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Current time:0:00Total duration:2:16

Writing: Within-sentence punctuation — Harder example 1

Writing: Grammar

Video transcript

- [Instructor] Chinese cuisine is more of a science than an art, it requires experimentation, trial-and-error, and years of experience. Okay, so this is a punctuation question. We know that because we have a comma underlined in the original. Then in the choices, choice B has a colon and then a comma, choice C has a semicolon, choice D has no punctuation at all. And we can look at this by sort of asking ourselves what are the rules about colons and semicolons and commas? And in short, a colon is used to introduce an example, a quotation, a list, or an explanation for something. And in this case, this is a bit of an explanation. Chinese cuisine is more of a science than an art. Oh yeah, how? Well, it requires experimentation, trial-and-error, and years of experience. So it is a little bit of an explanation, so a colon should work, but the problem here is that that comma, this comma here, is making this whole answer wrong. Chinese cuisine is more of a science than an art, it requires experimentation. No, there's no extra pause there. It doesn't make sense. So we can cross that out. Then we have the semicolon we're thinking about. And semicolons are used to separate two independent clauses. An independent clause is a clause that could function on its own as a sentence. So in this case, let's check it out. Chinese cuisine is more of a science than an art. Okay, that could be its own sentence. It requires experimentation, trial-and-error, and years of experience. Okay, it requires, subject, verb, it requires those three things. That also is a complete sentence, a complete independent clause. This is our answer. We definitely do need punctuation because these commas, all the punctuation offers pauses. So one way to check commas for future questions you might approach is to just give them a little extra pause and see whether it sounds weird. So in this case, Chinese cuisine is more of a science than an art. It requires, you definitely need a pause there, but in this case not a comma because of the two independent clauses. And you also need a comma after experimentation, trial-and-error, and years of experience. So you need those commas as well.