In formal nontechnical texts, numbers from one to one hundred, round numbers, and any numbers that can be expressed in one or two words are usually spelled out, that is, written out in words. In less formal texts, as a general rule, numbers from one to ten should be spelled out, and figures can be used for numbers above ten. For example: She has got three brothers. How many feet are there in a mile? Numbers at the beginning of the sentence should be written out in words.
If you need to use figures, restructure your sentence. For example: Fifty-six workers were fired yesterday. Numerals used in the same function in a sentence are usually written either as words or as figures. For example: He wrote one hundred and thirty essays, fifty-two stories, and seven novels.
When Should I Spell Out Numbers?
Here are symbols and words representing cardinal numbers:. Both in British English and in American English groups of three digits in numerals of one thousand and higher are usually separated by a comma, counting from the right: 4,; 12,; ,; 6,, Some manuals of style recommend writing four-digit numerals without a comma: ; ; In numbers written as words in British English, the conjunction "and" is used before tens, or before ones if there are no tens, starting with hundreds: one hundred and twenty-three ; four hundred and seven ; three thousand five hundred and thirty-eight 3, ; seventy-three thousand and five 73, ; five million three hundred thousand and fifty 5,, Note the use of more than one conjunction "and" in large numbers in British English: two million six hundred and twenty-five thousand three hundred and ten 2,, In American English, the conjunction "and" is generally not used before tens or ones: one hundred twenty-three ; four hundred seven ; three thousand five hundred thirty-eight 3, ; seventy-three thousand five 73, ; two million six hundred twenty-five thousand three hundred ten 2,, ; five million three hundred thousand fifty 5,, In British English, the conjunction "and" is also used before tens or ones in ordinal numerals above one hundred: one hundred and tenth th ; three thousand and fifth th.
But "and" is not used in American ordinals: one hundred tenth th ; three thousand fifth th. Ordinal numerals. Ordinal numerals that can be expressed in one or two words are usually written as words.
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Generally, ordinal numerals are used as adjectives and stand before nouns. An ordinal numeral is usually preceded by the definite article "the". For example: The first story was interesting. The second was dull. John Kennedy was the 35th president of the United States. Here are ordinal numbers in figures and in words:.
Difficult spellings. Pay attention to the differences in the spelling and pronunciation of the following cardinal and ordinal numerals. Suggestions concerning conclusions will be given later. You should not assume that an essay has to include and cover all the possible points an interpretation may offer up. A short, well organised and structured essay focusing on some of the main points is far better than an over-long and unwieldy attempt to say a little about everything. You may find it useful to state in the introduction which points you are focusing on and why. Keep your reader informed of the development of your argument.
Let her or him know which direction is being taken and the reasons why. Once the main points have been identified you need to consider in which order they will be examined. Students often do not make the most of the good ideas they have because they get lost if the argument does not develop coherently.
Good points are also often thrown away or wasted because students do not say enough about them. Make sure the relevance of each point to the main argument is clearly stated and demonstrated. You should dwell and linger on the points: often this requires no more than two or three extra sentences, particularly if your writing is concise and focused. A good essay takes time to prepare and write, so start to think about it and do the groundwork well ahead of the essay deadline even in timed conditions, such as exams, it is important to take the time to organise and structure the essay before starting to write.
You will probably find that you need to work out your ideas on paper before writing the essay, and are encouraged to prepare an outline of the essay: a point by point series of key words, phrases and ideas. This will help you to organise the structure and to recognise what is relevant and irrelevant to the essay as a whole. Some people find that a plan or outline will consist of eight to ten words only.
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Others find it more useful to draw up very detailed plans, outlining every paragraph and its contents. Again you will discover which method works for you as you go along.
How to write in plain English
Some students find it easier to think and plan the essay point by point before beginning to write, whilst others find that after some initial preparation, reading, organisation and thinking they can only develop their ideas through writing. Both these approaches take time, if the essays are to be done well. It should be stressed here that the first plan does not have to be binding and may change as the work begins and develops.
