The confusing world of commas and semi-colons

I don’t know about you, but when I write anything – essays, blog posts, even tweets – I panic about my use of grammar. Should there be a comma here? When do you use a semi-colon? WHY do we use semi-colons?!

Not to worry – there are tools out there to help you!

My personal favourite is a webcomic called The Oatmeal ( If you search ‘how to use a semi colon’ it will be in the top ten results, because it is a funny and accessible way to understand proper grammar. When I was a student it was page I had open constantly…OK even now I use it on an almost daily basis!

Now commas. Commas can be entirely confusing because when you write, it feels natural to put in a pause in your sentence. However it may not be needed. This TED video from Terisa Folaron is four minutes of clarity when it comes to how to use commas:

If you stick to these rules you’ll be sure to impress everyone who reads your work – even if you’re done with essays for the summer!



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