How to reliably identify the roles and relationships of words in a sentence
Mastery of grammatical concepts and syntactical strategies
How to apply this knowledge to produce coherent, economical, and compelling writing
Skills in critiquing and editing your own and others' writing
With the rise of social media and the Internet, many people are writing more today for different mediums than ever before. We’ll present materials that cover grammatical principles, word usage, writing style, sentence and paragraph structure, and punctuation. We’ll introduce you to some marvelous resources that we have annotated for your guidance. We’ll show you video clips of interviews conducted with distinguished grammarians, challenge you with quizzes and writing activities that will give you strategies to help you to build skills that will enhance the quality of your writing, and invite you to participate in discussions and assess the work of your peers.
In Week 1 , we'll introduce you to the course and discuss what grammar is and why it matters; writing standard English; and how words work.
In Week 2 , Introduction to Sentences, we'll learn about parts of speech and word classes; structure and patterns of sentences, phrases, and clauses; and common sentence-level problems.
In Week 3 , Introduction to Verbs, we'll consider finite and non-finite verbs: linking verbs, auxiliary verbs, transitive and intransitive verbs, verb phrases, phrasal verbs, verbal phrases, infinitives, participles, and gerunds. We'll also look at tense, mood, and voice of verbs.
In Week 4 , Introduction to Nouns and Pronouns, we'll explore form and function of nouns: noun strings and nominalisations; form and function of pronouns, and problems with pronouns.
In Week 5 , Introduction to Adjectives and Determiners, we'll discuss the form, function, and use of adjectives including the 'Royal Order of Adjectives' and degrees of comparison. Adjectival sequencing, punctuation, and determiners will also be discussed.
In Week 6 , Introduction to Adverbs and Conjunctions, we'll learn about the form, function, degrees of comparison, and placement of adverbs; intensifiers; and weasels.
In Week 7 , Introduction to Prepositions and Paragraphs, we'll identify how prepositions function and problems with prepositions. We'll also look at paragraph development and cohesive ties.
In Week 8 , Introduction to Punctuation, we'll explore the main punctuation marks, punctuation problems, and other punctuation marks.
Approach: Video interviews, mini-lectures, readings, quizzes, writing activities, and writing assignments.