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Chapter 3
1. The second phase of the 3-x-3 writing process begins with
a. analyzing the audience.
b. composing the message.
c. researching the topic.
d. organizing the message.
Answer: c
Rationale:
The second phase of the 3-x-3 writing process begins with researching the topic. Research is
necessary before beginning to write because the information collected helps shape the
message.
2. Before composing a business document, you should gather information that will answer
which of these questions?
a. Will I have enough time to complete thorough research?
b. What is the receiver to do?
c. What information will be the easiest to locate?
d. How will I use this information?
Answer: b
Rationale:
You should ask yourself "What is the receiver to do?" because it focuses on the audience
rather than on the sender.
3. All of the following would probably require informal research methods except
a. routine e-mail messages.
b. business letters.
c. long reports and complex business problems.

d. oral presentations.
Answer: c
Rationale:
Long reports and complex business problems generally require some use of formal research
methods. However, routine tasks such as drafting e-mails, memos, letters, informational
reports, and oral presentations require research that can be collected informally.
4. All of the following are informal research methods except
a. interviewing the target audience.
b. conducting a scientific experiment.
c. looking in company files.
d. brainstorming for ideas.
Answer: b
Rationale:
Informal research methods include searching company files, talking with the boss,
interviewing the target audience, conducting an informal survey, or brainstorming for ideas.
5. When brainstorming to generate ideas, you should
a. critique each idea as it is suggested.
b. record ideas without judging them.
c. always work alone for greater efficiency.
d. allow no more than five ideas to be discussed.
Answer: b
Rationale:
Brainstorming is the process of discussing and recording ideas without judging them.
Evaluations, critiques, voting, and limiting the number of ideas can stifle ideas needed in
brainstorming because brainstorming requires an open mind.
6. Which of the following is a formal research method?

a. Talking with your boss
b. Investigating primary sources
c. Brainstorming
d. Looking in company files
Answer: b
Rationale:
Investigating primary sources is a formal research method using questionnaires, interviews,
or focus groups.
7. Which formal research source is best to obtain firsthand information?
a. Internet websites and articles
b. Reference books
c. Electronic databases
d. Interviews
Answer: d
Rationale:
An interview would be the best form of research to obtain firsthand information.
8. As interns in human resource management, Brad and his team are administering a
professionally developed employee questionnaire to collect information on workplace
violence. This type of research produces data that is considered
a. firsthand information.
b. informal documentation.
c. supplementary, secondary information.
d. scientific experimentation.
Answer: a
Rationale:

This questionnaire produces firsthand information because the human resources team is
collecting workplace violence information directly from employees.
9. Quality Building Materials Inc. has developed a new whole-house weather blanket and
needs to determine the price point at which builders would switch to this new product. The
best research method for this is a(n)
a. manual search of other companies' price lists.
b. interview with a local builder.
c. Internet search of insulation values for weather blankets.
d. scientific experiment that presents price choices with controlled variables.
Answer: d
Rationale:
To find a competitive price for this new product, this company should conduct a scientific
experiment. An interview of a builder, a manual search of price lists, or Internet searches will
not provide the needed information.
10. Ahna is sending a persuasive memo to her staff asking them to participate in the new
wellness program. Which of the following sources of information would be most appropriate
to help Ahna shape an effective persuasive message for her staff?
a. Tightly controlled scientific experimentation
b. Library research
c. Questionnaires and surveys of employees
d. Research in company files
Answer: c
Rationale:
Questionnaires and surveys of employees will provide information to shape a persuasive
memo. Scientific experimentation, library research, and company files are unlikely to provide
the needed information.
11. According to communication experts, what is the greatest failing of business writers?

a. Poor spelling
b. Unclear sentence structure
c. Ambiguous wording
d. Poor organization
Answer: d
Rationale:
Because communication experts regard poor organization as the greatest failing of business
writers, business writers should use a scratch list or an outline to organize ideas.
12. The direct strategy would be most appropriate when
a. delivering bad news.
b. presenting ideas requiring persuasion.
c. expecting the audience to be pleased, mildly interested, or neutral.
d. revealing sensitive news.
Answer: c
Rationale:
When you expect the reader to be pleased, mildly interested, or, at worst, neutral, use the
direct strategy.
13. All of the following are effective tips for creating an outline except
a. use a single item under a major component.
b. divide the topic into three to five major components or classifications.
c. break the components into subpoints.
d. use details, illustrations, and evidence to support subpoints.
Answer: a
Rationale:

