Subject-verb agreement is a crucial aspect of grammar that often gets overlooked. This grammatical rule states that the subject of a sentence must agree with the verb in number. In other words, if the subject is singular, the verb should also be singular, and if the subject is plural, the verb should also be plural.
Correct subject-verb agreement is essential for clear communication and effective writing. Here are some helpful notes for ensuring subject-verb agreement in your writing:
1. Identify the subject
Before you can ensure subject-verb agreement, it`s essential to identify the subject of your sentence. The subject is usually the person, place, thing, or idea that the sentence is about. Once you`ve identified the subject, you can determine whether it`s singular or plural.
2. Determine the verb form
Once you`ve identified the subject, you need to determine the appropriate verb form. If the subject is singular, use a singular verb form, and if the subject is plural, use a plural verb form.
3. Watch out for tricky subjects
Some subjects can be tricky to identify as singular or plural. For example, collective nouns (e.g., team, family, audience) can be singular or plural, depending on whether you are referring to the group as a whole or the individuals in the group. Additionally, some nouns can be either singular or plural, depending on the context (e.g., news, economics).
4. Consider compound subjects
When you have a compound subject (i.e., two or more subjects joined by “and”), the verb should be plural. However, if the subjects are joined by “or” or “nor,” the verb should agree with the subject closest to it.
5. Be mindful of tense
Subject-verb agreement also applies to tense. For example, if the subject is in the present tense, the verb should also be in the present tense. If the subject is in the past tense, the verb should also be in the past tense.
6. Proofread carefully
Finally, it`s essential to proofread your writing carefully to ensure correct subject-verb agreement. Even experienced writers can make mistakes, so take the time to review your work and make any necessary corrections.
In summary, subject-verb agreement is an essential aspect of grammar that should not be ignored. By following these notes and proofreading your work carefully, you can ensure clear and effective communication in your writing.