English Language, Composition, &

Literature  Links

Use the links below to jump to a section:

The Elements of Rhetoric

The Writing Process  

Grammar and Sentence Structure

Major Errors

Diagramming Sentences


The Paragraph

The Essay

Diction, Vocabulary, Spelling


Logic, Argument Evaluation and Statistics

Rhetoric and Critical Analysis of an Essay


The Elements of Rhetoric

Audience Awareness. Texas A & M U.

Style, Diction, Tone, and Voice. Wheaon college.

How Audience and Purpose Affect Focus. Colorado State University.

Tone: A Matter of Attitude. Capital Community College.

Tone in Business Writing. The OWL at Purdue.

The Rhetorical Situation. The OWL at Purdue. Download a PowerPoint presentation.

The Writing Process

The Writing Process. Cleveland State University. The Writing Center.

Starting the Writing Process. The OWL at Purdue.

Principles of Composition: The Writing Process. Capital Community College.

Elements. U Texas Permian Basin. PowerPoint.

Grammar and Sentence Structure

Guide to Grammar and Writing. Capital Community College. An extensive site.

Guide to Grammar and Style. Jack Lynch

The Grammar Gorillas. Parts of Speech

Grammar,  Punctuation, and Capitalization. NASA.

Subjects and Predicates

Subjects and Predicates. U of Missouri.

Identifying Subjects. Georgia Southern U.

Identifying Subjects, Phrases, and Clauses. A Humbug's Grammar.

Grammar Exercises

Grammar Bytes. chompchomp.com

English Exercises Online.Grammar.

List of Exercises. U of London

330 Grammar Topics. U of Victoria.

Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers. U of Ottawa.

Misplaced Modifiers: Exercise 1.

Dangling Modifiers. Big Dog's Grammar.

Major Errors

Sentence Fragments

Purdue University Online Writing Lab

Guide to Grammar and Writing

Subject-Verb Agreement

Guide to Grammar and Writing

Purdue University Online Writing Lab

City University (Washington) Quiz

Faulty Parallel Structure

Guide to Grammar and Writing

The Brief Penguin Handbook

Parallel Structure. Purdue OWL.

Comma Splices

What is a Comma Splice and How Do I Fix It? Walden U.

Guide to Grammar and Writing

Comma Splices: Exercise I. D'Youville College.

Pronoun-Antecedent Agreement

Guide to Grammar and Writing

Big Dog's Grammar

Pronoun Antecedernt Agreement. LEO.

Diagramming Sentences

Diagramming Sentences: A Brief Introduction. Capital Community College.

Diagramming Sentences: A Brief Introduction. PowerPoint. Capital Community College.

Diagramming Sentences: Basic Sentence Parts. Capital Community College.

Sentence Diagramming. C. O. Burleson.

Diagramming Practice. St. Albans School.


PMS: Punctuation Made Simple. Gary A. Olson, JAC Online.

Punctuation. Frances Peck, U. of Ottawa.

The Paragraph

Paragraphs. Tips-O-Matic.

Paragraphs and Topic Sentences. Indiana U.

Writing Paragraphs. U of Ottawa.

Paragraph Development and Topic Sentences. Capital Community College.

Exercises in Using English for Academic Purposes. A Guide for International Students. University of Hertfordshire Hatfield, UK

Paragraph Transitions. U. of California at Santa Barbara.

The Essay

Thesis Statement: Literary Education Online.

Building the Essay Draft. Empire State College.

Writing an Argumentative Essay. Bogazici U.

Essays: Writing Den

Guide to Writing a Basic Essay.

Description and Narration

Writing Descriptions. Purdue OWL.

Descriptive Essays. LEO: Literacy Education Online. St. Cloud State U.

How to Write a Description. Northern Illinois U English Department.

Narrative and Descriptive. Capital Community College.

Descriptive Writing. English & English Literature Coursework. englishbiz.co.uk.

A Brief Guide to Writing Narrative Essays. Roane State Community College. OWL.

Profiles and Memoirs

On Memoir, Truth and 'Writing Well.'Interview with William Zinsser. National Public Radio. April 13, 2006. Excerpt "How to Write a Memoir."

Sixties Personal Narrative Project. University of Virginia Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities.

The Personal Essay.Capital Community College.

This I Believe. National Public Radio.

The Personal Essay.Mr. Bauld's English.

Process Analysis

Process Analysis Essay. Kamehameha Schools. Hawii.