When creating an outline, follow these tips: define the main topic in the title; divide the main
topic into three to five major components or classifications; break the components into at
least two subpoints; strive to make each component exclusive; and use details, illustrations,
and evidence to support subpoints.
14. Which of the following is an advantage of the direct strategy?
a. Minimizes a negative reaction
b. Respects the feelings of the reader
c. Saves the reader's time
d. Encourages a fair hearing
Answer: c
Rationale:
The direct strategy saves the reader's time. The direct strategy also sets a proper frame of
mind and prevents frustration.
15. Which of the following business messages would not use the direct strategy?
a. An e-mail message to a staff introducing a new employee
b. An oral presentation detailing the specifics of a new company wellness initiative
c. A letter to a coworker congratulating him or her on a recent promotion
d. A letter to a customer denying his or her request for credit
Answer: d
Rationale:
Typical business messages that follow the direct strategy include routine requests and
responses, orders and acknowledgments, nonsensitive memos, e-mail messages,
informational reports, and informational oral presentations. A letter denying credit to a
customer should be organized indirectly.
16. Which of the following message openings is the most direct opening for an e-mail
message announcing a new telecommuting plan?
a. A number of employees have asked about telecommuting options.

b. Many businesses have been implementing telecommuting programs, and we have studied
their programs extensively.
c. Rising gas prices have led many companies to allow telecommuting, and we think this
might be a good idea for our company.
d. Our new telecommuting program will begin on August 1.
Answer: d
Rationale:
Of the options shown, "Our new telecommuting program will begin on August 1" is the most
direct opening. The others are more indirect because they provide background information.
17. Which of the following is an advantage of the indirect strategy?
a. Saves the reader's time
b. Respects the feelings of the audience
c. Reduces frustration
d. Sets a proper frame of mind
Answer: b
Rationale:
The indirect strategy respects the feelings of the audience. The indirect strategy also
encourages a fair hearing and minimizes a negative reaction.
18. When you expect a reader of your message to be uninterested, unwilling, displeased, or
hostile, you should
a. put the bad news first.
b. begin with the main idea.
c. explain all background information first.
d. send the message via e-mail, text message, or IM.
Answer: c
Rationale:

When you expect a reader to be uninterested, unwilling, displeased, or hostile, you should
place the main idea later in the message (after the details, explanation, or evidence). In
addition, bad news should not be sent via e-mail, text message, or IM.
19. The indirect strategy is most appropriate for what kind of messages?
a. Bad-news messages
b. Sensitive messages
c. Persuasive messages
d. The indirect strategy is appropriate for all answer choices.
Answer: d
Rationale:
The indirect strategy works well with bad-news messages, sensitive messages, and persuasive
messages.
20. Which of the following kinds of business messages typically use the indirect strategy?
a. Nonsensitive memos
b. Routine requests
c. Informational reports
d. Sensitive messages
Answer: d
Rationale:
Business messages that refuse requests, reject claims, or deny credit usually reflect the
indirect strategy. Business messages that follow the direct strategy include routine requests
and responses, orders and acknowledgments, nonsensitive memos, e-mail messages,
informational reports, and oral presentations.
21. What kind of sentence contains only one independent clause?
a. Simple sentence
b. Compound sentence

c. Complex sentence
d. Compound-complex sentence
Answer: a
Rationale:
A simple sentence contains one complete thought with a subject and predicate (verb).
22. What kind of sentence contains two independent clauses?
a. Simple sentence
b. Compound sentence
c. Complex sentence
d. Compound-complex sentence
Answer: b
Rationale:
Compound sentences contain two complete but related thoughts joined with a coordinating
conjunction, a semicolon, or a conjunctive adverb.
23. What kind of sentence contains an independent clause and a dependent clause?
a. Simple sentence
b. Compound sentence
c. Complex sentence
d. Compound-complex sentence
Answer: c
Rationale:
A complex sentence contains one independent and one dependent clause.
24. Which of the following is a complex sentence?
a. Visit our website to learn more about our newest product line.
b. The conference will be held on Monday, but few managers will be able to attend.

