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Critical Reading > Sentence Completions

Choose the word or set of words that, when inserted in the sentence, best fits the meaning of the sentence as a whole. 

Often inattentive when it comes to schoolwork, Maya was uncharacteristically ------- when she wrote her personal essay; rather than taking her typical ------- approach, she paid extremely close attention to every last detail.

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To be “meticulous” is to pay extreme care in the consideration or treatment of details. In this context, “careless” means not showing care or attention. The sentence indicates that Maya is often inattentive in her schoolwork; in other words, she tends not to pay attention to her work, or typically is careless. It certainly would be uncharacteristic, then, for Maya to give extremely careful consideration to details when writing her essay — that is, it would be out of the ordinary for her to be so meticulous.

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