Articles and Agreement
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In this crime section we’ll be talking about articles under agreement so let’s start with the definite
There are many different ways in which we use the definite article.
The however for the isles essay I will only mention the most relevant rules.
The main thing that you need to know about using this article is that we use the when the reader knows
exactly to whom or what we are referring so let’s look at the different scenarios in which the reader
may know to whom or to what we are referring so firstly we use the when we’re mentioning something.
Again for example I planted a tree in my garden the tree is now big notice that we use the word bird
The reason for this is that we’ve already mentioned which tree we’re talking about.
The tree has already been mentioned in the previous sentence.
So we already know to whom or to what we are referring.
We also use the word superlative adjectives superlative adjectives are basically words like highest
lowest Best Worst fastest quickest slowest and so on.
We’ll talk more about superlative adjectives when we get to the vocabulary section of this course.
So here’s our example.
China had the highest growth rate so notice that because we have a superlative adjective here highest
we have to use the.
We also use the when we’re making a statement about all things referred to by a singular countable noun
so here we have a sentence.
The dolphin is a very intelligent animal so in this case the singular accountable noun is dolphin so
when we say a sentence like this the dolphin is a very intelligent animal.
We’re basically making a statement about all things OK about all dolphins.
We’re not saying that one particular dolphin is intelligent.
We’re saying that all dolphins are intelligent so by using the in this sentence we have generalized
what all dolphins are like all dolphins are very intelligent.
We also use the one we’re talking about certain groups of people for example the elderly the poor the
wealthy the employed and so on.
Finally we used the if the figure is an important part of a noun phrase so here we have a sentence.
The number of mangoes sold in Britain was surprisingly high so in this case number of mangoes is the
noun phrase so when we have a noun phrase we have to use the word the.
Now let’s talk about the articles and an now similar to the definite article.
There are numerous rules to using the indefinite articles.
Oh and um so again for the purpose of the Isles as is I’ll only be discussing the rules which are the
most relevant so the main thing that you need to know about these indefinite articles is that you have
to use or on with singular countable nouns and we use them with these singular countable nouns when
the reader does not know exactly to whom or to what we are referring.
Okay so keep in mind the reader does not exactly know to whom or to what we are referring.
So let’s look at some examples of that we can use these articles to show that something or someone is
part of a group.
For example we could say there is a way to prevent crime rates from rising now here we’re talking about
Notice that this is just one way out of several.
Why is this part of a group.
Because there are many different ways.
There isn’t just one way however we’re just talking about one way
next we could also use these indefinite articles if we’re referring to all things of the same kind.
So here’s an example of that.
A teacher has the responsibility of educating our children so notice here we use the indefinite article
Now take note that we’re not talking about any one specific teacher we’re talking about all teachers.
What we’re really saying is that all teachers have the responsibility of educating our children.
So here we have used our teacher to refer to all teachers next.
You should not be using a or an If you’re referring to uncountable nouns or plurals for example the
price of oil stabilized by January.
Note that here the word oil is an uncountable noun we cannot count oil here’s another example.
There are many Italians living in New York.
In this case the word Italians is plural so since we have a plural noun here we cannot use any indefinite
articles with it.
Now let’s talk about subject and verb agreement when you’re writing your sentence.
You have to make sure that your subjects and verbs agree with each other in number.
So what that means is that if your subject is singular then the verb must also be singular.
If the subject is plural then the verb must also be plural let’s look at some examples of that on the
left hand side.
We have the incorrect sentences and on the right hand side we have the correct sentences.
So here’s the incorrect sentence.
Future discoveries is based on past knowledge.
Why is this wrong.
Because here we have a verb is which does not agree with the subject discoveries.
Notice that the subject discoveries is plural whereas the verb is singular so in order to correct that
we have to write future discoveries are based on past knowledge there is has to be changed to are because
discoveries is plural.
Here is another example people improves their life by learning from their past mistakes notice that
the word people is plural whereas the verb improves is singular so to correct this sentence you have
to write people improve their life by learning from their past mistakes.
People is plural therefore the verb improve also has to be plural.
Here is our last example reflecting on our past.
Help us to make better decisions.
I want you to note that the subject reflecting on our past is singular whereas the verb help is plural.
So to correct this sentence we have to change the verb help to helps the correct sentence would read
reflecting on our past helps us to make better decisions so that’s it for this video.
I’ll see you in the next grammar section in which we’ll talk about active vs.
the passive voice.
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