1. Rumwriter
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    Rumwriter Active Member

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    Question mark? Or no?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Rumwriter, Jan 12, 2015.

    "...What evidence is there for any of this? How about the twisted look on a student’s face when the challenge of learning is put before them."

    This comes from a blog post I'm working on. My question is, should I end the second sentence with a question mark or a period? It's a rhetorical question, so I think I tend to prefer the period, but I want to know what the accepted standard is.
     
  2. D'hai
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    D'hai Member

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    I don't know what the accepted standard is but I would use a question mark in the second sentence as well.
     
  3. lustrousonion
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    lustrousonion Contributing Member

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    I would say yes. Question mark!
     
  4. stevesh
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    stevesh Banned Contributor

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    Yes, in both sentences.
     
  5. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Another vote for yes.
     
  6. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    It depends on what you second sentence is trying to say. If you are trying to respond to the first question with a question or an uncertain suggestion, then you would use a question mark. If you are simply making a statement, you would use a period. However, in this context, it seems like the question is the most natural.
     
  7. Bjørnar Munkerud
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    Bjørnar Munkerud Contributing Member

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    I think the answer is in what you said: you think of it as a question. Questions end with question marks; it's that simple. If you thought of it instead as an answer to the former question, it would not be a question and a full stop would be the correct punctuation mark.
     
  8. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Question mark, yes. With the "how about", it's phrased as a question. To eliminate the question mark, remove the question phrasing:

    "...What evidence is there for any of this? The twisted look on a student’s face when the challenge of learning is put before them."
    "...What evidence is there for any of this? One piece of evidence is the twisted look on a student’s face when the challenge of learning is put before them."
    "...What evidence is there for any of this? Well, let's consider the twisted look on a student’s face when the challenge of learning is put before them."
    "...How can we prove this? One piece of evidence is the twisted look on a student’s face when the challenge of learning is put before them."


    Edited to add: The "how about" is also rather informal and slang like and a slightly angry-sounding challenge. So I'd eliminate it anyway.
     
    tonguetied likes this.

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