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Commonly Made Errors in the Use of Tenses

Grade 10
May 18, 2023

Some of the Commonly Made Errors in the Use of Tenses are:

  1. Using inconsistent forms of the verb: When writing a text, it is important to make sure that the tense is the same throughout the text. One very commonly made error is changing the tense mid-way through a text.
  2. Confusion in the forms of the present tense: There are four different forms of the present tense. While they may seem to be very similar, they are not interchangeable.
  3. Confusion in the forms of past tense: Like the present tense, there are multiple forms of the verbs in the past tense. It is very common to mix them up.
  4. Switching between past and present tenses: Sometimes, people’s writing and speaking styles coincide. In casual conversation, it’s simple to make a mistake and use the incorrect tense of a term. The person you are chatting with will probably understand what you mean. However, avoiding moving between the present and past tense is critical when writing.
  5. Misuse of the past continuous tense: The past tense indicates something that happened in the past continuously. The problem with the past continuous tense is that all those aiding verbs and – Ing phrases will make your writing appear clumsy if it wasn’t an ongoing situation in the past.
  6. Changing tenses when using dialogue tags: It’s important to watch your tenses when writing dialogues. Remember to use the same tense throughout the text.
  7. Altering the future tense forms: The future tense uses different rules. When the verb in the main clause is in the future tense, the verb in the subordinate clause should shift to the present tense.

Other commonly made errors:

  1. Similar pronunciation leads to confusion.

Example: “could of” (incorrect) vs. “could have” (correct)

  1. Remember the difference between “there,” “their’, and “they’re.”

         a. There: An adverb that means in or at that place

         b. Their: The possessive case of the pronoun they, meaning belonging to them

         c. They’re: Is a contraction of the words they and are

Commonly made errors in the use of Tenses


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