- Slides: 25
Written Expression Common Errors OR Mistakes in Students’ Written Production
Introduction • One of the greatest skills that students gain during their university years is an assignment writing. It is not easy to write concise and impressive paragraphs, essays and research papers, especially if you are an ESL or EFL student. • Most of you will make so many mistakes before you learn the art of writing, and you may feel disappointed.
Introduction • To help you, here is a complete list of the most common college essay mistakes to avoid: common mistakes in content, style, structure, spelling, punctuation, and grammar. • A perfect paragraph or essay usually has an impressive introduction, well-organized content, and a powerful conclusion. Bad college paragraphs or essays often lack structure or content and do not impress the reader.
1. Content Mistakes • Follow these five tips when writing any type of essay: 1. Write a good introduction. An interesting introduction gives the background for the whole paragraph or essay. In the introduction, you should make your presentation of the essay topic. To write a good introduction, tell your reader what you are going to write.
1. Content Mistakes 2. Write a strong topic sentence or thesis statement. Remember: The thesis is the hook on which any essay hangs. The thesis statement expresses the writer’s thoughts on the topic and tells the reader how the topic is going to be developed. A good thesis statement explains two key things to the reader: what you plan to argue in your essay and how you plan to argue it. Always support your thesis with your own ideas in the main part of the essay.
1. Content Mistakes 3. Never write a topic sentence or thesis statement if you do not have enough ideas to support it. While planning your essay, you should think carefully and ask yourself whether you have enough ideas to support your topic sentence or thesis. And if you are not sure, formulate another one that you will be able to support. 4. Use ideas that you can prove with examples. Keep in mind: Any idea should be clarified and proved. So always give appropriate examples. 5. Write a powerful conclusion. In the conclusion, take advantage of your last chance to say something important to your readers. You should emphasize the purpose and importance of what you wrote in your essay.
2. Stylistic Mistakes • Even if it is written in an interesting way, your essay make a poor impression if you do not use the correct style. • These are four essay mistakes that most students make: 1. Word repetition. Here is the truth: Your essay will look boring and childish if you use the same lexical sets. So, use synonyms and word substitutes to avoid repeating the same nouns or verbs in addition to the other grammatical cohesion techniques.
2. Stylistic Mistakes 2. Formal or informal words and phrases. Many students forget that an academic writing requires a layer of vocabulary that we do not use in our everyday life. Never use slang expressions and nonstandard verb forms like gotta or wanna in your academic papers. You should use formal constructions and high-level vocabulary. Always consult a good dictionary to choose the proper word.
2. Stylistic Mistakes Formal • • • Say sorry Go up Find out Think about Look at Go against Informal • • • Apologize Increase Discover Consider Examine Oppose
2. Stylistic Mistakes 3. Sentences that are too long or too short. If you use sentences that are too long, you make your essay harder to understand. On the other hand, you can destroy the logical development of your idea if the sentences in your essay are too short. Try to use a good balance of both long and short sentences.
2. Stylistic Mistakes 4. Sentences beginning with coordinating conjunctions. Coordinating conjunctions are mainly used to connect words and clauses in the same sentence. Sometimes we can also use them to start a sentence. But if you begin too many sentences with coordinating conjunctions, your essay will be monotonous. It is better to use corresponding conjunctive adverbs like nevertheless, moreover, or however, which have the same meaning. They are more appropriate in a formal context.
3. Structural Mistakes • The most common structural mistakes are: 1. Sentence errors. The most typical sentence errors are fragments and run-on sentences. 1. 2. Fragments occur when you punctuate groups of words as complete sentences. They do not express a complete thought because they do not contain independent clauses. As a result, they make your meaning unclear. There are two ways to correct such mistakes: - You can expand the fragment into a complete sentence by supplying the missing elements such as subjects, verbs, and clauses. - You can incorporate the fragment into an adjacent sentence.
3. Structural Mistakes 1. 2. Run-On Sentences occur when you join two or more main clauses together without appropriate punctuation. Run-on sentences confuse the reader. • What can you do to correct them? • Simply, divide a run-on sentence into separate sentences to fix it, or add a coordinating or a subordinating conjunction.
3. Structural Mistakes Fragments Run on Sentences - Incorrect: - Whoever goes to the meeting. - Correct: - Whoever goes to the meeting should bring back handouts for the rest of the group. - Incorrect: - There was complete around me I still could not fall asleep. - Correct: - There was complete silence around me, but I could not fall asleep.
