Punctuation Marks: All You Ever Wanted to Know About Them!

Grammar is a big part of writing. It increases the readability and helps the reader adapt to the tone, flow, and style. One part of grammar that’s extremely important is punctuation marks, most of which get misused. That’s why we’re here with tips from Ordercoursework (where you can order course work 24/7) to increase your understanding and start improving your writing skills. 

The English language has 14 different punctuation marks, all of which have a particular place in writing. While most of them will look familiar from our experience reading, most might not know how to use them when writing. Plus, depending on where you’re located, English punctuation changes whether you’re in America or England. These subtle differences are not hard to figure out but, when reading, keep a close watch out for small hints.  

Meet the 14 Punctuation Marks 

As promised, here’s a look at each of the 14 punctuation marks and how to use them. 

Ending Sentences

The way that you end a sentence says a lot. You can change the tone and entire meaning when you add one single mark, making it essential to understand the difference. There are three endings in the English language, all of which serve different purposes. 

1. The Period

Think of the period as the generic punctuation mark that ends a sentence. While reading, we often don’t even really notice they’re there and don’t change our tone. They serve mainly to end sentences and keep you from creating long and confusing sentences that you have to read repeatedly. 

2. The Question Mark

Of course, these are found at the end of questions. They can either imply that you’re asking a question for dialogue or proposing a rhetorical question to provoke thought. 

3. The Exclamation Point 

Though we love to use these in texts, they should only be used sparsely when writing essays.  Expert writers at https://assignment-partner.com/ (assignment writing service) say that their overuse is a common mistake among young writers today. They serve to emphasize a point or to show excitement in a sentence. Other than that, they don’t belong in most writing situations. 

Commas and Colons

These little guys are used inside of sentences to separate thoughts or clarify ideas. Though they’re similar, they are used differently on some occasions. 

The Comma 

Of this category, the comma is the most common punctuation mark. It’s used when listing objects or greeting someone to show a separation in ideas. When reading, they make ideas more transparent and help the brain see that each comma is a separate category.

The Semicolon

The semicolon is the most incorrectly used punctuation mark in English. The reason? We have no idea. It may have to do with the confusion of what it’s used for. They are used to connect independent clauses and function the same as a period. However, when presenting two ideas that rely on each other, you’ll need a semicolon instead. 

The Colon

In most cases, the colon is used when providing further details. You can also use it when adding a quote into writing or sharing the name of a specific book or song. 

Dashes and Hyphens

Dashes and hyphens, what’s the difference? They look a lot alike, but they’re used for a bit of a different reason.

The Dash 

When adding statements into writing, dashes work wonders. They show the difference between spoken words and contextual words in a story. 

The Hyphen

The hyphen is different in function, working to connect two words to create one idea. For instance, the word well-known. Both words work on their own and have their meaning, but they turn into a completely different idea when fused. 

Brackets, Braces, and Parentheses; Oh My!

Many times, these punctuation marks work when adding numbers or mathematical figures into sentences. Other times, they work to add extra detail into sentences. 

The Bracket

A bracket is like an additional thought added into a sentence. It’s meant to provide a bit more context and, if you leave out the words in the bracket, the sentence will still make sense. 

The Brace

The brace doesn’t make its way into literary works often. Instead, it’s for mathematical figures and other numerical ideas. 

The Parenthesis 

These tiny, curvy marks are used to insert separate thoughts into sentences. Just like brackets, the sentence will still make sense without the contents, only adding additional details. 

The Least Common of the Bunch 

Among the rest, these are the least common when writing. Expert writers at https://write-essay-for-me.com/write-my-term-paper say that you might want to reconsider the punctuation if your paper is full of these. It’s easier to ask someone to write my term paper.

The Apostrophe

Things like “is not”, “are not”, and “I have” can be cut down to size and shortened with help from an apostrophe. They turn into “isn’t,” “aren’t,” and “I’ve”, respectively.  

The Ellipsis 

When you want to add a pause to an idea, add three dots. These show up a lot in dialogue or quotes. 

Quotation Marks

Unless you’re writing a story with a lot of dialogue, you won’t have many quotation marks. These are used to differentiate the character’s words from the context in the story. 

Sounds Easy, Right? 

All of these punctuation marks probably look familiar to you but, they’re still commonly misused. Luckily, there’s a lot of software out there that can help with advanced grammatical errors. Still, it’s a good idea to know how to make sense of punctuation marks to do some checking yourself. Plus, if you come across them while reading, you’ll better understand the context and tone. 

Don’t get lower grades because of punctuation. Understand what they are and how to use them to keep your grades high and your papers impressive.