Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Agree to/ Agree with/ Agree on

Agree to something: Give consent to; accede to
Agree to a suggestion, to agree to an action proposed by someone else.
e.g:
Russia and Spain agree to Cooperate In Energy Sector
We agreed to her suggestion


Agree with someone/ something: get on, be good for, suit; to approve of it
Agree with a person, opinion or policy
e.g:
The copy agrees with the original.
I don’t agree with some of the issues they have raised in the rating rationale


Agree on something:To come to terms, as in the details of a transaction, reach agreement on, settle on
Agree on a matter for decision, to agree on an action that is jointly worked out; have similar feelings about a specific matter
e.g:
Democrat Obama and Republican McCain agree on a range of issues that have divided the parties under Bush
Major EU states agree on tighter regulation

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Among vs Between



1) Use between with two items.

e.g:
Emily was standing between Sam and Adam.
Ram divided his property equally between his two children.


2) Between can be used to talk about distance and intervals.
e.g:
I will be at the college between eight and ten.
The distance between wooden studs in new houses in UK is 350mm


3) Between is used before each
e.g:
There seems to be less and less time between each event
Insert a space between each character
There are 9 lines between each centimeter


4) Use among with three or more items.
e.g:
Ram divided his property equally among his three children.
The letter is somewhere among these papers.


5) Use between when something/ someone is between several clearly separated thing/ people. Use among when something/ someone is in a group/ crowd/ mass which we cannot see separately.
e.g:
My villa is between the woods, the river and the village.
Your villa is hidden among the trees.


6) When talking about dividing and sharing things between or among more than two people or groups - can use any of the two
e.g:
Ram divided all his property between/ among his children and grandchildren - both between and among are correct
We shared the work between/ among four of us. - both between and among are correct


7) Generally between is used after difference.
e.g:
What's the difference between a Democrat and a Republican?
There are enormous differences between developing countries in burden of disease , financial resources, educational attainment, and health systems

Friday, April 04, 2008

Usual vs Is Usual

When something is compared to itself, usual is fine.
When something is compared to a subgroup to which it belongs, is usual should be used.

For example:


1. He is nicer than usual

2. He is faster than is usual for any human being.

3. Ram is faster than usual today.

4. Emails are often written in a much formal way than is usual in writing.

5. The sun looks less brightly than usual to-day.

6. The new sports car is heavier than is usual for a performance automobile, but it is exceptional because of its high-powered engine .

7. Successful completion of Grammar course is not easy and requires more planning and preparation than is usual for normal course completion .

8. There was a higher ratio of comedy to drama than is usual in a one hour show.

9. I checked this article more carefully than usual for grammatical errors.

10. The gravel was damper than usual, since it rained heavily yesterday.

11. Today I was busier than usual at work.


GMAT Question example:


The Parthenon is larger than usual for a Doric temple, with eight columns on the short sides and seventeen on the long ones rather than the typical six and thirteen.

(A) usual

(B) is usual

(C) has been usual

(D) one usually is

(E) it is usual

Answer: B

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Participles

A participle is a verbal (verb form) which is used as an adjective.

There are three participles that are commonly used as adjective: the present participle(active voice); the past participle (passive voice) and the perfect participle (active voice).

* The present participle always ends in ing
* The past participle usually ends in ed, d, t, n, or en.The past participle of some of the verbs do not have distinctive endings: swum, gone, sung etc.
*The perfect participle is always formed by prefixing the word having to the past participle: having sung, having driven, having seen etc

Consider an example from GMAT Prep SC:

First discovered more than 30 years ago, Lina's sunbird, a four-and-a-half-inch animal found in the Phillippines and that resembles hummingbird, has shimmering metallic colors on its head; a brilliant orange patch, bordered with red tufts, in the center of its breast; and a red eye.

