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Below is my sentence. I'm pretty sure the word "knowing" is a gerund, but please correct me if I'm wrong. I assumed that the only subject is "knowing" and that the linking verb should be "is", but grammarly flagged it. Is the sentence correct? Is grammarly wrong?

"I have found that knowing how to effectively manage and organize paperwork, requests, and deadlines is the only way in which to get the job done effectively."

Is grammarly reading the sentence like this?: "I have found that knowing how to effectively manage and organize paperwork, knowing how to effectively manage and organize requests, and knowing how to effectively manage and organize deadlines are the only ways in which to get the job done effectively." It seems like in this sentence, it clearly needs "are" for a linking verb (even though it's obviously a cumbersome sentence that nobody would write).

Is my original sentence correct???

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I have found that [knowing how to effectively manage and organize paperwork, requests, and deadlines] is the only way in which to get the job done effectively.

It's fine with singular "is". The reason is that non-finite clause subjects take singular verb agreement. Here, the large subordinate that- clause (in bold) functioning as complement to the verb "found" has the non-finite knowing clause (in brackets) as subject.

  • Thank you so much for answering! So now I have another question based on your answer. If I have several non-finite clauses, would that make the verb plural? For instance: "I have found that knowing how to read, practicing how to write, and learning how to form proper sentences are the only ways to do well in school." Or would that entire clause be considered singular? – Staci K Jun 25 '16 at 0:36
  • Where there's a coordination of non-finite clauses as in your example, the verb would normally be plural. – BillJ Jun 25 '16 at 17:13

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