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Syntax Training | Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

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December 20, 2016

Comments

Cathy Miller

Lynn, very nice, thorough review. :-) I added Grammarly's free version as a Firefox add-on. I always go with the free version to test it out.

For me, it gets very annoying online as I try to write and it keeps highlighting "errors." Yes, I do turn it off but it seems to turn back on every time I go back to Firefox. However, that could be me. ;-)

Like you, I use both Microsoft's grammar and spelling check and Grammarly. I agree, between the two, I think you get a nice result.

There is one odd thing I noticed online. I'm not sure if it's Wordpress or Grammarly. However, I did notice right after adding Grammarly, my posts did some wonky things (highly technical term) ;-)

For example, if I created a new paragraph in the middle of some content, it would repeat the same sentence in the original copy and in the new paragraph.

I do think Grammarly is worth a try. I'm not convinced enough to try the premium version. But, again, that's just me.

Jane Braynard Barr

Lynn, thank you for your smart tests and thoughtful review of both Microsoft's and Grammarly's text-checking performance. I have used both with mixed results and, like Cathy, have had occasional "wonky" results. I agree, however, that catching some errors is preferable to missing most errors.

My community college class ends this week, and I am eager to share your results with my writing students before they leave. I plan to offer information about this Business Writing feed and hope some of them will become new subscribers so that they can refresh their knowledge.

Thank you for your ongoing insights and interesting blogs. Your conversational style works well, and I always look forward to seeing Business Writing appear in my email.

Happy holidays to you and best wishes for exactly the kind of year you desire in 2017!

Marlene Braxton

Lynn, thank you for reviewing this wonderful tool! I have been using Grammarly for over a year. I don't know how I ever managed without it.

I am pursuing a Master's Degree in ministry--which is to say, I have a unique vocabulary. Still, Grammarly manages to catch many of my errors. Having said that, it's important that a writer knows the fundamentals of the craft: Grammarly misses significant mistakes.

I love the weekly report also: I, too, write 99 percent more than other Grammarly users (a stat that your post should change). I have a more unique vocabulary than 99 percent of users as well. Alas, my accuracy percentile is in the 80s. But, I am encouraged! One of the best features of Grammarly--both the tool and the blog--is that it provides explanations for grammatical usage.

There's hope for me yet!

Marlene

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello Cathy, Jane, and Marlene,

Thanks for your detailed comments. I appreciate hearing about your experience with Grammarly.

Cathy, thanks for mentioning the wonkiness. I believe I noticed the same thing--repeated text, that is--but I thought I might have copied and pasted rather than cut and pasted. Your experience suggests otherwise. My blog is hosted by Typepad, so this may be a problem across the web. I'll watch for it happening again and will open a trouble ticket with Grammarly if it does.

Jane, thanks for your good wishes. I am certain you are a wonderful example to your students, particularly in the way that you reach out and build relationships. I checked my email and realized I have a message from you I need to answer--from last summer! I apologize and will respond this morning.

Marlene, my fellow 99 percenter! I wonder how many who read this blog are also in our category. I agree that Grammarly's explanations are useful. Good luck with your program of studies!

Lynn

Emma Cameron

Actually, I've been using Grammarly and Hemingway Editor free versions. But after reading your review I'm definitely gonna pay for Grammarly. It is also great that it catches plagiarism because I've been using separate tool (http://www.paragraphchanger.com/) for this and copying and pasting took some time.
Thanks for your time, Lynn!

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Emma,

You are welcome. I am glad you will save time with Grammarly's plagiarism finder.

Lynn

lucia

I've been using Grammarly, and it's a very useful tool. I've written a recent review which can be found on my site.

ThadMcIlroy

With heavy advertising, Grammarly is becoming the best-known grammar checking software. You say you tested it against Word, but don't say which version. The latest Office 365 has a substantial revision to Word's grammar features: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Select-grammar-and-writing-style-options-in-Office-2016-ecd60e9f-6b2e-4070-b30c-42efa6cff55a

And what about Grammarly's many competitors, more than 20 of them. Do you know that Grammarly is truly the best?

Thanks for looking into this.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Thad,

Thanks for raising those points. I tested Grammarly against Office 10 and an earlier version. My goal was to find out whether Grammarly found additional errors and was worth downloading. People will have many versions of Word--not necessarily the latest--so I wanted to know whether it offered a helpful check against what I have now.

What Grammarly offers that Microsoft doesn't is a check of online communications like Twitter, Facebook, etc.

My goal was to test Grammarly, which, as you noted, is becoming the best-known grammar and spelling checker. I wanted to know whether I could stand behind it as a partner, and I found I could. If you would like to test its competitors, please do so, and give us a link to your results.

Again, thanks for commenting.

Lynn

ThadMcIlroy

Hi Lynn: Thanks for your thoughtful response.

I am at work developing a standard test that would be usable across products. I was surprised to find (perhaps I should not have been surprised) a book on this topic, "Automated Grammatical Error Detection for Language Learners, Second Edition" (www.morganclaypool.com/doi/abs/10.2200/S00562ED1V01Y201401HLT025). It's dense, though fascinating.

I'll let you know when I publish my results.
Best,
Thad

Poppy North

Thanks for the Article, I was thinking about a premium version of Grammarly.
Except Grammarly I use https://virtualwritingtutor.com/ and http://www.onlinecorrection.com/ I find one more checker http://www.grammarcheckeronline.info/ which discovered recently, looks like Grammarly. And here https://virtualwritingtutor.com/ I like punctuation.
http://www.grammarcheckeronline.info/ - this I will test today.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Poppy, thanks for these suggestions. I look forward to learning more about them.

Lynn

Steph

Thank you Lynn for your evaluation. I have found that Grammarly free is too limited. I use Grammarian Pro at http://linguisoft.com

Also, I've narrowed it down that there are really only four original grammar checkers on the web:

Grammarly- http://grammarly.com
Grammarian Pro - http://linguisoft.com
Ginger - http://gingersoftware.com
Languagetool http://languagetool.org

The others are some linked form of these and most are a linked form of Grammarly's partners/advertisements.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Steph,

Thanks so much for this information. I will look into Grammarian Pro and the others.

Lynn

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