Thursday, 29 November 2012

Question words

Question words


WHO is only used when referring to people. (= I want to know the person)
  • Who is the best football player in the world?
  • Who are your best friends?
  • Who is that strange guy over there?


WHERE is used when referring to a place or location. (= I want to know the place)
  • Where is the library?
  • Where do you live?
  • Where are my shoes?


WHEN is used to refer to a time or an occasion. (= I want to know the time)
  • When do the shops open?
  • When is his birthday?
  • When are we going to finish?


WHY is used to obtain an explanation or a reason. (= I want to know the reason)
  • Why do we need a nanny?
  • Why are they always late?
  • Why does he complain all the time?
Normally the response begins with "Because..."


WHAT is used to refer to specific information. (= I want to know the thing)
  • What is your name?
  • What is her favourite colour?
  • What is the time?


WHICH is used when a choice needs to be made. (= I want to know the thing between alternatives)
  • Which drink did you order – the rum or the beer?
  • Which day do you prefer for a meeting – today or tomorrow?
  • Which is better - this one or that one?


HOW is used to describe the manner that something is done. (= I want to know the way)
  • How do you cook paella?
  • How does he know the answer?
  • How can I learn English quickly?

With HOW there are a number of other expressions that are used in questions:

How much – refers to a quantity or a price (uncountable nouns)
  • How much time do you have to finish the test?
  • How much is the jacket on display in the window?
  • How much money will I need?

How many – refers to a quantity (countable nouns)
  • How many days are there in April?
  • How many people live in this city?
  • How many brothers and sister do you have?

How often – refers to frequency
  • How often do you visit your grandmother?
  • How often does she study?
  • How often are you sick?

How far – refers to distance
  • How far is the university from your house?
  • How far is the bus stop from here?

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