Civil Service Exam Correct Usage Reviewer

Here are some multiple-choice Civil Service exam reviewers on Correct Usage.

Instruction: Choose the letter that corresponds to the word or phrase that will correctly complete each sentence.

1.) The musical play _______ we saw last night was fascinating.
A.) whose
B.) whom
C.) that
D.) since

2.) _______ the four candidates, Margot was chosen to become the school representative.
A.) Between
B.) Among
C.) Meanwhile
D.) Already

3.) I noticed that you don’t look too well. What is it that _______ you?
A.) ails
B.) ales
C.) aisles
D.) isles

4.) My teacher _______ I was absent last time when she _______ the lesson on Tirad Pass.
A.) taught, thought
B.) tot, thawed
C.) thought, taught
D.) thought, teached

5.) The envoy from Latvia handled the affair in a _______ fashion.
A.) discreet
B.) discrete
C.) discretely
D.) discreetly

6.) My friends and I have known each other _______ 1990.
A.) after
B.) since
C.) mean while
D.) because of

7.) Jasper, a known rebel, _______ the speed limit by doing 170 on the road.
A.) flaunted
B.) flouted
C.) flagged
D.) flippant

8.) Martin speaks French. _______ you?
A.) Should
B.) Can
C.) May
D.) How

9.) Policies in society that do not work for the people should be _______ so that they serve the common good.
A.) praised
B.) undermined
C.) ameliorated
D.) metabolized

10.) _______ are fourteen volunteers in _______ group. _______ waiting for you.
A.) Their, they’re, There
B.) There, they’re, Their
C.) There, their, They’re
D.) They’re, there, Their

11.) Cheating on you is the _______ thing in my mind right now.
A.) furthest
B.) farther
C.) farthest
D.) further

12.) After playing three soccer games, Diego left _______.
A.) burned out
B.) burned in
C.) burned over
D.) burned up

13.) Please do not _______ the volume of the radio as I am studying for my exams.
A.) turn over
B.) turn out
C.) turn up
D.) turn with

14.) They were playing in the yard when the balloons _______.
A.) pooped
B.) plooped
C.) bursted
D.) burst

15.) People of different religions should _______ with each other despite their creeds and beliefs.
A.) get around
B.) get along
C.) get over
D.) get with

16.) _______ are my students you are scolding.
A.) That
B.) Than
C.) This
D.) These

17.) There is _______ that I can do to help you at this point.
A.) little
B.) more
C.) somehow
D.) few

18.) The fifth grade children of Mrs. Santos are _______. They ignored their teacher’s reminders.
A.) uninteresting
B.) disinterested
C.) disinteresting
D.) interested

19.) The sheriff _______ the bank robbers last Sunday.
A.) hung
B.) hanging
C.) hanged
D.) hunging

20.) The _______ at work is that of gravity.
A.) participle
B.) particle
C.) principal
D.) principle


1.) C.) that. The relative pronoun used here (“here”) applies to any object that is concrete or tangible.
2.) B.) among. The proper word should be “among” as there are several choices given. “Between” applies only when two choices are provided.
3.) A.) ails. The correct word is “ails” which means “makes one feel sick”.
4.) C.) thought, taught. “Thought” as the past tense of “think, and “taught” as the past tense of “teach”
5.) A.) discreet. “Discreet” means in a secret manner while “discrete” means separate unit.
6.) B.) since. The adverb of time “since” is the correct choice to suggest that the speaker in the sentence and his peers have known each other sometime in the past.
7.) B.) flouted. The word “flaunt” means to be overly expressive so as to boast while “flout” means to disregard rules or conventions. The correct answer is therefore flouted.
8.) B.) can. The correct choice is “can” making the reader ask if it is possible for him to do what is suggested.
9.) C.) ameliorated. Policies that don’t work need to be improved. “Ameliorate” means to change something for the better.
10.) C.) There, their, they’re. The use of “there” indicates an assertion of some quality or trait, or even to point at a direction. “Their” is a pronoun used to show possession, while “they’re” is a contraction (short-cut) for “they are”.
11.) A.) furthest. The rule on the use of “farther” applies to physical distance in space, while “further” implies mental distance/degree.
12.) A.) burned out. The expression “burn out” means to reach a point of exhaustion.
13.) C.) turn up. To “turn up” something means to increase the sound or volume.
14.) D.) burst. The verb “burst” is an irregular verb and its past tense is also “burst” not bursted.
15.) B.) get along. The phrasal verb “get along” means to cooperate with each other.
16.) D.) these. The correct answer is “these” as it agrees with the referent, children (plural form).
17.) A.) little. The tone of the sentence suggests not much can be done. The appropriate answer is “little” not “few” because the idea is something that is not quantifiable.
18.) B.) disinterested. “Disinterested” means indifferent, impartial or unconcerned.
19.) C.) hanged. The verb hang has two meanings but both mean to suspend something. The past tense for hanging “people” as a form of punishment in some societies is “hanged” while “hung” suggests the past of objects being suspended like clothes.
20.) D.) principle. “Principle” names a fundamental belief, rule or idea.

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