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Academic Support Center Student Toolkit

Grammar

Parts of Speech. Knowing the different parts of speech and being able to recognize them in the sentences you read as well as the ones you write will help you speak more eloquently, write more clearly, and feel more confident when communicating with others.

Capitalization.  Knowing which words to capitalize is often common sense (e.g. First words of sentences, names of people, cities, etc.), but even the best of us have trouble keeping track of all the situations where we need capital letters. This brief but handy guide lists most of the situations you will encounter where you will need to capitalize words.

A sentence is a word or a group of words expressing a complete thought. This handy guide will help you to be able to identify both complete sentences and fragments.

 

Like relatives at a holiday gathering, subjects and verbs are happiest when they agree with each other. This handy guide outlines the situations in which you will encounter subjects and verbs, allowing you to better mediate between the two and ensure that they are always in agreement.

Prepositions indicate time, place, or context, letting the reader know when and where things are happening in a sentence.

Articles signal and introduce nouns. There are two types of articles: definite and indefinite.

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Punctuation

Commas are frequently used to separate different words, phrases, and clauses in a sentence for the sake of clarity.

Apostrophes are used to show ownership or possession.

 

 

Colons serve a few purposes, both grammatical and non-grammatical. Like semicolons, they help to link related clauses without using conjunctions. However, unlike semicolons, the use of a colon does not require both clauses to be independent.

Semicolons are used between independent clauses that are closely related (i.e. the second clause further discusses the first) and are not joined by the conjunctions and, but, or, so, nor, yet.

Brackets are sometimes used interchangeably with the more common parentheses. However, the two serve different purposes in writing.

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