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Coordinators (and, but, so, or, nor, for*, yet*) connect elements of equal importance.

S + V , but S + V

S + V and V

S or S + V

N and N

Adj. and Adj.

Phrase and Phrase

Can be used in a series: A, B, C, or D

(A comma is normally used.)

(No comma is necessary.)


He drinks coffee, but she drinks tea.

(S + V , coordinator S +V)

Gary lives in Ohio, and Deana lives in Michigan.

She loves to dance, so she bought a studio.

You could buy a car, or you could put the money in the bank.

When there is a new subject and verb, a comma is used before (not after) the coordinator.

I hate to sing but, I love to dance. (Incorrect)

I hate to sing, but I love to dance. (Correct)

John and George both play football.

Paul listens to music and reads books.

John, Paul, George, and Harry are classmates.

(two subjects)

(two verbs)


*For is also commonly used as a preposition. Yet can sometimes be used as an adverb.

For Practice: See

And-But-Or (from The Internet TESL Journal)

The Coordinating Conjunction (from Grammar Bytes)

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Last updated: 15 February, 2010 02:43:16