Presentation on theme: "APA Style Grammar. Verbs Use active rather than passive voice, select tense and mood carefully Poor: The survey was conducted in a controlled setting."— Presentation transcript:
APA Style Grammar
Verbs Use active rather than passive voice, select tense and mood carefully Poor: The survey was conducted in a controlled setting. Better: We conducted the survey in a controlled setting. Poor: The experiment was designed by Simpson (2001). Better: Simpson (2001) designed the experiment.
Verbs Passive voice is acceptable in expository writing and when you want to focus on the recipient of the action. Use past tense to express action that occurred in the past (e.g. another researcher’s work, reporting results) Use present perfect tense (has + verb) to express a past action that did not occur in a specific time in the past or that is still continuing to the present. “Since that time, investigators from several studies have used this method.”
Verbs Use subjunctive tense to describe conditions that are contrary to fact or improbable Incorrect: If the experiment was not designed this way, the participants’ performances would suffer. Correct: If the experiment were not designed this way, the participants’ performances would suffer. Use would with care. Do not use would to hedge. Example: it would appear that vs. it appears that
Agreement of Subject and Verb Verb must agree in number (singular vs. plural) with its subject The plural form of some nouns of foreign origin (e.g. data, phenomena) may appear to be singular when they are plural. Collective nouns can be singular or plural. If action is on a group as a whole, it is singular. If action is on the members of a group, it is plural. None can be singular or plural. When the noun following is single, use singular; when the noun following is plural, use plural. If you mean “not one”, use not one.
Agreement of Subject and Verb When subject is composed of singular and plural noun joined by or or nor, the verb agrees with the noun that is closer. If the number of the subject changes, retain the verb in each clause. Example: The positions in the sequence were changed, and the test was rerun.
Pronouns Pronouns replace nouns. Should refer clearly to antecedent and agree with antecedent in number and gender. Use neuter pronouns to refer to animals unless animals have been named. Pronouns can be subjects or objects of verbs or prepositions. Use who as the subject of a verb and whom as an object of a verb or preposition. If you can use he or she, who is correct. If you can use him or her, whom is correct.
Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers and Use of Adverbs An adjective or adverb must clearly refer to the word it modifies Misplaced modifiers illogically modify a word. Place adjective or adverb as close as possible to the word it modifies. Unclear: The investigator tested the participants using this procedure. Clear: The investigator tested the participants who were using this procedure. Clear: Using this procedure, the investigator tested the participants.
Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers and Use of Adverbs Place the word only next to the word or phrase it modifies. Dangling modifiers have no referent in the sentence. Can be avoided by using active tense. Adverbs can be introductory or transitional words. Try to avoid importantly and interestingly. It is more appropriate to use important and interesting instead. Hopefully means “in a hopeful manner” or “full of hope.” It does not mean “I hope” or “it is hoped.”
Relative Pronouns and Subordinate Conjunctions Relative pronouns: who, whom, that, which Subordinate conjunctions: since, while, although Introduce an element that is subordinate to the main clause of the sentence and reflect the relationship of the subordinate element into the main clause.
Relative Pronouns That vs. which That clauses are essential to the meaning of the sentence. Which merely adds further information. Which clauses are set off with commas The animals that performed well in the first experiment were used in the second experiment. The animals, which performed well in the first experiment, were not proficient in the second experiment.
Subordinate Conjunctions While and since – both of these words have temporal and non-temporal meanings. APA suggests using them only when their temporal meanings are implied. While and although – Use while to link events occurring simultaneously; otherwise, use although, whereas, and, or but Since and because – Since is more precise when referring to time, otherwise use because
Parallel Construction Present parallel ideas in parallel form With coordinating conjunctions used in pairs, place the first conjunction immediately before the first part of the parallelism