Writing A Process Essay. LEO: Literacy Education Online. St. Cloud State U.

The Process Essay. Capital Community College.

Process Analysis. Tidewater Community College.

Illustration and Example

Using Examples. Capital Community College.

A Brief Guide to Writing Example Essays. Kimberly Davis. RSCC Online Writing Lab.

Using Exemplification in Your Writing.  PowerPoint. Prof. Steven Federle Solano College.


The Definition Essay. LEO: Literacy Education Online.

Developing a Definition. Capital Community College.

Writing Definitions. Purdue OWL.

Definition Essay. Essay Info: Essay Writing Center.

Writing Definitions. University Writing Center. Georgia Southern U.

 Comparison and Contrast

Comparison and Contrast. Capital Community College.

Types of Papers/Comparison Contrast. RSCC Online.

Comparison and Contrast Essays. Literacy Education Online. St. Cloud State U.

Classification and Division

Classification Writing Virtual Classroom: Mt. San Antonio College.

Classification and Division. U of Bremen.

Classification and Analysis. Capital Community College.

The Classification Essay. Homes ieu.edu. PowerPoint

Classification Essay. South Texas College. PowerPoint.

Cause and Effect

Cause and Effect. Capital Community College.

Cause and Effect Paragraphs. Technology Studies in Education.

"Cold Comfort": Sample Cause and Effect Essay. Capital Community College.

Diction, Vocabulary, and Usage

Dictionaries, Vocabulary, Spelling

Your Dictionary.Com.All kinds of dictionaries in many languages.

Diction References.Links to Dictionaries, Thesauri and Style manuals..

Diction.Hypergrammar. U of Ottawa.

The Rhyme Zone. Type ion a word to find its rhymes.

English Tongue Twisters.

A Lst of Eponyms. Wikipedia.

The Collective Nouns.What doyou call a room full of administrators?

The Perils of the Spell-Checker. BeyondBooks.com.

The 25 Most Commonly Misspelled Words. Business Writing .com.

Luciferous Logolepsy: Dragging obscure words into the light of day. "A collection of over 9,000 obscure english words."

Commonly confused Word Pairs

Homonyms, Homophones, and Homographs.Alan Cooper's Homonyms.

Common Errors in English.Commonly confused words. By Paul Brians. The Heteronym Home Page.Words spelled alike that, when pronounced differently, mean different things..


The Idiom Connection.

Dictionary of English and Idiomatic Expressions. Using English.com.

Etymologies: Word and Phrase Origins

Common Word Roots. Cuesta College.

Internet Public Library: Etymology.

Proverbs and Sayings

Commonly-Used Proverbs."Over 230 common proverbs sorted alphabetically."

English Proverbs and Humor. UCLA.

American English Proverbs. Santa Monica College Reading Lab.


Cliches. Washington State University. 

Cliche Finder:"Over 3,300 cliches indexed."

Jargon, Euphemisms and Doublespeak

Euphemism. Wikipedia.

Euphemisms. Frankfurt International School.

Jargon Watch. Wired Magazine. 

Weasel Words

Jargon, Weasel Words, and Gobbledygook. California State U Northridge.

Language is Funny

Actual Newspaper Headlines.

Sounds of the World's Animals. University of Texas. 

Pain Language.gov.

Some Humorous Looks at the English Language. Central Washington U.

Plagiarism: What It is and How to Recognize and Avoid It. Indiana U: Bloomington.

Plagiarism, by Earl Babbie. Social Sciences Research and Instructional Council Teaching Resources Depository.

RIT Libraries: Student Resources. Plagiarism—What it is and how to avoid it, with many links.

Anti-Plagiarism Strategies for Research Papers. Robert Harris.

Plagiarism. org. Turnitin.com.

Plagiarism. Sharon Stoerger.

Logic, Argument Evaluation, and Statistics

Elementary Logic. The Philosophy Pages.com.

Informal Logic. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

The Clinical Attitude Toward Arguments. Peter Suber. Earlham College.

Real-World Reasoning Course-Related Links: Peter Suber, Philosophy Department, Earlham College. A mega-listing of sites devoted to logic and argument.

Ratiional Appeal: Logos. Daniel Kies, College of Du Page.

Evaluating Arguments

Arguments and Their Evaluation: T. K. Trelogan, U of Northern Colorado.

Mission Critical: Critical Thinking Web Page: San Jose State U Institute for Teaching and Learning. A "interactive tutorial for critical thinking."

Argument Analysis: Identifying Arguments. Department of Philosophy, The U of Hong Kong.

