Agreement Verbs

Agreement Verbs: Understanding the Importance of Subject-Verb Agreement

As a copy editor, it is important to pay close attention to the relationship between the subject and verb of a sentence. This relationship is known as subject-verb agreement, and it is a critical component of effective communication. In this article, we’ll explore the concept of agreement verbs, why they matter, and how you can avoid common mistakes.

What are Agreement Verbs?

Agreement verbs are verbs that match the subject of a sentence in number and person. In simpler terms, they ensure that the verb form agrees with the subject, reflecting whether the subject is singular or plural, and is in the first, second, or third person. For example:

- He runs.

- They run.

In the first sentence, the subject “he” is singular, so the verb “runs” is in the third person singular form. In the second sentence, the subject “they” is plural, so the verb “run” is in the third person plural form.

Why Do Agreement Verbs Matter?

Subject-verb agreement is important because it adds clarity and precision to your writing. If there is a lack of agreement between the subject and verb in a sentence, it can lead to confusion and inaccuracies. Additionally, agreement verbs are essential in ensuring that your writing follows the rules of grammar, which aids in making your writing more professional and trustworthy.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

One common mistake when dealing with agreement verbs is to mismatch singular and plural forms. For example, saying “He and his friends is going to the store” is incorrect because “friends” is plural, so the verb “is” (singular) is not in agreement with the subject.

Another mistake is using the wrong verb tense. For instance, saying “She have a book” is incorrect because “have” is the present tense, while the subject “she” is in the third person singular form which requires a present-tense verb form that ends in -s, such as “has” or “is having”.

Avoiding these and other errors requires a thorough understanding of the rules of subject-verb agreement. It is crucial to check your work meticulously and make necessary corrections when necessary.

Conclusion

Agreement verbs are just one aspect of subject-verb agreement, but they are crucial in ensuring that your writing is precise, clear, and grammatically correct. As a professional, it is essential to have a good grasp of agreement verbs when editing written content to enhance readability and user experience. Be mindful of the common mistakes to avoid and make sure to check your work thoroughly to ensure that your writing is effective.