US Top Ten Editing



Quick Tip 5: ”a”和”the” 的使用

This time we will talk about the words “a” and “the”. They are very simple words that are used in similar places, but to make your writing sound professional it is important to not confuse them.

The general rule is this: Use “the” when the exact thing is already known to the reader or there is only one thing you could be talking about. Otherwise you should use “a”.

I’ll go through some examples. In each pair of examples, one will use “the” and the other will use “a”.

Here is the first pair:

  1. “There was no support from a commercial entity for this study.”
  2. “The commercial entity that supported this study can be found in the notes.”

Here is the next pair of examples:

  1. “This did not happen with the control group.”
  2. “A control group was not used in this study.”