Grammar, Clarity and AP Style - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


PPT – Grammar, Clarity and AP Style PowerPoint presentation | free to download - id: 7748e3-NDJhM


The Adobe Flash plugin is needed to view this content

Get the plugin now

View by Category
About This Presentation

Grammar, Clarity and AP Style


Grammar, Clarity and AP Style * PR practitioners get paid to translate complex ideas into understandable language. This means you need to know your organization ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:16
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 29
Provided by: Kristen173
Learn more at:


Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Grammar, Clarity and AP Style

Grammar, Clarity and AP Style
The Writing Process
  • Research!
  • Know who will receive your communication and how
    to best reach them.
  • This means knowing your
  • Message
  • Public
  • Medium

Tips on Writing Well
  • How?
  • Keep most sentences short.
  • BUT, vary sentence length.
  • Avoid too many clauses.
  • Cut out unnecessary words.
  • Use more periods and fewer words.
  • Avoid overwriting.
  • Cut out personal commentary.
  • Avoid long words if possible.

Tips on Writing Well
  • Write clearly.
  • Make what you write interesting.
  • Simplify the complex.
  • Write for a 6th grade reader
  • Reading skills vary
  • When in doubt, use the readability tool in Word

Cut it Out!
  • Cut out excessive words
  • (ex. revolutionary, outstanding)
  • Cut out redundant words
  • (ex. young children, ATM machine)
  • Cut out long words if possible

Tips on Writing Well
  • Simplify the complex.
  • Give readers only the information they need to
  • Dont use euphemisms.
  • Avoid jargon.
  • Introduce one new idea at a time, in a logical
  • Explain technical terms you cant avoid.
  • Explain the unfamiliar with the familiar.

Tips on Writing Well
  • Make the main idea stand out.
  • If possible, pretest drafts with intended
  • Edit, edit, edit!

  • Why use proper grammar?
  • Poor grammar damages credibility.
  • Poor grammar affects readability.
  • Good grammar reduces ambiguity.

  • Tips for good grammar
  • Read and revise.
  • Spell check misses some errors.
  • Learn the rules, but break them if you need to.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Proper Nouns
  • Only capitalize proper nouns

Common Noun Proper Noun
singer cookie city restaurant Lady Gaga Oreo Tuscaloosa Pepitos
Possessive Nouns
  • Possessive nouns are used to show possession
    (owning, or having).
  • Add s to the end of singular noun to make it
  • dogs collar
  • girls shirt
  • If a singular common noun ends in an s, add s
  • The boss's temper was legendary among his

Possessive Nouns
  • If a singular proper noun (a name) ends in s, or
    an s sound, add an apostrophe only.
  • Chris' exam scores were higher than any other
  • If a noun is plural in form and ends in an s, add
    an apostrophe only
  • The dog catcher had to check all of the dogs'
  • It is hard to endure the Marine Corps' style of

Possessive Nouns
  • If a plural noun does not end in s, add 's
  • Many activists in Oregon are concerned with
    children's rights.
  • Everyone was disappointed with the American
    media's coverage of the Olympics in Atlanta.
  • If there is joint possession, use the correct
    possessive for only the possessive closest to the
  • Clinton and Gore's campaign was successful.
  • She was worried about her mother and father's

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • That vs. Which
  • That introduces essential clauses, which
    introduces nonessential clauses
  • If you use the word "which" to introduce a phrase
    or clause, precede it with a comma.
  • Do not precede the word "that" by a comma.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • That vs. Which
  • Use "which" to introduce non-essential phrases
    and clauses, which can be eliminated from a
    sentence without changing its essential meaning
    (such as in this sentence).
  • Use "that" when you want to use a phrase or
    clause that cannot be removed from a sentence
    without changing its meaning (such as in this
  • Ex. The paper that won the award was mine. (tells
    which one) Vs. The paper, which can be found
    online, was interesting. (adds only a fact about
    the paper) Vs. The paper (that) I wrote in class
    was a winner.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • That vs. Who
  • Who refers to people. That refers to groups or
  • Example
  • Kristen is the one who made this presentation.
  • The Crimson Tide is the team that makes people
  • We go to a school that makes others jealous.
  • The students are the ones who make Alabama so

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Who vs. Whom
  • Use the he/him method to decide which word is
  • he who
  • him whom
  • Who/Whom wrote the letter? He wrote the letter.
    Therefore, who is correct.
  • For who/whom should I vote? Should I vote for
    him? Therefore, whom is correct.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Subject-Verb Agreement
  • Helps avoid confusion
  • Words that intervene between subject and verb do
    not affect the number of the verb.
  • Ex. Growing vegetables is interesting. Vs.
    Growing vegetables are interesting.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Subject-Verb Agreement
  • Use a singular verb form after
  • Each (is)
  • Either (is)
  • Everyone
  • Everybody
  • Neither
  • Nobody
  • Someone

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • I vs. Me
  • If John and (I or me?) get married, we'll have
    two kids.
  • If me get married? NO
  • If I get married? YES
  • Therefore, If John and I get married, we'll have
    two kids.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • I vs. Me
  • He told Tom and (I or me?) to get ready.
  • He told I to get ready? NO
  • He told me to get ready? YES
  • Therefore, He told Tom and me to get ready.

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Commas
  • Limit the use of commas
  • Non-restrictive clauses that dont change the
    meaning of the sentence should be set off by
    commas (Ex. The celebrity, who was battling
    addiction, finally went to rehab.)
  • Restrictive clauses that change the meaning of
    the sentence if left out, are not set off by
    commas. (Ex. Fans who show up early win a prize.)
  • Dont set off short titles by commas. (Ex. Vice
    president Dick Cheney did not run in the 2008

Some Basic Grammar Rules
  • Quotation marks
  • Periods and commas belong inside quotation marks
  • Exclamation points and question marks can be
    placed according to the sense of the sentence.
  • Ex. Did you see The Daily Show? vs. She said,
    Wheres the beef?
  • Ex. My thought was, Who cares? vs. What
    companys slogan is We care?

Breaking Grammar Rules
  • You dont always have to use the active voice.
  • Sometimes you should split infinitives. (Ex. I
    cant bring myself to really like vampire movies.
    Vs. I cant bring myself really to like vampire
  • Its okay to end a sentence in a preposition if
    you want to.

Commonly Confused Words
  • All right
  • Alternate vs. Alternative
  • Among vs. Between
  • As yet and As to whether
  • Data
  • Disinterested
  • Effect vs. Affect
  • Farther vs. Further
  • Flammable
  • Gratuitous
  • Irregardless
  • Lay
  • Nauseous vs. Nauseated
  • One
  • Secondly, thirdly
  • Shall vs. Will
  • They, he or she
  • Unique
  • Utilize
  • A lot
  • Toward

AP Style
  • AP Style is used by most print journalism
  • While publications differ, most use a style
    similar to AP Style
  • Writing with AP Style will give your piece a
    better chance of being picked up by the press
  • Only about 10 of the rules in the style book are
    used 90 of the time

AP Style
  • Common AP Style Errors
  • Datelines
  • Dates
  • Comma before and in a list of items
  • Titles after names (should be lowercase)
  • When in doubt, check it out.
  • AP Style quick reference handouts

Some Resources
  • Grammar Girl
  • AP Style on Twitter
  • Just for fun
  • Unnecessary quotes
  • Funny typos