I had no clue that you couldn’t use contractions in university essays until last sunday when I re-read one of my essay proposal’s. I graduate this June.
Now I know what a lot of you are thinking, but OnePercent, how could you not know after 17 years of schooling that you couldn’t use contractions while writing an academic essay? The answer is simple, french immersion. For 12 years I was forced into the french system, I didn’t have my first real english class until I was in grade 6! How was I suppose to know the rules of english when I was barely grasping the rules of french.
Side note: My grade 8 french teacher called me a “waste to the french system”.
Anyways, here I am, almost 22 and about to graduate university with a degree in COMMUNICATIONS and I’ve been using contractions in every single one of my essays.
After this realization two thoughts came into my head:
- How many marks have I lost because of this? I think it’s fair to say that I’ve lost anywhere from 3-5% on all my university essays because my illiterate ass kept using contractions.
- HOW MANY WORDS DID I MISS OUT ON? Anyone who’s written an essay knows that the most difficult part is hitting that pesky word count. Well contractions take two words and turn them into one! Just in-case someone has yet to figure out what I’m talking about. So all this time, I’ve been coming 500 words short of the word count when it could’ve been easily 400-350 words under. Needless to say, I’m distraught.
The worst part is that all my essay’s have such amazing points. For example, in one essay, I wrote “Twitter is essentially Jesus’ wet dream”, I think we can all agree an argument as sound as that deserves an A BUT because of my lack of understanding for the english language and it’s rules, I did not receive my A.
This is probably a good time to point out that next year I will be attending teachers college, so coming to a school near you is the guy who didn’t know contractions weren’t allowed in academic essays until April of his senior year.
On second thought, I kinda feel like I should be able to re-apply to the schools I didn’t get into on the grounds of illiteracy. It only seems fair.
P.S. I’m also illiterate in French but on the flip side, if you’re illiterate in 2 languages, you practically know 1.
P.P.S. I realize that if I had just re-read one of my essays in first year this whole thing could’ve been averted but fuck that, I’m no nerd. Why would I read someone else’s opinion on something I already think is right?