Join Judy Steiner-Williams for an in-depth discussion in this video Addressing common punctuation errors, part of Business Writing Principles.
- [Voiceover] When we speak,…we have tone and facial expressions.…When we write, we have words on the page,…and the punctuation marks.…The exclamation point is used, of course,…to indicate a surprise element,…and the question mark means a question's being asked.…Those are easy.…But what about the pesky comma?…The comma is the most used,…and the most abused punctuation mark.…I'm convinced that sometimes the only reason…a comma is inserted is that "It looked like a good place,"…or "I breathed," or "I haven't used one for awhile."…However, that comma can completely change…the meaning of your message.…
Look at this sentence, does it need a comma?…Your correct answer should have been, "It depends."…You can't know until you know the writer's intent.…The sentence without the commas predicts…the Blue team will win.…Let's add commas.…Now the Red team is predicted to win,…complete opposite meaning.…
Not using a comma correctly can also result in…sentence fragments and in run-on sentences.…Here are a couple of examples.…That first group of words is a sentence fragment.…
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- Define business writing.
- Describe how to make your writing concise and complete.
- Identify the elements of a clear message.
- List examples of concrete requests.
- Use a writing process to avoid common errors.
- Address common grammatical and punctuation errors.
- Identify special considerations for emails, reports, and memos.