English: skills for learning
English: skills for learning

This free course is available to start right now. Review the full course description and key learning outcomes and create an account and enrol if you want a free statement of participation.

Free course

English: skills for learning

Week 8: Structuring sentences and word groups


As you have seen in previous weeks, to express their ideas clearly, academic writers use language in a structured way. So far, you have looked at the overall structure of academic and formal texts and, in particular, essays. You have seen that these texts are organised in paragraphs and that paragraphs are composed of sentences.

This week you will focus on the way writers communicate their ideas through sentences and smaller units of language called word groups. You will also learn how punctuation is used to help writers to organise sentences and increase their clarity.

Download this video clip.Video player: swe_1_wk8_640_hq.mp4
Skip transcript


Congratulations, you’ve made it to Week 8.

During the past seven weeks you focused on the structure of contexts and paragraphs. During this final week you focus on sentences. Learning how to structure sentences is very important because it allows you to express your ideas more clearly.

You will start by looking at the structure of the two main components of a sentence, noun groups and verb groups. Then you will learn how to structure simple compound and complex sentences.

At the end of this week you will be able to do a second and final quiz that will allow you to gain your badge. And then you will be all set to get on with your academic writing.

End transcript
Copy this transcript to the clipboard
Print this transcript
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

By the end of this week, you will be able to:

  • distinguish between units of language
  • use noun and verb groups
  • structure sentences
  • use punctuation.

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has nearly 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus