Two important aspects of any language are the grammar and the vocabulary. While you focus on improving your English vocabulary, it is also important to ensure that you work on grammar as well.
The truth is that grammar is the foundation and the building block for becoming proficient in English, while vocabulary lends beauty to the language.It is also true that fixing grammar issues is more challenging than building on your vocabulary. So, the earlier you get the hang of correct English grammar, the better it is.
We often find a lot of people using ‘good’ words and giving the impression of having a good vocabulary, without being grammatically correct. However, you cannot be considered very good at spoken English till you get better with grammar. So, let’s focus on a fixing a couple of common English grammar mistakes to start with, which can be easily avoided.
When and how to use “been” and “being”
Here are two separate sentences that a person uses.
- This has done.
- It has sent.
Do the above sentences “sound” right?
In both the sentences above, the speaker is trying to communicate that the task was done and ‘it’ was sent. However, reading the sentences above, the immediate question that comes to mind is- “this has done what?” or “it has sent what?”
The focus shifts from the completion of the action to the “what”, an indication that the sentence is not correct English. There is an important word missing. And that word is “been”. To convey the meaning of the completion of the tasks, the word ‘been’ is necessary. So, the correct form of the two sentences above should be:
This has been done.
It has been sent.
A similar and related mistake that we see is in the following sentence.
- This is been done.
Do you see the problem with the above sentence? “Is” generally relates to something in the present while “been” relates to something in the past. Both of them placed side by side create a confusion with the tense and therein lies the problem.
The correct forms of the above sentence should be:
- This is being done (if the action had already started in the past and is continuing in the present); OR
- This has been done (if the action has already been completed).
Think of other examples where you have either come across these issues or where you may have used these words incorrectly. The next time somebody asks you for an update on an particular task or a report, remember how to use been and being correctly!
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-By Chander Madan