An acid test is a chemical test that uses acid to detect something; for example, an acid test can reveal if something is made of real gold or not.
More generally, an acid test is any test or other indication that reveals in an absolutely clear way whether or not someone or something is successful, genuine, real, high-quality, etc.
AS id test
Part of speech:
(Countable nouns, like “bottle,” “piece,” and “decision,” are words for things that can be broken into exact units. You talk about “a bottle,” “three pieces,” and “many decisions.”
Likewise, talk about one acid test or multiple acid tests.)
Just the plural: "acid tests."
How to use it:
Call something an acid test when it reveals with total clarity whether or not someone or something is truly successful. You can apply/administer/give an acid test, undergo/endure/prepare for an acid test, interpret something as an acid test, note that something has become an acid test, etc.
Often you'll say that something is an acid test for someone or something: "The live debate is an acid test for the candidates' ability to think on their feet." And you can talk about the acid test of something: "How much pain you still feel after taking it is the acid test of this medicine."
After running an ad for your business on Facebook, it's great to get a lot of "likes" on your company's page, but the acid test is how many sales the ad generated.
As I'm tutoring a child, I occasionally rely on this acid test for comprehension: "Okay, you learned this really well! Now I'd like to watch you teach it to your little brother."
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "acid test" means when you can explain it without saying "obvious" or "indicator."
Think of a goal you're working toward in your personal life, or with your family, or within a hobby of yours, or at work, and fill in the blanks: "Considering the acid test of _____, it's clear that (some specific kind of outcome has resulted, good or bad.)"
Example: "Considering the acid test of how many times our young daughter still wakes up each night, it's clear that we're still a long way away from a guaranteed uninterrupted night's sleep."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
This month, we're playing New Word Order! It's a card game that I recently created; it involves figuring out the order in which certain words and phrases entered our language. I'll give you several words and/or phrases, and you'll use your knowledge of history, slang, technology, popular culture, fashion, psychology, etc. to put them into chronological order. I'll post the right answer to each question on the following day. If you like this game, you can download and print it to play with your family and friends. (It's free.)
Remember, you don't need to come up with the actual years--just try to get the words in the correct time order.
Try these today:
Phenotyping, mini-mall, & 3G.
A Point Well Made:
Edgar Allan Poe: “If you wish to forget anything on the spot, make a note that this thing is to be remembered.”
1. The opposite of ACID TEST could be
A. BASE TEST
B. AMBIGUOUS TEST
C. FINAL TEST
2. Earning a passing grade and course credit is _____, but _____.
A. great ... the real acid test is long-term retention of knowledge and skills
B. the acid test .. real-world application is what matters
C. necessary .. the actual acid test took place at the beginning of the semester
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Today we extract a useful phrase from chemistry that we can easily apply outside a laboratory: "acid test." Could you also recall the abstract meanings of these other scientific terms? Calcify, immiscible, kinetic, undiluted, & valence.
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