Quick Start Guide: Run-on Sentences


Welcome to the Learning Commons Quick Start Guide on run-on sentences!

Run-on sentences are commonly found in inexperienced academic writing. They seem to make a given paper appear more “technical,” but really all they do is obscure meaning. This Guide will explain:

  • What run-on sentences are
  • How to fix run-on sentences (both fused sentences and comma splices)
Course Information

Course Level: Beginner

Time to Complete: 15 mins

Perfect for: Students in WRTG100/101, ENGL103, or anyone who needs a refresher.

Guide Creator: Alice Wu

Run-on Sentences 101

This video is a primer on what makes for a run-on sentence:

  • Two independent clauses are put together without being connected correctly. They are missing either:
    • The proper punctuation between them, or
    • A conjunction connecting them.

In this mini-course, we explore this in more detail:

  1. Spotting Run-ons
  2. Specific types of run-on: fused sentences
  3. Specific types of run-on: comma splices
  4. Correcting run-on sentences