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Transcript of Active/Passive Voice
Top 10 Grammar Problems:
Active Voice Collaboration between: Madeline Fortier and Ayoung Song Changing Passive to Active Why Be Active Instead of Passive? Passive vs. Active Sentences in passive voice contain a form of "to be" and a present or past participle. Passive voice is used when the subject of the active verb is unknown, which is why it is used mostly in scientific and technical writing.
An example is, "The Grand Canyon was visited by many tourists."
Sentences in active voice contain an action verb and are in the normal subject/verb order. Active voice is much less complicated and wordy than passive, so active voice is used mostly in non-scientific writing.
An example is, "Many tourists visited the Grand Canyon."
The object of the active verb is the subject of the passive verb, so intransitive
verbs (verbs which cannot be followed by objects, such as the verbs appear,
arrive, come, cry, die, and go) can't be used in passive voice. To change a passive-voice sentence to active voice, return the basic subject/verb order in the sentence.
1) Find who or what is performing the action expressed by the verb.
2) Make that the subject of the sentence, and change the verb accordingly.
For example, change, "The book is being read by most of the class," to "Most of the class is reading the book." An important thing to be aware of is that passive voice isn't always incorrect.
Grammar fanatics say that passive voice isn't the best option to voice your thoughts because it is awkward and vague. To also avoid wordiness, you should use active voice instead of passive.
However if you want to be obscure, then so be it! Use the passive voice already! Anonymous, Vague, and so on "Amy is loved."
Who loves Amy?
"Mistakes were made." - Anonymous Politician
Who made the mistake? Was it you or someone else?
"Your electricity will be cut off."
What? Why? Who will? When?
Why do these people make everything so obscure when we, as the readers and listeners, need more details? Corrections, Improvements, Using New Knowledge "Amy is loved." >>> "We love Amy."
"Mistakes were made." >>> "Our nation made a mistake by dropping a nuclear weapon in the sea."
"Your electricity will be shut off." >>> "We, the electric company," will shut off your electricity." LET"S FIX THAT! EXAMPLES
identify the voice 1. The chef is preparing the food.
2. Homework is being done by the girl.
3. The brother is annoying her sister.
4. The play was written by Shakespeare.
5. We determined the argument in a letter written by Martin Luther King, Jr. EXAMPLES
correct from passive to active 1. The girl was helped.
2.The boy was bitten by the dog.
3. The experiments were conducted by scientists to test the hypothesis.
4. The poor people were deprived of their opportunities.
5. The United States cited documents to prove that they admitted an estimated 12 to 20 million illegal immigrants. Worksheet Examples QUICK CHECK
identify the voice; if passive, change to active 1. The scales were played by the musician.
2. The teenager was typing on the computer.
3. The suspect was being watched by a spy.
4. A small bug flew by my ear.
5. The light by the door flickered out, leaving us in the dark. active
active ("we determined"); ("written by MLK" is a participial phrase, not a verb) Mary helped the girl.
The dog bit the boy.
Scientists conducted experiments to test the hypothesis.
New policies deprived poor people of their opportunities.
Correct. passive; The musician played the scales.
passive; The spy was watching the suspect.