Tag Archives: #grammarresources

APA Resources List

Whether you are a high school/university student or a scholar working on the first journal article, you must have encountered formatting/citation issues at least once. Depending on your subject area, you might have been required to format your paper either according to The Chicago Manual of Style, MLA, or APA style. There are many more, including CP and SAA, but the APA, MLA, and Chicago are the most common ones in academic writing. Used as an abbreviation for the American Psychological Association, APA format is normally used for papers concerning social sciences topics, such as psychology, economics, statistics, and education. Here I compiled the list of the most common issues that arise when formatting and/or citing a paper in the APA style.












Citing Government Documents










Tables and Figures






Using et al.




English Grammar Resources for Newbies and Well-Seasoned Writers

Are you finding English grammar rules mind-boggling? Perhaps, you’ve got amazing ideas but are feeling stuck because the difference between past perfect and simple past won’t let you be. Fortunately, there is no need to remember absolutely everything about the language to be a good writer. Here are some of the best resources on English grammar.

Booher, Dianna. Booher’s Rules of Business Grammar 101 Fast and Easy Ways to Correct the Most Common Errors. New York: McGraw Hill, 2009.

Written in a humorous tone, this book will guide you through all the common grammar pitfalls, including the infamous dangling modifiers, the lie/lay combo, indefinite pronouns, and irregular verbs. Although the book is mainly geared towards business writers, anyone, from an ESL student to a well-seasoned copywriter, can benefit from Booher’s Rules.

Ensohn, Amy. The Copyeditor’ Handbook A Guide to Publishing and Corporate Communications. London: University of California Press Ltd., 2006.

In this book, you’ll find anything you need to know about the art of copy editing, from copy editor’s marks for hard copy to practical information on how to edit tables, numbers, and graphs. The Copyeditor’s Handbook is a good starting point for anyone interested in an editing career. It’s also a good source for professional writers who want to know about elements that deserve special attention during the self-editing/proofreading process.

Ruvinsky, Maxine. Practical Grammar A Canadian Writer’s Resource, 2nd Ed. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2009.

Everything you needed to know about parts of speech, verbs, sentence structure, and punctuation can be found in this book. Its chapters are short, simple, and organized in a clear, concise way that will appeal to both absolute beginners and advanced English speakers. Each chapter contains exercises for readers to test themselves and to discover areas of improvement.

Stilman, Anne. Grammatically Correct: The Essential Guide to Spelling, Style, Usage, Grammar, and Punctuation, 2nd Ed. Cincinatti: Writer’s Digest Books, 2010.

Similarly to Ruvinsky’s Practical Grammar, Grammatically Correct by Stilman represents a compilation of rules one needs to know to be a successful writer. Although this book is organized a bit differently, its essence remains the same. It provides a breakdown of the major grammar rules and touches upon the common issues surrounding spelling and punctuation. The book’s well-organized table of contents, along with the index, makes the content extremely informative and user-friendly.

Crag, Catherine et al. Editing Canadian English The Essential Canadian Guide Revised and Updated, 2nd Ed. Toronto: Macfarlane Walter & Ross, 2000.

Although the title implies the book had been written for Canadian market, anyone eager to learn about differences between British and American spellings can benefit from this book. It’s organized thematically into tables, each representing a particular convention, such as -ae vs. -e. Editing Canadian English is a good reference point for those who cannot remember all the spelling variations.

Editing Canadian English, 3rd Ed. – A Book Review

The third edition of Editing Canadian English by Catherine Craig et al. is now available as e-book. According to the website of the Editors Association of Canada, this book is a “fully searchable version that you can read on your computer (with a reading app installed), tablet, smartphone or reading device.” While I prefer using the old-fashioned hardcover with an index, I still think that re-releasing it in a new format is wonderful news.

Editing Canadian English is a language manual that covers a wide range of topics pertaining to the English language and editing in the Canadian context. Such include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Canadianization, including tailoring edited content to Canadian market
  • differences between British and American spellings, including treatment of the variant words by the major dictionaries, such as Webster’s, Canadian Oxford, and Nelson
  • capitalization of titles, professional entities, and geographical terms
  • treatment of compounds, including hyphenation in variant words such as “homemade” and “longtime” according to the major dictionaries
  • measurements, including lists of the major scientific units and their abbreviations
  • French in the English context, including treatment of italics and quotation marks, organization names, place names, work titles, quoted material, and overall spacing in the text

The book also touches upon more practical aspects of the editing business, such as differences between different job roles (i.e., substantive editor, copy editor, and proofreader), successful communication with authors, and editor’s legal responsibilities. Inclusivity is a big part of communication both in Canada and aboard. One of the chapters provides practical advice on avoiding stereotypes, gender bias, and over generalizations in writing.

Many years ago, I was lucky enough to get a free copy of the second edition from an English instructor, who was gracious enough to give away her old books on the last days of our course. Ever since, I’ve been actively using it as a reference source for numerous editing projects. The content is broken down into several chapters organized thematically into various topics and sub-topics. Each sub-topic corresponds to a particular number point (1.1 through 12.157) and is searchable both through the index and table of context. Such mode of organization makes the text very user-friendly and easy to navigate. No matter which format you prefer, Editing Canadian English is a must-have for anyone who is serious about editing career.