Tips And Tricks And Shortcuts On Subject-Verb Agreement

Subject-Verb Agreement Tips and Tricks and Shortcuts:


Subject-verb agreement is an extremely basic segment of the English language. It means that the subject should agree with the verb in a sentence.

The key here is to check whether the verb agrees with the subject in terms of both number and person. However, these questions sometimes get tricky when it comes to certain thrown-up elements in a sentence.

tips and tricks for Subject verb agreement

Basic- Subject Verb Agreement Tips and Tricks and Shortcuts

Tip 1- Indefinite Pronouns are considered singular and require a singular verb.

  • List of Indefinite Pronoun. anybody, anyone, no one, nothing, something, whatever, whoever.
  • Example– Everybody wants to do a party. want is the plural form of a verb Correct form:- Ram and Shyam want to do a party.

Tips 2- Depending on usage Indefinite pronoun may be singular or plural. There is basically 5 indefinite Noun.

  • Indefinite pronoun AANSM ( All, Any, None, Some, Must/More).
  • You can use fingertips AANSM to remember 5 indefinite pronouns.
    • Now, an important thing is to on which criteria we can find a noun is singular or plural. There are a few common rules to understand.
      • Countable Noun( nouns for which plural form are available), then there is the plural form of verbs
      • Uncountable Noun ( nouns for which only singular form are available ), then there is the singular form of verbs
  • Countable Noun Example (i) Many of the ladies are going out. (ii) Most of the students were doing a party at the annual function. Here we can see in both cases ladies and students are plural and verbs also are and were.
  • Uncountable Noun Example (i) At the party, some drinks are needed. (ii) Love is an extraordinary feeling. Here in both cases, we can see that drinks and love are uncountable nouns ( uncountable noun cannot be count thus it doesn’t have its plural forms) and hence we consider these are a singular form of verbs.

Tip 3- Verbs between singular and plural noun

  • In the sentence which has a singular subject and plural predicted noun here the problem is.
  • The important trick that to be memorized is verbs all go with the subject, doesn’t matter what comes later.
  • To, avoid confusion rewrite the sentence to clarify the subject and predicted noun singular.
    • For Example- Wrong- Sana necklace were shiny objects. Correct- Sana necklace was the shiny object. Re-write- Shiny objects were Sana necklace. Re-write- Sana was constantly distracted by the shiny object.

Tip 4- If the verb is not certain always use the plural verb, although the subject is singular.

  • In a sentence which expresses a feeling, wish, desire, or condition there ‘were’ is removed by ‘was’
    • For Example:- (i) I wish I was King (ii) I had a deep feeling for Kristen Stewart

Sample Questions

Question 1.

Fill the correct form of the verb in the blank:

The woman and her husband ____ to the same tribe.

  1. Belong
  2. Belongs
  3. Belonging
  4. are belong

Correct Answer: B

The subject that is woman and husband in a person, which takes ‘es’ or ‘s’ with them. Therefore, belongs is the right answer.

Question 2.

Detect error in the below sentence:

Everyone _____ to stand up when the Principal comes.

  1. Needs
  2. Need
  3. Needing
  4. None of the above

Correct Answer: A

Although the sentence is in plural form but will be considered singularly. Therefore singular verb “need” will come in the blank.

Hence Option A is the correct one.

Question 3.

Replace the underlined word by choosing the correct option:

A large amount of money were deducted from the account.

  1. has
  2. have
  3. was
  4. none

Correct Answer: C

The noun here is uncountable, as we are not sure how much money is deducted. Therefore, “was” should be used instead of “were.”

Read Also: How to solve Subject-verb agreement questions