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Thursday, April 12, 2018

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that's great! thx so much for all of your valuable advice!!!

There are some comparisons implied in Beyonce's version:

1) the top spending category [than the others]

2) began much lower [than business]

3) comparatively [to business]

4) as the highest spending category [of all three]

5) $40 above the final business figure

6) remained in third place throughout

7) showed much less variability [than the others]

You're right Sandi. It is of course possible to compare things across separate paragraphs.

However, what I meant by "true comparisons" was direct comparisons within the same sentence e.g. comparing two or more figures side by side. Beyonce missed the opportunity to do this.

Usually the instructions merely state something like: "make comparisons where relevant".

There are tips on writing comparisons here:

https://www.aje.com/en/arc/editing-tip-writing-good-comparison-sentence/

In my view, a good comparison involves more than baldly stating figures in the same sentence: what is needed is a little math to make the statistics more easily digested. For example:

a) "In 1997, business visitors to New Zealand spent an average of almost $260 per day, while holidaymakers spent around $190 and people visiting friends or relatives spent less than $120."

b) [with a little math] In 1997, people visiting friends or relatives in New Zealand spent less than $120 per day, while holidaymakers spent much/over fifty percent more ($190), and business visitors averaged more than double/twice as much at $260.

Sandi,

Your comparisons are great too. You can do a bit of math here and there for variety of course. But please don't dismiss normal comparisons of figures within sentences. Many candidates lose themselves in the "math" before they've even demonstrated that they can make a simple comparison between baldly stated numbers!

My advice is: use the 'normal' comparison type most of the time, and add variety here and there (if you can).

Thanks very much for your advice Mr Simon !

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