The English language is arranged with confusing grammar rules. Whether you’ve been composing essays in college for months or just entering high school English courses, there are a handful of typical errors which can land you in a soup. Correct grammar is essential for effective communication, both spoken and written. So it’s important you brush up on these details every now and then to ensure you are thoroughgoing with these rules and showcase the best of your potential to your teachers and peers.


Let’s take a look at 5 commonly confused grammar rules:


1) Subject-verb disagreement

This is when you use the plural-form verb for a single-form noun or a single-form verb for a plural noun.

✗ The dog chase the cat.

✓  The dog chases the cat.


✗ The cats jumps on the dog.

✓ The cats jump on the dog.


2) Verb tense shifting

Verbs in the same clause should use the same tense when talking about a topic. Using different tenses can leave the reader confused about the time frame covered by the action/s denoted in a sentence.


✗ Lisa watched the movie and cries out loud.


(Lisa finished watching the show and is now crying? This sentence doesn’t make sense, right?)


✓ Lisa watched the movie and cried out loud.


3)  “i.e.” vs. “e.g.”

This is a common mistake found in college and high school essays. “i.e.” and “e.g.” are suitable abbreviations for the purpose of clarification. But contrary to popular belief, these terms should not be used interchangeably.

Generally i.e. and the clarification that follows ends a sentence. The e.g. abbreviation adds information whereas i.e. reinstates information. Here are some examples:


✓ A sports shoe which is synthetic, i.e. not leather

✓ There were many music instruments (e.g. drums, guitar, and piano)


4) Verb form confusion

Wrong verb participle and present participle overuse are the two most common errors associated with verb form.

British and American English may have different spellings for certain verb participles. For example, “learned” is used in the US, whereas both “learned” and “learnt” are accepted in the UK.


Generally, the present simple tense is used to discuss facts, habits, and the state or condition of something.

✗ The sun is always rising in the east.

✓ The sun always rises in the east.


5) Then/than


Some people always confuse between these two words. Let’s clear that confusion for once. Then is commonly used to designate the sequence of events.

✓ She finished her project and then started watching a movie.


Than is used to compare two things.

✓ Your score is better than your partner’s.


So, there you have it… the most commonly confused grammar rules busted. For the more severe rules you can’t get your head around, you can always trust PaperTrue.