What is wrong in this sentence?


Can you help me to fix this sentence?

See example:

Only because, I was getting educated about the English rules, how to read and how to write, and that is when I started seen progress in my language, the better I write and read the better I communicate.
asked Jan 18 '13 at 13:43 mariangela New member

1 answer


Thanks for the interesting question, Mariangela!


Here are my corrections to your sentence, and below are my explanations of the changes I have made:


Only because I was studying English Reading and Writing did I start to make progress with my communication skills.


Only because, I changed to Only because I: no comma is necessary here.


was getting educated about the English rules, how to read and how to write changed to studying English Reading and Writing:  I have made this phrase much shorter, changed getting educated about to studying, which sounds more natural when talking about academic studies, and changed the focus to academic/ESL/EFL subjects by using the gerund forms Reading and Writing, which should be capitalized because they are academic subjects.


, and that is when I changed to did I: first of all, you don't need a comma after the first clause (a clause is a phrase that has a subject and a verb; all sentences are clauses, but many sentences, such as yours, have more than one clause).  Secondly, there is no need for the conjunction and, the verb be, or the WH-word when.  Finally, when the first clause begins with only because, and the second clause uses a one word verb that isn't be, the second clause must be in question order, which means the helping/auxiliary verb (did, used to make questions about past events) must go first, the subject (I) second, and the main verb (start) third.  (There's a slightly different pattern for other kinds of verbs.)


started seen progress changed to start to make progress: After the past verb did, start needs to be in base/dictionary/infinitive form, start not started, and it must be followed by a verb in to + infinitive/dictionary/base form.  (Sorry about the multiple terms used for this form of the verb; unfortunately, different grammar books use different terms for the form of the verb that you would look up in a dictionary or use with to.)  Also, I changed see to make because make progress sounds more natural and confident when you are talking about your own progress. 


in my language, the better I write and read the better I communicate. changed to with my communication skills.:in my language is not necessary, and also confusing, because 'your language' is the language you grew up speaking, your first language, which is not English, right?  Also, it seems unnecessary to repeat write and read, or use the (sometimes-useful, but not in this context) the better I....the better I pattern in this situation (plus, it is more common to say/write the more I....the better I..., for example, the more I study, the better I speak English), and so I have shortened this part of your text considerably.


Another way to the say the same thing, more simply


This sentence could be rephrased in a simpler way, without using the complicated only because [subject] [verb]....[verb] [subject] pattern:


I only started to make progress with my communication skills because I began studying English Reading and Writing. Also, because could be changed to when with little change in meaning if you use this rewording.


I hope this helps.  Please let me know if you have any questions.



link comment edited Jan 18 '13 at 15:10 Shawn Mooney Expert

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