even
(30) tentative findings and untested theories
are better guides to decision-making
than no findings and no theories at all.
1. The author is primarily concerned with
(A) advocating a more modest view,
and less widespread utilization, of
the social sciences
analyzing the mechanisms for
translating discoveries into
applications in the social
dissolving the air of paradox
inherent in human beings studying
explaining a peculiar dilemma
that the social sciences are in
maintaining a strict separation
between pure and applied social
2. Which of the following is a social science discipline that
the author mentions as being possibly overutilized?
(A) Conventional theories of social change
(B) Game theory
(C) Decision-making theory
(D) Economic theories of international alliances
(E) Systems analysis
3. It can be inferred from the passage that,
when speaking of the "overutilization"
(line 17) of the social sciences, the
author is referring to the
premature practical application of
social science advances
habitual reliance on the social
sciences even where common sense
would serve equally well
practice of bringing a greater
variety of social science disciplines
to bear on a problem than the nature
of the problem warrants
use of social science constructs
by people who do not fully understand
tendency on the part of social
scientists to recast everyday truths
in social science jargon
4. The author confronts the claim
that the social sciences are being
proof that overextensions of social
science results are self-correcting
evidence that some public policy
is made without any recourse to social
science findings or theories
a long list of social science
applications that are perfectly
appropriate and extremely fruitful
the argument that overutilization
is by and large the exception rather
than the rule
the observation that this practice
represents the lesser of two evils under
5. Wearing either a lap seat belt or a shoulder-and-lap seat
passengers from the major types of injuries incurred in head-on
collisions. In such collisions, however, passengers wearing lap
alone frequently suffer internal injuries caused by the seat
Such injuries do not occur when shoulder-and-lap seat belts are
Which of the following conclusions about passengers involved in
automobile collisions is best supported by the statements above?
No type of seat belt provides passengers with adequate
protection from injury.
The injuries that passengers most frequently incur are internal
Head-on automobile collisions cause more injuries to passengers
than any other kind of automobile accident does.
It is safer for passengers to wear a shoulder-and-lap seat belt
than to wear a lap seat belt alone.
It is safer for passengers to wear no seat belt than to wear a
lap seat belt alone.
6. Nonprescription sunglasses shield the wearer's eyes from
sunlight. Squinting, however, provides protection from
ultraviolet rays that is
at least as good as the protection from nonprescription
sunglasses. There is,
therefore, no health advantage to be gained by wearing
rather than squinting.
Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens support
for the conclusion
Many opticians offer prescription sunglasses that not only
screen out ultraviolet sunlight but also provide corrective vision.
Some nonprescription sunglasses provide less protection from
ultraviolet sunlight than does squinting.
Squinting strains facial muscles and causes headaches and
Many people buy sunglasses because they feel that sunglasses are
Some people squint even when they are wearing sunglasses.
7.Once positioned in space, the Hubble Space Telescope will
capture light from sources twenty times fainter compared to
those that can be detected by ground-based instruments.
(A) compared to those that can be detected
(B) compared to those they can detect
(C) than that can be detected
(D) than those that can be detected
(E) than those detecting
8.One reason why more young people lose their virginity
during the summer than at other times of the year undoubtedly is
because school vacations give adolescents more free time.
(A) One reason why more young people lose their virginity during
the summer than at other times of the year undoubtedly is
(B) If young people lose their virginity more during the summer
than other seasons, it is undoubtedly because
(C) One undoubtable reason that young people lose their
virginity more during the summer than other times is
(D) One reason more young people lose their virginity during the
summer than at other times of the year is undoubtedly that
(E) Young people lose their virginity more often during the
summer undoubtedly because, for one reason,
9.No less an authority than Walter Cronkite has reported that
half of all Americans never read a book.
(A) No less an authority than
(B) Nonetheless an authority
(C) Nevertheless authoritarian
(D) Not less an authority than
(E) An authority not less than
10.Nowhere in Prakta is the influence of modern European
architecture more apparent than their government buildings.
