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  1. #1
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    Default Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Hello,


    I want to say something like this:

    The results of the study led the researchers to conclude that the type of treatment administered is suitable for the group.
    My issue is with the word "is". Should it be "was"?

    1) Please answer the question.
    2) If you could point me to authoritative reference material on the internet that speak particularly about this issue, I would appreciate it.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    if you use "is" you are stating a current fact that you have past confirmed.
    If you use "was" you are stating a result of the study.

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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    hamburgerenglish.
    Um, I'm not sure I understand your distinction. Please allow me to explain the sentence in focus.

    I am not one of the researchers. It was the researchers who concluded that "treatment administered" = "suitable to the group which received that treatment".

    Does this help us determine whether it's "is" or "was"?

  4. #4
    rj1948 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by kinghumpty View Post
    hamburgerenglish.
    Um, I'm not sure I understand your distinction. Please allow me to explain the sentence in focus.

    I am not one of the researchers. It was the researchers who concluded that "treatment administered" = "suitable to the group which received that treatment".

    Does this help us determine whether it's "is" or "was"?
    Could and would are used to make a polite request.Though past form is used ,it's present tense.
    ...that speaks...
    Regards,
    rj1948.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Why are you talking about "could" and "would"?

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    rj1948 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by kinghumpty View Post
    Why are you talking about "could" and "would"?
    I misunderstood your question.

    .... have led...administered is..

    Regards,
    rj1948.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    rj1948
    You changed "led" to "have led". I don't think that's necessary. If it is, please explain your reason.

    You chose "is". Again, I ask why.

    Thanks.

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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    The results of the study led the researchers to conclude that the type of treatment administered is suitable for the group.

    The researchers did a study on, say, 'can you successfully treat mentally ill people who are also of very low intelligence with X form of psychological treatment' or are people of lower intellectual capacity unable to derive any benefit from the treatment and so it is a waste of time trying.

    Now, treatment itself might take months or even years of sessions. But surely we don't need to wait until the end of the treatment to find out whether it is possible to do this treatment successfully with this group? Surely, there must be signs early on, that the treatment is working, is having some effect, that they are making some progress, that symptoms are being relieved?

    So, they do a study. They start treatment, and after a month, they compare the severity of the symptoms then with how bad they were at the start. If there has been some significant improvement, they know that the therapy, the treatment, isn't a total waste of time. Just how successful the treatment will eventually be - a complete cure? - they won't know till the end of the psychological treatment. BUT :
    The results of the study after just one month have led the researchers to conclude that the type of psychological treatment being administered is suitable for this group of people and so it is not a waste of time for the group to continue treatment to completion of the therapy.
    Last edited by David L.; 25-Jun-2008 at 09:22.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Ex: The results of the study led researchers to conclude that the type of treatment administered is/was suitable for the group.
    is = present fact
    was = past fact; was at the time, but is no longer now

    _______________________________
    One convention in academic writing that often gives students difficulty is what tense to use when discussing a text. One's first inclination is probably to use the past tense when discussing a book written in the past. But that's not what is usually done. Most textual analysis and commentary is written in the present tense, a convention sometimes called thehistorical present: Read more here http://nutsandbolts.washcoll.edu/rhetoric.html#present

    ________________________________________

    [The historical present] is particularly common with 'verbs of communication' such as tell, write, and say (and in colloquial uses, go) (Leech 2002: 7).

    Literary critics and grammarians have said that the historical present has the effect of making past events more vivid. More recently, analysts of its use in conversation have argued that it functions, not by making an event present, but by marking segments of a narrative, foregrounding events (that is, signalling that one event is particularly important, relevant to others) and marking a shift to evaluation (Brinton 1992: 221).

    Source: historical present. The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000.


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    venkatasu is offline Member
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    Default Re: Mixed Tenses in One Sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    Ex: The results of the study led researchers to conclude that the type of treatment administered is/was suitable for the group.
    is = present fact
    was = past fact; was at the time, but is no longer now

    _______________________________
    One convention in academic writing that often gives students difficulty is what tense to use when discussing a text. One's first inclination is probably to use the past tense when discussing a book written in the past. But that's not what is usually done. Most textual analysis and commentary is written in the present tense, a convention sometimes called thehistorical present: Read more here http://nutsandbolts.washcoll.edu/rhetoric.html#present

    ________________________________________

    [The historical present] is particularly common with 'verbs of communication' such as tell, write, and say (and in colloquial uses, go) (Leech 2002: 7).

    Literary critics and grammarians have said that the historical present has the effect of making past events more vivid. More recently, analysts of its use in conversation have argued that it functions, not by making an event present, but by marking segments of a narrative, foregrounding events (that is, signalling that one event is particularly important, relevant to others) and marking a shift to evaluation (Brinton 1992: 221).

    Source: historical present. The American HeritageŽ Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000.
    Dear Soup,

    I agree with you that historical present is used for making past events more vivid. But in this context (The initial thread) I don't think present tense is correct. It should be phrased as "........ have led the researchers to conclude that the type of treatment administered is suitable for the group"


    from
    venkatasu

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