On the SAT Exam – Tricky synonyms

On the SAT exam, it is likely that you will run into a bunch of vocabulary words that are frequently confused! In this blog, we will look at some of the most commonly confused vocabulary words and what their differences are. At the end, you will get the chance to test out the new vocabulary and see if you can recall which of these similar-sounding words means what to help you improve your score on the SAT!


Accept vs. except
Accept means to receive something or recognize and opinion or idea as correct.
Conversely, except means simply: other than.

Let’s look at an example:
1: My mother gave me a gift, and I accepted.
2: Everyone in the class wore blue clothes except one girl who wore black clothes.


Affect vs. effect
Affect is commonly used as a verb that means to have an impact on something or someone.
Conversely, effect is more commonly used as a noun that describes the results or consequences of an action or event.
Let’s look at an example:
1: Optimism affects how you see the world.
2: The effects of this medicine are that you may become drowsy or tired.


Elicit vs. illicit
Elicit means to bring forth or extract something.
Conversely, illicit means something that is illegal.

Let’s look at an example:
1: When the teacher asked a question, it elicited no response. No one raised their hand.
2: This substance is illicit and you will be fined for having it.

Cite vs. sight VS. site
Cite means to quote or reference something.
Conversely, sight means something that you see with your eyes or literally the ability to see.
To the contrary, site means a specific place or a website on the internet.

Let’s look at an example:
1: In my paper, I cited many different theorists.
2: We drove up the mountain to see a spectacular sight.
3: Construction workers work at the construction site.


SAT practice quiz

Complete the following sentences with the correct option.