Pronoun antecedent agreement
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Pronoun Antecedent Agreement. What is a Pronoun?. A pronoun is a substitute for a noun. It refers to a person, place, thing, feeling, or quality but does not refer to it by its name.

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What is a pronoun
What is a Pronoun?

  • A pronoun is a substitute for a noun.

  • It refers to a person, place, thing, feeling, or quality but does not refer to it by its name.

    • Mrs. Gessel gives too much homework. John wishes John could talk to Mrs. Gessel about the pressure John feels. John hates Mrs. Gessel’s class.

    • Mrs. Gessel gives too much homework. I wish I could talk to her about the pressure I feel. I hate her class.


What is an antecedent
What is an Antecedent?

  • An antecedent is the word, phrase, or clause to which a pronoun refers, understood by the context.

    • Mrs. Gessel gives too much homework. I wish I could talk to her about the pressure I feel. I hate her class.


Agreement
Agreement

  • A pronoun must agree with its antecedent in three ways:

    • Personrefers to first, second, or third person.

    • Number distinguishes between singular and plural.

    • Gender distinguishes masculine or feminine.


Steps for determining antecedent agreement
Steps for Determining Antecedent Agreement

  • Identify the pronoun.

  • Decide to whom or to what this pronoun refers or what it replaces--the antecedent.

  • Identify the person, gender, and number of the referenced pronoun.

  • Determine if the person, gender, and number are the same for the pronoun and the antecedent.

    • If they are, you have agreement.

    • If they are not the same, you have a correction to make.


For example
For Example:

  • Diversity training is a positive experience if it is well planned.

  • The e-mail that we received from an employee named Chris explained the problem that he or she wanted us to solve.

  • New York and New Jersey allow their state employees ten holidays a year.

  • Neither Teresa nor her assistants were aware of their negative attitudes.



Rule 1
Rule #1

1.  A phrase or clause between the subject and verb does not change the number of the antecedent:

  • The can of lima beans sits on its shelf.


Rule 2 singular indefinite pronoun antecedents take singular pronouns
Rule #2: Singular indefinite pronoun antecedents take singular pronouns.

  • Indefinite Pronoun Antecedents


Rule 2 plural indefinite pronoun antecedents require plural referents
Rule #2: Plural indefinite pronoun antecedents require plural referents.

Always Plural

Singular or Plural

all more none

any most some

Indefinite Pronoun Antecedents

both others

few several

many


Examples
Examples:

  • Each of the clerks does a good deal of work around his or her office.

  • Both do a good job in their office



Rule 3
Rule #3 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Compound subjects joined by andalways take a pluralreferent.

    • Jones and Smith made their presentation.


Rule 4
Rule #4 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • With compound subjects joined byor/nor, the referent pronoun agrees with the antecedent closer to the pronoun.

    • Neither the directornor the actors did their jobs.

    • Neither the actorsnor the director did his or her job.

      • Example #1, with the plural antecedent closer to the pronoun, creates a smoother sentence than example #2, which forces the use of the singular "his or her."  


Rule 5
Rule #5 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Collective Nouns may be singular or plural, depending on meaning.  

    • Family, group, jury, crowd, team, etc.

  • Examples:

    • The jury read its verdict.

      • The jury is acting as one unit; therefore, the referent pronoun is singular.

    • The jury gave their individual opinions.

      • The jury members are acting as twelve individuals; therefore, the referent pronoun is plural.


Rule 6
Rule #6 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Titles of single entities take a singular referent.

    • Books, organizations, countries, etc.

    • The Grapes of Wrath made its characters seem real.

    • The United States cherishes its democracy.


Rule 7
Rule #7 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Plural form subjects with a singular meaning take a singular referent. 

    • News, measles, mumps, physics, etc.

    • The news has lost much of its sting.


Rule 8
Rule #8 prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Everyor Many a before a noun or a series of nouns requires a singular referent.

    • Every cow, pig, and horse had lost its life in the fire.

    • Many a girl wishes she could dance.


Rule 9 the number of vs a number of before a subject
Rule #9: prepositional phrase may be either singular or pluralThenumber ofvsAnumber of before a subject:

  • The number of is singular.

    • The number of volunteers increases its ranks daily.

  • A number of is plural.

    • A number of volunteers are offering their help.


Let s practice
Let’s Practice!! prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural


1. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • One of the students must give their oral report tomorrow.

  • One of the students must give his oral report tomorrow.


2. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Everybody was hoping to have his lottery number picked.

  • Everybody was hoping to have their lottery number picked.


3. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • If anyone doesn't like the music I'm playing, they can go somewhere else.

  • If anyone doesn't like the music I'm playing, he or she can go somewhere else.


4. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Each member of the committee must submit their response in writing.

  • Each member of the committee must submit his response in writing.


5. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Neither of the girls knew that her teacher had seen the police report.

  • Neither of the girls knew that their teacher had seen the police report.


6. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Either of the boys may take his seat in the front of the room.

  • Either of the boys may take their seat in the front of the room.


7. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • The group hasits meeting here.

  • The group has their meeting here.

  • The group has it’s meeting here.


8. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • The senior class wore its rings proudly.

  • The senior class wore their rings proudly.

  • The senior class wore his or her rings proudly.


9. prepositional phrase may be either singular or plural

  • Children never realize how loud he or she can be.

  • Children never realize how loud they can be.


10 select all the correct sentences
10. Select prepositional phrase may be either singular or pluralall the correct sentences.

  • One of my friends must bring their tapes to the party.

  • Everyone should take his work seriously.

  • Since it was cold and windy, the boys had to wear his caps.

  • Sara and Jen had to finish their homework before they could go to the movies.

  • In the first-day confusion, neither of the teachers could find his classroom.


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