c. Employers are now using social media sites to screen applicants; therefore, job seekers are
advised to clean up their digital presence.
d. Because of rising insurance premiums, many companies are offering employee-wellness
incentives.
Answer: d
Rationale:
"Because of rising insurance premiums, many companies are offering employee-wellness
incentives" is a complex sentence. Complex sentences are often introduced by words such as
"although," "since," "because," "when," and "if."
25. Which of the following is a simple sentence?
a. If health insurance costs continue to rise, employee copays may increase.
b. Having healthy employees decreases the cost of monthly premiums; therefore, we will be
implementing a wellness program.
c. HMO and PPO insurance plans offer additional cost savings.
d. Because we will be reducing employee health insurance benefits, some employees may be
unhappy; however, we must make sure that they understand the reason for the change.
Answer: c
Rationale:
Only the sentence "HMO and PPO insurance plans offer additional cost savings" is a simple
sentence. The sentence beginning with "If" is a complex sentence. The sentence with the
conjunctive adverb "therefore" is a compound sentence. The sentence using "Because" and
"however" is a compound-complex sentence.
26. What is a sentence fragment?
a. Two independent clauses connected without punctuation or a conjunction
b. Two independent clauses connected by a comma without a conjunction
c. A broken-off part of a sentence
d. The part of a sentence containing the verb

Answer: c
Rationale:
A fragment is usually a broken-off part of a sentence. A run on occurs when two independent
clauses are run together without punctuation or a conjunction, and a comma splice is created
when two independent clauses are joined by a comma without a conjunction. The part of a
sentence containing the verb is the predicate.
27. What is a comma splice?
a. Two independent clauses run together without punctuation or a conjunction
b. Two independent clauses joined by a comma without a conjunction
c. A broken-off part of a sentence
d. Two dependent clauses
Answer: b
Rationale:
A comma splice is the joining of two independent clauses with only a comma. A run on
occurs when two independent clauses are run together without punctuation or a conjunction,
and a fragment is usually a broken-off part of a complex sentence.
28. What is a run-on sentence?
a. Two independent clauses run together without punctuation or a conjunction
b. Two independent clauses joined by a comma without a conjunction
c. A broken-off part of a sentence
d. An independent clause containing two dependent clauses
Answer: a
Rationale:
A run-on or fused sentence results when two independent clauses are run together without
punctuation or a conjunction. A comma splice is the joining of two independent clauses with
only a comma, and a fragment is usually a broken-off part of a complex sentence.

29. Technology has changed the working environments of employees, that is why employees
are telecommuting more than ever is an example of a
a. complete sentence.
b. fragment.
c. fused or run-on sentence.
d. comma splice.
Answer: d
Rationale:
This group of words represents a comma splice, a sentence fault in which a comma is used to
splice together two independent clauses. One way to remedy this fault is to change the
comma to a semicolon.
30. What is the recommended maximum number of words for a sentence?
a. 10
b. 20
c. 25
d. 30
Answer: b
Rationale:
Because length can influence the readability of a sentence and a reader's comprehension, you
should limit your sentences to about 20 or fewer words.
31. To emphasize an idea through mechanics, place it in
a. boldface.
b. a different font style.
c. italics.
d. Any of these techniques would emphasize the idea.

Answer: d
Rationale:
You can emphasize ideas mechanically by using underlining, italics, boldface, font changes,
all caps, dashes, and tabulation.
32. Which of the following sentences emphasizes an idea through style?
a. Consider adding a statement of qualifications section on your résumé; but, most important,
include specific and relevant previous employment information.
b. Add a statement of qualifications section on your résumé, but also include specific and
relevant previous employment information.
c. A résumé should include a statement of qualifications section and specific and relevant
previous employment information.
d. You should include a statement of qualifications section and specific and relevant previous
employment information on your résumé.
Answer: a
Rationale:
To emphasize an idea through style, you can label an idea if it is significant to the reader. The
only sentence that labels an idea is "Consider adding a statement of qualifications section on
your résumé; but, most important, include specific and relevant previous employment
information" because it uses the words "most important."
33. Which of the following sentences is most effective in de-emphasizing the bad news?
a. Although cash refunds are not offered, you can exchange resalable merchandise.
b. Although you can exchange returned merchandise, cash refunds are not available.
c. Because we only exchange merchandise, it is impossible for you to receive a cash refund.
d. Because of our exchange policy, you may not receive a cash refund.
Answer: a
Rationale:

