Lesson: Analogies - 08

Analogies: Never drop answer choices

Don’t Give Up If You Know Only One of the Two Words in an Answer Choice You can often eliminate an answer choice by knowing just one of the two words. If you build an idea about the other meaning to eliminate choices it might be successful. To see how you might apply this technique to a -style Analogy, consider the following explained example for better illustration:


  1. surrender : succumb
  2. swallow : regurgitate
  3. ingest : gorge
  4. breathe : respire
  5. engulf : envelop
Practice Questions

Example Solution

  1. Crosssurrender : succumb
  2. Crossswallow : regurgitate
  3. Checkingest : gorge
  4. Crossbreathe : respire
  5. Crossengulf : envelop


The correct answer is (C). To GUZZLE is to DRINK without restraint in amount. Considering choice (A), if you don’t happen to know what succumb means, ask yourself what word might convey the idea of an unrestrained amount of surrender. The concept of an amount of surrender doesn't make sense, and so it’s a good bet that choice (A) does not provide the best analogy. You don’t need to know the meaning of succumb (to give in, yield, or surrender) to rule out choice (A). Similarly, the concept of an unrestrained amount of swallowing doesn't make much sense, and so choice (B) is probably not the best analogy, either. (Regurgitate means “throw up” or “vomit.”)

By the same token, you can evaluate choice (C) without knowing what ingest means, as long as you know that gorge means “eat without restraint in amount.” Based just on this word, choice (C) looks like it might provide a good analogy. Indeed, it does—to ingest is to eat. Choices (D) and (E) are incorrect because they each provide a pair of synonyms.

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Miller Analogies Test (MAT)

The Miller Analogies Test (MAT) is an exam administered by the Harcourt Assessment at Pearson testing centers. The MAT is an admissions exam accepted by many graduate programs in the United States. Additionally, it is used by many high-IQ societies across the world as an admission requirement. The MAT is intended to assess logical and analytical reasoning through completion of partial analogies. The test duration is 60 minutes and contains 120 questions. Exam formats include both computer-based tests (CBT) and paper and pencil format.