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Questions tagged [formality]

This tag is for questions about formal (versus informal) words and usage. The question must identify a particular concern about the formality of the word or phrase at issue, and specify the target context or audience.

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1answer
25 views

“first time” as an adverb meaning “for the first time”

Can first time be used as an adverb meaning "for the first time", e.g. when I met him first time (Confession Tapes, third episode, 02:40)
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0answers
87 views

I want to change these informal sentences to formal but didn't get any clu can anyone help me plz? [closed]

Ajmal needs to think about his decision. Sana can get in touch with her mother if she likes. They cannot dare go against him. Oscar started freaking out about the test. When the cops arrived, the ...
0
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1answer
26 views

The usage of Formal Words in writing - interested [closed]

I was writing a letter and I wonder whether the usage of interested in a formal letter could be considered as a formal word. Also if there are synonyms which are more appropriate to use in formal ...
0
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1answer
28 views

Perhaps or Maybe or I Guess/Think - which one is correct in formal (office) email writing

Background: Boss: Did you get that X thing done? Me: Yes, thats done. Boss: No thats not done, I am still getting calls from people for X? Me: Oh, Perhaps/Maybe/I guess/I think you ...
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0answers
76 views

'May I know…' if 'May I know when this group was established?' sounds natural? May I know other ways to ask this question? [migrated]

May I know when this group was established? Hello. I learned in a text that we can say 'May I know...?' in formal situations. But an American teacher of English told me it sounded unnatural. He said '...
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1answer
29 views

in regards to/regarding and of/from - Grammar in formal email [duplicate]

I've been waiting for an email for several days and haven't heard of the other person yet. He emailed me, I answered him but I haven't heard back yet. I wish to send a message to remind him to answer ...
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2answers
89 views

Which pronoun should be used after the word ‘like’? [closed]

For example, which of the following is considered correct?: Don't be like him Don't be like he is There are other examples I can't think of right now where people use him instead of ...
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2answers
85 views

Is the term “fleshed out” considered informal?

In my most recent essay, I had used the term "fleshed out" but my teacher had circled it. I called her over to ask why it was circled and she said that "Flushed out is the correct term to use." I ...
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1answer
58 views

How do we end a Complain letter? [closed]

Do I end a Complain letter of complaint with 'Yours sincerely' or 'Yours truly' or 'Yours faithfully'? Or something else?
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2answers
43 views

When to use mid-sentence commas when adding a formal name

Where is it appropriate to insert a comma when putting a persons name in the middle of a sentence, such as when writing an email or letter. Is it really before AND after? Examples: Thank you for ...
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1answer
50 views

Can “ap­pre­ci­ate” be used in this way?

(I am not a na­tive speaker.) I just got an email re­gard­ing a failed or­der that used the fol­low­ing sen­tence: I ap­pre­ci­ate that this will not be what you wanted to hear and for that I apol­...
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2answers
86 views

No “are” in movies sometimes?

I often hear sentences in movies like "Fight back, you coward!", "You filthy, dirty hippy", etc. And I had thought it sounded like this only to me but when I found the subtitles for those movies, I ...
2
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1answer
44 views

What is the correct usage of the tilde symbol with negative numbers? [closed]

The tilde symbol (~) is used in academic texts in place of about or approximately. Generally, it is placed immediately before the number (eg. AUD ~2.4 million), which works for positive numbers, ...
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1answer
97 views

If I am writing a formal letter, should I use “can't,” “cannot,” or “can not?”

