C. Munzenmaier Hamilton College Urbandale, IA

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Grammar Diagnostic

Does anybody besides English teachers care about grammar and punctuation?

According to Maxine Hairston's research, employers notice these common errors:

* I seen him come in.
* My grammar is fine, I don't need any review.
* Although other people might.

Employers assume people who make these errors have poor communication skills. Judge for yourself. Who would you hire?

Cover Letter 1
Cover Letter 2
Dear Joe,
I saw. Your ad in the payper. I got all the credenshuls your gonna need. Including eggsellent communication skills. If you higher me you wont be sorry. I have a strong work ethnic, and did i mention my great communicashun skills.

Dear Mr. Green,
You advertised for a Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician with excellent communication skills. I hope you will consider me a strong candidate for the position. In addition to Microsoft certification, I have a solid work ethic, and I can express myself clearly in speech and writing.

The first letter makes readers work too hard to get the message. Basic errors in spelling and grammar might make employers judge the writer as lazy, stupid, or uneducated. (See Cover Letters from Hell.) Poor writing skills can also kill your chances for promotion. The Business Roundtable calls writing a ticket to work.

How are your written communication skills? To find out, take the Grammar Diagnostic test. This counts for 20 out of 500 possible points. You may retake this diagnostic once. After that, if you wish to raise your score, take one of the other diagnostics.

To complete this CM107 assignment:

1. Start with this 20-question Grammar Diagnostic.

2. Email your final score to yourself and to your instructor.

3. Not happy with your score? You can do review exercises to correct your weaknesses. Print them and hand them in.

4. Looking for a challenge? Take one of these:



   Copyright in these materials belongs to C. Munzenmaier © 2010.
Teachers are free to reproduce or modify them for nonprofit educational use. 

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