"Although cash refunds are not offered, you can exchange resalable merchandise" puts the
bad news in a dependent clause and the good news in an independent clause where it receives
emphasis. Other options emphasize the bad news or business policy, which may anger
customers.
34. Active-voice sentences
a. direct the action of the verb toward the subject.
b. place the subject of the sentence as the doer of the action.
c. generally use a to be helping verb.
d. should always be avoided.
Answer: b
Rationale:
In active-voice sentences, the subject of the sentence is the doer of the action. However,
passive-voice sentences usually use a "to be" helping verb and direct the action of the verb
toward the subject. Although sentences can be written in either voice, business writers
generally use active voice because it is direct, clear, and concise.
35. Which of the following uses only active voice in a complete sentence?
a. The company's rigid return policy was criticized by a few unhappy customers.
b. Because a few unhappy customers criticized the company's rigid return policy.
c. Managers were told about the unhappy customers who criticized the company's rigid return
policy.
d. A few unhappy customers criticized the company's rigid return policy.
Answer: d
Rationale:
The only option that includes an active-voice verb (criticized) in a complete sentence is "A
few unhappy customers criticized the company's rigid return policy." The sentence beginning
with "Because" is a fragment, and the other two sentences are in the passive voice.
36. When should passive voice be used in business writing?

a. When you want to de-emphasize the action or the recipient of the action
b. When you want to emphasize the bad news
c. When you want to conceal the doer of the action
d. Never
Answer: c
Rationale:
You can use the passive voice to emphasize an action or the recipient of an action, to conceal
the doer of an action, or to de-emphasize bad news.
37. Parallel writing
a. uses similar structures to express similar words.
b. places modifiers close to the words being described.
c. uses mechanical techniques such as underlining and bolding to emphasize ideas.
d. de-emphasizes ideas by placing the ideas in dependent clauses.
Answer: a
Rationale:
Parallelism is a skillful writing technique that involves balanced writing by using similar
structures to express similar ideas.
38. Which of the following uses parallel structure?
a. Our new paralegal must be smart, efficient, and have flexibility.
b. The accident shattered her pelvis, dislocated her foot, and her spinal column was broken in
three places.
c. Big business demands superior forecasting, reporting, and analyzing.
d. A good financial planner must be certified, competent, and must possess ethical standards.
Answer: c
Rationale:

Only "Big business demands superior forecasting, reporting, and analyzing" uses parallel
structure. Other choices fail to use similar grammatical structures to express similar ideas.
39. Modifiers
a. must be placed close to the words they describe or limit.
b. are always used in active-voice sentences.
c. should be avoided in business writing.
d. are always used in passive-voice sentences.
Answer: a
Rationale:
For clarity modifiers must be close to the words they describe or limit.
40. Which of the following sentences uses modifiers correctly?
a. Competent in computer graphics, our website was designed by Gloria.
b. To take advantage of the discounted pricing, place your order immediately.
c. To meet customers' orders, production must be increased.
d. Placing the proposal on the desk, the office was left by John.
Answer: b
Rationale:
Only "To take advantage of the discounted pricing, place your order immediately" uses
modifiers correctly. Other choices contain misplaced or dangling modifiers.
41. Effective paragraphs
a. usually present the main idea in the first sentence.
b. are coherent.
c. include supporting sentences that expand and explain the main idea.
d. All answer choices are correct.
Answer: d

Rationale:
A paragraph is a group of sentences about one idea. Paragraphs are most effective when they
contain (a) a topic sentence, (b) support sentences that expand and explain only the main
idea, and (c) techniques to build coherence.
42. How many ideas should be developed in a paragraph?
a. Two
b. Three to five
c. One
d. As many as needed to convey effective meaning
Answer: c
Rationale:
Good business writers develop well-organized paragraphs by focusing on a single main idea.
43. What do most business writers use as the first sentence in a paragraph?
a. Supporting sentence
b. Transitional sentence
c. Topic sentence
d. Pivoting sentence
Answer: c
Rationale:
Business writers generally place the topic sentence first in a paragraph.
44. A topic sentence
a. provides specific details, explanations, and evidence that support the main idea of a
paragraph.
b. links sentences within a paragraph.
c. is unnecessary in a paragraph.

