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[MUSIC] A noun phrase includes a noun,
a person, place or thing, and the modifiers which distinguish it. You can find the noun research in
a sentence, for example, but you do not know which research the writer means until
you consider the entire noun phrase. That research, the author's research,
the research conducted in our laboratory, Johnson's research that
investigated the alloy, the research involving
quantitative analysis. Modifiers can come before or
after the noun. Those that come before might include
articles, possessive pronouns, possessive nouns,
adjectives, or particles. Modifiers. Articles. For example, the research,
Is the modifier or it can be zero article because
research is uncountable. Or it can be a study,
an indefinite article. So it can be possessive pronoun. For example, Our research. Or their research. Can be possessive noun. For example, the authors. This is American spelling,
the author's research. Or it can be proper noun, Johnson's, Research. It can be an adjective. That, Research, though it is a demonstrative pronoun,
it is regarded as an adjective. It can be an adjective, for
example, the academic research. Or, The conducted research. It can be a participle. The well designed research, or, Earth breaking research. The noun phrase can be quite complicated. For example, the interstellar
medium of star forming galaxies. Note that long noun phrases can be made
up of several smaller noun phrases, often joined together by prepositions. There is a special case of noun phrases,
noun-noun phrases. These kind of noun phrases can cause
problems for discipline specific writers. An example of a noun-noun phrase is this,
market efficiency mechanisms. This phrase means the mechanisms
of market efficiency. To shorten phrases like this, it is common
in scientific writing for the second part, in this case, of market efficiency,
to be moved in the front of the head word. And when this happens,
the part that moves is generally, but not necessarily, written in its singular
form and the preposition is immediate. It is rare to find the possessive
form with an apostrophe in such cases in scientific writing. Similarly, aromatic amino acid
interactions means interactions involving aromatic amino acids. Noun phrases can form chains or
noun chains. A series of three or
four nouns functioning as adjectives. Noun chains in English, a word normally used as one part of
speech can often function as another. For example, the noun baseball can
be an adjective modifying game. A two noun combination such as
baseball game presents no problem. The problems begin when three or
more nouns appear in succession. So a noun chain can be same Baseball game. Then, we can add the word ticket. Ticket to watch the baseball game. Then, you may add one more word, price. Price for the ticket to
participate in the baseball game. There might be an increase in the price. Increase in the price for a ticket
to participate in a baseball game. And then, you have proposal. Proposal to watch this baseball game,
and the tickets for the game, and price for the ticket. An increase in the price for the ticket of
the baseball game and that's a proposal, and all together that's a long noun chain. Baseball game ticket
price increase proposal. Noun chains like this
may strangle readers or rather cause noun chain
strangulation problems. There are two problems with noun chains. First, they create awful prose. Second, they ruin readability. Is Brian Garner right? The problem is that many readers will
think they have hit upon the noun when they're still reading adjectives. The reader has to slow down and figure
out the sentence, mentally converting each noun into an adjective until
finally reaching the end of the chain. All that acts to work slows
the reader's comprehension, which in turn impedes
the writer's persuasiveness. To eliminate noun chains,
remember two rules. The last noun in the chain
is the real noun, the word referring to the thing
you're talking about. The information conveyed by this
word usually needs to be at or near the front of the phrase,
not at the end. Although, a noun can functions as
an adjective, other parts of speech, for example, adjectives or grammatical
structures such us prepositional phrases, do a better job of modifying a noun. Generally, the best strategy for breaking
up noun chains is to push the last noun towards the front, making it the first or
second word in the phrase. You'll then convert the following nouns
into adjectives, prepositional phrases, or other grammatical structures
designed to serve as modifiers. You may end up with a few extra words but you also make the writing
easier to comprehend. For example, we have a noun chain, before, transformation can be this. Sand, transfer, mitigation, Efforts. And after. Can be efforts To mitigate. Sand transfer. Or we have efforts. Mitigate The transfer of sand. If we have a three-noun chain, the easiest solution is to
hyphenate the first two nouns. This punctuation informs reader that
the first two nouns constituted a phrasal adjective modifying
the following noun. So before transformation can be cost recovery action. And after. So we hyphen these words, cost, recovery, action. And when there is a hyphen,
it becomes one word. And then instead of three words, you have
two words, one of which is a compound. If the last noun in the chain is generic,
such as process, situation, activity, and the like, try deleting it
to see whether any meaning has been lost. Afternoon, Thunderstorm activity. In this case, we can delete this word
activity, and make thunderstorm plural. So afternoon thunderstorms. More examples. Remedy. Selection. Process. We'll simply delete this word process,
and what we have is remedy selection. Or another example. Waste, Water, Treatment, Process. Again, we do not need this word, process. We make a compound of these two words,
waste water and then we have waste-water treatment. Sometimes, we can find one noun meaning the same thing as noun-noun couplet. Pharmacy Benefit. Management company. This two words can be substituted for the
word manager, that would mean the same. And then we can use a hyphen. And then in this phrase,
we have pharmacy-benefit manager. Another example. Mm-hm, television. Antenna manufacturing facility. Instead of this manufacturing facility, we can use the word factory
which would mean the same. And as in the previous case,
we can hyphen those two words and they will become one compound, and
again, television-antenna factory. Factory that manufactures antennas for
television. Feel free to use one noun to modify
another but don't change three or more nouns together. Strive for conciseness but do not
sacrifice readability to achieve it. To practice unpacking noun-noun phrases, write down three noun-noun phrases
commonly used in your research field. Next to each, unpack the phrase to
explain what it actually means. For example, field work,
work conducted in the field. Material resistance,
resistance of materials. Know the difference in
the usage of singular and plural word forms in the two
forms of the phrases. I suggest that you make a list
of noun-noun phrases you see used repeatedly in articles in your field,
and then, learn them accurately including whether
the forms are singular or plural. This will help you improve the accuracy
of your writing considerably. To sum up this video lecture,
science writing is largely made up of sentence templates which are usable for
many different areas of science plus noun phrases which are also
specific to particular areas. Once you understand this concept, you will
find it much easier to read articles from areas of science with which you
are not completely familiar. This is because you can skip
over the unfamiliar noun phrases on your first reading. Just concentrating on the sentence
structures and main meanings, then, you can identify which noun
phrases are frequently used and use a dictionary or
website to find out their meanings. If you need know them, if you need
to understand more about the area of research, then you will probably
need to look up many noun phrases. As you make your decisions
about which ones to look up, remember to identify the headword
of each noun phrase first, as this is the most important part for
the sentence meaning.

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