Common Grammar Mistakes to Take Care of While Speaking English
Grammar is the core of English or any other language. It helps to formulate readable and understandable sentences, even during verbal communication. Unfortunately, many Indians make a few common grammar mistakes.
Unfortunately, the cost of making such a mistake can prove devastating. For example, responding incorrectly to an interviewer can lead to a job loss. Similarly, improper verbal communication at a workplace can prove problematic for the organization and hinder promotions.
5 Most Common Mistakes While Speaking English
● On, At, and In Confusion
Many non-native English learners confuse “on, at, and in.” For example, Spanish to English learners mixes “en” with all three of them. However, unlike these three, other prepositions don’t confuse most of the students.
The easiest solution is to decide the place or time. By doing so, most of the confusion would vanish, even for native Spanish speakers. For example, “On” is always used for specific days, whereas “at” is for a specific part of the day or time. Meanwhile, “in” is commonly used for locations. For example, “I live in India.”
● Dangling or Misplaced Modifiers
A clause, phrase, or word that defines a clause, phrase, or word is a modifier. Dangling or misplaced modifiers make the sentence unclear to interpret and illogical. The listener often becomes confused or misinterprets.
For example, “After putting the journal in the packet, Mohan lost it.” The sentence doesn’t clarify whether Mohan lost the journal or the packet. The correct sentence formation would be “Mohan lost the journal after putting in the packet.”
● I vs. Me
Intermediate English language learners understand that “me” and “I” are object and subject pronouns, respectively. However, people often confuse these two whenever they give a self-introduction or encounter too many subjects or verbs while reading aloud.
For example, “Prem threw the basketball at I” is incorrect; however, “Prem threw the basketball at me” is correct. Therefore, “me” served as the object and was used as the object’s recipient.
● Incorrect Tense
Often non-native speakers learning English as a second language (ESL) make a common error of mixing tenses in the same or following sentences. It makes the listener confused and didn’t offer the correct interpretation.
For example, “I walk to Spencers, and bought milk.” is incorrect because “walk” represents present tense, whereas “bought” shows past tense. Therefore, the apt sentence would be, “ I walked to Spencers and bought milk.”
● Subject-verb Agreement
The number of actions performed by the subject should match the verb number. Otherwise, the speaker is representing bad grammar. Often, English beginners hardly notice such mistakes. But, the best method of improving them is through identification and practice of grammar rules.
For example, “Amar, and Prem is going skiing.” The sentence is incorrect because “Prem and Lata” are plural, whereas “is” represents singular. It should have been “Amar and Prem are going skiing.”
Likewise, there are many other common grammar mistakes that English beginner, intermediate, and advanced learners should focus upon to become skilled in the language.
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