Why should I improve my grammar?

Improving readability

There are certain characteristics of university writing at the sentence and paragraph level which are well-regarded: coherence, clarity and being grammatically correct. These all contribute to the 'flow' of your work; that is, how easy it is to read. The Academic writing section in Language and Learning Online has an excellent guide to improving your academic writing style.

Working on your grammar will certainly help increase the chances that your reader will understand what you are writing by improving its readability. It will also ensure your reader focuses on your argument rather than on the words you use to convey it.

Grammar and assessment

You may notice that 'grammar' is often part of your assessment criteria. For example, in this extract from Nursing, the difference between a Credit and High Distinction is in terms of clarity of expression - 'fluency' and accuracy.

Criterion HD Pass
Clarity of expression (including accuracy, spelling, grammar, punctuation) Fluent writing style appropriate to assignment. Grammar and spelling accurate, Meaning apparent, but language not always fluent.
Grammar and/or spelling contain errors.

You cannot, in this case, fail your assignment if your grammar is problematic but only if your reader cannot understand what you are trying to convey.

Resources for improvement

See How do I improve my grammar? for a range of resources to help you improve your use of grammar.