Course info
Feb 6, 2017
1h 42m

You might be a leading expert in your field, but if you can't write with clarity and accuracy, you're much less likely to reach your full potential. In this course, Avoiding Common Writing Mistakes, you'll learn about the value of effective writing and how to avoid some of the most common writing mistakes. Then, you'll learn how to use punctuation and structure sentences effectively. Finally, you'll learn how to convert these skills into workplace success. When you're finished with this course, you'll be better equipped to avoid the most common writing mistakes and pitfalls, and to represent yourself, your work, and your ideas more effectively.

About the author
About the author

Casey has experience leading projects in many fields, including healthcare, digital media, mobile app development, consumer product design, education, and event management. He's constantly in pursuit of new challenges and loves to share what he learns along the way with others.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Course Overview
Hi everyone, my name is Casey Ayers, and welcome to my course, Avoiding Common Writing Mistakes. I'm a project manager and strategic consultant with experience in mobile development, healthcare, consumer product development, and more. I'm also the author of Pluralsight's series of PMP and business analysis courses. Between not only the ubiquity of email and corporate life, but also the increasing integration of social tools and custom digital solutions, more business than ever is conducted in a text format of some sort. The rise of remote teams, especially those that may include members spread across the globe, raises the stakes even higher. Some think writing is a dead art, but the truth couldn't be more clear. Writing has never been more critical to your career and business success as it is today. Some of the major topics that we'll cover include the enemies of effective writing, including tricky grammar situations, punctuation rules and guidelines that can help make your writing more clear, tips for structuring sentences to best convey your messages, and how to convert these new skills into success for your organization and career. By the end of this course you'll have a newly sharpened sense of how to communicate in writing, and improve your ability to use writing to inform and convince others. The only prerequisite for this course is a desire to learn how more effective writing can help you better communicate and advance your career. I hope you'll join me on this journey to improve your writing skills with Avoiding Common Writing Mistakes, here at Pluralsight.

Enemies of Effective Writing
In this module we're going to look at some of the most obvious and easily addressable enemies of effective writing. First, we'll look at when it's appropriate and necessary to use capitalization. Then we'll look at when me or I is the correct word to use. After that, we'll look at the differences between adjectives and adverbs, and how to use them correctly. Later, we'll discuss topics like inconsistent verb tenses, double negatives, and slang, and discuss how they can impact the effectiveness of your writing as well. Let's get started.

Effective Punctuation
In this module we're going to look at how to use effective punctuation, no matter the type of writing task you're facing. We'll discuss how and where to use commas, apostrophes, quotation marks, parentheses, dashes, colons, semicolons, and more. Just as importantly, we'll discuss how not to use these, ensuring that your punctuation choices lead to the most accurate and reader-friendly final product possible. Let's jump right in.

Effective Sentence Structuring
We've set a good foundation now with an understanding of some of the most common writing mistakes, and how to effectively separate our thoughts using punctuation. Now we can start to change our focus from what to avoid to what to pursue. In this module we'll look at how to improve the strength of our writing by eliminating run-on sentences, recognizing and capitalizing on the differences between passive and active voice, learning the rules behind choosing the right pronouns, and using modifiers that add detail and power to our writing. With these new skills, you'll be able to write with greater clarity and emphasis, share information more effectively, and advocate in writing more persuasively. Let's get started.

Common Mistakes with Words
In this module we're going to quickly, but incisively, target some of the most typical word mistakes that sully otherwise effective writing. These include common spelling mistakes that spellcheck won't catch, words that sound alike, but mean very different things, words that are often used incorrectly, and words that are used far too often, and should be avoided whenever possible in order to make your writing more effective. Let's jump right in.

Converting Skills to Success
The rules we've covered thus far in this course are indeed important, and useful information. However, these rules alone won't make you an effective writer. Each sentence of every composition you write can be perfectly structured, and you can still be left with a mess that will fail to convey information, convince your audience, or otherwise fulfill the goals of that work. In order for writing to be successful, there are several key points to keep in mind that will be the focus of this module. Over the next few minutes we'll discuss writing techniques that will help you achieve greater clarity, consider how knowledge of your audience might impact your writing, and how to identify the correct medium for your message. Let's jump right in.