cannot stand on it's own. ex: "when I went to Europe" "because I am a teacher" "after I called the doctor"
Possessive of "it"
its ex: its collar
Contraction of "it is"
it's It's hot today.
Which is not a correct form? its, it's, its'
its'. This form does NOT exist.
Correct? Its' ball.
NO--> " its' " does not exist.
Possessive, ex: their books
a place, ex: I live there.
Rewrite this with a possessive form of "teacher": The salary of this teacher is very high.
This teacher's salary is very high.
Rewrite this with a possessive form of "teachers": The salaries of these teachers are very low.
These teachers' salaries are very low.
Correct? This is they're friend Bob.
No. Their friend. (possessive) CORRECT: This is their friend Bob.
Possessive, ex: whose hat is this?
When do you use a semi-colon?
On the ACT, it's the same as a period.
When do you use a colon?
Independent clause: a list or explanation (what follows the colon can be a complete sentence but does not have to be.)
Are the commas correct? Jacksonville is Florida's largest city by land area, however, it is not the largest by population.
NO. Run-on/comma splice. Use a semi-colon or period before "however."
Need a comma? I went to the store that sells all the vintage toys.
NO COMMA before or after "THAT"
Is the comma correct? My mother is a doctor, and my father is a teacher at the city's largest private lower school.
Yes. The comma is used to separate two sentences connected by one of the FANBOYS.
What are the FANBOYS?
Conjunctions that can be used to connect two independent clauses (complete sentences). For, and, nor, but, or, yet, so
Is the comma correct? When I went to Chicago, the weather was terrible.
YES. The comma is separating a dependent clause (when...) + an independent clause, in that order.
Is the comma correct? The weather was terrible, when I went to Chicago.
NO. NO COMMA between an independent clause + a dependent clause (if in that order). Correct: The weather was terrible when I went to Chicago.
Are the commas correct? Jacksonville, which is a very large city, has a variety of cultural landmarks.
YES. Comma sandwich. "which is a very large city" is non-essential in the sentence.
Are the commas correct? I like apples, pear, and bananas.
Yes. Commas separating items in a list of 3 or more. ____, ____, and ____
Is the comma correct? I like dogs that have black spots, and cats with orange stripes.
NO. NO COMMA separating a list of only 2 things. INCORRECT: ______, and _______ CORRECT: ______ and ____
Is the comma correct? The snarling, drooling raccoon in the cage scared me.
YES. The comma is separating 2 adjectives whose order CAN be reversed. EX: "The drooling, snarling raccoon in the cage scared me." (Also acceptable)
Is the comma correct? The big, red ball bounced into the street.
NO. NO COMMA separating adjectives whose order CANNOT be reversed. (We don't say red big ball.) CORRECT: The big red ball bounced into the street.
Is the comma correct? Jacksonville is a very large city, some cities are even bigger.
NO. You must use a period or semi-colon to separate 2 independent clauses (2 complete sentences). CORRECT: Jacksonville is a very large city; some cities are even bigger. OR Jacksonville is a very large city. Some cities are even bigger. OR Jacksonville is a very large city, but some cities are even bigger.
Is the comma correct? Jacksonville is a very large city, and has a variety of cultural landmarks.
NO. NO COMMA because "has a variety of cultural landmarks" is NOT an independent clause/complete sentence. It has no subject. CORRECT: Jacksonville is a very large city and has a variety of cultural landmarks.
Is the comma correct? The man in the red coat, will definitely miss the bus.
NO. NO COMMA between a subject and a verb. Correct: The man in the red coat will definitely miss the bus.
Is the comma correct? She is one of the greatest painters, of all time.
NO. "of" is a preposition. NO COMMA before or after a preposition. CORRECT: She is one of the greatest painters of all time.
Is the comma correct? The forest was filled with snarling, animals.
NO. NO COMMA between an adjective and a noun. CORRECT: The forest was filled with snarling animals.
Is the first comma correct? I attended a liberal arts college, (which I enjoyed a great deal), but I earned my graduate degree at a large university.
NO. NO COMMA before an open parenthesis. The second comma comes before a FANBOYS and independent clause so it IS correct. CORRECT: I attended a liberal arts college (which I enjoyed a great deal), but I earned my graduate degree at a large university.
If you use who...
You can check that "he", "she", or "they" could replace "who" in the phrase. Ex: I knew the man who called the talk show. ("HE called the talk show"--YES, that is correct.)
If you use whom...
You can check that "him", "her", or "them" could replace "whom" in the phrase. Ex: The student whom I called on Tuesday did not attend the class. ("I called HIM on Tuesday"--YES, that is correct.)
After a preposition, should you use "who" or "whom"?
ALWAYS use "whom." Ex: "of whom" "to whom" "with whom" because we say "of him" "to him" and "with him", NOT "to he"...
not only...but (also)...
Is the comma correct? I went to see Matt Damon's latest film, "The Bourne Ultimatum," at the theater last night.
YES--> the title is non-essential because we would all be able to figure out which movie based on it being Matt Damon's latest film.
Is the comma correct? I went to see my friend, Jane, last night.
