Category Archives: x Writing Tips

“Only” Abuse

The following are four examples of “only” abuse from this semester’s students. Decide which of the alternatives are the best and clearest claims. The jobless rate is only a representation of people without jobs that are still searching for jobs. … Continue reading

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Rebuttal Exercise

A Price Too High Is Nuclear Power Worth the Risk? Bob Herbert asks the question in the Opinion pages of the New York Times. It’s pretty clear from the evidence he cites that he thinks the answer is No, it’s … Continue reading

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Robust Sentences Exercise

In feedback, I often remark that students overuse “it,” or “that,” or “there is,” or “there are,” or, worst of all, “that means.” Pressed to explain why you should avoid these simple, seemingly essential constructions, I stammer something about their … Continue reading

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Good Citation Exercise

The following are all good citation techniques. Refer to this list if you’re ever in doubt about how to cite and briefly quote in the same short sentence. Daniel Flath, in his essay, “Boylan’s Folly,” claims that “boys can’t learn … Continue reading

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Grade Levels II TR

At the beginning of the semester, I published a post titled “Grade Levels” to illustrate the sometimes obvious, sometimes subtle differences between writing samples that could be expected to earn different letter grades in a Composition course. Now that we’ve … Continue reading

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Grade Levels II MW

At the beginning of the semester, I published a post titled “Grade Levels” to illustrate the sometimes obvious, sometimes subtle differences between writing samples that could be expected to earn different letter grades in a Composition course. Now that we’ve … Continue reading

Posted in davidbdale, Professor Post, x Writing Tips | 28 Comments