The problem today in community colleges—and even in colleges and universities is that the professors all assume that their students know the rules of grammar, but deep down in their hearts, teachers know the students do not have these skills!
According to Jamie Miller in “A Foreigner Teaching in America,” (The Chronicle of Higher Education, July 14, 2014): “There can be no obscuring the fact that the U.S. high school system is passing the buck on the development of basic grammar, punctuation, and writing skills.”
This book was a wonderful resource in college, and I continue to use many of these helpful tips.
The best part is that I won't forget any of these grammar lessons, thanks to all the catchy memory sentences.
In my four years at SMU, numerous professors commented again and again on the lack of grammar errors in my essays and reports. Now, in my second year of work at the JCPenny Home Office, managers have rated me “Well above expectation” in my writing and grammar skills. I have kept my old, beat-up Clamdigging book at my side for the last eight years, and I can assure you that it will remain a constant reference for any and all future writing.
Remembering the rules of Clamdigging throughout my college career was a life saver. The rules were catchy and easy to remember. I know before Clamdigging I was the worst at using and misusing punctuation. The way the book is set up is just so easy and fun.
I didn't realize just how valuable the "Guide to Professional Clamdigging" was until I started teaching creative writing to college students and saw their grammar. I thought surely everyone knew how to punctuate dialog, when to use semi-colons, etc. Not so. Not by a longshot. These weren't dumb kids, but their grammar was abysmal. Thank goodness for "Clamdigging" or I probably would have been in the same situation.
Throughout college and into the seminary I found myself referring to the Guide to Professional Clamdigging to make sure that my grammar was up to snuff. It continues to serve me as a trusted resource.
Clamdigging gave me a leg up on other journalism students at the University of Missouri. Knowing how to use proper grammar is essential when going into journalism and Clamdigging was a big part of that.