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Basic Grammar for IELTS: Tense

This web story explains the basic verb tenses - simple, continuous, and perfect - with examples, usage tips, and practice resources for IELTS grammar preparation.
Tenses indicate when an action takes place - past, present, or future. So let’s learn more about them quickly!
Simple Tense
The simple tenses - simple present, simple past, and simple future - are formed by adding verb endings like -s and -ed. Also -will as a prefix.

E.g. she walks, she walked, she will walk.
Continuous Tense

The continuous tenses - present continuous, past continuous, future continuous - use verbs ending in -ing. 

E.g. she is walking, she was walking, she will be walking.

Perfect Tense

The perfect tenses - present perfect, past perfect, future perfect - use has/have/had + past participle.

E.g. she has walked, she had walked, she will have walked.

When to use?
When describing experiences and habits, use simple present tense. For future plans, use present continuous or going to. For actions started in the past, use present perfect.
Be Consistent
Pay attention to tense consistency within paragraphs. Stay consistent between tenses. Use time markers like yesterday, now, or next week to indicate tense.
That covers the basics! With practice, you'll be able to identify and use tenses correctly.

For more grammar tips and practice questions, click on the button below.