3. Structural Mistakes 2. Text structure errors in essays: The most common error in the text structure is a lack of proper paragraph division. When you make text structure errors, you will not be able to convey your meaning effectively. Remember that any essay must have at least three paragraphs: the introduction, one body paragraph, and the conclusion. It goes without saying that the text and the sentences should have a clear structure and present a complete development of your ideas.
4. Grammatical Mistakes A successful paragraph or essay must be grammatically correct. • To avoid grammar errors in your writing, proofread it and check whether you have used grammar forms and obeyed grammar rules. • Are you still uncertain about what not to write in a college essay? You can always get help from essay writing companies that provide editing and proofreading services.
4. Vocabulary Mistakes • Even if you develop your ideas logically, your grammar is correct, and your style is perfect, your essay can be a disaster if you make vocabulary mistakes. • The three most common types of vocabulary errors in any written production are:
4. Vocabulary Mistakes 1. Misuse of homonyms. Many students typically misuse the following homonyms: hear vs. here, hole vs. whole, its vs. it’s, and many more. 2. Confused words. Spellcheck will not identify the incorrect use of such words as loose–lose, affect–effect, quite–quit–quiet, and accept– except. You should proofread your essay carefully to make sure you’ve used the correct words.
4. Vocabulary Mistakes 3. Wrong word form. When we write quickly, we may write a word form that differs from what we meant to write. For example, students often write verb forms instead of adjectives. This can result in an unintended change of meaning (disable people instead of disabled people). • You can use the following strategies to eliminate such errors: • Plan your time efficiently and leave enough time for the writing process. • Always proofread your writing, paying attention to the main problem areas. • If you can, check your essay for mistakes several days after you have written the first draft.
5. Spelling Mistakes • A lot of students say that the English language’s spelling system is the most unpredictable in the world. That is actually not true. There are some difficult words in English, like weigh, Caribbean, or island. You can do nothing but memorize their spelling. But a great number of other words do follow special rules. • After you have written your essay, read it carefully and correct any spelling mistakes. Make a list of the words that you usually misspell and practice writing them over and over.
6. Punctuation Mistakes • Punctuation is very important in writing. Punctuation marks are used to separate ideas, to relate ideas to one another, and to clarify meaning. • If you do not use proper punctuation, your readers will get confused and frustrated rather quickly.
Practice • The following are topic sentences for paragraphs written by first year students, English. Read them tentatively then provide your corrective feedback. 1. Social media have many advantages, this advantages can help us in the field of education. 2. social media is also usefull for students and researchers. 3. According advantages of social media in the field of education and information. 4. It make with teachers and friends all worlds, and take information. 5. the phenomenon of the advantages in the education. 7. in this time became social media let’ s is advantages in education that, what are advantages in education ? 6. Social media has some advantages in the field of education.
Practice • The following are topic sentences for paragraphs written by first year students, English. Read them tentatively then provide your corrective feedback. 1. Both American and British society use the English, so there are many similarities between them. 2. how we can similary between American and British English. 3. Although America and Britan are two different regions, british and American English have two much in common. 4. it find a similarities between American and British English, it is. 5. American and British have similarities and they speak English. 6. there a different between American and British English for this we compiar between both. 7. As the American and the British English are most using they have a lot of similarities between the two.
Practice • The following are topic sentences for paragraphs written by first year students, English. Read them tentatively then provide your corrective feedback. 1. In the present, the global warming has an effective effects on the planet. 2. The global warming is danger for the planet. 3. Global warming is difined phenoments while its effects bas as natural problemes on the planet. 4. The universe suffering from the impacts of global warming. 5. The global warming poluate the planet and envirenements. 6. The global warming effects negativly and making a danger for the earth and human is the responsible. 7. The global warming have many effects on the planet.
Practice • Read the following paragraph carefully then provide corrective feedback. Paraphrasing and summarizing have similarities as well as differences. Firstly, both of them similar in written form (written in short), both of them need to use your own words and to write the source below. In addition, both need to change the text words secondaly, these are differ in many points, such the number of sentences because summarizing is shorter than paraphrazing, also summarizing write only the main ideas not like paraphrazing Briefly, summarizing and paraphrazing have differences but it can be good way to avoid immitation.