Using the present perfect tense

November 29, 2012pdf

Form: has / have + past participle form of the verb

Affirmative Negative Question
I have worked. I have not worked. Have I worked?
He has worked. He has not worked. Has he worked?
She has worked. She has not worked. Has she worked?
They have worked. They have not worked. Have they worked?
We have worked. We have not worked. Have we worked?
You have worked. You have not worked. Have you worked?

Notes

Use have when the subject is a plural noun or plural pronoun like you, we and they. Have is also used with the first person singular pronoun I.

Use has when the subject is a singular noun or a singular pronoun like he, she or it.

Uses of the present perfect tense

The present perfect tense is used to talk about a finished action or event that is connected with the present in some way.

If we say that somebody has done something, we are thinking about the past and the present at the same time. In many cases it is possible to change a present perfect sentence into a simple present sentence.

  • She has finished her job. (= Her job is now finished.)
  • I have broken my leg. (= My leg is broken now.)
  • John has broken another window. (= Another window is broken now.)
  • The boys have set the bird free. (= The bird is free now.)
  • His father has died. (= His father is dead.)

The present perfect tense is often used to express the idea of completion or achievement.

  • She has written five novels.
  • The boy has done his homework.
  • I have cleaned the doors and windows.

Giving news of recent events

The present perfect tense is the most normal tense for giving news of recent events.

  • The rupee has fallen against the dollar.
  • The opposition has said that the government’s economic policies are not working.
  • There has been an explosion near the Juma Masjid.
Free Grammar Guide: "120 Deadly Grammar and Vocabulary Mistakes."