(A) more apparent than their
(B) so apparent as their
(C) more apparent than in its
(D) so apparent than in their
(E) as apparent as it is in its
The term "Ice Age" may give a wrong
impression. The epoch that geologists
know as the Pleistocene and that
spanned the 1.5 to 2.0 million years
(5) prior to the current geologic epoch was
not one long continuous glaciation, but
a period of oscillating climate with
ice advances punctuated by times of
interglacial climate not very different
(10) from the climate experienced now. Ice
sheets that derived from an ice cap cen-
tered on northern Scandinavia reached
southward to Central Europe. And Beyond
the margins of the ice sheets, climatic
(15) oscillations affected most of the rest
of the world; for example, in the
deserts, periods of wetter conditions
(pluvials) contrasted with drier,
interpluvial periods. Although the time
(20) involved is so short, about 0.04 percent
of the total age of the Earth, the
amount of attention devoted to the
Pleistocene has been incredibly large,
probably because of its immediacy, and
(25) because the epoch largely coincides
with the appearance on Earth of humans
and their immediate ancestors.
There is no reliable way of dating
much of the Ice Age. Geological dates
(30) are usually obtained by using the rates
of decay of various radioactive elements
found in minerals. Some of these rates
are suitable for very old rocks but
involve increasing errors when used for
(35) young rocks; others are suitable for
every young rocks and errors increase
rapidly in older rocks. Most of the Ice
Age spans a period of time for which no
element has as appropriate decay rate.
(40) Nevertheless, researchers of the
pleistocene epoch have developed all
sorts of more or less fanciful model sche-
mes of how they would have arranged
the Ice Age had they been in charge
(45) of events. For example, an each
classification of Alpine glaciation
suggested the existence there of four
glaciations, named the Gunz, Mindel,
Riss, and Wurm. This succession was
(50) based primarily on a series of deposits
and events not directly related to
glacial and interglacial periods, rather
than on the more usual modern method
of studying biological remains found
(55) in interglacial beds themselves
interstratified within glacial deposits.
Yet this succession was forced willy-
nilly onto the glaciated parts of
Northern Europe, where there are
(60) partial successions of true glacial
ground moraines and interglacial
deposits, with hopes of ultimately
piecing them together to provide a
complete Pleistocene succession.
(65) Eradication of the Alpine nomenclature
is still proving a Herculean task.
There is no conclusive evidence about
the relative length, complexity, and
temperatures of the various glacial and
(70) interglacial periods. We do not know
whether we live in a postglacial period
or an interglacial period. The chill
truth seems to be that we are already
past the optimum climate of postglacial
(75) time. Studies of certain fossil
distributions and of the pollen of
certain temperate plants suggest
decreases of a degree or two in both
summer and winter temperatures and,
(80) therefore, that we may be in the
declining climatic phase leading to
glaciation and extinction.
11. In the passage, the author is
primarily concerned with
searching for an accurate method
of dating the Pleistocene epoch
discussing problems involved in
providing an accurate picture of the
declaring opposition to the use of
the term "Ice Age" for the Pleistocene
criticizing fanciful schemes about
what happened in the Pleistocene epoch
refuting the idea that there is no
way to tell if we are now living in an
12. The "wrong impression" (lines 1-2) to
which the author refers is the idea
climate of the Pleistocene epoch
was not very different from the climate
we are now experiencing
climate of the Pleistocene epoch
was composed of periods of violent
Pleistocene epoch consisted of
very wet, cold periods mixed with
very dry, hot periods
Pleistocene epoch comprised one
period of continuous glaciation during
which Northern Europe was covered with
Pleistocene epoch has no long periods
during which much of the Earth was
covered by ice
13. According to the passage, one of the
reasons for the deficiencies of the "early
classification of Alpine glaciation"
(lines 45-46) is that it was
derived from evidence that was only
tangentially related to times of actual
based primarily on fossil remains
rather than on actual living organisms
an abstract, imaginative scheme of
how the period might have been structured
based on unmethodical examinations
of randomly chosen glacial biological
derived from evidence that had been
haphazardly gathered from glacial
deposits and inaccurately evaluated
14. Which of the following does the
passage imply about the "early
classification of Alpine glaciation"
It should not have been applied
as widely as it was.
It represents the best possible
scientific practice, given the tools
available at the time.
It was a valuable tool, in its time,
for measuring the length of the four
periods of glaciation.
It could be useful, but only as a
general guide to the events of the
It does not shed any light on the
methods used at the time for investigating
periods of glaciation.
