Read this article. Varying sentence structure in your writing helps your writing flow for your audience and can help keep your readers' interest.
Too many simple and compound sentences can make writing sound choppy, but too many complex and compound-complex sentences can make writing difficult to follow. Strive for a balance by combining sentences of various structures and lengths throughout your paper.
Parallel structure is established when words within a sentence are united by consistent use of grammatical forms. This stylistic element is also referred to as parallelism or parallel construction.
Lack of parallel structure can disrupt the rhythm of a sentence, leaving it grammatically unbalanced. Proper parallel structure helps to establish balance and flow in a well-constructed sentence; the alignment of related ideas supports readability and clarity.
1. Find a list within a sentence: Look for words or phrases of equal importance that are separated by commas and joined by a conjunction
Not parallel: Dr. Kall challenged his students to initiate their own learning, be creative problem-solvers, and think independently. (In this sentence, Dr. Kall wants his students to do or be three things, but the items in this list are not parallel in structure.)
2. Evaluate the word forms within the list.
3. Alter the words in the list to create proper parallel structure.
Parallel: Dr. Kall challenged his students to become self-motivated learners, creative problem-solvers, and independent thinkers. (In this sentence, Dr. Kall wants his students to be three things instead of a combination of being and doing. Additionally, the list follows a pattern since the nouns and adjectives all appear in parallel form.)
A primer-style sentence is a short and simple sentence that usually includes a single subject and verb. While short and simplistic sentences can be used effectively to emphasize a point or clarify a confusing statement, frequent use of them can make a paper sound choppy and interrupt the flow of the paper. Primer-style sentences can be combined into a more complex sentence.
Revision of primer-style sentences:
Revision of short, related sentences:
Simple sentences about a single topic may also be combined by using coordinating conjunctions (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) and/or modifying clauses.
Source: Writing Commons, https://writingcommons.org
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