Writing & Grammar


Introducing Quotations in your Essay Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: This posting is a bit early because I had a graduate student who asked me a question today and I thought you might benefit from reading my answer. Personally, I like students to introduce a quotation in their writing, rather than just dumping it into a paper. In this case, the student was writing an APA formatted essay and she wanted to know...

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Using in-text citations Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: How often do you think that an article starts on page one of a journal? It doesn’t. [There are all sorts of things that appear first, like the title page and Table of Contents, to name two.] The surprising thing to me is how often students will cite page one as their go-to page for an in-text citation. Just this past week, I...

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The devil is in the details: Proofread before you submit Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: Have you ever submitted a document for grading, only to have the instructor ask you what in the world you are saying? That probably means that you did not proofread the assignment before you turned it in. For example, today I read a discussion board posting by one of my graduate students where the individual spelled Friedrich Nietzsche’s name as “Frederick Niche.” Nope,...

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Writing notes or condolence or support Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: While you might have been the recipient of notes of condolence or comfort, let’s take a few minutes and talk about how to write them. You have the experience of being on the receiving end; now let’s see you start to send some yourself. First, I suggest that you not use those pre-written cards that cost an arm and a leg at the...

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Past and present tenses Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: Today’s blog will cover the all-important tense. When college students write an essay, sometimes they have a tendency to switch back and forth between past and present tense. According to Strunk’s Elements of Style, when a writer is summarizing something, he or she should use present tense. Don’t tell your reader that something is happening and then switch around and say that it...

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How important is formatting? Very! Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: Today’s blog is about the importance of formatting, i.e. following the directions. If an instructor gives you guidance on how he or she wants an assignment to be done, I have only two words: follow it! Recently, my students at two of the three colleges where I teach had an assignment due. I gave them samples of the formatting I wanted and offered...

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Writing a speech outline Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: Sometimes students do not understand what is required for an outline, so I have given you a sample of what is expected for a freshman level communications class that has a group project due. They are to discuss a movie and each team member must have three scholarly sources.  Here is a sample of outline formatting: Names of the team members COM1010 Group...

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Introductory phrases and words can get in the way of what you are saying Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: Today’s blog shares information on introductory words phrases. What are those, you might ask? Here’s an example straight off a paper one of my students wrote recently: In almost every workplace, there is at least one process or function that can be improved or made more efficient. In healthcare specifically, it could be finding better ways to attend to the patients faster or...

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How grocery shopping is like writing essay transitions Home Life / Writing & Grammar

Hello everyone: How in the world are transitions in an essay like grocery shopping???? Believe it or not, they are alike.  Work with me here! When you go shopping for food, you put a lot of unrelated items in your cart. Maybe you get some bananas, a container of cinnamon, and some nonfat yogurt. While you are pushing them around the store, they are three...

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