Punctuation Mastery
4.5 (543 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
7,240 students enrolled
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Punctuation Mastery

How To Use Commas, Dashes & Semi-Colons Like A Pro
Best Seller
4.5 (543 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
7,240 students enrolled
Created by Shani Raja
Last updated 8/2016
Price: $150
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • 2.5 hours on-demand video
  • 1 Supplemental Resource
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Know how to apply punctuation appropriately and stylishly
  • Write with more confidence and flair
  • Spruce up your reports, essays, resumes, books, blogs and articles
View Curriculum
  • Pen and paper, or computer for taking notes and doing exercises

From the creator of Writing With Flair: How To Become An Exceptional Writer, one of Udemy's most popular courses, comes Punctuation Mastery: a no-nonsense guide to using commas, dashes, colons and other punctuation with supreme confidence.

One of the top-selling courses in the Business Communications category, with thousands of students and dozens of 5-star reviews.

"Every once in a while, you find that one person who understands you, and teaches you exactly what you wanted to know..." -- JAYANTH S, UDEMY STUDENT

"Didn't realize punctuation could be so cool..." -- RYAN, UDEMY STUDENT

"Exactly what I needed to clear up all confusions I had about punctuation without reading through boring grammar lessons..." -- NIKKI BRUSOE, UDEMY STUDENT

"One of the best courses I have ever taken..." -- RICHARD HAKE, UDEMY STUDENT

"Good for any writer looking to work on their clarity and form..." -- BRENDAN TERRY, UDEMY STUDENT

"Will agonize less when editing..." -- JOAN SALANITRI, UDEMY STUDENT

"Puts you behind the steering wheel..." -- CHRIS HEMMES, UDEMY STUDENT

"Take this course if you want to write like a pro..." -- AARON LEBLANC, UDEMY STUDENT

"Thought I knew how to effectively use punctuation..." -- IGOR MILOSAVLJEVIC, UDEMY STUDENT

"Covers just about everything..." -- KNOWLEDGE GATHERING, UDEMY STUDENT

"Will now write with more confidence..." -- DEVON HALL, UDEMY STUDENT

"My punctuation was terrible... looking forward to applying these techniques..." -- AARON, UDEMY STUDENT

"Clarified a lot of questions..." -- ARIEL JACOBY, UDEMY STUDENT

"One of those people whose products I don't even think about buying. I just buy them..." -- IVAN JURAS, UDEMY STUDENT

Maybe you're among the growing army of people seeking to make a mark on the world by writing an outstanding book or creating a magnificent blog read by thousands.

Well, you won't be able to do that if you're punctuation is sloppy. Nothing gives away an amateur writer more than writing that lacks the discipline that a good grasp of punctuation immediately conveys.

You may already have taken my Writing With Flair: How To Become An Exceptional Writer course and discovered heaps of tactics to fast-track your writing ability.

But do you yet know the basics of how to use commas, colons, semi-colons, hyphens, apostrophes and dashes properly and effectively? And how to do so with style?

If not, trust me, you'll never be able to weave magic with your words.

This course probably isn't for you if you already feel very confident in your use of punctuation, as it goes over the fundamentals—along with some crackling insights that only an editor for major news organizations could provide. The course is also not for "purists" who may wish to learn everything strictly according to ancient technical grammar rules.

But if you basically spend ages wondering whether a comma should go here or there, and then doubt yourself straight afterwards...

Or frequently end up with a random mess of commas and semi-colons littering your page and distracting from your message...

Or have just forgotten the basics and need a refresher...

Then this should put you on a firmer footing.

It will give you the confidence to use punctuation in a way that's acceptable to many good newspapers.

You see, I teach top journalists how to improve their writing and have written and edited for some of the world's biggest news organizations, including The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Financial Times and Bloomberg News.

In this course I reveal to you how to use punctuation in a clean and stylish way, so that it doesn't get in the way but rather enhances your writing.

The best professional writers don't treat punctuation as a set of rigid rules to blindly follow.

As with grammar, they use it as a tool for making their communication more clear and elegant.

In other words, they use punctuation strategically to enhance the power and beauty of their thoughts.

I'm going to teach you how to do the same thing by revealing the diverse uses of each type of punctuation one by one.

You'll see first-hand how each symbol can be used to create a specific impact on your writing.

And I'll aim to teach you without all the usual jargon that surrounds most courses on the subject.

I've studied how the best editors use punctuation strategically to make their articles sing. The truth is, it's really quite easy.

Your college tutors may have taught you punctuation in a highly technical, jargon-laden way that left you bored or mystified.

You may dread going back to the subject.

