BE

used not to

The following rare student writing example shows how ‘used not to’ expresses modality: Also when I was younger, I used not to be allowed to drink coffee. PELIC Korean female level 3 grammar class. It sounds more natural to say: “I didn’t use to be allowed to drink coffee.” *In other words, she did not have permission to drink coffee.  Although now she is an adult and can. Point 227 …

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Academic IELTS grammar for task 1

I’m often asked by my students just before they take an IELTS test for some quick tips on what to study before a particular task.  Therefore, in this post, I will summarise the salient grammar and vocabulary features I found in very good introductions and overviews in the Academic IELTS  Task 1 tests using our …

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BE | HAVE | DO

Here is another English Grammar Profile point that overlaps multiple categories making it quite difficult to choose which criterion best suits. Point 40 in the category of CLAUSES is defined: AFFIRMATIVE INTERROGATIVE: (‘yes/no’ forms) with auxiliary ‘be’ and ‘have’. The EGP examples: Are you going to the new art class? Have you got a new dress for the party? Point 17 in the category of VERBS is defined: AUXILIARY VERBS …

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will not be VERBing

Point 32 in the category of FUTURE is defined: future continuous NEGATIVE WITH ‘WILL’ (won’t) An iWeb search for: wo|will _X be _VVG 1 WO N’T BE GETTING 2959 2 WO N’T BE GOING 2821 3 WO N’T BE USING 2817 4 WILL NOT BE USING 2040 5 WO N’T BE MAKING 1550 6 WILL …

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can be

Point 98 in the category of modality is defined: GENERAL TRUTHS AND TENDENCIES: ‘can be’ TLC STUDENT SPEAKING TEST EXAMPLE: Their students can get good grades and their income can be higher. male China B1 We follow the EGP example patterns in iWeb: _NN can_VM be _R _J 1 RATES CAN BE AS HIGH 102 2 RATE CAN BE AS HIGH 92 3 INFORMATION CAN …

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It can be + said | argued | concluded | considered + that

Point 208 in MODALITY is defined as: ‘can’ in passive reporting clauses in a more formal impersonal style (e.g. for reports and academic contexts), such as ‘It can be said that’, ‘It can be argued (that)’, ‘It can be concluded that’, ‘It can be considered” (This point overlaps point 26 passive C1 dummy subject) A …

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may | might + FUTURE CONTINUOUS

Point 65 in future is defined as: EXPECTATIONS WITH ‘MIGHT’ OR ‘MAY’ potentially in progress at a specified or understood time in the future. A search in iWeb: might|may_V be _VVG *Not all of these are about the future.   1 MAY BE WONDERING 10730 2 MAY BE LOOKING 8324 3 MIGHT BE WONDERING 7987 4 …

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BE + bound | likely | meant | obliged + TO

*There is an interactive word tree exercise for this B2 grammar here. Point 152 in MODALITY overlaps many other modality points.  So here we will cover those not already covered elsewhere. It is defined as: the full range of expressions with ‘be’ + infinitive (‘be likely to’, ‘be due to’, ‘be meant to’, ‘be bound …

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‘She should be looking for a job’ (SHOULD BE + verb ING)

Let’s look at an example in student writing: In Korea, it is so common that women should be looking for a job after divorce. PELIC Korean female level 4 writing. ‘Should’ can express obligation or expectation.  ‘Should’ can be used with a continuous form: Should be + lookING In the English Grammar Profile at B2, there are 3 points covering ‘should + continuous form’.  Points 141 (general), 164 and …

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