Adjectives and Adverbs Adjectives modify nouns. Adverbs modify everything else – verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. The ACT sometimes tests to see whether you know the difference between adjectives and adverbs. You may remember from grade school a method that often helps to decide if a word is an adjective – simply put the word you aren’t sure about into the following sentence. “He/She is very _____.” If the word fits the blank, then the word is an adjective. He is very intelligent. He is very intelligently.
Adjectives and Adverbs Intelligent fits the blank in the first sentence, so intelligent must be an adjective. Intelligently does not fit the blank in the second sentence because it is an adverb. She thinks intelligently.
A comparative adjective is often used when a sentence is comparing two things. Juanita is taller than Jane. In general, if an adjective has only one syllable, you can make it comparative by adding an “er” to the end of the word. If the adjective has more than one syllable, you can usually make it comparative by adding “more” or “less” in front of the adjective. Sid is more careful than Tom. Tom is less careful than Sid. Comparative Adjectivespar
Comparative Adverbs A comparative adverb is often used when a sentence is comparing two actions. Juanita dances more gracefully than Jane.
Comparative Adverbs To make an adverb comparative, you also need to add a “more” or “less” in front of the adverb. Sid behaves more politely than Tom does. Tom behaves less politely than Sid does.
Superlative Adjectives When more than two things are being compared, a sentence needs a superlative adjective. Of the many men in the room, John is the strongest. To make a comparison between three or more things, add “est” to the adjective.
Superlative Adverbs When more than two actions are being compared, a sentence often needs a comparative adverb. Compared with the other boys in the school, Sid behaves the most politely.
Work Cited Martz, Geoff, Kim Magloire, and Theodore Silver. Cracking the ACT. 2007 ed. New York: Random House, 2007. Print.