Be careful of the categorical statements that are sometimes made about what the GMAT test and doesn’t test. There are a lot of misconceptions around, and these can lead to misinformation.

Let’s take just one example: the present participle ‘being’. Students regularly tell us that ‘someone said’ or ‘they had heard’ that this form of the verb ‘to be’ is always wrong in Sentence Correction. Well, it’s not the verb that’s incorrect, it’s this information. If you take it on face value, you’ll end up eliminating all the options in which ‘being’ appears, and that could mean that you’ve eliminated a correct answer just on that basis.

The fact is rather diferent from the information that some students have read or have been told. ‘Being’ is frequently misused, but is not always wrong. Quite often it is stuck in sentences in which it has no role to perform, or is used unidiomatically. But there are cases in which its use is fine.

One of these cases occurs when ‘being’ is the subject of a sentence, and in fact if you look through the Sentence Correction section of The Ofcial Guide the GMAT, you’ll find a quite difcult question with a correct answer-choice that begins in this way. And here is an example from us:

‘Being overtired and stressed is a state that invariably leads to poor performace, whether on the stage or elsewhere’.

Here, the subject of the sentence is ‘being overtired and stressed’ and since English allows a present participle to be the subject of a sentence, this construction is undoubtedly correct.

Therefore you should definitely not eliminate all Sentence Correction. choices that contain ‘being’, because sometimes it has a role to perform in the sentence and is therefore used appropriately.

We’ll be back to give you some more ideas about some of the information that gets around about what you should and shouldn’t do in the GMAT.

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