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    #1

    The first type is vs. the first type are

    Good evening to everybody out there!

    I would be very grateful if you could help me here 'cause I've got a problem with the subject-verb-agreement in the following sentences:

    There are three types / kinds of parents.

    a) The first type / kind are the parents who always take their child to school by car. [...]

    b) The first type / kind is the parents who ..... [...]

    c) Type one are the parents who....

    d) Type two is the parents who....

    I'm aware of the fact that you could easily change "parents" into "parent" and thus avoid that problem, but I'd like to find out whether the sentences 2 and 4 are okay or not. To me they sound very odd...

    Thanks in advance!

  1. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: The first type is vs. the first type are

    The verb has to agree with the subject. So say:

    The first type is....

    Or:

    Type one is....

    Or:

    The first type of parent is....

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: The first type is vs. the first type are

    Right. A parent is. Parents are.

    We wouldn't usually say "type one."
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  3. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: The first type is vs. the first type are

    I don't have a problem with "The first type are the parents who ..." This is because it is obvious that a parent is not a type and vice versa, so "The first type is the parent who ..." is just as right or wrong. The meaning is "Belonging to the first type are the parents who ..." or "Constituting the first type are the parents who ..."

    But you could avoid any controversy by setting up your sentences with "There are three types of parent," and then keep using 'parent'.

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