Essay Grammar Check: 5 Rules to Follow

If you want to get a good grade for an essay, your English must be perfect. This means that you will need to be very careful about your grammar. Here are five rules you must always remember when writing an essay:

  1. Replace nouns with pronouns.
    • Repetition is one of the biggest problems essay writers face. It makes any text look ugly, so you should aim to avoid it at all costs. Replacing nouns with pronouns and expanding your vocabulary are the most effective tools to exclude tautology from your paper.
    • Remember that personal pronouns can be used as both a subject and an object.
    • The vast majority of essays require using the first or third person pronouns. You will need to clarify this with your professor.
    • The second person pronouns are mostly used for instructions and “how to” texts.
    • You can also use interrogative, demonstrative and possessive pronouns to diversify the vocabulary used in the text.

  2. Each sentence must include a finite verb.
    • Finite verbs are the ones that show tense. Depending on the syntactical structure you choose, there may be more than one of them present in a sentence.
    • These verbs are always tied to the noun or pronoun that serves as the subject of the sentence.
    • Bear in mind that some tenses require auxiliary verbs. This means that a finite verb can consist of several words.
    • For example, in Present Continuous you will need to use an appropriate form of the verb “to be” and a –ing form of the "main' verb.

  3. All parts of sentence must “agree” with each other.
    • Many people make mistakes because they do not differentiate between singular and plural pronouns. This results in using incorrect verb forms.
    • The following pronouns are always singular: everyone, nobody, anything, something, everybody.
    • Remember that a singular pronoun must agree with every part of the sentence. All collective nouns (e.g. the Government) must be followed by the singular form of the verb.

  4. Different sections of a sentence containing finite verbs (clauses) must be linked correctly.
  5. Clauses can be linked using conjunctions, like “so”, “because”, etc. For example: we missed the class because we slept in.

  6. Every adjective you use must be related to a noun.
  7. Adjectives make an essay more vivid and interesting. Usually, adjectives are placed before the noun they describe. In this case, they must be separated by commas. If the epithets are positioned in the end of the sentence/clause, the last one should be preceded by “and”.