Review on English: Subject-Verb Agreement and Tenses

Review on English: Subject-Verb Agreement and Tenses

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SUBJECT AND VERB AGREEMENT

Collective Nouns

These nouns can either take a singular or plural verb depending on how they are used in a sentence. On the other hand, if a collective noun is perceived as one entity, then it would take a singular verb. On the other hand, if a collective noun is perceived as individuals the group, it will take a plural verb.

Examples:  Our debate team has won the competition

Our debate team have won all their battles

 

Noun ending in –s-and –ics

Nouns ending in s and ics are always paired with verbs in the singular form

Examples: Mathematics is my favorite subject

Measles is a dangerous disease

 

Nouns in sets of  twos.

Nouns of this nature take a singular verb if the word” pair” is present. If not. They take a plural verb.

Examples: A pair of scissors in on the table

The scissors are on the table

 

“A number” and “The number”

Sentence beginning with the phrase “ a number” always take  a  plural verb, while sentences that begin with “ the number” take a singular verb”

Examples: A number of students have been expelled

The number of students being expelled is rising.

 

Fraction and Percent

Nouns in percent and in fraction take a singular verb if paired with a non-count noun, and vice versa.

Examples: 50% of the Earth’s water is still safe for drinking

One-third of the students were expelled

 

Compound Nouns

Compound subjects joined by a conjunction take plural verbs.

Examples: Paul and Robin are brothers

 

Neither…nor and Either…or

The verb must agree with closet noun.

Example: Neither John nor his brothers are going to America

 

As well and Together with

The verb must agree with the first noun (subject).

Example: the president, together with his advisers, is leaving tomorrow

 

 

TENSES

 

Simple Present Tense

Verbs in the present tense express habitual or factual actions.

Examples: She sings

The sun shines

Simple Past Tense

Verbs in the past tense express actions that happened in the past.

Example: She sang yesterday

 

Simple Future Tense

Verbs in the future tense express actions that will happen in the future.

Example: She will sing.

 

Present Progressive Tense

Verbs in the present progressive tense, express actions that are happening at the moment.

Example: She is singing.

 

Past Progressive Tense

This expresses a continuing action that started and ended in the past.

Example: She was singing all afternoon yesterday.

 

 Future Progressive Tense

This expresses a continuing action that will happen in the future.

Example: She will be singing in the competition.

 

Present Perfect Tense

This expresses an action that started in the past, but is still happening at present

Example: I have sung a song.

 

 

Past Perfect Tense

This expresses two past actions, in which one happened before the other.

Example: she had sung before she danced.

 

 

Future Perfect Tense

This  expresses two future actions, in which one will happen before the other.

Example: She will have sung before she dances.

 

Present Perfect Progressive Tense

This expresses an action that started in the past and still happening at present and will most likely continue to happen in the future.

Example: She has been singing since this morning.

 

Past Perfect Progressive Tense

This expresses two past actions, where the first one was still happening when the second one transpired.

Example: She had been singing before the bomb exploded.

 

Future Perfect Progressive Tense

This expresses two future actions, where the first action is still happening when the second one is transpires.

Example: She will have been singing before the bomb explodes.

 

SUMMARY SUMMARY
Present I dance
Past I danced
Future I will dance
Present Progressive I am dancing
Past Progressive I was dancing all afternoon yesterday
Future Progressive I will be dancing
Present Perfect I have danced
Past Perfect I had danced before I sang
Future Perfect I will have danced before I sing
Present Perfect Progressive I have been dancing since then
Past perfect Progressive I had been dancing when the bomb exploded
Future Perfect Progressive I will have been when the party ends

 

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