This question is asking about school reports, letters to members of Congress, apology letters, etc.
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1answer
22 views

It 's nothing you do casually or natively

I have no idea what does "It 's nothing you do casually or natively" mean.Please anyone explain.What is the exact meaning of this sentence??
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1answer
32 views

What is the meaning of I wasn't living with heart at that time [closed]

Please explain the meaning of "I wasn't living with heart at that time"
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2answers
60 views

A formal word between 'frequently' and 'rarely'

Rarely: X rarely goes to Y Frequently: X frequently goes to Y What would be a word in between the two? A formal word for 'sometimes' maybe? Context: Atheists sometimes appeal to Nietzsche'...
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2answers
24 views

“like it like you” vs “like it, like you”

My husband and I have discussed for an hour over this and we still haven’t agreed. Please help! Do these two sentences have different meanings? (A) She doesn’t like it like you. (B) She doesn’...
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0answers
21 views

Is using “Sirs” when addressing a group of men incorrect? [duplicate]

When I was in the Army, I was taught that you addressed an individual officer as "Sir" or "Ma'am". You address groups of officers as "Gentlemen" or "Ladies", not "Sirs" or "Ma'ams". Example: ...
1
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1answer
94 views

How to include a question in a declarative sentence?

Over the years I have gotten used to the following sentences formation: I know that this is the website but how do I specify for what I am paying? Instead of: I know that this is the website ...
0
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1answer
118 views

Which is correct: “While studying, I ran my own business” or “While studying, I was running my own business”?

While studying, I ran my own business for almost two years. This sounds natural to me, but my friend claims that the continuous form ("I was running") is gramatically correct. Which is it? PS. In ...
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0answers
22 views

using ''require'' or synonyms in a cover letter

I have a doubt about the correct use of the verb to require and its synonyms in a cover letter. My doubt is: require sounds almost like it's something that you are forced to do (therefore expresses a ...
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2answers
328 views

which group I belong to vs to which group I belong [duplicate]

I don't know which group I belong to. I don't know to which group I belong. Which one of the sentences is true? Note: An answer was given to this question when it still read "I don't know (to) ...
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1answer
219 views

Synonym for “sure” and “yes please”

When somebody suggests me something (maybe offering me something, or suggesting me for a proposal/plan), and I would like to show my agreement/approval for that. Instead of just saying "sure" or "yes ...
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votes
2answers
62 views

How to say “dulcet” in verbal English (or slang)?

For example, if somebody sitting next to me hummed or sang a song and I want to tell him that his song is dulcet, in a polite but informal manner (or even slang). How can I express that? Should I ...
2
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2answers
131 views

How informal is “mind blowing”?

I'm writing a statement letter (SOP for graduate school), and I wanted to use "mind-blowing" in a less-formal segment of my letter. Is that too informal for a personal statement or cover letter, or is ...
1
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1answer
69 views

''Should you have decided'' Inversion

In an email I received from my university, the following is stated: ''Should you have decided to do the assignment, please send us an email.'' My question is whether the inversion and usage of should ...
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3answers
39 views

How to properly use gear up?

Does the following sentence seem natural to native English speakers? "I have been gearing up for a career in XXX since then." Also, does this sound formal? If not, what do you recommend instead? ...
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4answers
112 views

How to say “and more!” in a more professional sense

We are in the process of writing an ad that details our curriculum, and the ad goes something like this - "...fall prevention, medical emergencies, AND MORE!" I keep thinking there has to be a better ...
1
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3answers
135 views

Can the idiom “It is high time” be used in formal writing? [closed]

Recently I saw "it is hightime + subj. + past verb + ..." idiom. Like "It's high time we made some changes around here.". I want to know if it is a good phrase to start a formal writing (i.e. ielts ...
0
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1answer
59 views

Can we use the phrase “go for it” in formal essay [closed]

Good evening everybody, Can I use "go for it" as a way to express choosing something in a formal essay, a report to be more precise. Further education took the lead in the number of students ...
0
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1answer
97 views

Which one is more appropriate: To learn more about or For more information

When sending a formal email, which of the following sentences is more appropriate to use: To learn more information, please visit helloworld.com. For more information, please visit helloworld....
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2answers
105 views

Is the word “selfie” formal enough to be used in official documents?

