PS level of formality

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PS level of formality

Postby honeybadger12 » Tue Aug 28, 2012 12:38 pm

Wondering about how formal the PS should be, eg for the following:

"you" vs. "one"
starting sentences with And/But

If these have already been answered, please post the link. Thanks!

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Re: PS level of formality

Postby 06102016 » Tue Aug 28, 2012 12:42 pm


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Re: PS level of formality

Postby iMisto » Tue Aug 28, 2012 1:01 pm

I tend to think formal PS sound a bit stuffy...

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Re: PS level of formality

Postby bp shinners » Tue Aug 28, 2012 9:25 pm

It depends on the tone you're taking, but it should usually be less formal than an academic paper. You can definitely use contractions, but make sure everything you do is grammatically correct.

So parentheses and dashes are fine as long as they're used properly. I would never use 'one' instead of 'you', but I'd probably rephrase the sentence to avoid the issue altogether. I almost always use contractions, as otherwise it reads as too formal and distances the reader from you (that's bad in the personal statement).

As to starting a sentence with And/But, you can get away with it, but you need to make sure that you demonstrate a mastery of grammar otherwise. When you bend a rule a bit, you have to let the person reading that you know you're bending it (which makes it acceptable - you're using it for effect rather than out of ignorance); you do that by following the rules everywhere else.

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