d. states the main idea of the paragraph.
Answer: d
Rationale:
A topic sentence states the main idea of the paragraph. It tells readers what to expect and
helps them understand the paragraph's central thought immediately.
45. A supporting sentence
a. must relate to the topic sentence.
b. reveals the main idea of a paragraph.
c. is usually the first sentence of a paragraph.
d. is usually the last sentence of a paragraph.
Answer: a
Rationale:
One of the hardest things for beginning writers to remember is that all supporting sentences
in a paragraph must relate to the topic sentence.
46. Paragraphs are coherent when
a. all sentences are written in the active voice.
b. each sentence includes dependent and independent clauses.
c. ideas are linked; that is, one idea leads logically to the next.
d. All answer choices are correct.
Answer: c
Rationale:
Paragraph coherence occurs when ideas are linked. For example, the writer can use
transitional phrases to show how one idea leads logically to the next.
47. To build paragraph coherence, a writer should
a. repeat a key idea by using the same expression or a similar one.

b. use pronouns to refer to previous nouns.
c. show connections with transitional expressions.
d. All answer choices can build paragraph coherence.
Answer: d
Rationale:
To build paragraph coherence, writers can repeat a key idea by using the same expression or a
similar one, use pronouns to refer to previous nouns, and show connections with transitional
expressions.
48. Transitions
a. should be avoided in business writing because they add unnecessary length to a message.
b. support a paragraph's main idea.
c. connect ideas.
d. determine the organizational strategy used by the writer.
Answer: c
Rationale:
Transitions connect ideas and allow the reader to follow the writer's ideas.
49. Transitional expressions such as next, first, and finally are useful to show
a. cause and effect.
b. illustration.
c. comparison and contrast.
d. time association.
Answer: d
Rationale:

"Next," "first," and "finally" are useful transitions to show time association. Effective
business writers select transitional expressions suited to the organization of the paragraph to
achieve coherence between ideas.
50. Paragraphs should
a. focus on at least three ideas.
b. avoid the repetition of key or similar words.
c. contain long, solid chunks of print.
d. contain eight or fewer printed lines.
Answer: d
Rationale:
Although no rule regulates the length of paragraphs, business writers recognize the value of
short paragraphs. Paragraphs with eight or fewer printed lines look inviting and readable. In
addition, a paragraph should focus on only one idea and repeat key words to build coherence.
51. You can expect to write more messages on the job than ever.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Business, technical, and professional people are exchanging more messages than ever. As a
result, you can expect to do extensive writing on the job.
52. When you fail to collect all needed research before beginning to organize and write your
business document, you may end up starting over and reorganizing.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:

Careful writers complete their research before beginning to write to avoid starting over and
reorganizing.
53. One question you should ask yourself when you collect research is What does the receiver
need to know about this topic?
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Asking this and other key questions will help writers avoid frustration and inaccurate
messages.
54. Jonathan is researching the financial impact of a job-sharing benefit for employees.
Talking with his boss about the possible effects of offering this benefit to employees is an
effective method of formal research.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Jonathan needs to conduct formal research on financial impacts; talking with his boss may be
helpful, but this is an informal research method.
55. Conducting scientific experiments is a method to gather formal research.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Formal research may include searching libraries and electronic databases or investigating
primary sources (interviews, surveys, and experiments).

56. Most routine business messages require formal research.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Most routine tasks such as composing e-mail messages, memos, letters, informational reports,
and oral presentations require data that you can collect informally.
57. Looking in company files for information is a waste of time.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
If you are researching information for a routine business message, you often can find the
answer(s) when you investigate the company files or consult colleagues.
58. Brainstorming is an ineffective research technique.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
You should use brainstorming to generate ideas and collect research; however, don't evaluate
ideas during the brainstorming process.
59. Many communication experts regard poor organization as the greatest failing of business
writers.
a. True
b. False

Answer: True
Rationale:
Because unorganized messages fail to emphasize important points, readers can't see how the
pieces fit together, and they become frustrated and irritated. Therefore, many communication
experts regard poor organization as the greatest failing of business writers.
60. Using a hierarchy such as an outline can help you to organize ideas and information.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Most writers can benefit when they use an outline to organize their data. The beauty of
preparing an outline is that it gives the writer a chance to organize his or her thinking before
getting bogged down in word choice and sentence structure.
61. When you expect the reader to be pleased, mildly interested, or neutral, use the indirect
pattern of organization.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Use the direct strategy of organization when you expect your reader to be pleased, mildly
interested, or neutral. When you expect the audience to be uninterested, unwilling,
displeased, or perhaps even hostile, the indirect strategy is more appropriate.
62. When you develop a major component on an outline into subpoints, you must have at
least two subpoints.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True

Rationale:
Major components on an outline should be developed with subpoints, but do not put a single
subpoint under a major component. If you have only one subpoint, integrate it with the main
item above it or reorganize your ideas.
63. Another name for the direct strategy is frontloading.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
The direct strategy is also called frontloading because the main idea is expressed
immediately.
64. One advantage of the direct strategy is that it saves the reader time.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
The direct strategy has three advantages: saves the reader's time, sets a proper frame of mind,
and prevents frustration.
65. The indirect strategy works well with three kinds of messages: (a) bad news, (b) ideas that
require persuasion, and (c) sensitive news.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
The indirect pattern should be used for messages that contain (a) bad news, (b) ideas that
require persuasion, or (c) sensitive news.

