4 Free Ways to Prep for FSOT English Expression Questions

I have always done poorly on the English Expression part of the FSOT.  I don’t know why.  I’m a reasonably good writer and after graduating from college I worked as a reporter/editor for United Press International.  In any case, when I took the practice exam last month, I scored in the high 70s in English Expression.  Pretty dismal.  And people say it’s a lot easier than the FSOT!
If I had to take the FSOT again, I would work with the following four free resources:
Mignon Fogarty, the Grammar Girl, has a blog (and podcast) chock full of grammar answers, like Who v. Whom or Affect v. Effect, at the Quick & Dirty Tricks website.  Fogarty insists she focuses more on “usage” than grammar, but both the book and her podcasts will help you.  Free
WorldWideWords.org is a British site that focuses primarily on words, but also includes discussion on grammar and usage.  Of course, the British v. American English rule applies — The US and UK are, two countries separated by a common language. Free
Elements of Style, the best known of American style guides.  Written by William Strunk, a Cornell professor, on the eve of WWI and published in 1920, the book has gone through a number of editions.  Essayist, children’s book author, and former Strunk student, E.B. White brought Elements of Style into the modern age and into millions of libraries and bookcases across the United States. White’s editions also include his chapter on writing.  Strunk’s original version is offered free through Amazon’s Kindle program Elements of Style and in PDF format at Washington University in St. Louis website ()
A new paperback copy of the Fourth Edition will run you $5.20; and good used version will run you $4.00 with shipping, both on Amazon. The Fourth Edition includes a foreword by Roger Angell, longtime sportswriter for the New Yorker and White’s stepson.  Free
Grammar and Vocabulary Exercises — a kind fellow has published a website chock full of test questions that will test and ideally improve your overall grasp of English Expressions.  You can just load them on your browser bar.  When you get breaks in your schedule you can just fire them up and test yourself.  Grammar and Vocabulary here  Free
I hope you’re still writing, sitting down four or five times a week   Also, write and rewrite your bio — mind the new character limit —until you can do it in your sleep.  The more time you practice now, the less time it will take you on FSOT.  Remember, one of the biggest complaints of FSOT takers is that they run out of time.
Good luck!

Comments

  1. Hello,
    Thank you for the resources. The link for the Grammar and Vocabulary isn’t working.
    Best,
    Jihane

    • Thanks for the email. I encourage applicants to try this site — Flash Quizzes for English Study
      http://bit.ly/2gMZSQJ

      Don’t be put off that it’s for ESL students. First, it’s for advanced students and the questions are challenging. I’ll keep looking for online practice tests. I tend to favor online testing because you’ll be taking the test on a computer. Stay tuned.
      Bill

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