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    #1

    check on it vs. check up on it

    Hi,

    I'd like to know what does "check on it" mean?

    If someone ask me about something and I am not sure about the answer, can I say: I will check on it? Or should I say I will check about it? Or I will check up on it?

    Thank you.

  1. EnglishRyan's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    'Check on' and 'check up on' are slightly different in meaning, with the latter denoting a situation requiring more attention. For example, a mother would check on a sleeping baby but check up on a sick baby. Both phrases loosely translate to 'make sure ___ is alright' (one to a slightly greater degree than the other) and are used to describe an object or situation that does not presently hold your attention. For example, I could not currently say I'm going to 'check on/check up on' my computer because, at this moment, I am using it.

    Both phrases are often preceded by 'I'd better'. So...

    I'd better check on that soup I'm cooking.
    (I'm going to have a quick look at that soup I'm cooking.)

    I'd better check up on that soup I'm cooking.
    (I'm going to have a quick look at that soup and I anticipate it will need some attention.)

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    #3

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    Don't use 'check about it'!

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    #4

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    The connotation as I understand it is that "check up on it" implies that it has been maintained, while "check on it" would imply a first visit to the subject.
    I have soup on the stove, let me check up on it. vs. Let me check on how Pia is coming along with the soup.

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    #5

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    Thanks a lot for the answers.

    Just wanna clarify. People asked me to help them find the contact of a professor, so I can say "I will check on it later", right?
    I have vague memory about another phrase with word "look", which could be used in this context also. Could anyone remind me which phrase that is? Thank you.

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    #6

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    I am not a native speaker but I would rather use 'I will look it up for you later' meaning'I will find out how to contact him/ find his phone number etc'.

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    #7

    Re: check on it vs. check up on it

    Thank you magdalena. :)

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