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The Art of Grammar: Sentence Fragments & Comma Splicing

An educational presentation aimed toward refreshing grammatical finnesse involving complete sentences and comma use.
by

Austin Quick

on 7 September 2012

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Transcript of The Art of Grammar: Sentence Fragments & Comma Splicing

The Art of Grammar Sentence Fragments & Comma Splicing Recognizing Fragments Sentence Fragments Fixing Fragments Sentence Fragments Recognizing Splices and Fused Sentences Commas Fixing Splices and Fused Sentences 1. Does it have a complete verb? If the answer is no, it is a fragment.

2. Does it have a subject? If the answer is no, it is a fragment.

3. Does it begin with a If the answer is yes, it is a fragment.
subordinating word but otherwise
stand alone? Identifying Fragments When two independent clauses are joined by: Austin Quick, Matthew MacDonald, Dalton Turner, Brian Wilcox a comma alone It is an example of a comma splice no punctuation It is an example of a fused sentence Connect the fragment to a related independent clause. Once a fragment has been identified, two options for correction are possible. Examples Other indicators second clause begins with a conjunctive adverb We ordered pizza, however, we received pasta. subject of the second clause refers to the subject of the first Austin is an awesome programmer, he codes all day long. Comma splice Her beautiful new sports car.
Her beautiful new sports car was smashed beyond repair. one clause is positive and the other is negative Examples Dalton is not lazy, he is proactive. the first clause introduces the second clause, or the second clause elaborates on the first. Fragment Sentence The first mission to pluto was launched in 2006. Will arrive in 2015. Grammar has a large impact on modern literature it gives both structure and form to our writing. Fused sentence Fixing Phrase Fragments Phrase Fragments Fixing Subordinate Clause Fragments Subordinate Clause Fragments Recognizing Phrase Fragments Phrase Fragments Recognizing Subordinate Clause Fragments Subordinate Clause Fragments or Convert the fragment into an independent clause. He made 5,000 songs available over the university's server. Which prompted the record companies to threaten legal action. He made 5,000 songs available over the university's server, which prompted the record companies to threaten legal action. Connection via independent clause Examples Connection via Independent Clause Fragments Sentences Comma Splices and Fused Sentences The first mission to Pluto was launched in 2006. Will arrive in 2015. The first mission to Pluto was launched in 2006. It will arrive in 2015. Separate Sentences
Coordinating Conjunctions
Semicolons
Colons and Dashes
Modifying Subordinate Clauses or Phrases He made 5,000 songs available over the university's server. In response, the record companies threatened legal action. He made 5,000 songs available over the university's server. Which prompted the record companies to threaten legal action. Divide into two separate sentences Example 2: Separate Sentences Example 1:
Fused Sentences Do the clauses have a logical relationship? If both of the independent clauses are long, or do not have a close logical relationship, simply divide them up. Servers no purpose.
The breadmaker in my cupboard serves no purpose. "My friends and I began our long-anticipated trip to Peru in early July we arrived in Lima on Saturday morning and flew to Cuzco that same day." "My friends and I began our long-anticipated trip to Peru in early July. We arrived in Lima on Saturday morning and flew to Cuzco that same day." The Five Strategies for Correcting Splices and run-ons Are there two independent clauses? No: the sentences are not closely related. Yes: there is a clear, logical relationship. Does one of the claims contrast, provide an example, or explain the other? Use a Semicolon Example 2:
modified with a semicolon and an adverb Example 1: Comma Splice Using a semicolon in conjunction with an adverb can effectively clarify the relationship between two clauses. "More than sixty people have won two or more Academy Awards in a single year; however, only one person, Walt Disney, has yet won four in a year." "More than sixty people have won two or more Academy Awards in a single year only one person, Walt Disney, has yet won four in a year." Andre sank a perfect basket unfortunately the coach's back was turned. Comma Splices and Fused
Sentences occur when you
combine two independent
