All Forum Topics

prefer to.... to

Hello everybody! Could anyone please tell me if my sentence below is correc? I prefer to stay at home to go to that party. Thanks a lot!Read More...

so...as/as...as

Hi, one more question: Does 'so...as' expression have the same meaning to 'as...as', escpecially when they are preceded by 'not'? If there is difference, would you let me know? Vaguely I have thought the two expressions are identical, but I want to be clear on that, if you kindly help. Sorry for not suggesting specific examples in this question.Read More...

one and it/that

Hi, Even though grammar books explain the distinction between one and it as pronouns, sometimes it is confusing to select one, or explain the difference to students. For example, I failed to give proper answer to the following question: Q)Aerobic activities are those/ones that exercise the heart. (The answer is 'those') Always thanking you...Read More...

Contraction ending, "Yes, I'm" is not correct.

I know this is insignificant but a beginner student asked me and I didn't know. We all know that the following sentences (1) (2) are not correct, because they end in an abbreviation. (1) Yes, I'm. (2) Yes, he's. But in negative answers, abbreviation ending is acceptable. (3) No, he isn't. Why is this? AppleRead More...

LIGHT HEAD?

Dear experts, Will LIGHTHEAD or LIGHT HEAD used nominally mean anything to you? Thank you, YuriRead More...

US/UK English

Dear experts, What would the phrases below mean (if at all?) to a speaker of American English: CAR PARK CHAT UP LEG IT OFF LICENCE (noun) PUSH BIKE (noun) TAKE AWAY (noun) Thank you, YuriRead More...

"need," and "want"

1. I want a cat. 2. I want cats. 3. I want some cats. 4. I need a pen. 5. I need pens. 6. I need some pens. Are all the above grammatically correct? Is (2) somehow unnatural? Apple.Read More...

Questions regarding "rather than", "prefer" in complex sentences

Hi again, Are the following sentences correct? or how to make them sound better? 1. My mother would rather we caught the bus, rather than walk home after the party. My mother would prefer us to catch the bus rather than walk home after the party. My mother would rather we emailed each other once a week, rather than spend half an hour on the phone every night. My mother would prefer us to email each other, rather than spend half an hour on the phone every night. 2. My mother would rather we...Read More...

School, University

I'm just wondering how to differentiate between "at school", "in school", "at university", and "in university" and also "apply to (a) university" and "apply for university". And is "university" count or uncount in these expressions? I know the following are idiomatic expressions: She does well in school. He is very unhappy at school. When you apply to a university, you need to have the right prerequisites. She graduated with high enough marks to apply for university. But I don't have a more...Read More...

some, any,

How am I supposed to explain the difference between the following pairs of sentences to EFL students? Does one of each sound unnatural? Are there specific situations where one of each sounds odd? 1) I need some money. 2) I need money. (more than clothes and shelter?) 3) She is going to buy some bread. 4) She is going to buy bread. (not rice and pasta?) 5) Does she want any advice? (I'm not sure if she wants some) 6) Does she want advice? (or just information?) Apple.Read More...

More than one

Hi,more questions More than one student is/are involved in the incident. does "more than one" modeify a singular or a plural phrase? Thank you from the heart for your time.Read More...

was living, and lived.

Of the two choices, why is (1) preferred? Is (2) grammatically incorrect? What can I best explain this usage? (1) She was living in Paris when I first met her. (2) She lived in Paris when I first met her. AppleRead More...

"gotten" VS "got"

One of my students wrote "Since the most important financial city in the United States has finally gotten n back on track, other countries of the Pacific Rim will surely benefit from such an effect. ", and his teacher corrected the sentence and wrote "got", in stead of "gotten". I'm certain of the following phrases where gotten (the participle of "get") is used. He's just gotten the money from the bank. He's just gotten her to do it. How 'bout in idioms, phrasal verbs and other uses that use...Read More...

past tense regarding "I was wondering"

A similar question regarding how long the past tense should be maintained. I was just wondering if it was/is possible to come tomorrow. If it was/is possible, i was just wondering if you would/will be available tomorrow? I was just wondering if you'd/will be kind enough to watch this for me while I am/was gone? I was just wondering if Susan was/is there because I am/was supposed to talk to her on the phone now. I was just wondering if you wanted/want me to go now since he is/was here now?Read More...

"would" - how long should the "past tense" be kept

I have several questions regarding how long the past tense should be kept in sentenses involving the use of "would" (as I have difficulty explaining it to one of my students). (Some sentences below are purposefully made longer to include more clauses that they might sound a bit awkward.) 1. I'd like it if we were/are friends. I'd like it if we didn't/don't talk about it. 2. You'd think I have/had/would've done it. You'd never think she was/is the daughter of a banker. You'd think there...Read More...

To discounts for?

The warning came as the ruling party announced a plan to give its 15 million registered members "high-tech" cards that will entitle them to discounts for products and services from several businesses. Q: Is "to discounts" correct in this sentence? I'm not sure about the function of "discounts" in this sentence.Read More...

Present/past/past perfect in dependent clauses

Dear All, A.The following is from a newspaper in England : "Interestingly, only a few of those present ... had been to Africa.Few seemed to have their facts correct and some even used to think that Africa is one large country. Q: As it is not a general truth ( Africa being one large country ) and the sentence starts off in the past tense, why "is" ? B.Which of the following is correct : 1. Glad to hear that you had had a good holiday. 2. Glad to hear that you had a good holiday. Thank you...Read More...

Have or has with plural company names

Rachel has asked me to post this question from Joan Frakes: I have a question on has/have. Here is my sentence: Eagle Publications have seven directories closing in September. Do I use have or has? Thank You! MarilynRead More...

Position of prepositional phrase

Please consider the phrase below: The box containing the Spanish coins from the 1540s To me, the prepositional phrase "from the 1540s" could modify either "box" or "coins", which leads to difference in meaning. However, someone has argued that this phrase is indeed not ambiguous because the rule of thumb is the prepositional phrase is supposed to modify the noun closest to it; "coins" in this case. What do you think about this argument? Moreover, I suggest the revised version as follows: The...Read More...

beside / besides

Hello, My question is, when the context does not create any ambiguity, and the idea we wish to convey is that of "in addition to", would you say that both "beside" and "besides" are equally fine, or is "besides" still preferable? This is what I found on the dictionary.com site: Some critics argue that beside and besides should be kept distinct when they are used as prepositions. According to that argument, beside is used only to mean "at the side of," as in There was no one in the seat...Read More...

Type of sentence ?

Dear All, Could someone please tell me what kind of sentences are the following ? A."We'd been meaning to do it for ages.The idea was that we leave our London home in January and take over their house in Melbourne for three months." Q: I know "leave" is right but how do you explain the present tense when the rest is in the past tense ? B.Now, as she drove north, she decide she would refuse their offer to stay overnight. Q: A similar question to the one above, but this time, I'm not sure if...Read More...

such / relative pronoun + "reinforcement noun"

Hello, One of my students recently wrote: "One solution currently being resorted to is the so-called Certification Bodies (CB) Scheme. According to such arrangement one National CB accepts the data and accreditation issued by another National CB member". The part I'm unsure of is the use of "such" – is it grammatically possible? It doesn't sound very bad to me, but I wonder if there's some Portuguese interference at play. If it's actually wrong, I think a possible simple fix would be to use...Read More...

twice the number...that/as + object

Hello, I have some doubts about using "twice". Besides the possibility of a sentence such as, We need twice as many chairs are there are here , Are these other options right? We need twice the number of chairs that are here We need twice the number of chairs as there are here Thanks, Gisele São Paulo, BrazilRead More...
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