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General Writing and Grammar Help/Go OVER something - go THROUGH something

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Question
Dear Ted:

When you check/revise something such as a report, an essay, a summary, and so on, do you go THROUGH it or do you go OVER it?

If both are possible, are they identical in meaning?

If not, when should I use each of them?

Would you please give me some examples?

Thank you very much for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

When you check/revise something such as a report, an essay, a summary, and so on, do you go THROUGH it or do you go OVER it?

*** It is your opinion, since both essentially mean the same thing.  There is a slight difference in the connotation.  If you go THROUGH it, you are implying that you looked at the report in its entirety and you didn't just "glance" at it.  If you are just glancing at it, such as checking for the contents, you are going OVER it.

EXAMPLES:

The health care bill was more than 2000 pages in length.  Most of the congressmen probably didn't even go OVER it, before they voted on it.

The "spellchecker" on my computer was not working, so I had to go THROUGH the entire paper and search for misspelled words, line by line.


Ted

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Ted Nesbitt

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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.

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

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

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