Contemporary's GED Language Arts, Writing
Using Correct Language
Chapter OutlineStudy the chapter outline below. Use the page numbers below each topic to refer to the corresponding section in Contemporary's GED Language Arts, Writing. When you are finished, go to the Flashcards or choose a different activity or chapter from the menu on the left.
Adjectives and Adverbs
(See pages 145 and 146)
- Modifiers describe the people, things, and actions in a sentence.
- Adjectives are modifiers that describe nouns and pronouns.
- Adverbs are modifiers that describe verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs.
(See pages 147, 148, and 153)
A modifying phrase is a group of words that describes another word in a sentence. It can function as an adjective, an adverb, or a noun. Modifiers answer questions such as Who? What? When? Where? How? How much? How many? What kind? or Which one?
There are several types of modifying phrases:
A prepositional phrase is a word group that starts with a preposition (such as by, of, to) and ends with a noun or pronoun.
A verbal phrase uses a verbal form (such as gliding or signed) to describe a noun.
A renaming phrase (also called an appositive) supplies more information about a noun or pronoun in the sentence.
Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers
(See pages 149–152)
A misplaced modifier is too far away from the word it describes. It may appear to modify a different word. To fix it, you need to move it closer to the word it modifies or turn the modifying phrase into a dependent clause.
A dangling modifier describes a word that should be in the sentence but isn't. To fix it, you need to add a noun that makes sense and change the wording of the sentence slightly.
(See pages 154–156)
When a sentence contains a series of nouns or verbs joined by a conjunction, the elements of the series should all have parallel structure. That is, they should all be in the same form.
To check for parallel structure, first look for the conjunction. Then decide what words or phrases the conjunction joins and make sure their forms are alike.
Agreement in Number
(See pages 159–162)
A pronoun must agree with, or match, its antecedent in number (singular or plural), just as a verb must agree with its subject.
Watch out for agreement problems in paragraphs as well as individual sentences.
Singular pronouns are I, me, my, mine, you, your, yours, he, she, it, him, her, his, hers, its.
Plural pronouns are we, us, our, ours, you, your, yours, they, them, their, theirs.
To check for agreement in number, follow these three steps:
Find the pronoun's antecedent.
Decide whether the antecedent is singular or plural.
Make sure the pronoun agrees with it in number.
Agreement in Person
(See pages 163–165)
Personal pronouns must agree in person with their antecedent:
- First person: I, me, my, mine, we, us, our, ours
- Second person: you, your, yours
- Third person: he, she, it, one, him, her, his, hers, its, they, them, their, theirs