A. found in the Phillippines and that resembles
B. found in the Phillippines and that, resembling
C. found in the Phillippines and resembling
D. that is found in the Phillippines and it resembles
E. that is found in the Phillippines and that, resembling

OA : C

As we know :

Past participle ---- represents
1) a past condition, or
2) the passive voice or
3) a condition done onto the subject


Present participle ---- represents
1) a present condition, or
2) the active voice or
3) a condition performed by the subject


In the given sentence, we can clearly see that for the 1st participial phrase, the action of "found" happened in the past because Lina's sunbird was found more than 30 years ago. Further Lina's sunbird did not do any finding instead they were found by X not mentioned in the sentence so passive voice is right.

The second participial phrase starting with "resembling" implies that the "Lina's sunbird" is still resembling in the present(a present condition), so the use of present participle is better. We cannot say that the Lina's sunbird "resembled" because then this would illogically mean that they no longer resemble the humming bird.

The present and past participles are used to describe the "Lina's sunbird", they act as adjectives..

For more examples click on the link below:
GMAT Sentence Correction Questions


Monday, November 12, 2007

Until vs. As long as

Until can be used both as a preposition and as a conjunction. Until is used to express a point of time in the future

Until (preposition) -
  1. Up to the time of: We danced until dawn.
  2. Before (a specified time): She can't leave until Friday
Until (conjunction) -
  1. Up to the time that: We walked until it got dark.
  2. Before: You cannot leave until your work is finished.
  3. To the point or extent that: I talked until I was hoarse

As long as means that one thing will occur while another thing is still true

As long as (conjunction) -
  1. During the time that: I'll stay as long as you need me.
  2. Since: As long as you've offered, I accept.
  3. On the condition that: I will cooperate as long as I am notified on time.

Idiom

1. For the period of time that, as in You may keep the book as long as you want, that is, keep it for whatever time you wish to.
2. Also, so long as. Since, because, as in Please pick up some milk as long as you are going to the store, or So long as you're here, you might as well stay for dinner.
3. Also, so long as; just so. Provided that, as in As long as you don't expect it by tomorrow, I'll make the drawing, or So long as sales are greater than returns, the company will make a profit, or You may have another cookie, just so you don't take the last one.

Source: http://www.answers.com

1. In order to express a future idea. after as long as, we use a present tense.
e.g - As long as I live, I shall smoke no more cigarettes
2. Before a number, as long as can be used to suggest great length
e.g - The discussion can last as long as six hours

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Verb, Infinitive, Gerund - 1

Below is the list of Verbs generally followed by an infinitive with to

agree

appear - e.g Her health appeared to be worse

arrange
ask
attempt
care
claim
dare
decide - e.g We decided to go to Hawaii

demand

deserve

endeavor
expect
fail
get

grow
happen

hasten
help
hesitate

hope

hurry
intend
leap
learn
long
make (passive)
manage
neglect
offer
pay
plan - e.g We plan to go to India this year

pledge
pretend
refuse - e.g: I refuse(verb) to lie(infinitive) to my friends
resolve
say

seek

seem

struggle

swear

tend

v
ow
want
would like - e.g We would like to leave now
wish
yearn

Verbs + infinitive with to or a gerund:

attempt
begin - e.g He began singing; He began to sing
can't bear
continue
dread - e.g She dreaded taking the risk; She dreaded to think of the consequences of her actions
forget
go on
hate
intend
love - e.g She loves to dance; She loves dancing
mean
plan
prefer
propose
regret
remember
start
stop - e.g He stopped drinking; He stopped to rest for a few minutes
try

Verbs + object + infinitive with to or a gerund

admit
allow
consider
forbid
imagine
keep(in order to) - e.g
The attackers kept hostages to prevent the police from entering; She kept talking.
need - e.g He need to call his boss; The house needs cleaning
permit
require


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Usage of One

In sentences that contain the phrase one of.....

1. In simple form one of or one of the, a singular verb is used.

e.g - One of the books is missing from my cupboard.

2. In sentences that contain phrases one of those who or one of the things that, a plural verb is used.

e.g - He is one of our employees who are always alert.

3. When only precedes one of /one of those, a singular verb is used. (Do not mix this rule with the 2nd rule stated above)

e.g - Ram is the only one of our employees who is always alert.