NO-->Because I hopefully have more than one friend, we do not know which friend without her name. Jane is essential information. CORRECT: I went to see my friend Jane last night.
Correct? Would of
NO, INCORRECT. There is no such phrase in English. CORRECT: would have
Correct? could of, should of
NO, INCORRECT. There is no such phrase in English. CORRECT: could have, should have
Correct? must of
NO, INCORRECT. There is no such phrase in English. CORRECT: must have
Whether (this)...or (that)...
If a verb form is underlined...
...check subject-verb agreement, then tense.
he, she, it, they, him, her, them...
If a pronoun is underlined...
check what it refers to....should it be singular or plural? Is there an answer choice with a more specific and logical noun? Does it make sense in the sentence...he vs him, she vs her, etc?
Correct this sentence: I like swimming, dancing, and to hike.
Parallel structure: I like swimming, dancing, and hiking.
Is this sentence correct? For my party tonight, I need: chips, salsa, and a cake.
No, the colon is a glorified period. If you can't use a period, you can't use a colon. You can say, "...tonight, I need."
Is this sentence correct? I need several things for my party tonight, such as: chips, salsa, and a cake.
No, not a full sentence. No, you can't use a colon with words like "such as, for example...
What is a typical ACT trap with a colon?
The ACT loves to use sentences that have a colon after "such as" and "for example"
Is this sentence correct? I need several things for my party tonight: such as chips, salsa, and a cake.
No, not a correct list
What are 3 things you must remember about a colon?
1. it comes before a list 2. it comes after a full sentence 3. it is not used with words like "such as" and "for example."
Is this sentence correct? One grammar aspect is often overlooked in high school: punctuation.
Yes. It is a list (short) and follows other 2 rules
What is the correct colon format?
Full sentence : list explanation
What is the correct semi-colon format?
Full sentence; full sentence. 1. Sentences must be related somehow 2. 2nd sentence must provide further detail or contrast to the 1st sentence.
Typical ACT Trap with semi-colons?
The ACT loves to use sentences that have a semicolon AND a conjunction.
Is this sentence correct? I sit on a chair; I look at the wall.
No. Sentences aren't related and 2nd doesn't provide further info about 1st.
Is this sentence correct? I like vanilla ice-cream; I also like vanilla cookies.
No. The second sentence needs to provide further detail.
Is this sentence correct? I like vanilla ice-cream; I eat it every day.
Yes. 2nd provides further detail.
Is this sentence correct? I like vanilla ice-cream; I detest vanilla cookies.
Yes. 2nd provides contrast.
Is this sentence correct? My brother got a medal in track; and he was the fastest runner in the whole state.
No. ACT strategy: no semi-colon with a conjunction
Do you know the rules for the dash?
The dash can be used - informally - as a comma.
Is this sentence correct? My teacher - who always assigned a lot of homework over the weekends, finally gave us a break last week.
No. Be consistent with added information. Use either two dashes, two commas, or two parentheses.
Can the dash be used as a colon?
Yes. Full sentence - list or explanation. A dash may not be used to replace a period.
What is the rule for using a semi-colon with a words like however, therefore...
Full sentence; HOWEVER, full sentence. If you leave out however, you must have 2 full sentences.
3rd person present/present perfect verb tense rules.
3rd person singular verbs in present and present perfect tenses end in S. 3rd person plural verbs do not.
In working with verb tense questions, what are the steps?
1. Find the subject (it will not be located next to the verb) 2. Determine if the subject is singular or plural. 3. Find the verb. 4. Make the verb agree.
What is the most common type of interrupting phrase on ACT verb-tense questions?
Where will the ACT put prepositional phrases in the sentence to distract from errors in subject-verb agreement? What strategy can you use to avoid this trap?
Between the subject and verb Cross out the prepositional phrase
Do singular subjects need a verb with or without an S?
With - think sss: singular/subjects/s on the verb (This is true for 3rd person: he, she, it, they, which is mostly on ACT)
Do plural subjects need a verb with our without an S?
Without - plural - no s
Do compound subjects need a singular or plural verb? Will it have an S or no S?
Plural - the subject is plural (more than one) since it's compound; most of the time, no S
Never replace "have" with
A pronoun must have a clear
antecedent (noun it's replacing)
Pronouns and nouns must
agree in number and person
If an underlined passage has a phrase which repeats,
remove it- it's redundant
Use who when you can replace it with
Use whom when you can replace it with
4 ways a comma will be used on the test
1. Separate a dependent clause from a complete sentence 2. Surround a nonessential group of words 3. Separate two adjective or separate words in a list 4. Connect two sentences before a conjunction
When do you use a comma to set off a proper name?
Use a comma if the name can be taken out of the sentence without changing the meaning or when the sentence already identifies a specific person without mentioning their name. Our 44th President was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. Our 44th President, Barak Obama, was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. (There is only one person that could be the 44th president.)
frequently a choice- never correct. Do not pick it.
3 reasons/ times when you should pick OMIT/DELETE
1. The underlined portion is redundant 2. The underlined portion explains something that the reader already knows 3. The underlined portion gives unnecessary definition of the word