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Are both these sentences grammatically accurate and can they be used interchangeably?

  1. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume other species sense the environment
    we do in the same manner.

  2. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume other species sense the environment
    in the same manner we do.

I used several editing web sites and the results were varied.

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    What do you mean that several web site produced varied results? What did they say? Did they say that one or the other had any sort of problem, and if so, what was their complaint?
    – tchrist
    Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 20:25
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    Sorry for not putting it clearly. One editing site says it's grammatically correct to use the first sentence, and a couple of others says it's wrong to use the first one.
    – nina
    Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 20:54
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    The first one's ungrammatical, all right; the second one's not. In the first one, in the same manner is separated from its antecedent phrase sense the environment by the string we do, which is in the wrong place. The second one has it in the right place, as a reduced relative modifying manner. Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 21:10
  • Why do you think that they might be used interchangeably? It would be useful if you described your explanation of the structure of each sentence as well as you're able (in particular, what "in the same manner" describes). Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 21:13
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    @Araucaria-Nothereanymore. It might fly as "sense the same environment that we do in the same manner that we do" but the second one is transparent. Commented May 1, 2023 at 0:08

1 Answer 1

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Your sentences are both perfectly grammatical, but they don’t mean the same thing (and one of them is likely odd).

If you put back the “zero thats” (one from a that-clause and the other from a relative clause), I think you can see the difference in meaning:

  1. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume [that] other species sense the environment [that] we do in the same manner.

  2. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume [that] other species sense the environment in the same manner [that] we do.

Here’s a paraphrasing:

  1. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume that other species sense the human environment in the same manner that humans do.

  2. It is dangerous for ecologists to assume that other species sense the environment (that humans and other species share) in the same manner that humans do.

I think sentence 2 reflects your intended communication.

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