Grammar

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)

English Grammar – Loss vs Lost

Both loss and lost have to do with losing. In this post, you will learn the difference between loss and lost.

When to use ‘loss’?

Loss is a noun (naming word) and is defined as the state of no longer having something or as much of something.

Examples:

  • I want to report the loss of a package (singular).
  • The closure of the factory will lead to a number of job losses (plural).

When to use ‘lost’?

Lost is the past tense and past participle of lose. To lose something is to misplace it or have it taken away by someone or something. Since lost is a verb (action word), you should expect to see it following a subject of some kind.

Examples:

  • I have lost my car keys.
  • Some families lost everything in the flood.

Lost is also an adjective that describes a noun.

Examples:

  • Your letter must have got lost in the post.
  • She is still looking for that lost cat.

 

Sponge ME, English Tuition (Singapore)

English Grammar – Everyday vs Every Day

Everyday = an adjective that describes a noun

Definition: happening every day or regularly; ordinary

Example: The Internet has become part of everyday life.              

In this instance, ‘everyday’ is followed by a noun and is not used by itself at the end of a sentence.

Every day = a phrase that usually acts as an adverb

Definition: all of the days or each day over a period of time

Example: I drink coffee every day.                                                        

In this instance, you should separate ‘every’ and ‘day’ like ‘every hour’, ‘every week’, ‘every month’, etc. You don’ t write ‘everyhour’, do you? 🙂

Sponge ME, English Tuition (Singapore)