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  1. Anonymous
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    #1

    STUDENT QUESTION - FOR & TO HELP PLEASE!!!!!!!

    Hi all,

    Apologies for not logging in but I am having problems with my forgotten password and retireval through my e-mail, anyhow:

    I had a student ask me this question today and was at a loss for a comprehensive answer!

    Which is correct and why?

    "This is important to me".

    "This is important for me".

    I have tried Practical english usage and there is a reference with 'for' usage with noun/pronoun but I found it as clear as mud and did not answer this context!

    I found a basic reference to the use of for + noun and to + verb in Murphy's essential grammar.......but I have heard both used many many times over the years in BE and I cannot say that either sound incorrect to me. If there is a rule in the regard to their usage in this context could one of you please shed a little light.

    Many many thanks in advance,


    Mak.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: STUDENT QUESTION - FOR & TO HELP PLEASE!!!!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by makavelithedon
    Hi all,

    Apologies for not logging in but I am having problems with my forgotten password and retireval through my e-mail, anyhow:

    I had a student ask me this question today and was at a loss for a comprehensive answer!

    Which is correct and why?

    "This is important to me".

    "This is important for me".

    I have tried Practical english usage and there is a reference with 'for' usage with noun/pronoun but I found it as clear as mud and did not answer this context!

    I found a basic reference to the use of for + noun and to + verb in Murphy's essential grammar.......but I have heard both used many many times over the years in BE and I cannot say that either sound incorrect to me. If there is a rule in the regard to their usage in this context could one of you please shed a little light.

    Many many thanks in advance,


    Mak.
    They are both correct.

    The sense of "important to me" is that that speaker cares about something.

    The sense of "important for me" is that something will be halpful or useful to the speaker.

    A college education is important to me. (I care about education and I want to be educated.)

    A college education is important for me. (I will be able to use it to get where I want to go.)

    :wink:


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    #3
    Many thanks Mike,

    I realise there is a subtle difference in meaning of the two sentences, and there were actually a few other examples that I was given! I was just looking for a hard a fast rule to forward them today and they are a beginner student so I was wary of trying to overload, but as with so much in English I can see it appears again an example of relevance entirely related to the context!


    Many thanks again for the speedy reply,


    Mak.

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    #4
    The rule youlooked at wouldn't explain this use- it would explain why we say 'it is important to be there', not 'for. The are a number of words that can take different prepositions, I'm afraid, like this one and 'different'.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by makaveli
    Many thanks Mike,

    I realise there is a subtle difference in meaning of the two sentences, and there were actually a few other examples that I was given! I was just looking for a hard a fast rule to forward them today and they are a beginner student so I was wary of trying to overload, but as with so much in English I can see it appears again an example of relevance entirely related to the context!


    Many thanks again for the speedy reply,


    Mak.
    The selection of prepositions is difficult for learners. Each preposition has a list of different uses/meanings, and there is consderable overlap. Many of the combinations with verbs are idiomatic, and can't be deduced from meanings. :wink:

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