My dad sent me a link to this article today: “7 Grammar and Spelling Errors That Make You Look Dumb.” I highly recommend it if (a) you’re one of those people who cannot keep “your” and “you’re” straight, or (b) you’re one of those people who can keep “you’re” and “your” straight, and it drives you crazy that your friends, students, coworkers, etc. can’t. Within the article, there’s a link to Grammar Girl, which is also an excellent resource. Another one of my favorites is The Oatmeal, which delivers grammar lessons via comics (usually including dinosaurs or dolphins or something else amusing and lighthearted, yet memorable). Finally, there’s a great Hyperbole and a Half comic on the non-word “alot.”
Like it or not, grammar matters. I try to be non-judgmental and open-minded about a lot of things, but I absolutely judge based on grammar and spelling, and these resources allow me to admit that and justify it a little bit. In the grand scheme of things, is grammar important? Well, as the first article says, yes: potential employers and hiring committees are going to judge also. Should it be important is another question, but for now, it is. Everyone who has to write a cover letter or put together a resume is probably going to be judged on their grammar. Written communication is important – as is attention to detail, especially if you’re applying for a job. So if you’re in category (a), take advantage of the opportunity to learn from comics.
(c) The Oatmeal