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Grammar Notes

Units 16, 17, 18

Unit 16
Present Perfect: "Since" and "For"

1. Present perfect tense structure: Subject + have/has+ PP

a. Bob has been a teacher since 1987.

b. They have been in Paris for many years.

Verb tense

1. Present
2. Past
3. Past participle (PP)

a. regular: add -ed: love, loved, loved - want, wanted, wanted

b. irregular:

be was/were been see saw seen meet, met, met

sleep slept slept sell sold sold tell told told
buy bought bought think thought thought begin began begun
sing sang sung have had had make made made
put put put read read read pay paid paid
say said said do did done go went gone
dive drove driven give gave given know knew known
grow grew grown eat ate eaten fall fell fallen
speak spoke spoken break broke broken get got gotten
write wrote written

3. Use "since" with present perfect tense to;

a. since + point in time: since yesterday, since 5:00, since Monday, since 1995, since then
b. since + time clause: since he was a child, since I was here, since they were ... .

4. Use "for" with present perfect tense

a. for + length of time: for 10 minutes, for two weeks, for years, for a long time

a. Bob has owned a restaurant for years.

Unit 17
Present Perfect: Already and Yet
1. Use "already" in affirmative (+) present perfect.

a. I have already mailed the invitation.

b. John has already met Mary.

2. Be careful!
Do not use present perfect with already and past time.

a. John has already met Mary.

b. * John has already met Mary last month.

3. If "already" is used in question present perfect, it shows surprise.

a. Has John arrived already? (= John has arrived sooner than expected)

4. Use "yet" in negative (-) and question (?) present perfect.

a. I haven't cleaned yet.

b. John hasn't called yet.
c. Have you bought the water yet?
d. Has she arrived yet?

5. Use "yet" at the end of the sentence or after haven't/hasn't.

a. They haven't arrived yet.

b. They haven't yet arrived.
c. *They yet haven’t arrived.

6. Use "haven't/hasn't" or "not yet" to answer questions.

John: Has the party started yet?

Mary: No, not yet.
Mary: No, it hasn't.
Mary: Not yet.

Unit 18
Present Perfect: Indefinite (= unknown) Past

1. Use present perfect when you do not know exactly when something happened.

a. They've traveled to Egypt.

b. We've been to Rome.
c. She’s been to Qatar.
2. For repeated action, use “twice” or “many times” at the end of the sentence.

a. I’ve stayed there many times.

b. I’ve seen this movie twice.

3. Use “adverbs of frequency” (= always, never, ever, often) before the PP.

a. I’ve always stayed there.

b. She’s never been there.

c. *I’ve stayed always there.

d. *I’ve stayed there always.
e. *She’s been never there.
f. *She’s been there never.

4. Use “ever” for asking questions in present perfect.

a. Have you ever been to Rome?

b. *Have you never been to Rome?

5. Use “never” in negative present perfect.

a. I’ve never been there.


John: Have you ever been to Rome?

Mary: I’ve never been to Rome.

Mary: No, never.

6. Use “just” before the PP in present perfect tense.

a. I’ve just gotten back from China.

b. *I just have gotten back from China.
c. *I’ve gotten just back from China.

7. Use “lately” at the end of the sentence.

a. They haven’t been there lately.

b. *They lately haven’t been there.
c. *They haven’t lately been there.
d. *They haven’t been lately there.

8. Use “recently” before PP or at the end of the sentence.

1 2

a. He has recently flown a lot.

b. He has flown a lot recently.

c. *He recently has flown a lot.

d. *He has flown recently a lot.

9. In American English, people often use just and recently with the simple past.

a. I just got back from China. (American English)

b. I’ve just got back from China. (British English)