The main point here is that essays involve a certain amount of planning and preparation even before the actual writing begins. Having emphasised that essays are hard work and take time it should also be stressed that it can be very stimulating and rewarding to work through a number of ideas in depth and detail. Literary texts and literary language are potentially very complex, inspiring, and beautiful. The ideas and images often demand careful thought and attention. Computers are essential in terms of using the time you spend on an essay efficiently and productively.
As stated earlier, good essay writing demands time spent on every stage of the process: reading and research, making an outline, ordering and structuring your ideas, writing and changing various drafts, and final editing and presentation. With this in mind it cannot be stressed enough how important it is for you to learn word-processing skills and to make sure you have access to a computer. Use the university resources. Admittedly the space available is limited at times but this is no excuse not to learn the skills, if you do not already possess them, and to find out where there are available computer terminals.
Of course if you use university resources it is even more important to start your essay early in order to avoid the last minute rush as most students, not only from this department, search for terminals in a panic on the Friday before a Monday deadline. It is appreciated that students are very busy and do have a lot of work, but it is a mistake to claim, as some students have been heard, that they are too busy to learn word-processing skills. Ultimately word-processing will save you a lot of time. It is far easier to add and delete material, and to restructure and reorganise essays by moving material around, on a computer than if you are writing by hand.
Software has become really user-friendly; 'Word', for instance, will tell you what to do in explicit English or French, and typing skills can be learned whilst typing. Your essay will be the representation of an argument on a given subject or subjects. It will include only points which are relevant to the subject, so be careful to get rid of material that is not directly relevant. Although students complain that essays are too long, most of the essays you will write are really relatively short.
Part of the skill of writing is to write concisely and economically , without wasting material or 'padding' the work with irrelevant diversions and repetition. Once the points have been chosen they should be presented logically and coherently , so do not leap about from point to point. Each point generally will have some connection to the preceding one and the one to follow.
If you do leave one area of the essay to move into another, but intend later to go back to the point you have left and show, for example, how the points may be connected or related, then it can be useful to say so by 'signposting', e. After each draft of the essay check that each point is presented in a logical and coherent order. Read each draft carefully and critically. Is there a significant idea you have not included in the essay? Do you need to expand some of the points you have chosen to write about?
210 Responses to “10 Rules for Writing Numbers and Numerals”
Are some of the points, after due consideration, not really relevant? Have you been too long-winded or repetitive? Does your argument need to be clearer, and do the links between some of the main points need more emphasis? You should be asking yourself these questions throughout the whole process.
Rules for Writing Numbers in an Essay | Sciencing
A particularly distressing weakness in the past, but hopefully not the future, has been the absence of serious discussion of imagery and literary language. Some students have merely stated that the author uses imagery, illustrated this with an example, and then moved on to the next point on the list. If you discuss images, metaphors and other literary devices, then say how and why they are being used in the piece of fiction, and maybe if you think the imagery works or not.
If you do not say how and why an image is being used then don't mention it.
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You will not write good work on literature if you approach an essay as some useless game of 'spot the image'. These quotations can obviously add much to the texture and quality of your work, but they are often handled very badly by students. Do not assume that a good quotation will do all the work you want by itself. Poor essays are often merely a patchwork of quotations stitched together by the briefest of comments, and it is a mistake to leave quotations hanging in mid-air, as it were, without comment or explanation. Quotations need to be framed. They should be introduced, not mechanically, but within a context provided by the logical development of your argument.
See Example 1 at the end of this guide. This is often likely to be the case as there is really little point in including 'bland' quotations in your essay. Decades and Centuries Decades or centuries are usually spelled out, especially if the writing is formal. Incorrect: The library was built in the '50s.
bohemianjazzprophets.com/1904-the-best-cell.php Correct: The library was built in the fifties. If you are referring to a specific year e. Consistency Always strive for consistency, even if it overrides a previous rule. Style Guides Let's complicate things a bit, shall we? Conclusion Your ultimate authority will always be a style guide, but in the absence of one, following the rules outlined above will help you be consistent in your use of numbers in writing. Related Articles.