General Writing and Grammar Help/a question

Advertisement


Question
Hello,
please help to find out which statement is true.

1- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that if computers are beneficial or detrimental.

2- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that computers are beneficial or detrimental.

3- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that are computers beneficial or detrimental?

4- ... now a question arises that if computers are beneficial or detrimental.

5- ... now a question arises that computers are beneficial or detrimental.

6- ... now a question arises that are computers beneficial or detrimental?

Answer
Dear Ali:

It is wonderful to receive questions from students in Iran.  For the past several months, I have been corresponding with several Iranian students.  Perhaps you have heard about me through one of the people I have already helped.

Now to your questions:

1- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that if computers are beneficial or detrimental.

2- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that computers are beneficial or detrimental.

3- There has been a big controversy among different group of people on this issue that are computers beneficial or detrimental?

*** First, in each of the three choices, you should have used the plural word "groups."
The third sentence can be ruled out, because you have written a statement and NOT a question.
The first sentence is not good, because of the use of the word "if."  When you use "if," that is just the first part of a structure of comparison.  The second part would begin with the word "then."  Such a comparison is not evident in this version.

That leaves the second sentence, which is the correct one.  The first half of the sentence states the "situation" -- There has been a big controversy among different GROUPS of people on this issue.  The next part of the sentence explains WHAT "this issue" is:  that computers are beneficial or detrimental.  Those words function as an adjective clause, and the clause modifies or explains the word "issue."

4- ... now a question arises that if computers are beneficial or detrimental.

5- ... now a question arises that computers are beneficial or detrimental.

6- ... now a question arises that are computers beneficial or detrimental?

*** These sentence are like the first three.  #4 is wrong, because the "if" part is not followed by a "then" part.

#6 is wrong, because, even though you to refer to a "question," you are not actually ASKING a question.  You are simply stating that there IS a question.

#5 is the correct choice.  The words "that computers are beneficial or detrimental" clearly state what the question is.

I hope to hear from you frequently, Ali.

Ted Nesbitt  

General Writing and Grammar Help

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

Experience

I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.