Writing 5 - Punctuation
Smith's article makes some useful points.
For plural possession:
The students' work must be typed.
For missing letters:
It's going to be ready on time.
I'm going to get a 2:1.
(Do not use this in formal essays.)
Apostrophe is not to be used for plural:
1) To mark a pause in a sentence, making the meaning easier to follow. You may like to test for this by reading your work aloud:
As has been noted, functionalism refuted the identity theory.
2) To separate an idea which is a sort of 'aside':
This theory, although it is attractive, has been refuted by many authorities.
3) To divide up a list:
I read books, articles, papers and crisp packets.
4) To mark the start of a sub-section or 'clause':
Jones elegantly disproves this theory, which she likens to a load of old rubbish.
If what follows your comma is in fact a sentence in structure, the comma is too weak and a full-stop is required. For example:
Catism is more succinct than dogism, the library has hardly any references to catism at all.
In that example, 'the library’ is a new subject; 'catism' is the subject of the first part.
However, you could have used a semi-colon (see below for more information)
Semi-colon ( ; )
This is used where two short sentences are very closely linked, because they are part of one idea:
Monkey females look after and protect their young; female monkeys can be particularly threatening when their young are attacked.
The test for correct use of a semi-colon is: could you put a full-stop instead?
There must be a sentence-type structure each side.
The look of a semi-colon is a clue to its use; it is a combination of a full-stop and a comma, and its 'power' is between the two of them.
Colon ( : )
This should be thought of as meaning 'and this is what I mean’ or 'here are the examples’ or 'this is the list':
This occurs because of three factors: woman's procreation role, her social role and socialisation.
This leads to the third factor: women are socialised by their mothers and not by men.
For this experiment, we will require the following: a pin, two lemons and a dog.
Colons are also used to introduce quotations:
Block writes: “It looks as if qualia are not in the domain of psychology”. (Block, 2005, p1)
Use one before a long quotation too:
Smith's argument here is convincing:
“In order for the main characters in the book to be explored, one must refer closely to psychoanalytical theory. That is one advocated blhajhsjhdjhsjhsjhedufh…..”(Smith 2005, pps2-3)