15. It can be inferred from the passage
that an important result of producing
an accurate chronology of events of
the Pleistocene epoch would be a
clearer idea of the origin of the
clearer picture of the Earth during
the time that humans developed
clearer understanding of the reasons
for the existence of deserts
more detailed understanding of how
radioactive dating of minerals works
firmer understanding of how the
northern polar ice cap developed
16. The author refers to deserts
primarily in order to
illustrate the idea that an
interglacial climate is marked by
oscillations of wet and dry periods
illustrate the idea that what
happened in the deserts during the
Ice Age had far-reaching effects even
on the ice sheets of Central and
illustrate the idea that the
effects of the Ice Age's climatic
variations extended beyond the
areas of ice
support the view that during the
Ice Age sheets of ice covered some
of the deserts of the world
support the view that we are
probably living in a postglacial
17. The author would regard the idea
that we are living in an interglacial
18.In the 1980’s the rate of increase of the minority
population of the United States was nearly twice as fast as the
(A) twice as fast as
(B) twice as fast as it was in
(C) twice what it was in
(D) two times faster than that of
(E) two times greater than
19.In Holland, a larger percentage of the gross national
product is spent on defense of their coasts from rising seas
than is spent on military defense in the United States.
(A) In Holland, a larger percentage of the gross national
product is spent on defense of their coasts from rising seas
than is spent on military defense in the United States.
(B) In Holland they spend a larger percentage of their gross
national product on defending their coasts from rising seas than
the United States does on military defense.
(C) A larger percentage of Holland’s gross national product is
spent on defending their coasts from rising seas than the United
States spends on military defense.
(D) Holland spends a larger percentage of its gross national
product defending its coasts from rising seas than the military
defense spending of the United States.
(E) Holland spends a larger percentage of its gross national
product on defending its coasts from rising seas than the United
States does on military defense.
20. Studies of workplace safety in construction and manufacturing
firms have found
that the rate of injuries tends to rise when the firms' work
loads increase. Since
inexperienced workers are often hired by these firms when work
loads increase, the
higher rate of injuries is undoubtedly due to a higher accident
rate for inexperienced
Which of the following statements, if true, would most weaken
the conclusion drawn
Many of the inexperienced workers hired when the firms' work
loads increase are hired only for temporary positions.
The studies of workplace safety were focused only on injuries
that resulted in lost workdays.
There is a much higher rate of injury in construction firms than
in manufacturing firms.
The accident rate for experienced workers tends to increase
whenever the firms' work loads increase.
Firms that hire inexperienced workers for potentially dangerous
jobs are required to provide them with training.
21. The facts show that the fear of flying in airplanes is not
rational. In 1986
alone, there were 46,000 fatalities in highway accidents, but
from 1980 to the
present an average of only 77 per year in accidents on major
The rate for regional airlines was only slightly higher.
If the evidence cited above is accurate, which of the following
would be most
important to know in order to evaluate the force of that
Whether repeated airplane travel allays fear of flying in
Whether regional and domestic airlines spend the same average
amount of time
per aircraft on maintenance
How many people reported a fear of flying in airplanes that was
to prevent them from traveling by air
How many people per year have traveled by highway and how many
by air since 1980
How much higher the accident rate has been for regional airlines
major domestic airlines since 1980
Echolocating bats emit sounds
in patterns—characteristic of
each species—that contain both
frequency-modulated (FM) and
(5) constant-frequency (CF) signals.
The broadband FM signals and the
narrowband CF signals travel out to
a target, reflect from its, and return
to the hunting bat. In this process
(10) of transmission and reflection, the
sounds are changed, and the changes
in the echoes enable the bat to perceive
features of the target.
The FM signals report information
(15) about target characteristics that modify
the timing and the fine frequency
structure, or spectrum, of echoes—for
example, the target's size, shape,
texture, surface structure, and
(20) direction in space. Because of their
narrow bandwidth, CF signals portray
only the target's presence and, in the
case of some bat species, its motion
relative to the bat's. Responding to
(25) changes in the CF echo's frequency,
bats of some species correct in flight
for the direction and velocity of their
22. According to the passage, the
information provided to the bat by
CF echoes differs from that provided
by FM echoes in which of the following
Only CF echoes alert the bat to
Only CF echoes identify the range
of widely spaced targets.
Only CF echoes report the target's
presence to the bat.
In some species, CF echoes enable
the bat to judge whether it is closing
in on its target.
In some species, CF echoes enable
the bat to discriminate the size of its
target and the direction in which the
target is moving.
24. According to the passage, the
configuration of the target is reported
to the eholocating bat by changes in the
echo spectrum of CF signals
echo spectrum of FM signals
direction and velocity of the FM
delay between transmission and
reflection of the CF signals
relative frequencies of the FM and
the CF echoes
25. The author presents the information
concerning bat sonar in a manner that
could be best described as
26. Which of the following best describes
the organization of the passage?
