Friday, December 13, 2013

Shannon McCabe - The Importance of the English Language

 For a final exam this semester, assigned for my ENG 321: The Structure of the English Language course, I was asked to write an essay covering why studying the structures of English was significant to my life. These basic structures, which most of us learned in Kindergarten, are used on a daily basis without most of us even taking notice to them. Throughout the course, we covered the basics of the noun phrase, the verb phrase, the adverb phrase, the adjective phrase, and the prepositional phrase. We also studied morphemes and phonemes and how these particular sounds and words contribute to our overall understanding of these structures. Not only is this knowledge used for various forms of verbal and written communication, but it is also information that I will use with me for my future profession. Being an English and a Creative Writing major, I encounter these fundamental structures day in and day out. With my degrees I plan to obtain a job at a publishing firm as an Editorial Director.  In order to edit manuscripts efficiently and send out necessary professional documents, it is necessary for me to understand the structures of English. The syntax of English establishes how a particular communication can be interpreted. Each of the phrases mentioned above can be arranged and compiled into various ways throughout particular sentences in order for various interpretations.

When I first took this class, I thought that it was going to be an abundance of insignificant information that I already had a solid grasp on from previous courses in English, however, I was proven wrong as the semester continued. This class spent allocated time on each phrase, in order for the class to fully grasp the importance that each structure provides to a sentence. Every day of class, someone would write a simplistic or complex sentence on the board and the class would construct a syntax tree that expressed each structure the sentence formulated. Completing these exercises allowed me to notice these structures more effectively and how the slightest change or rearrangement can change the entire meaning of the sentence at hand. Using these obtained skills for my editorial profession will allow me to become more open-minded and observant to the manuscripts that I’ll be presented with on a daily basis. This class takes the English language beyond just the fundamentals of grammar and pronunciation, and delves deeper into the arrangement of words and how humans use these aspects of communication to create meaning and purpose.