as – Misused Words

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This article series aims to eliminate usage errors and help non-native speakers to write clearly and fluently. We suggest that you always do proper research and use style guides effectively. For anything you are not sure of, feel free to ask us. Misused word as Alternatives because Explanation “As” is sometimes used to mean “because.” But do not use it if there is any chance of ambiguity. In the example below, “as” could mean “because” or “when.” Example Avoid “We […]

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actual – Misused Words

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This article series aims to eliminate usage errors and help non-native speakers to write clearly and fluently. We suggest that you always do proper research and use style guides effectively. For anything you are not sure of, feel free to ask us. Misused word actual Alternatives current, present. Explanation “Actual” is sometimes used to refer to something that is happening now. However, in English it means “real” or “existing”. Example Avoid “This appropriation is intended to cover basic salaries of […]

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to blaze a (new) trail

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Are you as old as I am and therefore able to name the NBA team the legendary basketball player Clyde Drexler is most commonly associated with? If you are getting somewhat on in years and you also follow NBA basketball, then you would answer: Portland Trail Blazers. What I will focus on throughout the rest of my entry is the verb “to blaze a (new) trail.” If you set an example by being the first to do something, you blaze […]

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allow (to), permit (to), enable (to) – Misused Words

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This article series aims to eliminate usage errors and help non-native speakers to write clearly and fluently. We suggest that you always do proper research and use style guides effectively. For anything you are not sure of, feel free to ask us. Misused word allow (to), permit (to), enable (to) Alternatives make it possible to, allow us to, enable us to, allow (an assessment) of.

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define/definition – Misused Words

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This article series aims to eliminate usage errors and help non-native speakers to write clearly and fluently. We suggest that you always do proper research and use style guides effectively. For anything you are not sure of, feel free to ask us. Misused word define/definition Alternatives establish, lay down, set out, draft, establishment, drafting, design. Explanation In English, “define” means “to state the precise meaning of” (for example “we have already defined the meaning of control”). It does not mean […]

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When To Use “The”

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Below in an overview of the times when the definite article (“the”) needs to be used. There are some exceptions. [ws_table id=”1″] *For some organizations the trend is now to drop the “the,” e.g, Harvard University, Facebook. If unsure, check online. **Check whether the “the” is part of the official title and requires capitalization.

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