Hi there, can I use the plural nouns in the given sentences with and without the. What difference in meaning does the create in the sentences? And as an English speaker which one sounds best to your ears?

  1. John, I have been to many countries in my life. I can tell you one thing that (the) people in America are politically very aware.
  2. (The) students at this school are diligent, intelligent and smart.

As an ESL learner it confuses me a lot because I have seen sentences like these are used both with and without the. And I can't figure it out. Could anyone please explain?

My probelms begin when nouns with plural from come before preposition like -(the) people in America, (the) teachers at this scool.

Original Post

Hi, Subhajit123,

Before dealing with the article issue, please notice that "be aware" requires the preposition "of" if the object one is aware of is mentioned (in this case, the object is "one thing"). Also pay more attention to your spelling.

subhajit123 posted:

My problems begin when nouns with plural form come before prepositions like -(the) people in America, (the) teachers at this school.

In such cases, even if you refer to all the people or all the teachers (and not to some specific ones), you can use the definite article. I'd say that in this particular case the definite article makes the phrase more comprehensive than the zero article. Compare:

- Teachers at this school can be very severe. (You might be referring to some or to most, and not to all of them.)

The teachers at this school can be very severe. (In this case, it is clear you are referring to all of them.)

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