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Rules for Writersis a college writer's companion that covers writing, grammar, research, and documentation in an extremely affordable and portable spiral-bound format. From the best-selling family of handbooks, Ruleshas consistently been the best value for college writers. Now it's even more so. The Seventh Edition actually teachesstudents how to make better use of their handbook. With new material about how to integrate the handbook into lessons and class activities, Rules for Writersis an even more useful tool for instructors
Diana Hacker class-tested her handbooks with nearly four thousand students over 35 years at Prince George's Community College in Maryland, where she was a member of the English faculty. Hacker handbooks, built on innovation and on a keen understanding of the challenges facing student writers, are the most widely adopted in America. Other Hacker handbooks, all published by Bedford/St. Martin's, include A Writer’s Reference, Seventh Edition; The Bedford Handbook, Eighth Edition; and A Pocket Style Manual, Fifth Edition.
Nancy Sommers has taught composition and directed composition programs for thirty years and now teaches writing in the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University. A two-time Braddock Award winner, Sommers is well-known for her research and publications on student writing. Her recent work involves a longitudinal study of undergraduate writing. Nancy Sommers is coauthor of Fields of Reading, Ninth Edition and is lead author on Hacker handbooks, all published by Bedford/St. Martin's.
Table of Contents
The Writing Process 1 Explore and plan. a Assess the writing situation. b Explore your subject. c Draft a working thesis. d Sketch a plan. 2 Draft the paper. a Draft an introduction that includes a thesis. b Draft the body. c Draft a conclusion. 3 Make global revisions; then revise sentences. a Make global revisions: Think Big. b Revise and edit sentences. c Proofread the manuscript. d Use software tools wisely. e Manage your files. STUDENT ESSAY 4 Build effective paragraphs. a Focus on a main point. b Develop the main point. c Choose a suitable pattern of organization. d Make paragraphs coherent. e Adjust paragraph length.
Academic Writing 5 Writing about texts a Read actively: Annotate the text. SAMPLE ANNOTATED ARTICLE SAMPLE ANNOTATED ADVERTISEMENT b Sketch an outline. c Summarize to demonstrate understanding. d Analyze to demonstrate critical thinking. e Sample student essay: Analysis of an article SAMPLE ANALYSIS PAPER 6 Constructing reasonable arguments a Examine your issue’s social and intellectual contexts. b View your audience as a panel of jurors. c Establish credibility and state your position. d Back up your thesis with persuasive lines of argument. e Support your claims with specific evidence. f Anticipate objections; counter opposing arguments. g Build common ground. SAMPLE ARGUMENT PAPER 7 Evaluating arguments a Distinguish between reasonable and fallacious argumentative tactics. b Distinguish between legitimate and unfair emotional appeals. c Judge how fairly a writer handles opposing views.
Clarity 8 Prefer active verbs. a Active versus passive verbs b Active versus be verbs c Subject that names the actor 9 Balance parallel ideas. a Parallel ideas in a series b Parallel ideas presented as pairs c Repetition of function words 10 Add needed words. a In compound structures b that c In comparisons da, an, and the 11 Untangle mixed constructions. a Mixed grammar b Illogical connections cis when, is where, and reason . . . is because 12 Repair misplaced and dangling modifiers. a Limiting modifiers b Misplaced phrases and clauses c Awkwardly placed modifiers d Split infinitives e Dangling modifiers 13 Eliminate distracting shifts. a Point of view (person, number) b Verb tense c Verb mood, voice d Indirect to direct questions or quotations 14 Emphasize key ideas. a Coordination and subordination b Choppy sentences c Ineffective or excessive coordination d Ineffective subordination e Excessive subordination f Other techniques 15 Provide some variety. a Sentence openings b Sentence structures c Inverted order 16 Tighten wordy sentences. a Redundancies b Unnecessary repetition c Empty or inflated phrases d Simplifying the structure e Reducing clauses to phrases, phrases to single words 17 Choose appropriate language. a Jargon b Pretentious language, euphemisms, “doublespeak” c Slang, regional expressions, nonstandard English d Levels of formality e Sexist language f Offensive language 18 Find the exact words. a Connotations b Specific, concrete nouns c Misused words d Standard idioms e Clichés f Figures of speech
Grammar 19 Repair sentence fragments. a Subordinate clauses b Phrases c Other fragmented word groups d Acceptable fragments 20 Revise run-on sentences. a Correction with coordinating conjunction b Correction with semicolon, colon, or dash c Correction by separating sentences d Correction by restructuring 21 Make subjects and verbs agree. a Standard subject-verb combinations b Words between subject and verb c Subjects joined with and d Subjects joined with or, nor, either . . . or, orneither . . . nor e Indefinite pronouns f Collective nouns g Subject following verb h Subject, not subject complement iwho, which, and that j Words with plural form, singular meaning k Titles of works, company names, words mentioned as words, gerund phrases 22 Make pronouns and antecedents agree. a Singular with singular, plural with plural (indefinite pronouns, generic nouns) b Collective nouns c Antecedents joined with and d Antecedents joined with or, nor, either . . . or, orneither . . . nor 23 Make pronoun references clear. a Ambiguous or remote reference b Broad reference of this, that, which, and it c Implied antecedents d Indefinite use of they, it, and you ewho for persons, which or that for things 24 Distinguish between pronouns such as I and me. a Subjective case for subjects and subject complements b Objective case for objects c Appositives d Pronoun following than or as ewe or us before a noun f Subjects and objects of infinitives g Pronoun modifying a gerund 25 Distinguish between who and whom. a In subordinate clauses b In questions c As subjects or objects of infinitives 26 Choose adjectives and adverbs with care. a Adjectives to modify nouns b Adverbs to modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs cgood and well, bad and badly d Comparatives and superlatives e Double negatives 27 Choose appropriate verb forms, tenses, and moods in standard English. a Irregular verbs blie and lay c-s (or -es) endings d-ed endings e Omitted verbs f Verb tense g Subjunctive mood
