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Grammar and Vocabulary
Tips and Tricks to Check Yo...
With things rather than people or animals, don’t use -‘s to show possession.
To show joint ownership, add -‘s to the last noun only.
To show individual possession, add -‘s to each name.
To form the passive, use BE + PAST PARTICIPLE (is left, are loved, was locked).
Modals (must, have to, can, etc.) form the passive MODAL + BE + PAST PARTICIPLE.
Intransitive verbs can’t use passive.
Use the passive when the subject is acted upon.
Use active voice when the subject is the actor.
We often use a/an when mentioning a noun for the first time.
Use a when you mean one of many.
Never use a/an with non-count nouns.
Use the to identify a noun already mentioned.
Don’t use the in statements of general truth.
Use the with an abstract noun only when the noun is limited by a phrase or a clause.
That, which, and who act as subject of an adjective clause. Never use a double subject!
That, which, and whom can act as direct objects in a clause. Never use a double object!
When, where, and why are never the subject of an adjective clause!
What never introduces an adjective clause. Use which or that.
Which must refer to a single noun. It cannot refer to a whole clause.
When a clause tells why, use because.
So…that and because…so are used in cause-result clauses.
So…that is used with adjectives; such…that is used with nouns.
If, when, and while clauses must be followed by a comma. Don’t add and or so.
Noun clauses follow regular subject-verb order. Do not use question order with noun clauses.
All clauses must have a subject and a verb.
To indicate certainty, use that to introduce a noun clause.
To show doubt or ask a question, use if to introduce a noun clause.
As…as is used with adjectives to compare qualities of two persons, places, or things.
As…as is used with adverbs to compare two actions.
To compare two nouns, use similar to or the same as.
Use more…than or -er…than in unequal comparisons.
In comparisons, use either more or er. Never use both.
In superlatives, use the…most or the…-est.
In the present tense, would rather…than must be followed by the simple form of the verb.
In the past tense, would rather have…than is used with the past participle.
When participles describe actions, the past participle (VERB + ED) is used to emphasize a completed action.
When participles describe actions, the present participle (VERB + ING) is used to emphasize an ongoing process.
When participles describe emotions or moods:The past participle (VERB + ED) describes the person’s mental state or inner feelings.The present participle (VERB + ING) describes the cause of the mental state or feeling.
NO: I came to Gallaudet because I wanted to social.
YES: I came to Gallaudet because I wanted to socialize.
YES: I came to Gallaudet because I wanted to have a social life.
Present participles commonly modify nouns.
NO: Children will behave better with the house look neat.
YES: Children will behave better with the house looking neat.
Past participles modify nouns when the meaning is passive.
NO: I already know about the internship providing at the Department of Education.
YES: I already know about the internship (being) provided at the Department of Education.
Noun phrases – gerunds, preposition or infinitive phrases – are commonly the subjects, compliments or the objects of the verb in the main clause.
Prepositions must be followed by a nominal noun, pronoun, gerund, noun phrase or noun clause.
Others is a pronoun which usually means ‘other people.’ Other is an adjective meaning ‘some more.’
A few means several. Few means not many.
A little means some. Little means not much.
A pronoun must agree with its noun antecedent in gender and number.
Each other and one another indicate a relationship between two people or things. They refer to a plural subject.
Wh- questions (who, what, where, what kind of, how many, how much, how often) usually follow Yes-No question order the subject is between the helping verb and the main verb.
When who, what or which is the subject of the question, use regular subject-verb order.
Yes/No questions are formed by inserting the subject between the helping verb and the main verb. Person, number and tense are indicated by the helping verb. For example: She has gone? Has she gone?
A comma splice occurs when two or more independent clauses are joined by a comma.
Dependent clauses cannot stand alone. They must be connected to an independent clause.
A fused sentence has grammatical parts which are missing or used incorrectly.
A run-on sentence is a sentence whose clauses are incorrectly joined.
Intransitive verbs are followed by an adverb, prepositional phrase, verbal, or nothing at all.
Intransitive verbs can never be passive.
Use a noun after a linking verb only when it renames the subject.
Use an adjective after a linking verb to describe the subject.
If there introduces a clause, there must be followed by a linking verb. IT/THERE
Sequence of tenses Use the present tense to express a current opinion, belief, or state of mind about a past event.
If the verb in the independent clause is in the future tense, don’t use the future tense in the dependent clause.
Use the present perfect to express actions that begin in the past and continue to the present.
Use past continuous to describe an action in progress at the time of another action.
Use of present tense Use the simple present tense to express general truths, repeated or habitual actions, and states or qualities of being.
Conflicts with adverbs of time Adverbs of time are commonly associated with only one verb tense.
Transitive verbs are action verbs that need a direct object, a nominal noun, pronoun, gerund, noun phrase or clause.
Transitive verbs must be followed by a nominal.
Subject and verb must always agree.
Verb tense and voice must always follow regular patterns. See VERB TENSE TABLES
Modals are in the USAGE DICTIONARY.
Some verbs are often followed by verbals. There are five basic verb-verbal patterns. See pp. 38-39 and the USAGE DICTIONARY.
verb + infinitive
verb + gerund
verb + gerund
verb + object + simple form of verb
verb + object + simple form of the verb
verb + object + infinitive
Modifiers must come after the noun they modify.
When using a non-count noun:Never add s to a non-count noun.Always use a singular verb.Never introduce a non-count noun with a/an.Never use many with a non-count noun.
Words or phrases joined by and, but, or, or nor and words in a list must be grammatically the same (parallel).
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