66. One advantage of the indirect strategy is that it respects the feelings of the audience.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
The indirect strategy begins with an explanation and evidence and then presents the main
idea. As a result, this organizational technique respects the feelings of the audience. Other
advantages to the indirect strategy include encouraging a fair hearing and minimizing a
negative reaction.
67. The most compelling and effective messages contain one repeated sentence pattern rather
than a variety of sentences.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
The most compelling and effective messages contain a variety of sentences rather than just
one repeated pattern. Messages that repeat the same sentence pattern become boring.
Effective messages also avoid common sentence faults and achieve emphasis and parallelism
with special sentence-writing techniques.
68. The new software system will be installed on Monday; therefore, our intranet will be
unavailable to employees is an example of a complex sentence.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
This sentence is a compound sentence because it contains two independent clauses.
69. Words such as although, if, because, and since often introduce dependent clauses.

a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Words such as "although," "if," "because," and "since" often introduce dependent clauses,
which cannot stand alone because they are fragments.
70. When introductory dependent clauses precede independent clauses, they are always
followed by a comma.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
When an introductory dependent clause precedes an independent clause, it is always followed
by a comma.
71. A compound-complex sentence contains two complete but related thoughts.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
A compound sentence contains two complete but related thoughts. A compound-complex
sentence contains at least two independent clauses and one dependent clause.
72. Employers want employees who can write messages appropriately they also want
employees who can speak effectively with others is an example of a well-written sentence.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False

Rationale:
This sentence is a run-on sentence, which results when writers fuse two independent clauses.
You can correct a run-on sentence by placing a comma and a coordinating conjunction
between the two clauses, by adding a semicolon between the two clauses, or by separating the
clauses into two sentences.
73. A run-on-sentence results when a writer joins two independent clauses with a comma.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
A comma splice results when a writer joins two independent clauses with a comma.
74. Because sentences of 20 or fewer words have the most impact, business writers must
restrict all sentences to fewer than 20 words.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Business writers should strive for sentences that are about 20 words long, although some
sentences will be longer or shorter.
75. Although mechanical means are occasionally appropriate to create emphasis, more often a
writer achieves emphasis stylistically.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:

Although mechanical means are occasionally appropriate, more often a writer achieves
emphasis stylistically by choosing words carefully and constructing sentences skillfully to
emphasize main ideas and de-emphasize minor or negative ideas.
76. Careful writers avoid labeling main ideas because they know that readers prefer to
identify main ideas for themselves.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
If an idea is important, tell the reader. Using words such as "most importantly" or "primary
reason" gains the reader's attention and helps the reader focus on what's important.
77. The following sentence effectively uses a stylistic device to de-emphasize the bad news:
Although we don't have any available positions at this time, we were pleased to receive your
application and will keep it on file for six months.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
This sentence effectively de-emphasizes the bad news by placing it in the dependent clause.
The good news is in the independent clause, which receives the major emphasis of the
sentence.
78. In the active voice, the subject is acted upon. In the passive voice, the subject is the doer
of the action.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:

In the active voice, the subject is the doer of the action (The supervisor scheduled a meeting).
In the passive voice, the subject is acted upon (The meeting was scheduled by the
supervisor).
79. Passive voice should never be used in business writing.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Although active voice is more direct, clear, and concise, passive voice is useful in certain
instances such as de-emphasizing an action or the recipient of the action, de-emphasizing
negative news, and concealing the doer of the action.
80. The following sentence demonstrates parallel structure: Maggie was organized, punctual,
and she was always positive.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
The ideas in this sentence lack parallelism. The sentence should be revised: Maggie was
organized, punctual, and positive.
81. Modifiers must be close to the words they describe or limit.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
For clarity modifiers must be close to the words they describe or limit. Writers dangle a
modifier when the word or phrase the modifier describes is missing from the sentence, and
they misplace a modifier when the modifier is not close enough to the word it describes.

