Parallel framework, or parallelism, means utilizing the exact same pattern of words to present that two or more words or ideas are of equal prestige. Words and phrases within a sentence should not only match in structure, but also in tense. Writers use parallel structure to include clarity to their writing, make it much easier to understand also and present that their writing is structurally and also grammatically correct. Explore parallel structure to better understand also the principle.



The problematic locations are italicized below.

Ashley likes to ski, to swim and jump. (Tright here requirements to be a "to" in between "and" and "jump," to be parallel with the other items. )She likes dancing and also to sing songs. (This have to pair "to dance" via "to sing" so the infinitive create is used throughout the sentence.)

Parallel Structure With -ing Endings

Be regular and use parallel structure with words that end in -ing.


The bold words show that parallel building is provided appropriately.

Joe likes running, walking and being active.We enjoy relaxing and sitting out in the sunlight.

You are watching: Select the sentence that uses correct parallel construction.


The words that should be parallel but aren"t are displayed in italics here.

Joe likes running, walking and outdoor activities. ("Running" and also "walking" are parallel with each other, yet "outdoor activities" is not parallel. Use "participating in outdoor activities" or similar.)We reap relaxing and also prefer to sit out in the sunlight. (The italicized phrases are not parallel; they must both incorporate verbs that finish in -ing.)


The bold terms highlight parallel construction between the claprovides.

The teacher told them that they need to research and also that they must exercise their words every night. My parental fees shelp get a good education and also carry out not resolve for much less.


In these, the claoffers do not illustrate parallel building and construction. The problem wording is highlighted.

The teacher told them to study and that they need to practice their words eextremely night. (This sentence should either incorporate "that they" in both clasupplies, choose the correct example over, or it have to include the word "said" in between "that" and "they.")My parents said to obtain a great education and not resolve for less. (Here, the word "to" must be consisted of prior to "not" in the italicized message.)

Parallel Structure in Lists With Colons

When you have actually items on a list following a colon, the items need to all be in the exact same form in order to stop a parallel structure error.


Wording that shows parallel construction in these is bold.

The following tasks deserve to be done at the mall: buying groceries, eating lunch and paying bills.In your bedroom, you will certainly find the following: a bed, a closet and a desk.


The problematic wording in these is highlighted in italics.

The following activities can be done at the mall: buying groceries, eating lunch and also bill payment. ("Bill payment" must be composed as "paying bills" in order to show parallel construction.)In your bedroom, you will certainly find the following: a bed, a closet and also, sitting at a desk. (You shouldn"t list two nouns through an task in this type of list. It could review, "a bed, a closet, and a desk if that is what the writer implies. If the writer wants to describe someone sitting at a desk, that have to be part of a new sentence. )

Parallel Structure in Other Lists

Even as soon as a colon isn"t provided to introduce a list, parallel building is necessary.


The terms that create parallel structure in these sentences are bold.

Mary wanted to make sure that she made her presentation creatively, effectively and persuasively.Tim was considered to be an excellent employee because he was always on time, he was incredibly urged and he was a good leader.


Parallel constructor errors are italicized.

Mary wanted to make certain she made her presentation creatively, effectively and also encouraged others.

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("Persuaded others" is not parallel via the other list items.)Tim was considered to be a good employee because he was always on time, he was extremely motivated and also led the team well. ("Led the team well" is not parallel via the various other list items.)

Parallel Structure in Verb Tense

Keep in mind that parallel framework have to be provided once it concerns verb tense. Your verb tenses have to always match.


The bold words in these are all previous tense, which indicates they are of parallel building.

She composed a letter and also mailed it to the college.Yesterday we watched a movie, played video games and made pizza.


The below mix tenses. The problematic wording is italicized.

She writes a letter and mailed it to the college. (This mixes present and also previous tense; both words should be the exact same tense.)Yesterday we watched a movie, play video games and also made pizza. ("Watched" and also "made" are past tense, but "play" is present tense. It need to be "played" given that the sentence specifies this took area in the past.)

The Importance of Parallel Structure

Parallel structure gives circulation in a sentence. It keeps your creating balanced and renders it easier to check out. It also mirrors that concepts are of equal prestige. Errors in parallel structure deserve to make your writing sound strange to listeners. Many type of tests, including the SAT, will call for you to recognize parallel framework errors as a way of testing your composing abilities. To further expand your knowledge around parallel framework in writing, evaluation these of parallelism in literature and rhetoric.