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something missing in test #1 (permalink) Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:58 am   something missing in test
 

Business Idiom in English, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #97 "Letter of Complaint (4)", question 6

From the end of May until August I have been away on business and was surprised that ......... that period

(a) while
(b) attending
(c) from
(d) during

Business Idiom in English, Intermediate level

ESL/EFL Test #97 "Letter of Complaint (4)", answer 6

From the end of May until August I have been away on business and was surprised that during that period

Correct answer: (d) during
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something missing in test #2 (permalink) Wed Aug 29, 2007 7:28 am   something missing in test
 

Incidentally, the sentence seems to be missing something after was surprised that ... during that period Surprised what?
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something missing in test #3 (permalink) Wed Aug 29, 2007 16:31 pm   something missing in test
 

Hi Alex

In this test, you have to look at both question 6 and question 7 to get the complete sentence.

What I see as problems:

- The use of the present perfect sounds just awful to me in the context of questions 6 and 7. Would a Brit actually use the present perfect that way? :shock:

- I would also like to know why in the world "the end of my rope" is considered incorrect in question 8. :!: :?: :!: Saying "at the end of my rope" is just fine in my book!

(I will withhold judgment on the use of shall in question 10.) :wink:
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something missing in test #4 (permalink) Mon Sep 03, 2007 12:26 pm   something missing in test
 

.
In view of the fact that the test sentence refers to a definite past time (underlined), I would suggest two small changes in questions 6 and 7 as follows (in blue):

From the end of May until August I was away on business and was surprised that during that period no effort was made to write to me and keep me up to date.


I realize that the use of the present perfect in American English differs somewhat from the use in British English. Nevertheless, I do not feel the present perfect is justified in the sentence above.

Please note that my first post reflected my subjective reaction to the tense usage -- in other words, it might be seen as "descriptive" grammar. This post reflects "prescriptive" grammar. In this case, both descriptive and prescriptive grammar seem to support the same thing: the tense needs to be changed.
.
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