Subject Verb Agreement
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The subject (the noun that does the action) and verb (the action) of a sentence must agree in number. All of these examples will focus on the present tense because the past and future forms don't change to agree with the subject. For example, in the past to eat becomes: I ate, you ate, he/she/it/one ate, they ate. In the future, to eat becomes: I will eat, you will eat, he/she/it/one will eat, they will eat. The major exception is the verb to be which has the following forms in the past: I was, we were, you were, he/she/it/one was, they were. Most verbs are regular; when the subject is 3rd person singular, the verb ends with an -s and all other forms are identical. However, some verbs are irregular and follow other patterns. For example:
|Subject||to be (irregular)||to have (regular)||to eat (regular)|
|1st person singular||I am||I have||I eat|
|1st person plural||we are||we have||we eat|
|2nd person singular/plural||you are||you have||you eat|
|3rd person singular||he/she/it/one is||he/she/it/one has||he/she/it/one eats|
|3rd person plural||they are||they have||they eat|
Subjects can be a pronoun (as shown above) or any noun that agrees:
- I am a first-year student at UC Davis.
- “Airplane” is a very normal word today.
- Today, we think that bicycles are for kids.
- For me, the clock, calculator, and music are essential for continuing my life.