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that vs to which

 
 
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 07:49 pm
The extent that you work determines...
the extent to which you work determines...

Which is preferable? More precise? Correct?

Thanks.
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layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:07 pm
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

The extent that you work determines...
the extent to which you work determines...

Which is preferable? More precise? Correct?

Thanks.


Again, I'm no expert but "to which" doesn't sound right at all to me in this context. But, for that matter, this doesn't really sound right either: "The extent that you work determines.."

I've seen entire articles addressing the proper use of "which" vs. "that," but I certainly couldn't recite them from memory.

If I was trying to say what I think you are, I would probably say something like:

The amount of effort you devote determines... or

Success in achieving the result you desire is usually dependent upon the amount of work you do to effect it.
0 Replies
 
camlok
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:07 pm
@perennialloner,
Quote:
The extent that you work determines...
the extent to which you work determines...

Which is preferable? More precise? Correct?


Neither. Neither. Both.

A caveat - depends on what follows.
perennialloner
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:14 pm
@camlok,
The extent that you work determines your success as a student.

The extent to which you work determines your success as a student.

What about between these, then?
camlok
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:19 pm
@perennialloner,
Which is preferable? More precise? Correct?


Depends on register. Neither. Both.
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:20 pm
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

The extent that you work determines your success as a student.

The extent to which you work determines your success as a student.

What about between these, then?


Hmmm....the key word here is "extent" (although, as I already said, I wouldn't phrase it that way). Between the two, I guess "to which" would be better.
camlok
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:22 pm
@layman,
Quote:
Again, I'm no expert but "to which" doesn't sound right at all to me in this context. But, for that matter, this doesn't really sound right either: "The extent that you work determines.."


You are one terribly confused puppy, layman.

My apologies to puppies everywhere.
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:32 pm
@layman,
A couple of more thoughts.

1. Work does not strictly "determine" success. It will affect it, sure, but "determine" is too strong.

2. I wouldn't "lead" with a phrase like that. I would say something like: Your success as a student depends, in large part, on the amount of work you are willing to do.

This is kinda like your last question (which I've already forgotten) where I quoted Mark Twain. I would prefer to lead with the primary concern ("success" in this case), and not with the tangential factors which may affect it. In other words, I would try to make the topic clear first, and only then proceed to the qualifying conditions that pertain to it. Again, maybe that's just me.
camlok
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 08:35 pm
@layman,
We are not discussing your opinions about what constitutes what.

You don't have near the necessary knowledge of English grammar to partake in these discussions.
0 Replies
 
perennialloner
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 09:03 pm
@layman,
I will attempt to make my original post clearer.

A father is lecturing his child on responsibility. The child has been difficult lately and the father doesn't know what precisely he should do to address his child's misbehavior. At the end of his lecture, he incentivizes the good behaviors he expects of his child and says the child will be progressively rewarded according to the extent that/to which the behaviors are fulfilled.

I understand that you may have written this differently but I just want to know which option, in this scenario, is better.

I've heard both used.

Also, my example from before isn't supposed to be an accurate statement. It's just a sentence. Inaccurate sentences can still be well-written.

Off topic: I don't think "a couple of more minutes" is grammatical. Maybe "a couple more minutes"?
layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 09:18 pm
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

d says the child will be progressively rewarded according to the extent that/to which the behaviors are fulfilled.

I just want to know which option, in this scenario, is better.


I already gave you my answer to this, I thought. "To which" seems more appropriate, since "extent" is the referent.

But, really, I guess either is OK, when I think about it. I just have trouble making sense out of that particular formulation, which seems awkward, at best, to me.

I would, for example, say: To the extent that he lied, he is unreliable (not "to which").

I might also say something like: He got an "F," but he worked hard, which is about the extent of anything positive I can glean from the situation.

0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 09:27 pm
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

Off topic: I don't think "a couple of more minutes" is grammatical. Maybe "a couple more minutes"?


Not sure where this came from. I tend to agree with you, though. You might well ask something like this though: Can you give me a couple of minutes more? "Couple of" and "two" are basically synonyms in this context, the way I see it. Most people would say "couple more minutes," (with the "of" being implied), but I'm not really sure if that's strictly correct, grammatically.

But if you say "couple of more minutes" it becomes ambiguous. Are talking about "more minutes" doubled, or what? Like 5 minutes more, and then another 5?
perennialloner
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 09:44 pm
@layman,
You said it a couple of posts earlier. I don't know why i substituted thoughts for minutes but the same principles apply.
I think the reason a couple of minutes more works is because more means longer or added. A couple of thoughts added for example sounds better than a couple of more thoughts.
The reason "to the extent that he lied, he is unreliable" works for you is because the to is at the beginning of the sentence. It's essentially the same construction as to which just reorganized.
perennialloner
 
  0  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 09:56 pm
@layman,
Also, after some thinking, I think you're right that extent to which is the better of the two given options.
If I were to ask a question where the sentences I've provided were the answers, to include to which in the response seems more appropriate and accurate.
To which or what extent have you fulfilled your responsibility?
The extent to which I've fulfilled...
Extent exists across a spectrum. The inclusion of "to" indicates the presence of that spectrum, I think. Maybe Im talking nonsense. Entirely possible.
0 Replies
 
camlok
 
  -1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 10:07 pm
@perennialloner,
Quote:
Off topic: I don't think "a couple of more minutes" is grammatical. Maybe "a couple more minutes"?


It almost certainly came from the natural speech pattern "a coupala more ... " which was rendered with an 'of'.
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 May, 2017 10:53 pm
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

You said it a couple of posts earlier. I don't know why i substituted thoughts for minutes but the same principles apply.


Well, yeah, that was just a little sloppy. If you say you want "a couple," the questions becomes "a couple of what?" The "of" relates to what are talking about--of cookies, of shots of heroin, of women, etc. Actually I started out saying "a few" but when I decided that I only had two, I just went back and replaced "few" with "couple of," without really giving any thought to the "more" that followed.
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 May, 2017 04:37 pm
@layman,
Quote:
Most people would say "couple more minutes," (with the "of" being implied), but I'm not really sure if that's strictly correct, grammatically....If you say you want "a couple," the question becomes "a couple of what?" The "of" relates to what are talking about--of cookies, of shots of heroin, of women, etc.


Suppose, for example, I had said "a couple of further thoughts" or "additional thoughts?"

Would "of" be incorrect then? Is there any real, substantial difference between "more" and "additional?"

For me, the question is too trivial to warrant any attempt to find an "authoritative" answer to it. But I don't mind pondering it.
perennialloner
 
  0  
Reply Sat 27 May, 2017 06:21 pm
@layman,
Quote:
But things get tricky when couple is used with words and phrases of comparison, such as more, fewer, too many, too few. Many people would say a couple of more dollars, but in that construction the of is dropped: a couple more dollars and a couple too few dollars are correct. However, if we slightly revise those phrases, of must be put back:  a couple of dollars more and a couple of dollars too few are correct.


http://data.grammarbook.com/blog/effective-writing/a-couple-of-things-and-a-couple-more/
layman
 
  0  
Reply Sat 27 May, 2017 06:28 pm
@perennialloner,
Well, that answers that. Good work, Perry. They don't say why, but I agree that it's the common practice
0 Replies
 
newmoonnewmoon
 
  0  
Reply Sat 27 May, 2017 06:37 pm
@perennialloner,
The extent to which you work determines...
0 Replies
 
 

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