Multilingual Writers and ESL Challenges 28 Verbs a Appropriate form and tense b Passive voice c Base form after a modal d Negative verb forms e Verbs in conditional sentences f Verbs followed by gerunds or infinitives 29 Articles a Articles and other noun markers b When to use the c When to use a or an d When not to use a or an e No articles with general nouns f Articles with proper nouns 30 Sentence structure a Linking verb between a subject and its complement b A subject in every sentence c Repeated nouns or pronouns with the same grammatical function d Repeated objects, adverbs in adjective clauses e Mixed constructions with although or because f Placement of adverbs g Present participles and past participles h Order of cumulative adjectives 31 Prepositions and idiomatic expressions a Prepositions showing time and place b Noun (including -ing form) after a preposition c Common adjective + preposition combinations d Common verb + preposition combinations
Punctuation 32 The comma a Independent clauses joined with and, but, etc. b Introductory elements c Items in a series d Coordinate adjectives e Nonrestrictive elements f Transitions, parenthetical expressions, absolute phrases, contrasts g Direct address, yes and no, interrogative tags, interjections hhe said, etc. i Dates, addresses, titles, numbers j To prevent confusion 33 Unnecessary commas a Between compound elements that are not independent clauses b Between a verb and its subject or object c Before the first or after the last item in a series d Between cumulative adjectives, an adjective and a noun, or an adverb and an adjective e Before and after restrictive or mildly parenthetical elements f Before essential concluding adverbial elements g After a phrase beginning an inverted sentence h Other misuses 34 The semicolon a Between independent clauses not joined with a coordinating conjunction b Between independent clauses linked with a transitional expression c In a series containing internal punctuation d Misuses 35 The colon a Before a list, an appositive, or a quotation b Between independent clauses c Conventional uses d Misuses 36 The apostrophe a Possessive nouns b Possessive indefinite pronouns c Contractions d Not for plural numbers, letters, abbreviations, words mentioned as words e Misuses 37 Quotation marks a Direct quotations b Quotation within a quotation c Titles of short works d Words as words e With other punctuation marks f Misuses 38 End punctuation a The period b The question mark c The exclamation point 39 Other punctuation a The dash b Parentheses c Brackets d The ellipsis mark e The slash
Mechanics 40 Abbreviations a Titles with proper names b Familiar abbreviations c Conventional abbreviations d Latin abbreviations e Inappropriate abbreviations 41 Numbers a Spelling out b Using numerals 42 Italics a Title of works b Names of ships, spacecraft, and aircraft c Foreign words d Words as words, letters as letters, numbers as numbers 43 Spelling a Spelling rules b The dictionary c Words that sound alike d Commonly misspelled words 44 The hyphen a Compound words b Hyphenated adjectives c Fractions and compound numbers d With certain prefixes and suffixes e To avoid ambiguity or to separate awkward double or triple letters f Division of words and electronic addresses 45 Capitalization a Proper vs. common nouns b Titles with proper names c Titles and subtitles of works d First word of a sentence e First word of a quoted sentence f First word after a colon g Abbreviations
Grammar Basics 46 Parts of speech a Nouns b Pronouns c Verbs d Adjectives e Adverbs f Prepositions g Conjunctions h Interjections 47 Sentence patterns a Subjects b Verbs, objects, and complements c Pattern variations 48 Subordinate word groups a Prepositional phrases b Verbal phrases c Appositive phrases d Absolute phrases e Subordinate clauses 49 Sentence types a Sentence structures b Sentence purposes
Document Design 50 Principles of document design a Selecting appropriate format options b Using headings to guide readers c Using lists to guide readers d Adding visuals that support your purpose 51 Academic formatting 52 Business formatting a Using established conventions for business letters b Writing effective resumes and cover letters c Writing clear and concise memos d Writing effective e-mail messages
Research 53 Conducting research a Posing questions worth exploring b Mapping out a search strategy c Searching a database or consulting a print index to locate articles d Consulting the library’s catalog to locate books e Using a variety of online tools to locate other sources f Using other search tools g Conducting field research 54 Evaluating sources a Determining how a source might contribute to your writing b Selecting sources worth your time and attention c Selecting appropriate versions of online sources d Reading with an open mind and a critical eye e Assessing Web sources with special care 55 Managing information; avoiding plagiarism a Maintaining a working bibliography b Keeping track of source materials c Avoiding unintentional plagiarism
Writing papers in MLA style 56 Supporting a thesis a Forming a working thesis b Organizing ideas with a rough outline c Using sources to inform and support your argument 57 Citing sources; avoiding plagiarism a Citing quotations and borrowed ideas b Enclosing borrowed language in quotation marks c Putting summaries and paraphrases in your own words 58 Integrating sources a Using quotations appropriately b Using signal phrases to integrate sources c Synthesizing sources 59 Documenting sources in MLA style a MLA in-text citations b MLA list of works cited c MLA information notes (optional) 60 MLA manuscript format; student research process and sample paper a MLA manuscript format b Highlights of one student’s research process c Sample MLA research paper
Writing papers in APA style 61 Supporting a thesis a Forming a working thesis b Organizing ideas c Using sources to inform and support your argument 62 Citing sources; avoiding plagiarism a Citing quotations and borrowed ideas b Enclosing borrowed language in quotation marks c Putting summaries and paraphrases in your own words 63 Integrating sources a Using quotations appropriately b Using signal phrases to integrate sources c Synthesizing sources 64 Documenting sources in APA style a APA in-text citations b APA list of works cited 65 APA manuscript format; sample paper a APA manuscript format b Sample MLA research paper