Finding and Evaluating Statistics

U S Census Bureau.

Statistics Resource Finder: Worldwide Statistics. U of Arizona.

Population Reference Bureau and Social Science Data Analysis Network.

Search Systems.Net: Your Public Record Information Network. SearchSystems.Net

Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Statistics and Demographics. The U of Texas at Austin.

Texas Statistics. Rand.

Trail: Texas Records and Information Locator. Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Rhetoric and Critical Analysis of an Essay

How to Read Essays You Must Analyze:Virginia Tech. Practical Advice.

Rhetorical Analysis Worksheet. StevenHale. Georgia Perimeter College.

A List of Fallacious Arguments.

Fallacy Files.

The Forest of Rhetoric: silva rhetoricae:"This online rhetoric, provided by Dr. Gideon Burton of Brigham Young University, is a guide to the terms of classical and renaissance rhetoric. . . .This site is intended to help beginners, as well as experts, make sense of rhetoric, both on the small scale (definitions and examples of specific terms) and on the large scale (the purposes of rhetoric, the patterns into which it has fallen historically as it has been taught and practiced for 2000+ years)."

Rational Appeal: "Logos translates into 'word' or 'reason.' In rhetoric, logos refers to systems of reasoning." Daniel Kies: College of DuPage.

The Emotional Appeal:"Pathos, also called the pathetic or emotional appeals, persuades audiences by using emotions (Lanham 74)." Daniel Kies: College of DuPage.

Ethical Appeal:"Aristotle defined ethos as the credibility or trustworthiness that the author establishes in his/her writing." Daniel Kies: College of DuPage.

Aristotle's Rhetoric: A Hypertext Resource. Compiled by Lee Honeycutt. Iowa State U.

Color Coded Rhetorical Analysis of Letter from Birmingham Jail. Mary Schultz. DeAnza College.


Organizing Your Research  Paper

Organizing Research with Computers. Study Guides and Strategies.

Organizing Research: The Note Card System.Study Guides and Strategies.

How to Organize a Research Paper and Document It with MLA Citations. GeoCities.

Documenting Sources

Using Quotations. Presbyterian College.

Documenting Sources. Diane Hacker.

MLA Formatting and Style Guide. Purdue OWL.

A Guide for Writing Research Papers (MLA).Capital Community College.

A Research and Reference Guide (MLA).Perspectives in American Literature. Appendix I.

MLA Works Cited Documentation. Studyguide.org.



Good writing reads well or flows. This page explains how to make your writing flow.

Do you ever get comments like these:

  • 'This doesn't read well.'

  • 'Your writing is disjointed.'

  • 'How is this related?'

  • 'You need to improve the flow of your writing.'

  • 'Link up your ideas.'

  • 'Use signposts!'

  • Or Dr. Perez's favorite comment 'AWKWARD'

If so, you're not alone: students often struggle with this.

To make your writing read better, or flow, you need to use transition and linking words or phrases.

This is what transitions and linking words do:

  • connect words, sentences and paragraphs.

  • show the relationship between ideas.

  • indicate the order of things and their relative importance.

  • indicate when something new is coming.

  • signal to readers how an idea fits in and where it's going.

  • show a change is coming, i.e. introduce a new idea.

  • help writing flow.

  • introduce a summary or a conclusion.


The following are great links that help with sentence and paragraph flow


RMIT (opens in a new window)

Online tutorial on how to use linking words, includes activities.


Transitions - University of North Carolina (opens in a new window)
Discusses the function and importance of transitions, how transitions work, and signs that you might need to work on your transitions


Essay flow - Massey University (opens in a new window)

Explains flow within and between paragraphs; includes examples and suggested transition words.


Writing effective paragraphs - California State University (opens in a new window)
Scroll down for help with making your writing cohesive and coherent.


Effective writing - Unilearning (opens in a new window)
This site is divied into a number of sections: The introduction explains what effective writing is and how to achieve it, with examples; macro features explains logical stucture and flow; and micro features discusses paragraphs, the roles of referring and connective words. There a a number of interactive exercises.


Logical development of ideas - Monash University (opens in a new window)
Explains what is meant by coherent and cohesive writing; includes examples.


Making links between paragraphs - Waylinks English (opens in a new window)
Explains the importance of linking paragraphs using 'signposts' and shows how 'signposts' help readers understand your writing; includes an example.


Take a Quiz to learn about how to write clear sentences.


Other common problems and solutions