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The purpose of his work was explicit and revolutionary, he wanted to turn attention away from the mind and towards nature.

The fact that they had agreed to the conditions does not mean that their was no violation of the worker’s rights.

As MacFarquhar eloquently phrased it the best books might be better than the best television, but further down the pile the difference gets murkier (2010).

Today’s consumer is likely to be more sensitive to exaggerated advertising claims than was his counterpart fifty years ago.

James Robertson agrees that Stevenson raises significant problems that he cannot resolve with a single experiment.

Alliances and collaboration is important if the community is to gain the benefits offered by the program.

Test Your Knowledge

Each of the following sentences requires editing. Can you spot the problems? Click the button following the sentences to check your responses. Advance to the next question by clicking the numbered buttons.

1

Edited Version:

 

The purpose of his work was explicit and revolutionary; he wanted to turn attention away from the mind and towards nature.

 

[Two complete sentences (or independent clauses) should not be joined by a comma. The comma could be replaced with a semicolon, or alternatively, a conjunction such as the word “and” could be added after the comma.]

Edited Version:

 

 The fact that they had agreed to the conditions does not mean that there was no violation of the workers’ rights.

 

 [The word “there” should be substituted for “their” to be consistent with the author’s meaning. The apostrophe in “worker’s” should come after the letter “s” rather than before it, because the sentence refers to more than one worker.]

Edited Version:

 

As MacFarquhar eloquently phrased it, the best books might be better than the best television, but further down the pile the difference gets murkier (2010).

 

[The last portion of the sentence is a quotation from MacFarquhar and, therefore, should be enclosed in quotation marks and preceded by a comma.]

Edited Version:

 

Today’s consumers are likely to be more sensitive to exaggerated advertising claims than their counterparts fifty years ago.

 

[A consumer could be either male or female, so it is inappropriate to use “his” to refer to consumers in general. One solution would be to write “consumers are” and “their counterparts.”]

Edited Version:

 

James Robertson agrees that Stevenson raises significant problems that Robertson cannot resolve with a single experiment.

 

[In the original statement, it isn’t clear to whom the word “he” refers. Is it Robertson or Stevenson who cannot resolve the problems?]

Edited Version:

 

Alliances and collaboration are important if the community is to gain the benefits offered by the program.

 

[Even though alliances and collaboration are very similar things, using them together at the start of the sentence means that “is” should be replaced with “are.” ]