A fact is stated, a process is
outlined, and specific details of the
process are described.
A fact is stated, and examples
suggesting that a distinction needs
correction are considered.
A fact is stated, a theory is
presented to explain that fact, and
additional facts are introduced to
validate the theory.
A fact is stated, and two theories
are compared in light of their
explanations of this fact.
A fact is stated, a process is
described, and examples of still
another process are illustrated in
27. Which of the following, if true, would argue most strongly
Since the inventory of spare parts kept at each airport is
smaller than in
earlier years, planes are often delayed at an airport while
parts are flown in
from another airport, and then repairs are carefully made and
Air fatalities from 1980 to the present have been concentrated
in the last
two years, with the rate rising sharply.
The number of reports of near collisions in midair in 1986 was
half those in a typical year of the 1960's, even with double the
Many reported near collisions in midair are closer than
but are nevertheless without actual danger.
Between 1980 and 1986, safety improvements in the design of
steadily improved their crashworthiness.
28.In 1985 a consumer agency concluded that Xylo brand bicycles
are safer to
ride than are Zenon brand bicycles. The agency based the
conclusion on the
ratio of the number of rider injuries to the number of riding
hours for each
brand of bicycle from 1981 through 1984. Yet for identically
manufactured since 1985, the number of rider injuries has been
twice as great
among riders of Xylos as among riders of Zenons. Therefore, the
conclusion would have been different for the period since 1985.
Which of the following is an assumption that, if true, supports
the claim that
the agency's conclusion would have been different for the period
For the period since 1985, the number of riding hours for Zenons
totaled at least half the number of riding hours for Xylos.
Of all the bicycles ridden in the period since 1985, the
percentage of Xylos ridden was twice the percentage of Zenons ridden.
Prior to 1985, Zenon owners were more likely than Xylo owners to
report the injuries they sustained while riding their bicycles.
In 1985 the agency had miscalculated the ratio for Xylos, for
Zenons, or for both.
Soon after the agency had issued its report, consumer demand for
Xylos increased more rapidly than did consumer demand for Zenons.
29. In October 1987 the United States stock market suffered a
major drop in prices.
During the weeks after the drop, the volume of stocks traded
also dropped sharply
to well below what had been the weekly average for the preceding
the volume for the entire year was not appreciably different
from the preceding
Which of the following, if true, resolves the apparent
in the passage above?
Foreign investors usually buy United States stocks only when
prices are low.
The number of stock buyers in 1987 remained about the same as it
had been the preceding year.
For some portion of 1987, the volume of stocks traded was higher
than the average for that year.
The greater the volume of stocks traded in a given year, the
lower the average price per share on the United States stock market for
The volume of stocks traded rises and falls in predictable
30. In a recent year California produced an orange crop equal to
percent of Florida's orange crop. However, when citrus crops as
a group, including
oranges, were compared, the California crop was twenty-three
percent greater than
Florida's crop for the same year.
If the information above is true, which of the following can
concluded about the Florida and California citrus crops in the
Florida's climate was suited only to growing oranges.
Florida produced larger oranges than California did.
California produced more oranges than it did non-orange citrus.
California's proportion f non-orange citrus crops was higher
California had more acreage that could be devoted to agriculture
than did Florida.
31. Researchers studying sets of identical twins who were
raised apart in
dissimilar environments found that in each case the twins were
character, medical history, and life experiences. The
researchers saw these
results as confirmation of the hypothesis that heredity is more
than environment in determining human personalities and life
The existence of which of the following would tend to weaken the
for the hypothesis above most seriously?
A set of identical twins raised together who are shown by
appropriate tests to have very similar value systems
A pair of identical twins raised apart who differ markedly with
respect to aggressiveness and other personality traits
A younger brother and older sister raised together who have
similar personalities and life experiences
A mother and daughter who have the same profession even though
they have very different temperaments
A pair of twins raised together who have similar personality
traits but different value systems
32. Because the process of freezing food consumes energy, many
their electric freezers half-empty, using them only to store
frozen foods. Yet freezers that are half-empty often consume
more energy than
they would if they were kept fully stocked.
Which of the following, if true, contributes most to an
explanation of the
apparent discrepancy described above?
A given volume of air in a freezer requires much more energy to
be maintained at a temperature below freezing than does an
identical volume of frozen food.
