Michelle's independent resources for ESL Students at Vancouver Community College

This blog is for Intermediate and Advanced Students who want to learn and improve their English. Each PAGE above contains thousands of free English lessons and practice exercises to help you learn and improve your English grammar, reading, listening, pronunciation, writing and editing. On the right hand side, is a list of links of resources grouped by category. Although I am constantly checking on the links, please let me know if you find any that don't work.

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Editing/ Error Correction


 

Proofreading and Editing ( Error Correction)

In addition to developing a better vocabulary, proofreading and editing are the two most essential skills you must learn when you are trying to improve your writing .

Proofreading means looking for grammar, punctuation and spelling mistakes in your writing. These could be verb tense mistakes, subject-verb agreement errors, sentence Fragments, Run On Sentences or Comma splices, incorrect singular or plurals as well as many other types of errors. 

Editing simply means correcting the mistakes you have found.  

In an earlier post I described a method to help you find and correct errors when you write in-class writing tests or high stake tests such  as IELTS or TOEFL when you are under pressure. 

The best approach is to proofread and correct one major error at a time. For example, if you have a lot if problems with verb tenses, proofread your writing specifically for that mistake, underlining every verb and analyzing whether you are using the correct tense or not.

 This page is designed to help you practice finding and correcting common errors you and other ESL students make in your writing. 

This page is divided into categories. 

Part 1 
In Part 1  you will learn how to identify and correct specific types of mistakes. Then, you can practice identifying and correcting those mistakes in sentences and paragraphs. After you develop control at editing ( correcting) individual errors, in your writing, you can then work on other problems. 

Part 2
 
In Part 2 you will practice identifying and correcting a variety of mistakes instead of just one specific type of mistake. In this section you will NOT know which mistakes you are looking for. Instead, you will have to look for mistakes by yourself without help, just as you must do in exam situations and in REAL LIFE.  

This is the real test of whether you are ready or not to take high level writing exams, or to apply for jobs that require you to write in error free English.

Common Problems in ESL Writing 

Writing Textbooks with Online Practice 

  • English Essentials is a 21 chapter book on sentence skills for writers which offers online practice on subjects/verbs, sentence fragments, Run On Sentences, All Forms of Punctuation, Dangling Participles, Spelling and other common problems of ESL/EFL writers.  

  • Exercises for Easy Writer is an online resource package to accompany the textbook Easy Writer. Its focuses specifically on editing practice at the sentence and paragraph level. The activities include all of the common grammar, sentence style, punctuation and mechanic, and language use students commonly make. It also contains a section specifically aimed at multilingual writers.



 PROOFREADING SITES: 

  • Jon's Proofreading and Editing Page *** ( This is an excellent resource because it contains both explanations and practice in all of the areas in which ESL.EFL students have problems: sentence fragments, run on sentences, comma splices, subject-verb agreement, plurals, pronouns, etc.
  • This site has many explanations and activities to help you practice proofreading for a wide variety of common errors that ESL students make in their writing. ( Types of errors include verb tenses, prepositions, word order, articles, nouns, adjective-adverb, spelling, punctuation and choosing the correct word)

  •  CONFUSING WORDS 
ERROR CORRECTION EXERCISES IN PARALLEL CONSTRUCTION 
 Verb Tense Consistency
SENTENCE FRAGMENTS:

Run On Sentences and Comma Splices  

Subject/Verb Agreement 




PRONOUN REFERENCE AND CONSISTENCY 

PUNCTUATION AND CAPITALIZATION 
SPELLING:
A demonstration of a mapping strategy to help you with vocabulary and spelling








 PART 2: CORRECT THE MISTAKES ( MIXED ERRORS)

Can you recognize grammar mistakes when reading a sentence? Practice with these exercises.


Paragraph Correction (Mixed Errors) 
Intermediate Paragraphs 
Editing a Paragraph for Mixed Errors ( Source McGraw-Hill Publishers




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