82. The following sentence contains a dangling or misplaced modifier: Working all night, the
brief was filed with the court on time.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
This sentence contains a dangling modifier. This revision fixes the error: Working all night,
we filed the brief with the court on time.
83. A paragraph is unified when it develops at least three ideas.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
A paragraph is unified when it develops a single main idea.
84. The topic sentence should relate the main idea of a paragraph.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
The topic sentence should reveal the main idea of a paragraph. It tells readers what to expect
and helps them understand the paragraph's central thought immediately.
85. Business writers generally place the topic sentence first in a paragraph.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True

Rationale:
Business writers generally place the topic sentence first in a paragraph. It tells readers what to
expect and helps them understand the central thought immediately.
86. All support sentences in a paragraph must relate to the topic sentence.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Support sentences illustrate, explain, or strengthen the topic sentence. One of the hardest
principles for beginning writers to remember is that all support sentences in the paragraph
must relate to the topic sentence.
87. Pronouns should be avoided in business writing.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Pronouns can promote sentence and paragraph coherence, but they must have clear
antecedents.
88. Good writers should avoid repetition of words or key ideas because it shows lack of
creativity.
a. True
b. False
Answer: False
Rationale:
Repetition of key words and key ideas is an effective writing technique that skilled writers
use to build coherent paragraphs.

89. Writers can use words and phrases such as on the other hand, as opposed to, and
conversely to show contrast in business messages.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
These transitional expressions improve business messages and build paragraph coherence by
identifying contrasting ideas.
90. Business writers should strive for paragraphs with eight or fewer printed lines.
a. True
b. False
Answer: True
Rationale:
Although no rule regulates the length of paragraphs, business writers recognize the value of
short paragraphs. Paragraphs with eight or fewer printed lines look inviting and readable.
91. Nicola is collecting information for a business document she is writing. This collection
process is called ____________________.
Answer: research
Rationale:
Research is the process of collecting information. Research may be formal or informal
depending upon the complexity of the project.
92. Long reports and complex business problems generally require some use of
____________________ research methods.
Answer: formal
Rationale:

The more complex a business problem is, the more likely the need for formal research.
Shorter, less complex projects may use informal research, such as a quick search of company
files or an impromptu survey of a few employees.
93. ____________________ is an organizational writing technique that involves placing the
main idea first and following the main idea with details, an explanation, or evidence.
Answer: Frontloading
Rationale:
Frontloading is a direct organizational technique that places the main idea first followed with
details, explanation, or evidence.
94. Persuasive and bad-news messages should usually use the ____________________
strategy.
Answer: indirect
Rationale:
The indirect strategy is used for persuasive and bad-news messages. By starting with the
explanation and background, the writer prepares the audience for the main idea to follow.
95. A ____________________ sentence contains two independent clauses and one dependent
clause.
Answer: compound-complex
Rationale:
A compound-complex sentence contains two independent clauses and one dependent clause.
96. A ____________________ results when a writer joins two independent clauses with a
comma.
Answer: comma splice
Rationale:
When a writer joins two independent clauses with a comma, a comma splice is created. To
correct a comma splice, use a coordinating conjunction after the comma, replace the comma
with a semicolon, or add a semicolon and a conjunctive adverb before the comma.

97. The new organizational chart was presented by our recently hired CEO is an example of a
sentence using the ___________________ voice.
Answer: passive
Rationale:
This sentence uses the passive voice. Because the doer of the action (CEO) comes after the
verb, you can identify the verb as being in the passive voice.
98. A ____________________ modifier results when the word or phrase the modifier
describes is missing from its sentence.
Answer: dangling
Rationale:
When the word or phrase a modifier describes is missing from its sentence, a dangling
modifier results.
99. A(n) ____________________ is a group of sentences about one idea.
Answer: paragraph
Rationale:
A paragraph is a group of sentences about one idea. Paragraphs are most effective when they
contain (a) a topic sentence, (b) support sentences that expand and explain only the main
idea, and (c) techniques to build coherence.
100. Before and meanwhile are examples of transitional expressions that show
____________________ association.
Answer: time
Rationale:
Words such as "before" and "meanwhile" show time association. Other typical time
transitions include "next" and "finally."

Test Bank for Essentials of Business Communication
Mary Ellen Guffey, Dana Loewy
9781285858913, 9781337386494, 9781111821227, 9781285858890, 9780176473358, 9780176531409

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