Assorted Grammatical Problems Exercise (710)

In each sentence, identify and correct the grammatical error.

Answers and Explanations

1.
Original: In the photograph above, Mary Jones (right), executive director of Athletic Scholars Advancement Program, hands John Smith (left), a scholarship application.
Correct : In the photograph above, Mary Jones (right), executive director of the Athletic Scholars Advancement Program, hands John Smith (left), a scholarship application.

Organizational names generally should be preceded by the article "the."

2.
Original: The publication will no longer publish fully nude photos of women as part of an upcoming redesign.
Correct : As part of an upcoming redesign, the publication will no longer publish fully nude photos of women.

This sentence, as organized, implies that the publication’s new policy is to no longer publish fully nude photos of women when they are part of an upcoming design. By inserting the modifying phrase "as part of an upcoming redesign" at the head of the sentence, it becomes clear that this is the context for the policy.

3.
Original: User feedback led his team to the idea of letting people dictate the rating—not machines.
Correct : User feedback led his team to the idea of letting people, not machines, dictate the rating.

The sentence construction implies that it is the rating, not machines, that would be dictated. The correct reading, however, is that people will dictate a rating and machines will not; the revised version places the counterpoint phrase "not machines" immediately after "people," clarifying their parallel relationship.

4.
Original: Secrets that can pose a danger shouldn’t be kept because they are not harmless.
Correct : Secrets that can pose a danger shouldn’t be kept, because they are not harmless.

This sentence reads as if there’s another reason, soon to be described, that secrets that pose a danger should be kept. Inserting a comma before the subordinate clause makes the intended meaning clear. Better yet, "Because secrets that can pose a danger are not harmless, they shouldn’t be kept."

5.
Original: The cure to the city’s chronic problem is very costly and requires political unity.
Correct : The cure for the city’s chronic problem is very costly and requires political unity.

The original sentence uses an incorrect preposition in the subject. Alternatively, the preposition could remain the same if the noun preceding the preposition was replaced (for example, by "solution").

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