Education & Culture

GRE Triple Blank Text Completion Questions

Published : 19 Nov 2023 07:24 PM


That we can, from a piece of art, (i) ____________ the unconscious urges of the artist—urges that remain hidden even from the artist himself—will remain a(n) (ii)______________ issue, as it is one (iii) ___________ empirical analysis: we can never definitively know what is submerged deep inside the artist’s psyche, let alone reconcile any such revelations with the artist’s work.

Select the answer for BLANK i.

A) derive

 B) appreciate

 C) subvert

Select the answer for BLANK ii.

D) practical

 E) intractable

 F) unambiguous

Select the answer for BLANK iii.

G) easily subjected to

 H) not readily amenable to

 I) likely to be resolved by


i: A) derive

ii: E) intractable

iii: H) not readily amenable


The very last part of the sentence tells us that we can’t figure out an artist’s “unconscious urges” by analyzing his or her artwork. Therefore, (A) derive works best. When you derive something, you figure it out. (B) appreciate doesn’t really capture the sense of “figuring out/discovering”, which ties back to the clue “never definitively know”. The problem is that we have this clue: “urges that remain hidden even from the artist himself”. The word “appreciate” means “to be aware of/to recognize the quality of.” It doesn’t really fit to say that someone could “appreciate” a part of a piece of artwork that the artist himself didn’t know about. Rather, we want a word that means “extract”. The sentence is talking about people finding something hidden in a piece of art. “Appreciate” doesn’t have this connotation of “extracting” the hidden meaning.

At this point, we can figure out that deriving unconscious urges is a thorny problem. (E) intractable, which means difficult to deal with, matches this meaning nicely.

Finally, “empirical analysis” deals with testing observable, measurable phenomenon. The sentence tells us that we “never definitively know what is submerged deep inside the artist’s psyche.” How can we empirically analyze something we don’t know? In order to do an empirical analysis, we need quantifiable data. If we can’t definitely know something, we can’t have any data on it. Thus, the issue is (H) “not readily amenable to” empirical analysis, meaning it cannot be easily tested. We can’t choose (G) “easily subjected to,” which would mean the opposite: that we can indeed study and even solve the question by empirical analysis. And if we put (I) “likely to be resolved by” in the blank, we’d be saying the opposite of what we want – we’d be saying that this issue can be solved by empirical analysis, which is the opposite of what the correct answer choice says (not readily amenable to).


That the comedian was so (i) ____________ as to be unable to (ii) ____________ the effect she had on others was not lost on her audience, who quickly stood up to leave, hoping their action would at least (iii) ____________.

Select the answer for BLANK i.

A) coarse

 B) oblivious

 C) presumptuous

Select the answer for BLANK ii.

D) discern

 E) mitigate

 F) ignore

Select the answer for BLANK iii.

G) serve as an uncommon retort

H) send an unambiguous message

I) provide a cryptic counterpoint


i: B) oblivious

ii: D) discern

iii: H) send an unambiguous message


To take apart this text completion, you should try to put in your own words what is happening. The audience has walked out on the comedian, who was not able to notice the effect she was having. Notice is my own word for the second blank. The word that is the closest is (D) discern.

The first blank should be the opposite because she was “so _____ as to be unable to notice the effect.” Oblivious (B) is a good opposite.

As for the third blank, the crowd is aware that the comedian is very oblivious, and so they hope that they can finally do something so she will take notice (they choose, in this case, to walk out). They hope that “their action would send a clear message”. The answer that best matches up for the third blank is (H), “send an unambiguous message.”

To make sure that all the pieces ‘fall into place’, try plugging in those answers to see if they make sense. This final step will help you make sure that the sentence has coherent meaning. In this case (B), (D), and (H), the answers, make sense.

If you chose a different answer, say (A), (E), and (G), try plugging them into and reading the sentence. Does that make sense? If you say kind of, which is often the case with wrong answers (they kind of work), try to see if there is a different interpretation. In this case, that interpretation is the one above.