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What You Should Know About Comma Splices

Comma splices are one of the most common grammar mistakes people make. You need to know how to fix comma splices if you want to submit consistently good papers. Comma splices are a frequent error students make in their papers. They can confuse the reader and make your writing more difficult to understand. The comma splice is just a form of run-on sentence. It occurs if more than one independent clause is combined with only a comma to connect them within the sentence. A comma is not considered enough to join independent clauses and requires the help of a coordinating conjunction. Anybody who writes should know how to find comma splices and correct them to ensure well-written text that the reader can easily understand.

How to Identify a Comma Splice

Comma splices are a confusing issue and even experienced writers can sometimes overlook them. Before you can learn how to identify run on sentences and comma splices you need to know what is an independent clause. The independent clause is simply a phrase that is able to stand on its own as a complete sentence. To be an independent clause a phrase most contain these three elements:

  • Subject: this is the person or thing that the sentence is about. It is what performs the action in a sentence. The subject will be a noun, a pronoun, or a noun phrase.
  • Predicate: the predicate is the action being performed in the sentence. It modifies the subject and will be a verb or verb phrase.
  • Express a full and complete thought: to be an independent phrase a complete thought or idea must be communicated so that the reader knows what the sentence is about.

It will also be necessary to know what coordinating conjunctions are when you check for comma splices. There are 7 coordinating conjunctions (for, but, and, or, nor, yet, so). If you have two or more phrases that each contain all 3 of the elements required of an independent clause joined in a single sentence using only a comma with no coordinating conjunction then that is a comma splice. If the independent clauses were combined with no punctuation or coordinating conjunction at all then it would be a fused sentence which is another type of run on. Now that you know what coordinating conjunctions and independent clauses are you have the ability to find comma splices:

  • Identify independent clauses in a sentence. To do this look for verb/noun combinations that express complete thoughts.
  • When you find more than one independent clause in a sentence separated only by a comma with no coordinating conjunction it is a comma splice.

Identifying comma splices can be perplexing to say the least. If you are having difficulty finding comma splices in your writing try our run on and comma splice checker to identify them. A comma splices online checker can detect all run on sentences in your paper within a matter of seconds. You won’t have to wonder is this sentence a comma splice when you use our tool. The comma splice checker online tool we offer will determine if a sentence is a run on quickly and efficiently so you can fix the mistake.

How to Correct a Comma Splice

After performing a comma splice check you can get to the task of correcting them. There are a number of different ways to fix a comma splice. The following are 7 tactics with examples for how to revise a comma splice sentence:

how to correct a comma splice
  • Use a period: turn each comma splice into 2 sentences by replacing the comma with a period. You will have to capitalize the first word in the second independent clause.
    1. Comma splice: “Karen has a temperature of 101, she probably shouldn’t go to work today.”
    2. Corrected: “Karen has a temperature of 101. She probably shouldn’t go to work today.”
  • Use a semi-colon: replace the comma with a semi-colon. It isn’t necessary to capitalize the first word in the second independent clause unless it is a proper noun.
    1. Comma splice: “Melissa is an excellent violinist, she had a solo in her school’s last concert.”
    2. Corrected: “Melissa is an excellent violinist; she had a solo in her school’s last concert.”
  • Add coordinating conjunction: by adding coordinating conjunction following the comma to correct the comma splice
    1. Comma splice: “George never opened a textbook all semester, he still passed all of his final exams.”
    2. Corrected: “George never opened a textbook all semester, but he still passed all of his final exams.”
  • Use subordinating conjunction to separate each of the independent clauses: replace the comma with subordinating conjunction to turn the second independent clause into a dependent clause.
    1. Comma splice: “The football game was canceled tonight, rain has flooded the field.”
    2. Corrected: “The football game was canceled tonight because rain has flooded the field.”
  • Use a colon: replace the comma with a colon. It isn’t necessary to capitalize the first word of the second independent clause unless it is a proper noun.
    1. Comma splice: “Kevin resolved the problem he had with his boss, he quit his job.”
    2. Corrected: “Kevin resolved the problem he had with his boss: he quit his job.”
  • Begin the sentence with subordinating conjunction: turn the first independent clause into a dependent clause by starting it with a subordinating conjunction. Leave the comma in place.
    1. Comma splice: “Alice eats a whole pizza every day at lunch, she never gains any weight.”
    2. Corrected: “Although Alice eats a whole pizza every day at lunch, she never gains any weight.”
  • Use a conjunctive adverb: use a conjunctive adverb with a semi-colon and a comma to separate the independent clauses. The order should be a semicolon, conjunctive adverb and comma.
    1. Comma splice: “Mike doesn’t like to exercise, he walks to work every day.”
    2. Corrected: “Mike doesn’t like to exercise; nevertheless, he walks to work every day.”

Many of the ways to correct comma splices are techniques for how to fix a fused sentence as well. If you are having difficulties correcting run on sentences comma splices and fragments you may want to consider using our fragment run on comma splice checker during the revision process.

Revise Effectively with Our Comma Splice Corrector

Editing sentence fragments and comma-splice sentences during the revision process can be done much more effectively using our comma splice fixer. First the run on and sentence fragment finder detects comma splices and other sentence errors. It then identifies them for you and recommends corrections that should be made.

Here are the types of sentence mistakes our corrector tool can help you with:

  • Spelling: finds and corrects any spelling mistakes
  • Grammar: identifies and corrects multiple grammar errors including run on sentences, sentence fragments, misplaced modifiers, noun/pronoun agreement, verb tense issues, subject/verb agreement and many others.
  • Punctuation: detects and corrects all types of punctuation errors
  • Tone: identifies text tone and recommends adjustments to set the right tone
  • Passive/active voice: identifies passive and active voice use and suggests adjustments if you want to change voice
  • Duplicate text: identifies text that is too similar to avoid plagiarism issues.
how to use comma splice checker online

Our online comma splice corrector is easy to use:

  • Copy and paste all of the text into the field provided
  • Click the button to start the analysis process
  • Receive your report which will identify comma splices and all other errors along with recommended corrections
  • Make the suggested corrections

The comma splice tool works on any type of paper and is both fast and accurate. It is also free to use. With all the functions it performs and the benefits it offers it is the best online grammar tool for editing and revising text effectively. 

Our comma splice editor is the best way how to fix comma splices and other errors in your paper so give it a try at the next available opportunity!

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