Compare Two Passages

I'm reviving a few of my old blog posts because they'll be new to most people reading this blog, and hopefully they'll be helpful.

I wrote the post below  in May of 2011, while in the midst of  taking 7 SATs as part of a year-long journey I took with my son.

Since then, I finished the project (and a book about the project), my son took the SAT  (twice), and got into his first choice school where he's  about to start his second semester. And now, I'm at it (i.e. the SAT) again with kid #2 -- an SAT re-do, as a mom.

The book about our journey is called The Perfect Score Project: Uncovering the Secrets of the SAT and will be in stores in about six weeks (yikes!) -- but you can pre-order the book now, if you'd like. You can also read an excerpt by clicking here -- and read a few blog posts where I posted excerpts: PSAT scores vs SAT scores and  Mother Love.

There Are Basically Four Types of Relationships 

(Originally posted in May 2011)

Continuing with the Compare 2 Passages conversation of yesterday, the reason I often find these so difficult is that their distinctions can be very subtle and hard to articulate.  It's not as if one is "pro" and the other is "con."  That would be way too easy for the SAT.

Erica Meltzer has a great post describing the four types of passage relationships.  She says that if you go into these passages knowing that they fall into predictable categories, they get easier:

  1. Passage 1 and Passage 2 present opposing views of the same topic (the easiest for me)
  2. Passage 1 and Passage 2 agree but have different focuses or stylistic differences (hard for me)
  3. Passage 1 and Passage 2 discuss completely different aspects of the same event (e.g. P1 focuses on how an event was perceived by the press, P2 focuses on how it impacted women)
  4. Passage 2 provides an example of an idea that Passage 1 describes (very hard for me!)


I *think* this is an example of a #2.



Illustrations by Jennifer Orkin Lewis

  • John

    brilliant! Thanks for this; I'm passing it forward.

    • Debbie Stier

      Thank you!!  

      And I just dug out my kindle so I can order your book.  I'm over the ipad.