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Punctuation

Home » Punctuation

Punctuation

Having good English punctuation

Having good English punctuation is absolutely essential to writing and expressing ourselves properly and correctly.

Everywhere from the workplace to writing emails, documents and even sending text messages, society will always endeavour to adhere to the social norms, that is, what we perceive to be correct.

Correct usage and a basic understanding of the fundamentals of English punctuation concerning: apostrophes, colons, semi-colons, commas, dashes, full stops, questions marks, exclamation marks and quotation marks, will lead to an overall much more fluent, comprehensive and respected English.

Why is punctuation so important?

We should strive to meet the social, academic norms, and withstand from letting ourselves become accustomed to writing in English using incorrect and shabby punctuation.

Not having good punctuation might lead to others thinking badly of our overall level of English. Above, we’ll elaborate and explain with examples over the basic pillars of punctuation.

Mistakes to avoid in punctuation

  1. What are you speaking about?. = X
  2. I want to leave now!. = X 
  3. My friend, Jake, is, a, nice person. = X 
  4. Their friends dog. = X
  5. What we must do: we’ll look at the budget: with them: convince them. = X 
  6. She told me: stay away. = X

In the above examples, which are all incorrect, common punctuation mistakes have been made, of which we can see explanations for:

  1. A question mark followed by a fullstop (?.).
  2. An exclamation mark followed by a fullstop. (!.).
  3. A complete misuse of commas (,). 
  4. A missing apostrophe (‘) to signal the possessive before the s. 
  5. An excessive use of colons (:).
  6. A lack of quotation marks (“…”) for direct speech.

These are all common punctuation errors that occur regular with natives and non-natives alike. 

Speaking English correctly with good pronunciation also entails ensuring you have good punctuation. See the links above for a complete overview on all things associated with punctuation in English.