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Notebook correction

I'm struggling between two concepts while I'm correcting a notebook. Does correction includes rephrasing, or just correcting grammars mistakes. Sometimes, it's very difficult to rephrase some sentence. In that case, if you think rephrasing is important do you consider neglecting as an option, or do you not contribute at all?

Feb 23, 2018 10:01 AM
Comments · 7

That’s really a crucial question. I would say that if you realize that the author of the post is a beginner, just correct the main mistakes. If he is writing at a better level you can change the words and suggest more appropriate vocabulary. 

Anyway Mohammed your contributions are always welcome in the notebook section.

February 23, 2018

I wish i had more colours... for exmpale some of my 'green' corrections can be a pure desire to share a synonym, because it si useful. But some are because of the original phrase being, perhaps, not quite what I would use in this situation/ But I think, more of them would confuse the reader.

Last time I wanted to correct someone (I didn't),  the Russian was advanced and complex. The author was fluent and has read a lot.
But mistakes were really numerous. Say, 7 red marks per a line. So I thought about first making a correction without rephrasing.... So that misspelings, wrong cases etc. were clearly seen (mostly red, some blue).

Then copy this 'cleaned' text, and add another correction, where I rephrase things (green, blue.... and even some red).

THis was exactly tthe situation where I treated "mistakes that need rephrasing" and "mistakes that don't need it" differently. It was because the latter were so many, that marking  both at once would turn text into mess.

February 24, 2018

Mohammed, you speak of difficulty of rephrasing.
I made corrections because I enjoy the process, because I learned A LOT (really) of new things about Russian from foreigners mistakes (from thinking "why is it unnatural?"). So this difficulty was the most attractive part to me.

But in Russian notebooks there are always some 4 corrections, and one is normally good.

I think, if in Arabic the situation is worse, correction without rephrasing is better than nothing:)

"requires rephrasing the whole sentence not just one word to be suitable with Arabic language logic"
I think this situation has to do with Arabiuc grammar too sometimes. Even if withing Arabic linguistic tradition it is coalled differently (is it?). Other times it is just abour Arabic usage but still can be very important. It is a mistake too.

I normally mark correctionw ith colour:
red for orthographic mistakes, for simpler/more obvious grammatical mistakes, for the most important mistakes.
Orthography, is, actually less important part, it comes with practice:) But it is too obvious.
blue for less important and at the same time more subtle errors. Also for stylistical errors.
green for suggestions. When I want to introduce a Russian construction the author is anaware about, but the original sentence is nice.

February 24, 2018

I think that's what comments are for...

The main purpose why many people learn languages is to communicate with others. So the first correction should make the text communicative (and also grammatically and orthographically correct). When the notepad entry is correct and gives clear idea what is the person writing about - it's enough for the beginner.

Another thing is that you don't want this person to sound weird, like someone from past epoque or from very distant land (even if his land is very distant indeed). So you may write him comments like 'It was easy to understand but we (usually / nowadays / in everyday life) use other expressions, so it's better to write like that: ....'
Of course you need more time to give so detailed information.

On the other hand (speaking as a non-native speaker who occasionally writes comments in English discussions) I think it would be good to have a possibility of receiving such 'side comments' (similar to these in notebook) with correction from native speakers. Sometimes they post corrections as a comment in discussion, but it happens to make the discussion unclear (the corrective comments are mixed together with comments related to the discussion topic, and sometimest we have two or more parallel discussions in one thread). Maybe Italki people could implement such feature in discussions too.

February 23, 2018
Actually the grammar correction is more important in my opinion but rephrasing is truly necessary to use the words which is closer to what you would like to say. Oftentimes expressing needs accurate words to make the sentence clearer.
February 23, 2018
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Language Skills
Arabic, Arabic (Maghrebi), English, Turkish
Learning Language