Parallel Structure Exercise (730)

For each pair of sentences, choose the one that correctly organizes the syntactical elements.

    1.
    He was intelligent, successful, and loved her unconditionally.
    He was intelligent and successful and loved her unconditionally.

    2.
    The facility provides a safe environment, positive role models, and cultural awareness and enrichment, as well as physical and educational activities.
    The facility provides a safe environment, positive role models, cultural awareness and enrichment, as well as physical and educational activities.

    3.
    The Amish belief in nonresistance prevents them from serving in the military, in law enforcement, or in any other position that requires them to use firearms against other people.
    The Amish belief in nonresistance prevents them from serving in the military, law enforcement, or in any other position that requires them to use firearms against other people.

    4.
    Serving as director of this agency has exposed, enlightened, empowered and continues to encourage me to seek ways to engage the community.
    Serving as director of this agency has exposed, enlightened, and empowered me and continues to encourage me to seek ways to engage the community.

    5.
    Every day we serve to meet your expectations, help you create lasting memories, and to encourage you to play with a purpose.
    Every day we serve to meet your expectations, help you create lasting memories, and encourage you to play with a purpose.

Answers and Explanations

1. He was intelligent and successful and loved her unconditionally.
"Intelligent" and "successful" must share the verb "was," and they can do so only with the conjunction "and," rather than a comma between them.

2. The facility provides a safe environment, positive role models, and cultural awareness and enrichment, as well as physical and educational activities.
The conjunctive phrase "as well as" should not take the place of the simple conjunction "and" to connect the final item in a list. The sentence lists three things and then tacks on a related thing, so the list requires a conjunction before the third item, as shown in the revision.

3. The Amish belief in nonresistance prevents them from serving in the military, in law enforcement, or in any other position that requires them to use firearms against other people.
In this sentence, "law enforcement" requires its own preposition, as shown in the revision. Alternatively, a conjunction can replace the comma between the first two elements: "The Amish belief in nonresistance prevents them from serving in the military or law enforcement or in any other position that requires them to use firearms against other people."

4. Serving as director of this agency has exposed, enlightened, and empowered me and continues to encourage me to seek ways to engage the community.
The phrase starting "continues to" is grammatically distinct from the preceding list of three verbs, which should be formatted as a serial list with a conjunction preceding the third item and should have its own pronoun, as shown in the revision.

5. Every day we serve to meet your expectations, help you create lasting memories, and encourage you to play with a purpose.
The first instance of "to" can be shared by each phrase, so it should not be repeated before the final phrase.

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