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18 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

How to start a new line on Stack Exchange You type this into your computer: "What is this strange smell?" "The food _________" a) has burnt b) burnt c) was burning d) had ...
18 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Titles are for titles, and questions belong in your question. Please, don't ask a question like this one: There are four things wrong with this question – two are formatting issues, and two are "...
13 votes

What's the policy on using profanity in answers (where appropriate)?

There will always be a gray area where it's not clear whether the language is "appropriate". I personally believe that we shouldn't be too squeamish when we are educating, and that using ...
ColleenV's user avatar
  • 12k
11 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Avoid using a slash when asking about two versions For example, instead of asking, “Which is correct?": There was a zebra at/on the mouth of the river. It would be better to ask, “Which is ...
9 votes

Please, everyone ... details. Please!

For inspiration, here are some examples of questions that have good detail : An adjective for a woman showing lots of skin? Excessively figurative and wrong usage of a phrase What does "have a ...
8 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

How to properly make a list This post illustrates common mistakes and provides a proper example. For more information on basic lists, see Simple lists. For nesting, see Advanced lists: Nesting. In ...
8 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

How to ask a question based on a practice question you are struggling with Occasionally someone will be trying to figure out an answer to a practice question, and will stumble across the Stack ...
8 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Proper spacing around punctuation and the first-person pronoun Because this site helps learners improve their English, we appreciate when people format their questions properly. Here are a few things ...
8 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Answering questions Remember your audience when writing your answer. Use standard English, write in complete sentences, and punctuate and capitalize correctly so that learners will be able to more ...
6 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Posts with helpful information Please, everyone ... details. Please! This page includes tips on writing good questions on ELL. How to salvage/improve questions: a guide by example A thread that ...
6 votes

What's the policy on using profanity in answers (where appropriate)?

I don't see anything wrong with teaching profanity, but Put it in spoilers, as per ColleenV's suggestion Add an explanation that it is profanity and shouldn't be used in polite/professional circles/...
AndyT's user avatar
  • 2,133
5 votes

Alternative websites for proofreading

As said by @Dan Brown, proofreading "is a lot of work, not particularly rewarding, and only ever helps one single person." This means you will get poor support, because native speakers won't have much ...
Ooker's user avatar
  • 2,432
4 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Tips for Searching The help center has more detail on the How do I search? page. Limit your search to just questions by adding is:q to your search terms. You can use is:a to limit your search to ...
4 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Marking and Attributing Examples, Sources, and Other Quotes Users often quote text written by others in order to ask about the grammar or usage in such texts. In other cases, users will quote ...
4 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Asking questions Composing the question When you ask a question, don't skimp on the words! Take your time and write your question as thoroughly and as detailed as you can. In this case, less is not ...
4 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Formatting your posts These are some basic features to get you started. Note that this is intended to be a summary. Click the links for more details and features. Simple Blockquotes You can use the &...
3 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Using site features Linking related questions to a post If you add a link to another ELL question in a comment, that question will appear in the "Linked" section of the right sidebar on the ...
3 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Commenting and chatting Once you have 20 reputation, you can participate in chat. ELL's main chat room is Language Overflow. You can see all of the messages people in a chat room thought were ...
2 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Welcome to the site, we'd like to get to know you better. Please do create an account and edit your profile to tell us a bit about yourself. Your profile might include: Your level of English. Are you ...
2 votes

Contributor's Guide to English Language Learners

Editing, reviewing, flagging, and other community moderation activities If you see a comment that you believe violates our Code of Conduct, flag it. Other users can't see that you have flagged a ...
1 vote

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