I was asked to edit a translation and I noticed that the original English sentence is: Selfie (only) - You will only need to upload a selfie photo. The context is the process of uploading ...
1
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1answer
58 views

On The Formality Of The Usage Of The Word “Their”

Is using "their" in a phrase "Everyone has their reasons for doing something" informal? This reason I'm asking this is because a test book I'm using claims that using their in the situation above is ...
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2answers
2k views

Signing off an email with 'on behalf of'? [closed]

I am writing an email as one of the committee members of a voluntary organization. Is this an appropriate way to sign off an informal email whose audience is professionals? Regards, On behalf of <...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Is using 'then' after 'if', considered informal English?

A colleague mentioned that while doing exams (in China) for academic English, using the word 'then' after an 'if' was marked as incorrect. For example, "If it is raining then I will need my umbrella" ...
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4answers
106 views

Archaic phrase similar to “not give a damn”

I'm looking for a phrase that would mean I don't give a damn about it but could be used by a girl in the 1930s. It needs it to be very informal but not vulgar.
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4answers
94 views

Can “so on” and “vice versa” mean the same?

The example sentence from a Mathematics book: 0 is predecessor of 1 and 1 is successor of 0. Similarly 1 predecessor of 2 and 2 is successor of 1 and so on. I thought that we can use" vice versa" ...
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1answer
62 views

We're square/even/quits in formal speech

What are the differences between: be square, be even and be quits? Are they acceptable to use in formal speech? If they not, what should I use instead?
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1answer
42 views

A source for learning how to speak or write formaly? [closed]

and thanks for helping me. I would like to know if there is a source so I can learn how to speak and write formally, mostly for these topics: -Sending a formal email to anyone or an organization or a ...
0
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3answers
226 views

Why is there no formal version of “you”? How does one get around it? [duplicate]

Many languages, such as German (and Spanish), have "Sie" (you-formal) as a formal version of you. One can say use "Mr." and "Mrs.", but in a thank-you note / email, there is no formal word for English ...
3
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2answers
159 views

Use of encl. at the bottom of a cover letter where the body of the text already explains this

I am submitting a grant request. The package will include four copies of the grant request, an executive summary, and a cover letter. The cover letter is very short and says in part "I have included ...
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0answers
44 views

When to insert the word “professor” in conversation? [closed]

What is the proper use of "professor" in a formal conversation with a professor? Assuming that this person is really strict on titles, do I have to add "professor" in every sentence? Does it have to ...
18
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3answers
2k views

Does the word candidate have to refer to a person?

I was helping a friend create a motivational letter for a scholarship and I wrote a sentence in the lines of: "(...), which would qualify my project as a candidate for the Program". We changed this ...
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5answers
567 views

Difference between “touching”, “about” and “concerning” as a preposition

The Macmillan Dictionary regard touching as a formal preposition, and other dictionaries nearly related the prepositions concerning, about, touching as synonyms. So is it fine to use all of three ...
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1answer
70 views

Should I use the possessive apostrophe or an attribute noun on a business card?

I have designed some stationary items (such as letterhead and business card) for a website/brand (XYZ.Com for instance), and I need help to choose the correct sentence among those below: The ...
2
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2answers
201 views

Difference between the closely related prepositions for “excluding”

The following cited words suggest the same meaning, as "excluding" could: Apart from the last paragraph, the book is finished. Barring the last paragraph, the book is finished. Besides the ...
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2answers
92 views

how do I describe a person who's currently attending a university/college in a more colloquial way

If I want to express the fact that I have a brother who is currently a university student in Boston or attending a university in Boston, can I say "I have a brother who's in a university in Boston"? ...
2
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2answers
76 views

Is the word “flatulence” ridiculous sounding? [closed]

I ask because there is a small disagreement over the terminology that was used in the following (original) Travel.SE question My seatmate farts like rotten eggs. What ought the cabin crew do? The ...
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2answers
67 views

Things that go “hand-in-hand” to make me resign

Looking for a formal sentence to explain the reasons for leaving my previous job, and for some reasons i insist on using the phrase "hand-in-hand" in the sentence. Is it formal and grammatically ...