Proofreading for Parallel Structure on the SAT and ACThttp://schooltutoring.com/help/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2014/06/ProofReading.jpg 308 220 School Tutoring School Tutoring http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/78d03a5c650efdb2b2c5c83686f0c95a?s=96&d=mm&r=g
Overview: What Is Parallel Structure?
Parallel structure in writing is a refinement technique in which verbs, subjects, and clauses are made similar. It is tested on the ACT and SAT in grammar questions, as it is a feature that adds impact to writing. Often, phrases that mean the same may not be parallel.
Checklist: Are Verbs in the Same Tense?
Parallel verbs in each clause should be in the same tense. For example, parallel verbs are “He came, he saw, and he conquered” not “he came, he saw, and he will conquer. ” Similarly, if helping verbs are used in one clause, the same helping verbs should be used in the other clauses. “She may gather enough support, she may raise enough funds, and she may win the election,” rather than “she may gather enough support, she raised enough funds, and she will win the election.”
Checklist: Is the Subject the Same in All Clauses?
In order for clauses to be parallel, the subjects should remain the same. “The corporation will sponsor the fun run, the CEO will speak at the breakfast, and they will wear T-shirts advertising the event” is unclear and not parallel. In order to make the structure parallel, one way to recast the clauses is, “The corporation will sponsor the fun run, its CEO will speak at the opening breakfast, and its employees will wear T-shirts advertising the event.”
Checklist: Are the Same Types of Clauses Used?
More subtly, parallel clauses need to have the same structure. A sentence like “The building manager will choose the maintenance projects that they think will make their properties more attractive” has two clauses that are less parallel than the recast sentence “The building manager will choose the maintenance projects that will make their properties more attractive.” Sometimes it is a matter of eliminating unnecessary words in order to clarify the structure.
Checklist: Is the Punctuation Parallel Between Parallel Clauses?
If clauses are parallel, they should be separated with the same type of punctuation. For the most part, they will be independent from one another. For example, in the sentence “He came, he saw, and he conquered” all the clauses are separated by commas.