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Joining Independent Clauses
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Joining Independent Clauses

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Learn to join two independent clauses properly.

Learn to join two independent clauses properly.

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  • 1. Dependent or independent – that is the question… PART ONE: Joining Independent Clauses
  • 2. Independent Clauses
    • An independent clause:
      • Is a group of words with a subject and verb
      • Forms a complete thought
      • Can stand alone as a sentence
    • Example:
      • the boy runs
      • chocolate candy is my favorite
      • she got a new puppy last week
  • 3. Two Independent Clauses
    • Two independent clauses may stand as two separate sentences.
    • Two independent clauses may be joined
      • With a semicolon
      • With a comma plus a coordinating conjunction
    • Two independent clauses may NOT be joined
      • With only a comma
  • 4. Stand Alone
    • Two independent clauses may stand as two separate sentences.
    • Example:
      • I was hungry. I ate some pizza.
    • Both clauses have a subject and a verb . They both form a complete thought. Each clause may stand as a separate sentence.
  • 5. Joined with Semicolon
    • Two independent clauses may be joined
      • With a semicolon
      • Clauses must be closely related
    • Example:
      • I was hungry ; I ate some pizza.
    • Both clauses have a subject and a verb and form a complete thought. They are closely related , so they may be joined by a semicolon.
  • 6. Coordinating Conjunctions
    • Two independent clauses may be joined:
      • With a comma plus a coordinating conjunction
    • MEMORIZE
    • And
    • But
    • For
    • Or
    • Nor
    • So
    • Yet
  • 7. Comma plus Conjunction
    • Two independent clauses may be joined
      • With a comma plus a coordinating conjunction
    • Examples:
      • I was hungry , so I ate some pizza.
      • I was hungry , and I ate some pizza.
      • I was not hungry , yet I ate some pizza.
    • The conjunction follows the comma.
  • 8. NEVER a comma alone
    • Two independent clauses may NEVER be joined
      • With a comma alone
    • Example:
      • I was hungry , I ate some pizza.
      • INCORRECT
    • This is called a “comma splice.” Add a coordinating conjunction after the comma.
  • 9. Is this correct?
    • It rained all day, Judy could not go play outside.
  • 10.
    • It rained all day, Judy could not go play outside.
    Answer: Two independent clauses may NOT be joined by a comma alone.
  • 11. Is this correct?
    • The rain soon disappeared, for the sun had returned.
  • 12. Answer:
    • The rain soon disappeared, for the sun had returned.
    Two independent clauses MAY be joined with a comma PLUS a coordinating conjunction.
  • 13. Is this correct?
    • Everyone loves Sam; he is always smiling.
  • 14. Answer:
    • Everyone loves Sam; he is always smiling.
    Two independent clauses MAY be joined with a comma PLUS a coordinating conjunction.
  • 15. Summary
    • An independent clause is a group of words that form a complete thought and can stand alone as a complete sentence.
    • You may join two independent clauses in these ways:
      • Use a period between them to allow them to stand as two separate sentences.
      • Use a comma followed by a coordinating conjunction.
      • Use a semicolon.
    • You may NOT use a comma alone when joining two independent clauses.