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Writing Style

Prepositions (prep)

This page is in the process of being updated. 

A preposition is a linking word. Prepositions are always part of a phrase, a group of words that contains the preposition and its object. The object can be a noun, noun phrase, or pronoun.  The prepositional phrase links its object to other words or parts of the the sentence.
Most prepositions show a relationship related to place, time, direction, comparison, or effect.

Common Prepositions

of - All levels of nursing are needed in health care today.

to - The elderly patient has a right to equal treatment.

in - Health promotion programs exist in many settings.

for - Nurses provide care for three types of clients: individuals, families, and communities.

as - Some physicians are primary care practitioners (also known as general or family practitioners).

with - A client with a back injury needs to learn how to get out of bed safely.

on - The choice of treatment for a particular client depends on the needs of the client.

by - Private hospitals are often operated by churches, companies, and communities.

from - Store the medication away from heat and moisture.

at - Have the client sit up in bed for at least 1 minute.

about - Instruct about proper administration of medication.  

during - Children get tired quickly during treatment.

through - Some patients repeat through the stages more than once.

before - The nervous system must grow before a baby is able to sit, walk or talk.

after - Exercise will help recovery after a stroke.

Prepositional Phrases

A prepositional phrase has at least two parts: preposition + object (noun, noun phrase, or pronoun).
The nurse went to the hospital on Sunday.
The patient’s family drove in a car to visit.

A prepositional phrase may also have adjectives or adverbs that provide additional information:
The nurse went to the women’s hospital on Sunday.
The patient’s family drove in a big blue car to visit.


More Information

"Grammar: Prepositions," Walden University

"Prepositions," Towson University

"Prepositions of Location: At, In, On" - Perdue OWL

"Prepositions of Time -- for, during, while," University of Victoria: English Language Centre