ENF. 1, 2 & 3, Passing the Portfolio or Exit Essay Review:
The Least You Need to Know About Editing

The primary focus on editing skills when the portfolios are evaluated are in three main areas: sentence boundaries, diction (mainly correct use of verbs and avoidance of slang), and comma use.


Sentence Boundaries.  You will need to be able to identify and correct the following constructions:

·         Sentence fragments

·         Comma splices

·         Run-on sentences

*Diction/verb use.

·         Subject/verb agreement, i.e., the verb agrees in number with the subject, plural verbs with plural subjects

·         Consistent tenses

o   Present stays in present tense

o   Past stays in past tense

o   Future stays in future tense

·         Regular and irregular verb use

·         “I write the way I talk.” THEN STOP IT!!!!

Comma Use (the purposes of commas)

1.       To add information to the sentence

a.       Following an introductory word, phrase or clause (it comes before the main clause of the sentence)

b.      In the middle of a sentence, similar to adding parenthetical information into a sentence

2.       To separate elements in a series—could be a series of words (nouns, verbs, modifiers, etc.), or a series of phrases, or a series of clauses

3.       To combine simple sentences (independent clauses), along with FANBOYS, into compound sentences

4.       For mechanical or place-holder functions: in numbers (2,345,987); in dates (March 29, 1998); in addresses (99 Thomas Nelson Drive, Hampton, Virginia); in salutations (Dear Mom,); introducing quotes (Jesse said, “No way, Jose.”); etc.


* Note: Diction problems generally relate to two different word endings, in one way or another, "s" and "ed." Plural nouns have an "s" at the end; however, singular verbs have "s" at the end. Moreover, past tense regular verbs have an "ed" ending. In fact, they are called "regular" verbs because they take the "ed" ending in past tense. The Irregular verbs are those verbs which do not take the "ed" ending in past tense forms (such as swim, swam, swum).

Return to Mr. D's home page