Student or Learner
Hi, I wanna ask about grammar...
I want to describe an occupation in GENERAL...
Should I write..with article 'a'..
"A doctor works in a hospital. A doctor treats patients and gives medicine.'
OR..with zero article..
"Doctor works in a hospital. Doctor treats patients......"
I'm confused here..
If some comes to the hospital and asks the nurse:
Can I see the doctor here? (the doctor means the specific doctor on duty at the time of asking the question which is known to the nurse)
Nurse: Please wait. The doctor is busy.
If the question is:
Can I see a doctor. (a doctor means any one who is present at the time of asking the question.)
Nurse: Sorry, no one is free.
No (zero) article;
Doctors in this hospital are on leave today. (plural and indefinite)
“doctors” is plural. The lack of an article in front of it means that the speaker/writer is talking not about particular doctors that are known to the listener/reader, but about doctors in general working in that hospital
For proper use of article, a clear understanding of two concepts countability and definiteness are essential.
Last edited by sarat_106; 21-Jan-2010 at 05:50.
How about I wanna write a 'factual description' about an occupation 'TEACHER' generally without referring to any specific individual...
Being a teacher is one of the popular ambitions. A teacher works in school. A teacher teaches students academic subjects and skill of living too.
Is the use article 'a' in both sentences appropriate or redundancy ?
Should it be replaced with 'the', zero article or 'teachers' to make it general...
***thank you everyone....
You can make general references to countable nouns via either an indefinite singular or plural noun phrase, hence either
A doctor works in a hospital.
Doctors work in hospitals.
, with the plural form being generally the more natural choice.
Note that it is even possible to make universal references using the definite article, although this is mainly reserved for animals or inanimate objects and tends to lend a somewhat elevated or scientific tone, e.g.
The rhinoceros is a shortsighted beast.
The violin is a beautiful instrument.
You can replace 'a' by ‘the’ after the fist sentence, as a rule: The noun has been previously mentioned, so a reader/listener can know specifically what a noun is referring to; as:
I saw a funny-looking dog yesterday [first mention, indefinite]. When it saw my cat, the dog ran away [second mention, definite].