Construction of Clear
Sentences and Paragraphs
Teacher – Shahed Rahman
RULES !!
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CARE IN SENTENCE DESIGN
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
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Using Short Sentences
Limiting Sentence Content
Economizing on Words
Determining Emphasis in Sentence Design
Giving the Sentences Unity
Arranging Sentences for Clarity
CARE IN PARAGRAPH DESIGN
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Giving Paragraphs Unity
Keeping Paragraphs Short
Making Good Use of Topic Sentences
Leaving out Unnecessary Details
Giving the Paragraphs Movement
Adaptation
Sentence should be adapted to
readers
 Use the simpler sentence
structures for people who are
less able to understand
 Use the more complex
structures when appropriate
 You should aim a little below
the level of your reader
 Simplification is best for all
reader

Using Short Sentences
Readers are busy > Writing
efficient you saving their time 
 Short sentences communicate
better because of mind
limitations
 Short means 16 - 18 words for
middle level readers.
 But the excessive use of short
words in also bad.

Limiting Sentence Content
Limiting content is one way to make
short sentences
 Selecting thought units and making
separate sentences
 Don’t - when thoughts are closely related
you want to deemphasize on the content
 Avoid overdoing this suggestion.
Remember too many short sentences
give a choppy effect

Economizing on Words
Another way to shorten sentences is
through word economy
 Seek shorter ways of saying things
 Some suggestions:
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Cluttering Phrases
Surplus Words
Roundabout Constructions
Unnecessary Repetition of Words or Idea
Cluttering Phrases
Avoid cluttering phrases
 Substitutes shorter expressions

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◦
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Example
At the present time >> Now
In the mean time >> Meanwhile
In the near future >> Soon
On the basis of >> By
Surplus Words
Eliminate Surplus Words
 Eliminate words that add nothing to
sentence meaning
 We often use meaningless words as a matter
of habit

◦ Example – He ordered a desks that are of the
executive type ----- He ordered executive –type
desks
◦ There are four rules that should be observed
◦ Four Rules should be observed
Roundabout Constructions
Avoid round about ways of saying things
 You can say direct or the same ground in
a roundabout way.
 Direct always communicates better

◦ Example – He criticized everyone he came in
contact with >> he criticized everyone he met.
◦ The department budget can be observed to be
decreasing each new year <<< The
department budget decreases each year
Unnecessary Repetition of Words
or Ideas

Repeat words only for effect and
emphasis
◦ He stated that he believes that we are
responsible >> He stated that he believes we
are responsible
◦ We must assemble together at 10:30 am in
the morning >> We must assemble at 10:30
am
Determining Emphasis in Sentence
Design
You should give every item its due emphasis ( Importance )
 Short sentences emphasize contents
 Long sentences de-emphasize contents
 Determining emphasis is a matter of good judgment

◦ Example –
◦ The company lost money last year. The loss occurred in spite of
record sales. ( Equal Emphasis )
◦ Although the company enjoyed the record sales last year, it lost
money. (Emphasis on the lost money)
◦ The company enjoyed record sales last year, although it lost
money. ( Emphasis on the record sales )
Giving the Sentence Unity
All parts of a sentence should concern
one thought
 Good sentence have unity
 Three causes of unity error

◦ Unrelated ideas
◦ Excessive details
◦ illogical Constructions
Unrelated Ideas
Placing unrelated ideas in one sentence
violates unity
 Its not grammatically wrong
 You can avoid this error by

◦ Putting unrelated ideas in separate sentences
◦ Subordinating an ideas
◦ Adding word that shows relationship
Mr Jordan is sales manager,
and he has a degree in law
Mr Jordan is our sales
manager. He has a law
degree. ( Separate )
Mr Jordan, Our sales
manager, has a law degree
( Subordinating )
Excessive Detail
Excessive details is another cause of lack
of unity
 If the details important put it in a
separate sentence
 This mean again using short sentence

illogical Constructions
Illogical construction can rob a sentence
of unity
 Active and Passive voice in the same
sentence can violate unity
-First we cut prices, and then quality was
reduced >>> First we cut prices and then
we reduced quality

Arranging Sentences for Clarity
Clear writing requires that you follow the
established rules of grammar
 These rules are based on custom and logical
relationships
 Do a proof reading

CARE IN PARAGRAPH DESIGN

Give the paragraphs Unity
◦ The contents of a paragraph should concern one
topic or idea (unity )
◦ But unity can vary in breadth.
◦ Paragraphs unity concern a narrow topic
Keeping Paragraphs short
◦ Generally paragraphs should be short
◦ Short paragraphs show organization better than long
ones
◦ Most readers prefer to read short paragraphs
◦ About eight lines is a good average length
◦ But length can vary with need
CARE IN PARAGRAPH DESIGN

Making Good Use of Topic Sentences
◦ Topic sentences can help make good paragraphs
◦ Not every paragraphs must have a topic
◦ Placement of the topic sentence depends on the writer’s
plan

Leaving out Unnecessary Detail
◦ In writing paragraphs, leave out unnecessary information
◦ But deciding what to include is a matter of judgment
CARE IN PARAGRAPH DESIGN

Giving the Paragraphs
Movement
◦ Good writing has movement
◦ Movement is the writing
quality that takes the reader
towards the goal with a logical
step – without side trips and
backward shifts.
◦ The progress is steadily
forward
Next Week
Midterm Exam
 Please go through with the first three
chapters.
 Make sure you read all the contents of
the chapter

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Construction of Clear Sentences and Paragraphs