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Independent & Dependent Clauses
BASIC DEFINITIONS OF INDEPENDENT/DEPENDENT CLAUSES • A clause that makes sense by itself is an independent clause. • A clause that does not make sense by itself is a dependent clause. • A complex sentence contains an independent and dependent clause. But what does this mean?
Independent and Dependent Clauses • An independent clause is a group of words that contain a subject and verb and expresses a complete thought. An independent clause is a sentence. – Jim studied in the cafeteria for his chemistry quiz. • A dependent clause is a group of words that contain a subject and verb but does not express a complete thought. A dependent clause cannot be a sentence. Often a dependent clause is marked by a dependent marker word. – When Jim studied in the cafeteria for his chemistry quiz. (NOT a sentence!)
Dependent Marker Words • A dependent marker word is a word added to the beginning of an independent clause that makes it into a dependent clause. Examples: – When Jim studied in the cafeteria for his chemistry quiz (NOT a sentence!) • Some common dependent markers are: after, although, as if, because, before, even if, even though, if, in order to, since, though, unless, until, whatever, whenever, whether, and while
Dependent Clauses and Subordinators • Subordinators (also subjects) such as “who, ” “which, ” “that, ” and “whom” start adjective dependent clauses. – Examples: • My cat, who is soft and sweet, hates dogs. • The Furr's that is on the corner has been robbed five times. • The weather, which is beautiful, makes me want to take a walk.
Connecting Dependent and Independent Clauses • There are two types of words that can be used as connectors at the beginning of an independent clause: – Coordinating conjunctions – Independent marker words
Coordinating Conjunctions • Coordinating conjunctions are used as connecting words at the beginning of an independent clause. • They are: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, & so. (FANBOYS) • When the second independent clause in a sentence begins with a coordinating conjunction, a comma is needed before the coordinating conjunction: – Example: Jim studied in the cafeteria for his chemistry quiz, but it was hard to concentrate because of the noise.
Independent Marker Word • Some common independent marker words are: also, consequently, furthermore, however, moreover, nevertheless, and therefore. • An independent marker word is a connecting word used at the beginning of an independent clause. • These words can always begin a sentence that can stand alone. • When the second independent clause in a sentence has an independent marker word, a semicolon is needed before the independent marker word. – Example: Jim studied in the cafeteria for his chemistry quiz; however, it was hard to concentrate because of the noise.
Proper Punctuation Here are some examples of ways to combine independent and dependent clauses properly. IC. I went to the store. I didn't buy any bread. IC; IC. I went to the store; I didn't buy any bread. IC, CC IC. I went to the store, but I didn't buy any bread. IC; IM, IC. I went to the store; however, I didn't buy any bread. DC, IC. When I went to the store, I didn't buy any bread. IC DC. I didn't buy any bread when I went to the store.
Proper Punctuation Here are some examples of ways to combine independent and dependent clauses properly. IC. IC; IC. IC, CC IC. IC; IM, IC. DC, IC. IC DC.
Review: Using the example below, explain: 1. What makes the underlined portion an independent clause? 2. What makes the blue portion a dependent clause? Independent clause Native Americans lived on the island until they were attacked. Dependent clause
Write IC or DC; List the Subject and Verb. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. DC IC IC DC if you live on an island______ the tides affect your life______ the water level rises_____ when the tide comes in_____ much of the beach disappears under water_____ 6. until the tide goes out_____ IC DC
Write IC or DC. 1. 2. Since the exam was cancelled, the class was cancelled also. After Michael gulped down two strong cups of coffee, his heart started to flutter. 3. Ellen, who had decided to defrost the freezer, started hacking at the ice with a screwdriver. 4. A bright yellow Volkswagen, which looked like a lemon on wheels, pulled up beside me. 5. I'm beginning to get used to hearing the sound of my neighbor's phone, which has been ringing for ten minutes. 6. I got to work late because I had car trouble. 7. It's hard to discuss anything with Larry, who interprets everything as criticism. 8. We knew the old desk had a secret drawer that no one could find. 9. When the cat food commercial came on, Marie started to sing along. 10. We haven't watered the lawn too often this summer because it has rained so much.
ANSWERS 1. I 2. D 3. D 4. I 5. D 6. I 7. D 8. I 9. D 10. I
Write IC or DC on a piece of paper. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Although it was raining, Maria went for a jog at Civitan Park. Brianna eats chocolate whenever she gets a poor grade in math. After the flood, the family moved into a temporary shelter. While walking at the park, John saw a raccoon eating potato chips. Students enrolled in bachelor's and associate's degree programs must pass the Regents' Test as a graduation requirement. 6. Students who fail to show up for the Regents' test must enroll in the Regents' remediation courses. 7. When you finish your homework, please take the dog for a walk. 8. After Juan completed the assignment, he swam laps at the gym. 9. Christa left home at 4: 00 a. m. since she had to drive to Atlanta for a meeting. 10. Before completing the assignment, Evan decided to eat a quick lunch.
ANSWERS 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. DC DC NAC IC IC DC DC DC 9. DC 10. NAC 11. http: //www. daltonst ate. edu/writinglab/writing-labpracticeexercises/index. ht ml
Run-ons & Fragments Common Errors to Avoid Owl Purdue
Comma Splices • A comma splice is the use of a comma between two independent clauses. You can usually fix the error by: – changing the comma to a period and therefore making the two clauses into two separate sentences, – by changing the comma to a semicolon, – or by making one clause dependent by inserting a dependent marker word in front of it.
Comma Splices Examples • Incorrect: I like this class, it is very interesting. – Correct: I like this class. It is very interesting. – (or) I like this class; it is very interesting. – (or) I like this class, and it is very interesting. – (or) I like this class because it is very interesting. – (or) Because it is very interesting, I like this class.
Fused Sentences • Fused sentences happen when there are two independent clauses not separated by any form of punctuation. This error is also known as a run-on sentence. The error can sometimes be corrected by adding – a period, – semicolon, – or colon to separate the two sentences. • Incorrect: My professor is intelligent I've learned a lot from her. – Correct: My professor is intelligent. I've learned a lot from her. – (or) My professor is intelligent; I've learned a lot from her. – (or) My professor is intelligent, and I've learned a lot from her. – (or) My professor is intelligent; moreover, I've learned a lot from her.
Sentence Fragments • Sentence fragments happen by treating a dependent clause or other incomplete thought as a complete sentence. You can usually fix this error by combining it with another sentence to make a complete thought or by removing the dependent marker. • Incorrect: Because I forgot the exam was today. • Correct: Because I forgot the exam was today, I didn't study. • (or) I forgot the exam was today.