Phrases, Essential and Non-essential Phrases

A phrase is a group of words that lacks a subject (an actor) and a verb (an action): after the market correction (prepositional phrase)the clever stock traders (noun phrase)were ready to buy the dip  (verb phrase). An Essential Phrase is a phrase that contains the information needed to complete the meaning of the sentence. A Non-Essential Phrase is a phrase that contains information that isn't needed in the sentence for the sentence to retain its meaning. Synonymous Terms: The terms restrictive or non-restrictive information are synonymous to Essential Phrase or Non-Essential...

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Active vs Passive Voice

Active and passive voices are two ways of describing how sentences create relationships between actors, actions, and objects of actions: Sentences in active voice put those elements in this order: Actor + Action + Object of Action. Sentences in passive voice put those elements in a different order, and sometimes even leave out the actor element: Object of Action + Action (+ Actor). This changes what would normally be the direct object or indirect object into the subject of a sentence. Active voice focuses on who did what. Passive voice...

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Word Form

English has different forms of words that convey different meanings. 1. For instance, the third person singular verb in English has an -s on the end. He sits on the bus, while I stand, and they hold on. 2. Adding -ing to a verb means that it is happening in the present time. He is sitting on the bus right now. 3. Adding –ed to a verb means that it happened in the past. They danced in the moonlight. English has a number of irregular verb forms, though, so this...

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Choppy Writing

Choppy writing uses short words and simplistic diction. short, primer-style sentences (i.e., sentences that don't connect to each other). How can I improve choppy writing? Connect some of your ideas together with conjunctions and/or segues. Make two short sentences into one longer one. Writing feels choppy when the sentences are very short, and the sentences do not connect to each other. Choppy writing sounds like it has been written by someone who can only use the basic words of the English language. Add some introductory phrases (transitions, modifiers, or infinitive...

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Contractions

Contractions are a way to combine two words with an apostrophe. Here are some examples: Should I use contractions in my paper? Some disciplines do not have a problem with contractions in writing. If you received this comment, though, this assignment requires you to use formal language. You will need to spell out your contractions. Consider your audience when writing this assignment. If you write casually, they will think that you do not care about your topic. By using formal language, you are showing your audience that you respect them...

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Vocabulary

Vocabulary is so highly correlated with high scores/grades that ETS (Educational Testing Service) and Pearson Education use vaculary and sentence length to predict grades and scores in their machine-learning algorithms.

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Verb Tense Shift

A verb tense shift occurs when a writer changes tense within a single piece of writing. Tense is the term for what time frame verbs refer to. Standard American English has a number of tenses, each of which is a variation on past, present, or future. Any switching of tense within a sentence, paragraph, or longer piece of writing is a verb tense shift. Are verb tense shifts always wrong? No. Verb tense shifts are useful for informing readers of the different times at which things happen. When I opened...

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Coordinating Conjunctions

Coordinating Conjunctions are words that are used to connect ideas. Rhetors use coordinating conjunctions to join to two independent clauses--i.e., two sentences. Coordinating conjunctions are words that connect ideas. Coordinating conjunctions are used to join two sentences together. Example: I'm reading, and I'm writing. FANBOYS is mnemonic device you can use to remember the seven coordinating conjunctions: F = For (cause/ reason)A = And (addition)N = Nor (negative choice)B = But (contrast)O = Or (choice)Y = Yet (contrast)S = So (as a result/effect) Commas are used when two independent clauses...

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Subordinating Conjunctions

A subordinating conjunction connects an independent clause to a dependent (subordinate) clause: an independent clause is a sentence that is a complete thought and therefore can stand alone. a dependent clause does not express a complete thought and cannot stand on its own. For example, an independent clause looks like this: I survived the shipwreck. A dependent clause looks like this: Although I lost my luggage. Notice how the second sentence is incomplete, but it includes a subordinating conjunction. In order to make the sentence complete, you would need to...

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Sentences

A sentence is a grammatically independent unit that contains (1) a verb (AKA predicate) and (2) a subject wherein the verb is an action and the subject is a nounat least one word long yet typically composed of at least two words in one-word sentences either the subject (noun) or action (verb) is implied. Example: Go!started with a capital letter and then ended with end-mark punctuation--i.e., a period, exclamation, or question mark. A sentence may include Subordinate Clauses, Dependent Clauses Related Concepts Punctuation The grammatical relationships between and among words...

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