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mixed opinions about this Options
luckyguy
Posted: Wednesday, April 12, 2017 5:37:53 PM
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Joined: 12/25/2015
Posts: 252
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Last week, I discussed these sentences with my friends. They had different opinions about them.

(1a) The certificate John received yesterday recognized his completion of the cooking course.

(1b) The certificate John received yesterday recognized the completion of his cooking course.

(2a) The government funded his pursuit of studies at Cambridge University.

(2b) The government funded the pursuit of his studies at Cambridge University.

Some of my friends said, "In (1), he completed the course himself. It's his completion. You can't say it's his course because it belongs to the school. The school is the one that designs, administers and offers it to him."

My other friends argued, "It's correct to say his course because he took it and owned it until he finished it. It's wrong to say his completion because you can't own your completion."

They argued about (2) in the same way. Who's right? Please give me your feedback. Thanks.
NKM
Posted: Wednesday, April 12, 2017 6:31:22 PM

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Location: Corinth, New York, United States
Certainly the "completion" and the "pursuit " are his, no matter who may "own" the cooking course or the University's curricula.

luckyguy
Posted: Sunday, April 16, 2017 4:24:16 AM
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Joined: 12/25/2015
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Thanks,NKM. I don't quite understand your answer. Does it mean (1a) and (2a) are correct?
FounDit
Posted: Monday, April 17, 2017 12:26:57 PM

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luckyguy wrote:
Thanks,NKM. I don't quite understand your answer. Does it mean (1a) and (2a) are correct?


If I could answer for NKM, yes, both (1a) and (2a) are correct, because both the pursuit and the completion are his.

A great many people will think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. ~ William James ~
luckyguy
Posted: Saturday, April 22, 2017 4:01:55 PM
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Joined: 12/25/2015
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Neurons: 1,378
Thank you, FounDit.
Romany
Posted: Saturday, April 22, 2017 5:24:41 PM
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Joined: 6/14/2009
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom

But one thing , that the others haven't yet mentioned yet is that a certificate (or a medal, or an award) cannot 'recognise' anything. It's an inanimate object - a piece of paper.

You receive that piece of paper 'in recognition of' some achievement, yes. But the paper itself, being an inanimate object, cannot 'recognise' anything. But the value of the piece of paper is to prove that the Board of Education, or the Town Guild, or the Police Force (whoever is giving you the certificate) recognises your achievements. So the sentences which contain "the certificate recognises..." need to be tinkered with. Because this is formal language it needs to be very precise.

In spoken English, of course, we'd say something like "He got his certificate from the cooking course yesterday."
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