Postby Prototype on Fri May 29, 2015 12:12 am

Dear Prof,

a-If you happened not to get e-mails due to a spelling mistake in the address. Which one sounds better?

1-I probably wrote down the wrong address, here goes the right one....
2-I´m afraid there is a mistake in my e-mail address, here goes the right one...

b-What do you make of this sentence; is it well-drafted?
We must help our adult learners actively use English COMPETENTLY'??? in a global setting.
I would have formulated it: actively and competently use English.....or active and competently

Re: Miscellany

Postby prof on Fri May 29, 2015 10:42 pm

With your first query, both explanations need a better second part than 'here goes the right one', which is poor English. A better way of putting this is 'let me now give you the correct one'.

When you say 'I probably wrote down the wrong address' you are partly dodging the blame by using the word 'probably'. With the second remark 'I am afraid there is a mistake' you are not admitting any responsibility. Both comments are good English, so the question is how diplomatic you want to be about saying who is responsible for the breakdown in communications.

With the second query, I agree that splitting the adverbs on either side of the verb is odd and confusing. It is the sort of thing you would expect in spoken English but not in a written text. Your version of 'actively and competently' is more, well, competent.
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