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    • Join Date: Dec 2008
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    Using Present Perfect


    Can we use tense in question like this.

    Since last month John has visited his English class. Since that time he has studied hard. But one day he decided that English is not his cup of tea. John joined Spanish class.

    Is it correct to use Present Perfect here or Past Perfect is advised? In my viewpoint, as we are discussing the process of John's attending English class before the past event, we should use Past Perfect, but I am not quiet sure.

    • Join Date: May 2009
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    Re: Using Present Perfect

    Last month, John attended his English class. During that time, he studied hard. However, one day John decided that English was not his cup of tea. Since then, John has joined Spanish class.

    "Since last month" means starting last month and continuing to the present. Since John no longer attends the class, it is not appropriate.

    "John has visited his English class". Visit means to go see a class once or twice to see whether you like it or not: "John has visited the English class twice this month." If he is enrolled in the class and he goes to the class, he is attending, not visiting: "John has attended English class every day since he enrolled." If it is last month, not continuing to the present, use the simple past.

    "But one day he decided that English is not his cup of tea." It used to be considered improper to start a sentence with "but", and I still discourage it. In this sentence I would use the past "was" rather than "is" for consistency with the other verb conjucation. It is something he decided in the past, and it was true even then.

    "John joined Spanish class." This is the most recent event leading up to the present, so I would say "John has joined Spanish class." The past tense is acceptable if you want to keep it, but I would put in some kind of temporal indicator: "Then John joined Spanish class."

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