[Instructors: Download PDFs of the exercise and exercise key at the end of the post.]
Careful writers use commas to separate three or more equal elements (words, phrases, or short clauses) in a series. To ensure separation of the last two elements, always use a comma before the conjunction in a series, known as the Oxford comma.
The event committee was meeting to discuss guests, invitations, venues, and costs. [commas in a series of words]
Agenda items included a report on hiring practices, discussion about open positions, and review of the previous week’s e-mail blast. [commas in a series of phrases]
Marketing will focus on creating the messages, production will mock up a sample, and sales will devise a distribution list. [commas in a series of clauses]
Correct the punctuation in the sentences below.
- Among those attending were two interns, Tim Cook and Bill Gates.
- When hiring, the manager looks for candidates who possess strong communication skills, two years of experience and a bachelor’s degree.
- The company is cutting costs by addressing waste, overtime and supplies.
- The study found that new-hires were most interested in upward mobility, current employees cared most about benefits and retirees had concerns about pension stability.
- The book was dedicated to his parents, Mariah Carey and LL Cool J.
- To plan for retirement, new workers should open an IRA, save to create a cushion and consult a financial planner.
- Because small companies do not have a large workforce, employees have the opportunity to be more versatile, work on new skills and grow in unexpected ways.
- The meeting was so poorly run that attendees left confused, irritated, and hungry.
- Issuing smartphones to staff allows an organization to monitor employee communication, ensure compliance with policies and check access to electronic systems.
- Women working in male-dominated industries such as construction or technology often face hazing, harassment and inequality.
- Public relations relies on many components including social media to connect with stakeholders, websites to provide information about the organization and events to engage with investors.
- When interviewing for a new job, applicants should arrive 15 minutes early, bring a résuméand prepare questions.
- The position requires an individual with experience in advocacy, a background in science and desire to effect change.
- To stand out in a new position, an employee should show focus, enthusiasm and integrity.
- Highlights from the global tour included encounters with Angela Merkel, a five-ton elephant and an exotic weapon collector.