clauses without the proper punctuation and transitions. "More than sixty people have won two or more Academy Awards in a single year; only one person, Walt Disney, has yet won four in a year." Acceptable Clearer relationship This sentence is an example of a fused sentence as it combines two independent (determined to be such because they include both a subject and a predicate) clauses without any punctuation. Use a Colon or Dash Example 2: modified with a Dash Example 1: modified with a Colon Using a semicolon or a dash can create a stronger emphasis on the relationship between two clauses. "Don't get kicked out of school--learn to study effectively." "The message is clear, smoking kills." "Don't get kicked out of school, learn to study effectively." Comma Splice In this instance, the second clause elaborates on what must be done to avoid the effect in the first clause. Tony was enjoying his pizza and listening to his friends, hot cheese dripped onto his plate. "The message is clear: smoking kills." Comma Splice In this case, the first clause introduces the second. Therefore, we use a colon. Here is an example of comma splicing as it combines two independent clauses with a comma but no conjunction. Does the first clause introduce the second? Does the second explain or elaborate on the first? Use a Coordinating Conjunction Example 2: Modified with a Coordinating Conjunction Example 1: Run-on When joining independent clauses with a comma and a conjunction, choose the conjunction that best fits the relationship between the clauses. "We needed to adjust to the altitude before we began hiking in the Andes we spent three days sightseeing in Cuzco." "We needed to adjust to the altitude before we began hiking in the Andes, so we spent three days sightseeing in Cuzco." A Third Option to Relating Clauses The Final Option Subordinate Clauses and Modifying Phrases Example 2:
Revised Subordinate Clause Example 1: Comma Splice Turn one of the independent clauses into a subordinate/modifying clause. Note: Information contained in the subordinate clause is de-emphasized in relation to the primary clause. Therefore, this option is not often considered. "Spanish, like French and Italian, is a Romance language, it derives from Latin, the language of the Romans." "Spanish, like French and Italian, is a Romance language because it derives from Latin, the language of the Romans." Primary Clause Subordinate Clause Example 3:
Revised Modifying Phrase "Spanish, a Romance language like French and Italian, derives from Latin, the language of the Romans." Modifying Phrase Other common conjunctions: and, but, or, nor, for, so, or yet Prepositional Fragment: An incomplete sentence consisting of a preposition, such as as, at, for, from, in addition to, to, or until. Verbal fragment A verbal fragment can function as an adjective, adverb, or noun within a sentence. On its own however, it is incomplete, unable to function. Appositive Fragment: Appositive phrases rename preceding nouns or noun phrases. Appositives become fragments when they are separated by a period from the phrases they rename. Compound Predicate Fragment: A fragment results when the last part of the compound predicate is punctuated as a separate sentence. What is a phrase fragment? A Phrase fragment is basically a fragment that follows the basic rules of certain phrases. Types of Phrase Fragments A subordinate clause contains a subordinate conjunction, a subject, and a verb. Because this type of clause does not express a complete thought, it cannot stand alone as a complete sentence.

Example: Blogs continue to gain popularity as a source of information. Because they can publish late-breaking news as soon as it occurs. Subordinate Clause Fragments Phrase fragments can usually be corrected by attaching them to an adjacent sentence. Prepositional Phrase:
The Kenyon College women won the NCAA Division III title again. For the seventeenth consecutive year. Examples Verbal Phrase:
The car had run out of gas. Stranding us in the middle of nowhere. Appositive Phrase:
In her acceptance speech, the Academy Award winner thanked her biggest fan. Her mother. Compound Predicate:
By the end of May, the band members hated each other. But still had six weeks left on the tour. Examples The Kenyon College women won the NCAA Division III title for the seventeenth consecutive year. The car had run out of gas, stranding us in the middle of nowhere. In her acceptance speech, the Academy Award winner thanked her biggest fan, her mother. By the end of May, the band members hated each other but still had six weeks left on the tour. Example: Blogs continue to gain popularity as a source of information because they can publish late-breaking news as soon as it occurs. Correct a subordinate clause fragment by connecting it to the independent clause to which it relates. The first mission to Pluto was launched in 2006 and will arrive in 2015
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