Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Would vs. Could


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 39
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    Would vs. Could

    How do you decide which would be more appropriate in a sentence, like - "Would you read it out to me please?" or "Could you read it out to me please?"

    Alternatively, is it better to say "Would you read it out for me please?" or "Could you read that out for me please?"

    Is there a general rule that one could follow, when deciding whether to use could or would?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 16,120
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Quote Originally Posted by kkookk2003 View Post
    How do you decide which would be more appropriate in a sentence, like - "Would you read it out to me please?" or "Could you read it out to me please?"

    Alternatively, is it better to say "Would you read it out for me please?" or "Could you read that out for me please?"

    Is there a general rule that one could follow, when deciding whether to use could or would?
    Either word is acceptable. Both are polite forms.

    Either "it" or "that" is acceptable.

    However, "out" should be "out loud".

  2. BobK's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 15,854
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Would and could have more-or-less equivalent meanings in these polite questions. There's a[n] (I think) juvenile tendency to make a clever-clever distinction along these lines:

    Could you give me some more paper?
    Well I could, but I'm not going to.

    Some teachers do it, to emphasize their position of power. It never impressed me much.

    b


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 39
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Hi,

    Thanks a lot for the replies.

    Regards,

    Benjamin

  3. rewboss's Avatar

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
    • Posts: 1,553
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    However, "out" should be "out loud".
    In British English at least, "out" is perfectly acceptable.

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 16,120
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #6

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Quote Originally Posted by rewboss View Post
    In British English at least, "out" is perfectly acceptable.
    Thanks. I'll add that to my list.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 39
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #7

    Re: Would vs. Could

    Thank you

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •