3. Error of Conditional Sentences
English has four conditional structures: the zero, first, second and third.
First of all, here is a quick reminder of what conditional sentences are:
We use a conditional sentence to say that one event depends on another event, i.e. that something can only happen if something else happens first.
Conditionals sentences have two parts, namely if-clause and the main clause.
The main clause depends on the if-clause.
Here are the most common mistakes when it comes to structure:
i)The zero conditional
In the zero conditional, both clauses are in the present tense. A common mistake is to use ‘will’ in the main clause:
Incorrect: If people eat too much, they will get fat.
Correct: If people eat too much, they get fat.
ii) The first conditional
In the first conditional, we use the present simple in the if-clause and ‘will’ in the main clause. A very common error is to put ‘will’ in the if-clause:
Incorrect: If you will study more, your English will get better.
Correct: If you study more, your English will get better.
iii) The second conditional
This is used for hypothetical or improbable situations. We use the past simple in the if-clause and ‘would’ in the main clause.
Often mistake are made by putting ‘would’ in the if-clause.
Incorrect: If you would study more, your English would get better.
Correct: If you studied more, your English would get better.
iv)The third conditional
This is the most difficult conditional to master, probably as there are more auxiliary verbs to remember and the structure is therefore quite long. Again, ‘would’ should not be used in the if-clause:
Incorrect: If you would have studied more, your English would have improved.
Correct: If you had studied more, your English would have improved.
4. Error of Participles
Incorrect: Sitting down, the chair felt warm and comfortable under Anjali.
Correct; Sitting down, Anjali found the chair warm and comfortable.(The chair is not sitting down; Anjali is.)
5. Error of Nouns and pronouns
Nouns and pronouns must agree in number:
Incorrect: A student is free to express their opinion.
Correct: A student is free to express his or her opinion.
Correct: Students are free to express their opinions.
6. Error of Articles
Incorrect: She is fastest runner.
Correct: She is the fastest runner.
7. Error of conjunctions.
Incorrect: As soon as he got the telegram, at once he started.
Correct: As soon as he got the telegram, he started.
Correct: He got the telegram and started at once
8. Error of Adjectives
Incorrect: Sonia is taller of the two girls.
Correct: Sonia is the taller of the two girls. (When a group has just two members, we use the comparative with the.)
9.Error of Pronouns The usage of it, its, it’s, there, their
Incorrect: How could she blame you and he for the accident?
Correct: How could she blame you and him for the accident?
10. Error of Prepositions
Incorrect: He is independent from his parents.
Correct: He is independent of his parents.
Incorrect: We do not sell things at credit.
Correct: We do not sell things on credit.
11. Error of Punctuation:( Apostrophe with Possessives Nouns)
Consider the following :
(i) A boy’s bag (ii) The boys’ school
(iii) My father’s house (iv) My parents’ place
(v) Men’s saloon (vi) Women’s parlor
(vii) Children’s park (viii) Socrates’ disciple
(ix) Dickens’ novels (x) Levis’ jeans
The nouns ending with ‘s’ do not usually require another ‘s’ after the apostrophe.
Consider the following :
(i) Jack and Jill’s house–one house belonging to both
(ii) Sita and Ram’s journey–same journey covered together