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The General Reasons Why Grammar Is Important for Daily Use

by Dr. Mary Dowd

Grammar rules facilitate clear and concise communication. Errors in verb tense, sentence structure, contractions, punctuation, spelling and word usage detract from your intended message. Being an effective communicator helps you make a positive impression on others, which impacts your overall happiness, social life and employment opportunities. Your verbal skills and self-confidence contribute to your public persona. In fact, the American Psychological Association suggests that the first few minutes of meeting someone shapes the course of the relationship.

Career Success

Neglecting to correct grammar errors in cover letters and resumes can cost you a job interview. Potential employers who notice mistakes in application materials may assume you’re careless, lazy or apathetic about the position or employment with their company. In order to compete with other job seekers, you must demonstrate professionalism and competency. Once you land a job, you'll be evaluated on how well you fit the company’s culture and expectations. Career advancement can be adversely impacted by poor grammar. Forbes suggests than many managers look down on younger workers who disregard grammar and use text message abbreviations in office emails.

Professional Communication

Grammar proficiency is an important aspect of working. If you’re in a leadership role, individuals you supervise may judge your competency based on your command of the English language. Careless mistakes can cause embarrassment and ridicule. As a hypothetical example, if you’re a secretary for a 24-hour towing company, and you forget to proofread your online ad before submission, amused readers will see that your business offers “emergency toe service.” Many jobs require presentations to small or large audiences when demonstrating a product or pitching a marketing idea. Grammar mistakes can undermine your credibility and persuasive power.

Personal Communication

Strong communication abilities enable you to make your point in everyday interactions with family, friends, neighbors and community members. When you appear intelligent and exude an air of self-assuredness, you’re apt to be taken more seriously. An ability to speak without grammar errors can help you make your point when returning defective merchandise, explaining to a police officer why you ran a stop sign or asking your banker for a loan. Grammar skills are also useful when delivering a wedding toast, memorial service tribute, motivational speech or personal testimonial at a rally. Using proper grammar shows respect for your audience.

Academic Achievement

USA Today suggests that grammar is vital to doing well in school because many classes require written homework assignments. Professors appreciate well written papers free of grammatical errors, which can result in higher grades. Proper grammar is expected in graduate school. Even if you’re finished with school, you may need or desire continuing education in the future to update skills or retrain for a different job. Stanford University recommends that adults of all ages engage in lifelong learning such as college classes to maintain and expand brain functioning.

About the Author

Mary Dowd holds a doctorate in educational leadership and a master's degree in counseling and student personnel from Minnesota State University, Mankato. In her 20 years of higher education experience, she has taught classes, served as interim dean of students, and worked in many areas of student affairs, including student discipline, career advising, orientation and violence prevention.

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