CATEGORY: Writing

WRITING: HOW TO USE GRAMMER CHECKERS

A grammar checker is a program which is used to detect and correct grammatical errors in a document and provide verification to it. These grammar checking programs are more commonly executed as a characteristic of a big program, for example, a word processor. However, grammar checkers can also be availed as a separate application which can be implemented within a program of your choice to verify and edit text.

During an essay writing, it is essential to use the processing in a natural language for the execution of a grammar checker. While studying about grammaticality in 1950, Chomsky has described the two factors on which a grammatical judgment of the speaker is based. These factors include:

1.  The linguistic competence of a speaker, which refers to the knowledge possessed by the speaker of his language. Linguistic competence also permits a speaker to differentiate a grammatically perfect sentence from an ungrammatical sentence by the use of instinctive introspection. For this very reason, this kind of judgments is known as introspective grammaticality judgments

2.   The framework as well as the context of a sentence in which it was first voiced.

According to Chomsky, it is not necessary for a grammatical string to have some meaning in it. He exemplified this by quoting his renowned sentence ‘Colourless green ideas sleep furiously’. Nevertheless, the irrational string can still be understood by the language speakers by natural modulation and the speakers are also able to call these strings to mind without facing many difficulties. These speakers are also believed to have intuitions related to grammaticality and these intuitions are usually based on their proficiency in a specific language.

Catt (1988) and (Catt and Hirst 1990) formed a model representing grammaticality that revolved around a computer operated program designed to diagnose automatic errors and correct the ungrammaticalities generated by the learners of the second language. Their program used a parser consisting of constraints which could be relaxed, selectively provided the failure of the first parsing attempt. Hence, the relaxed constraints would indicate the clear-cut location as well as the nature of ungrammaticality for a given parse. Following their program, the newer programs categorize the mistakes in the sentences made by the language learners as the errors in transformations, phase structures, verb subcategorization or morphology. Programs like Language tools also categorize these errors as the mistakes made by the language learners while translating their native language into the language they are currently learning.

Dozens of programs are available on the internet now a days. You type in “best grammar checker” on any search engine and a search full of thousands, self acclaimed best grammar checkers, pop out. Lets put one of these software under our test laboratory which seems Quiet cool, huh? We took a random software app.grammarly that has appeared on our screen which offers grammar check, spelling improvement, definition and synonym but right now we’re interested in accuracy of this software. So we put three test  as follow and here’s what we get:

Wow, look at the result from first two tests, it managed to detect errors and even explains the issue related to those errors. However, we’ve tried with a bit complicated task, “I and masum goes to school” (the correct variant would be “Masum and I go to school”). Pretty simple, but it failed and provides us with some different explanation. But anybody can fix this sentence with out any software help which raise a negative impact in our thought about these software – how can we trust such thing? So we try with another leading service, grammarbase, and we repeat same tests procedure:

But what a coincidence, the same failure with same sentence, even worse! it did not even give us any suggestion or grammatical error. Can we sum up the topic already and forget about the mentioned software? Don’t worry, there are other lots of software that can do similar job but not with 100% guarantee.

To conclude, a grammar checker can be used to produce a grammatically accurate document with a minimum level of mistakes. Grammar checkers can be termed as a writing aid or assignment experts for foreign languages which are being used by non-native people to proofread their document and to provide essay writing help. However, these grammar checkers are sometimes criticized for failing to point out errors and flagging the correct sentences as flawed during their help with assignment. Therefore, it is better for a person to polish skills in a language and not to rely on this software for proofreading.