Question 15 - High School English I: Writing Practice Test for the STAAR test

Leila has not provided a strong thesis for her paper, shown in the attachment. Which of these sentences should come after sentence 3 to serve as a thesis statement for this paper?

Leila’s teacher assigned the class an expository essay about a current event or social topic. Read Leila’s first draft and look for any revisions she should make.

Genetically Modified Organisms

(1) You’ve probably seen the labels on food packaging in the grocery store: “Made with Non-GMO ingredients”. (2) But what does that really mean? (3) What are these “GMOs”?

(4) A GMO, or Genetically Modified Organism, is any living organism that has had its DNA (its genetic material) artificially modified or manipulated in some way, usually by a scientist in a laboratory. (5) GMOs are not naturally occurring organisms, they are created by scientists. (6) GMOs aren’t just things we find in our food because in addition to plants, animals can also be genetically modified, and so bacteria and viruses can be modified, too. (7) GMOs are everywhere.

(8) The rise in the use of GMOs in our daily lives has prompted some debate as to the benefits and bad things about their use and humanity’s consumption of them. (9) Scientists continue to debate the pros and cons. (10) There are positives and negatives about using GMOs and exposing people to them.

(11) GMO benefits are numerous. (12) By altering the genetic code in plants, scientists can make these plants more resistant to insects, which cuts down on the need for pesticides. (13) Genetically modifying food crops like soybeans, corn, and wheat can make them more productive by increasing their yield in each planting, ensuring a greater amount of food for people. (14) Scientists have also determined a way to make foods more nutritious by genetically modifying their ingredients to increase their levels of specific nutrients, like certain vitamins.

(15) Not everyone feels that the use of GMOs is a good thing. (16) Some scientists are concerned that animal feed that contains GMOs may impact the animals’ product (meat, milk, eggs, honey, etc.). (17) Genetically modified plants may be more resistant to insects, but the concern is that the development of “superweeds” or “superbugs” may result in them becoming immune to herbicides and insecticides designed to protect them. (18) Opponents also point to the lack of understanding of the long-term effects of GMOs on the environment and worry about the damage they could be causing with their increased development and use.

(19) The benefits and consequences of GMOs is still under study. (20) While genetically modified organisms may help address some of the world’s concerns with food production to feed growing populations, the long-term effects of their role in the food chain for both humans and animals is, as yet, unknown.

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