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Welcome to this week's FREE English lesson on the Web's best site for ESL students and teachers...

In English, we often add words and phrases at the beginning of sentences to introduce a new idea or additional idea.  Here are 5 examples of those words/phrases:

In spite of In addition, On the other hand,
Although Because of

The above phrases indicate either “same direction” or “change direction.”  In other words, the information that comes after these phrases is either continuing the previous idea or is adding information different from the previous idea.  Take this quiz, and then see the answers and explanations below.  Enjoy!

1.  It looks like they are going to pass the class, ___________ not studying.

A. On the other hand,    B.  In addition,   C.  Although   D. Because of  E. In spite of

2. ___________ his excellent resume, he was able to get a dozen job interviews.

A. On the other hand,    B.  In addition,   C.  Although   D. Because of    E. In spite of

3. Jackie loves to visit museums.  _______________ he loves reading about them.

A. On the other hand,    B.  In addition,   C.  Although   D. Because of    E. In spite of

4. My brother is very tall.  ________________ I am kind of short.

A. On the other hand,    B.  In addition,   C.  Although   D. Because of    E. In spite of

5.  ________________ Tony worked very hard this summer, he still did not have enough money to travel to Europe.

A. On the other hand,    B.  In addition,   C.  Although   D. Because of    E. In spite of

 

 

1. E.  Here we use "in spite of" because this phrase indicates a change of direction in what the listener expects.  When people don't study, you expect them NOT to pass the class.  The people in this sentence did NOT study.  However, they WILL pass the class.  "In spite of" is followed by a noun or gerund and NOT a complete sentence.  

"In spite of I didn't study, I will pass" is INCORRECT.  

"In spite of not studying, I will pass" is CORRECT.

 

2. . D.  "Because of" and "in spite of" are very similar.  "In spite of" is used when the listener hears something that he/she doesn't expect.  "Because of" is used when the listener hears something that he expects.  When a person has a great résumé, you expect that they will get some job interviews.  Like "in spite of," "because of"  is followed by a noun or gerund and NOT a complete sentence.

"Because of she wrote a great résumé, she got lots of job interviews" is INCORRECT.

"Because of her great résumé, she got lots of job interviews" is CORRECT.

3. B. "Jackie loves to visit museums.  In addition,  he loves reading about them."  Here, we are just adding information.  It is the same direction.  Jackie loves A and B.
4. A. The phrase "on the other hand" is the opposite of "in addition."  We are completely changing direction.  In the sentence "my brother is very tall.  ________________ I am kind of short" we are first talking about my tall brother.  Afterwards, we discuss how short I am.

 5. C.  "Although" has virtually the same meaning as "in spite of," but "although" IS followed by a complete sentence (remember "in spite of" is NOT followed by a complete sentence). Compare the following to number 1 above:

"Although I didn't study, I will pass" is CORRECT

"Although not studying, I will pass" is INCORRECT.

 

 

 

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