Don’t you dare…in a formal paper

Here’s a list my favorite teacher gave me back in high school. It’s compiled of things that should never be in a formal composition.

Don’t you dare…

  • Use a contraction (don’t, couldn’t, etc.)
  • Use “things” or “stuff”…be specific
  • Use “nice” or “some” – too vague, over used
  • Use “a lot” or worse – “alot”
  • Use “bunch”
  • Use slang
  • Use “this, that, those, these” as pronouns, only use them as adjective before a noun or pronoun
  • Put a comma before “because”
  • Use “different than” – correct usage is “different from”
  • Use “irregardless”- it’s a not real word, use regardless
  • Use “off of”
  • Use “plus” instead of “and”
  • Write in passive voice when your sentence works in active voice.
  • End a sentence with a preposition (to in, at, etc.)