English Grammar – Top 7 Commonly Confused Uncountable Nouns

A noun is a word that refers to a person, place, thing, event, substance or quality.  Seems simple enough but nouns can also be very confusing. For example, some people have a tough time distinguishing countable nouns and uncountable nouns. Certain words in the English language seem countable but are actually uncountable nouns. Let’s look at seven of them: 

1  Equipment 

♦  All medical equipment must be sterilised before use. 

♦  The photographer arrived at the venue early to set up his equipment.

NOTE: As ‘equipment’ is uncountable, we cannot say ‘an equipment’ or ‘equipments’. To refer to a single item of equipment, we say a piece of equipment. The same applies to ‘furniture’ and ‘luggage’.

2  Furniture 

♦  He likes to collect antique furniture

♦  We need to buy a few more pieces of furniture for the guest room. 

3  Luggage 

♦  You should never leave your luggage unattended. 

♦  Let’s drop our luggage off at the hotel and go sightseeing. 

4  Accommodation (mainly UK)

♦  There’s a shortage of affordable accommodation in major cities like London.

♦  The cost includes flight, accommodation and meals. 

NOTE: ‘accommodations’ (plural) is used in the US.

5  Feedback 

♦  The new programme received a lot of positive feedback from viewers. 

♦  Please give us your feedback by completing this questionnaire. 

6  Evidence 

♦  Scientific evidence shows a link between smoking and lung cancer.

♦  Two pieces of evidence incriminating him were found last week.

7  Research 

♦  They are conducting some fascinating research on animal languages. 

♦  It was a useful piece of research

 

Finally, in case you didn’t know, money is uncountable BUT dollars, pounds and other monetary units are countable. 🙂

 

Sponge ME, English Tuition (Singapore)

Categories: English 101
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