The more often a freezer's door is opened, the more energy is
required to maintain that freezer's normal temperature.
When unfrozen foods are placed in a freezer, the average
temperature of a given volume of air inside that freezer rises temporarily.
A person who normally maintains a half-empty freezer can cut
energy costs considerably by using a freezer that is 50 percent smaller.
An electric freezer can operate efficiently only if chilled air
is free to circulate within the freezing compartment.
33. People often do not make decisions by using the basic
of rationally weighing all possibilities and then making the
choice that can
be expected to maximize benefits and minimize harm. Routinely,
information in ways that are irrational in this sense.
Any of the following, if true, would provide evidence in support
assertions above EXCEPT:
People tend to act on new information, independent of its
perceived relative merit, rather than on information they already have.
People prefer a major risk taken voluntarily to a minor one that
has been forced on them, even if they know that the voluntarily
taken risk is statistically more dangerous.
People tend to take up potentially damaging habits even thought
they have clear evidence that their own peers as well as experts
disapprove of such behavior.
(D) People avoid situations in which they would become involved in
accidents involving large numbers of people more than they do situations
where single- victim accidents are possible, even though they realize that an
accident is more likely in the latter situations than in the former.
People usually give more weight to a physician's opinion about
the best treatment for a disease than they do to the opinion of a
neighbor if they realize that the neighbor is not an expert in disease
34.Los Angeles has a higher number of family dwellings per
capita than any large city.
(A) a higher number of family dwellings per capita than any
(B) higher numbers of family dwellings per capita than any other
(C) a higher number of family dwellings per capita than does any
other large city
(D) higher numbers of family dwellings per capita than do other
(E) a high per capita number of family dwellings, more than does
any other large city
35.New techniques in thermal-scanning photography, a process
that records radiation from surface areas, makes it possible to
study the effects of calefaction, or warming, of a river in
greater detail than ever before.
(A) makes it possible to study the effects of calefaction, or
warming, of a river in greater detail than ever before
(B) make it possible to study, in greater detail, the effects of
calefaction, or warming, of a river than ever before
(C) have made it possible to study in greater detail than ever
before the effects of calefaction, or warming, of a river
(D) make possible the study of the effects of calefaction, or
warming, of a river in greater detail than it ever was before
(E) has made it more possible than ever before to study in
greater detail the effects of calefaction, or warming, of a
36.Judge Forer recognizes that the American judicial system
provides more safeguards for accused persons than does the legal
system of any other country, but she believes there is a great
disparity between the systems of justice accorded rich and poor.
(A) for accused persons than does the legal system of any other
(B) to accused persons as the legal system of any country
(C) for accused persons as the legal system of any country
(D) to accused persons as the legal system of any other country
(E) for accused persons than the legal system of any country
37.Local residents claim that San Antonio, Texas, has more
good Mexican American restaurants than any city does in the
(A) any city does
(B) does any other city
(C) other cities do
(D) any city
(E) other cities
38.Inflation has made many Americans reevaluate their
assumptions about the future; they still expect to live better
than their parents have, but not so well as they once thought
(A) they still expect to live better than their parents have
(B) they still expect to live better than their parents did
(C) they still expect to live better than their parents had
(D) still expecting to live better than their parents had
(E) still expecting to live better than did their parents
39.Inuits of the Bering Sea were in isolation from contact
with Europeans longer than Aleuts or Inuits of the North Pacific
and northern Alaska.
(A) in isolation from contact with Europeans longer than
(B) isolated from contact with Europeans longer than
(C) in isolation from contact with Europeans longer than were
(D) isolated from contact with Europeans longer than were
(E) in isolation and without contacts with Europeans longer than
40.In the United States, trade unions encountered far more
intense opposition against their struggle for social legitimacy
than the organized labor movements of most other democratic
(A) against their struggle for social legitimacy than
(B) in their struggle for social legitimacy than did
(C) against their struggle for social legitimacy as
(D) in their struggle for social legitimacy as did
(E) when they struggled for social legitimacy than has
41.Increases in the cost of energy, turmoil in the
international money markets, and the steady erosion of the
dollar have altered the investment strategies of United States
corporations more radically than those of foreign corporations.Answers:
(A) altered the investment strategies of United States
corporations more radically than those of
(B) altered the investment strategies of United States
corporations more radically than
(C) altered the investment strategies of United States
corporations more radically than they have
(D) radically altered the investment strategies of United States
corporations more than
(E) radically altered the investment strategies of United States