heating / heated> argument <around /about the> criteria

Goleo8

Member
Chinese
Hi everyone,

Someone revised my essay and said the following are wrong.

There is a heating (heated) argument around (about the) admission criteria, focusing on whether academic abilities are the core requirement rather than others.

My question is:

1. Why cannot I use present participle to present a changing process. I mean the argument is becoming more and more drastic. (By the way can I use "drastic discussion"? or else how can I depict the discussion is very "hot" ? :))

2. Why cannot I use around? I want to express the meaning "having a centre in". I also find a sample in a dictionary. "she had built her life around her children" .


3. About the article. Is the article needed here? As the criteria is plural, why we need an article here?

Your help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.:)
 
  • dharasty

    Senior Member
    American English
    1. I agree you can't use "heating argument". If you really want to convey that the argument is becoming more drastic, you should consider:

    "There is an increasingly heated argument [about the criteria] ..."
    "The argument [about the criteria] is heating up..."

    2. I agree "arguing about [a topic]" is common to define the topic of the argument.

    "Arguing around [a topic]" is not as common and has a slightly different sense: such as neither party is REALLY addressing the central question; they are only talking about tangential topics; the arguers are dodging the question. "Neither candidate answered the question as to what they would do to reduce crime in the city; they just argued around the topic."

    3. About the article: "the" may be used a definite article plural nouns and uncountable nouns to show you are talking about a specific set/instance of those nouns.

    "I like red cars". (I like all red cars.)
    "I like the red cars". (Of all the cars here, I like the ones that are red.)

    "Don't drink milk." (Don't ever drink any milk.)
    "Don't drink the milk." (Don't drink milk from this restaurant we are in.)

    "We object to admissions criteria". (We don't like that any university has admissions criteria.)
    "We object to the admissions criteria". (We don't our university's admissions criteria.)

    4. Also consider my proposed use of "admissions" over "admission". At a university, the department responsible to admit new students is generally the Admissions Office. So, generally, the criteria they use would be "admissions criteria" (although "admission criteria" and even "admitting criteria" would be syntactically acceptable, as well).
     
    Last edited:

    Goleo8

    Member
    Chinese
    1. I agree you can't use "heating argument". If you really want to convey that the argument is becoming more drastic, you should consider:

    "There is an increasingly heated argument [about the criteria] ..."
    "The argument [about the criteria] is heating up..."
    Thanks dharasty. Your explanations are very clear. About the first question, I guess the reason is heated there is an adjective instead of past participle.
     
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