I'm going to steer clear of all that. In fact, by the end of the course you may well wonder why nobody told you that punctuation could be so interesting.

I've designed this course to help get you the understanding as quickly as possible so you can apply your knowledge straight away, without hesitation.

I explain punctuation in a way that anyone with even a cursory knowledge of the English language can understand. There'll be plenty of exercises, too, so you'll feel confident using punctuation forever after.

What could that do for your career or business?

By the end of the course, you'll hopefully see commas, dashes, semi-colons and other types of punctuation in a new light.

You'll discover that a comma doesn't just help create useful pauses in a sentence, but that it can be a mighty weapon letting you express your ideas with clarity and grace.

You'll discover that colons don't only give you a neat way of introducing lists; they can be used to heighten drama and anticipation in your writing.

In fact, you'll come to see that each little symbol that you thought was so mundane has its own unique power to create special effects throughout your writing.

This course will also prevent the bad use of punctuation that may be killing the authority of your writing.

After all, how seriously would any boss take a cover letter that lacks a basic knowledge of punctuation?

And how much more seriously would the letter be taken if your punctuation enabled you to express your background, skills and qualities with style and flair?

How much better would your college essays, articles, blogs and books look?

You're one step away from discovering these methods, which will change your writing forever.

Who is the target audience?
  • Anyone unsure of how to use punctuation
  • Anyone who wants to deepen their understanding of punctuation
  • Marketers, salespeople, communications professionals
  • Writers and journalists
  • Students
Compare to Other Punctuation Courses
Curriculum For This Course
38 Lectures
Why Punctuation Matters
2 Lectures 10:04

An overview of the course

Preview 04:16

Why you need to take punctuation seriously

Punctuation: Why Bother?
Clever Commas
6 Lectures 30:48

How commas can be used to sharpen your meaning and prevent misunderstanding

Commas For Clarity

How commas can make your points easier to grasp

Preview 03:42

How commas can add a touch of elegance to your prose

Commas To Add Elegance

How commas can be used to extend a point you are making

Commas To Extend A Point

How commas can help you insert points within points

Commas To Insert A Point

Test your knowledge of commas

Comely Colons
4 Lectures 12:23

How colons can help draw attention to an upcoming list of items

Colons To Introduce Lists

How colons can be used to split ideas and answer one thought with another

Colons To Answer A Thought

How colons can be used to create drama in your writing

Colons To Create Anticipation

Test your knoweldge of colons

Suave Semi-Colons
3 Lectures 13:09

How semi-colons can be used to make lists neater

Preview 05:21

How semi-colons can be used to gracefully complete thoughts

Semi-Colons To Complete Thoughts

Test your knowledge of semi-colons

Exciting Exclamations
2 Lectures 06:07

The various uses of exclamation marks

The Function Of Exclamation Marks

Test your knowledge of exclamation marks

Killer Quote Marks
4 Lectures 19:58

How and when to use quote marks

Quote Marks (Or Inverted Commas) For Speech

How to use quote marks for sarcasm and colloquial expressions

Other Uses For Quote Marks

Quote marks to avoid

Dangers Of Quote Marks

Test your knowledge of quote marks

Ace Apostrophes
3 Lectures 10:20

Basic uses of apostrophes

How To Use Apostrophes

How to use apostrophes to sound less stiff

Apostrophes To Sound Less Formal

Test your knowledge of apostrophes

Boring Brackets
3 Lectures 10:02

Why you should be wary of using brackets

Why Brackets Aren't So Cool

Where brackets can be useful

Brackets To Aid Comprehension

Test your knowledge of brackets

Daring Dashes
4 Lectures 14:20

How dashes can be used to add some excitement to your writing

Dashes To Add Drama

How dashes can be useful in drawing attention to something

Dashes For Definition & Significance

How dashes can prevent readers getting confused

Dashes To Prevent Getting Lost

Test your knowledge of dashes

Handy Hyphens
4 Lectures 13:29

Why using hyphens can be complicated

Hyphens Can Be Tricky

How hyphens can prevent misunderstanding

Hyphens To Prevent Confusion

How hyphens can be used to help readers grasp ideas more quickly

Hyphens To Quicken Comprehension

Test your knowledge of hyphens

1 More Section
About the Instructor
Shani Raja
4.4 Average rating
11,099 Reviews
142,838 Students
10 Courses
Ex-Wall Street Journal editor

Shani Raja teaches top journalists how to improve their writing and has written and edited for some of the world's biggest news organizations, including The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Financial Times and Bloomberg News. Shani has also taught advanced writing skills to professionals and edited for leading global companies from Microsoft and IBM to PwC. He also teaches journalism to undergraduates.