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Conditional sentences, if-clauses type I, II, III

Conditional sentences

Tense Signal words Use Form Examples affirmative Examples negative Examples interrogative
Present
Simple
  • always
  • every……
  • frequently
  • never
  • occasionally
  • often
  • seldom
  • sometimes
  • usually
  • something happens repeatedly
  • how often something happens
  • one action follows another
  • things in general
  • with the following verbs (to love, to hate, to think, etc.)
  • future meaning: timetables, schedules
infinitive
(he/she/it)
-s
work. don’t
work.
Do I
work?
He works. He doesn’t
work.
Does he
work?
go. don’t go. Do I go?
He goes. He doesn’t
go.
Does he
go?
Present
Continuous
  • now
  • today
  • at the moment
  • right now
  • Look!
  • Listen!
  • something is happening at the same time of speaking or around it
  • future meaning: when you have already decided and arranged to do it (a fixed plan, date)
to be
(am/are/is)
infinitive
-ing
I‘m
working.
I‘m not
working.
Am I
working?
He‘s
working.
He isn’t
working.
Is he
working?
I‘m going. I‘m not
going.
Am I
going?
He‘s going. He isn’t
going.
Is he
going?
Past Simple
  • a ….. ago
  • in 1999
  • last…..
  • the other day
  • years ago
  • yesterday
action finished
in the past,
mostly
connected with
an expression of
time (no
connection to
the present)
  • regular:

infinitive + -ed

  • irregular:

2nd column of
table of irregular
verbs

worked. didn’t
work.
Did I
work?
He worked. He didn’t
work.
Did he
work?
went. didn’t
go.
Did I go?
He went. He didn’t
go.
Did he go?
Past
Continuous
  • while
  • when
  • an action happened in the middle of another action
  • someone was doing sth. at a certain time (in the past) – you do not know whether it was finished or not
was/were
infinitive
-ing
was
working.
wasn’t
working.
Was I
working?
He was
working.
He wasn’t
working.
Was he
working?
was going. wasn’t
going.
Was I
going?
He was
going.
He wasn’t
going.
Was he
going?
Present
Perfect
Simple
  • already
  • for
  • ever
  • just
  • lately
  • never
  • recently
  • since
  • so far
  • until now
  • up to now
  • (not) yet
  • you say that sth. has happened or is finished in the past and it has a connection to the present
  • action started in the past and continues up to the present
have/has +
past
participle*
have
worked.
haven’t
worked.
Have I
worked?
He has
worked.
He hasn’t
worked.
Has he
worked?
have
gone.
haven’t
gone.
Have I
gone?
He has
gone.
He hasn’t
gone.
Has he
gone?
Present
Perfect
Continuous
  • all day
  • for
  • just
  • since
  • the whole….
  • How long….?
  • action began in the past and has just stopped
  • how long the action has been happening
  • emphasis: length of time of an action
have/has
been
infinitive
-ing
have been
working.
haven’t
been
working.
Have I
been
working?
He has
been
working.
He hasn’t
been
working.
Has he
been
working?
have been
going.
haven’t
been
going.
Have I
been
going?
He has
been going.
He hasn’t
been
going.
Has he
been
going?
Past Perfect
Simple
  • already
  • before
  • for
  • just
  • never
  • not yet
  • once
  • until that day
  • when
  • mostly when two actions in a story are related to each other: the action which had already happened is put into Past Perfect, the other action into Simple Past
  • the past of Present Perfect
had +
past
participle*
had
worked.
hadn’t
worked.
Had I
worked?
He had
worked.
He hadn’t
worked.
Had he
worked?
had gone. hadn’t
gone.
Had I
gone?
He had
gone.
He hadn’t
gone.
Had he
gone?
Past
Perfect
Continuous
  • already
  • before
  • for
  • just
  • never
  • not yet
  • once
  • until that day
  • when
how long
something had
been happening
before
something else
happened
had + been
infinitive
ing
had been
working.
hadn’t
been
working.
Had I
been
working?
He had
been
working.
He hadn’t
been
working.
Had he
been
working?
had been
going.
hadn’t
been
going.
Had I
been
going?
He had
been going.
He hadn’t
been
going.
Had he
been
going?
will – future  
  • predictions about the future (you think that sth. will happen)
  • you decide to do sth. spontaneously at the time of speaking, you haven’t made a decision before
  • main clause in type I of the if clauses
will + infinitive I‘ll work. won’t
work.
Will I
work?
He‘ll work. He won’t
work.
Will he
work?
I‘ll go. won’t
go.
Will I go?
He‘ll go. He won’t
go.
Will he go?
going to – future  
  • when you have already decided to do sth. in the future
  • what you think what will happen
to be
(am/are/is)
+ going to
infinitive
I‘m going
to work.
I‘m not
going to work.
Am I
going
to work?
He‘s going
to work.
He‘s not
going to work.
Is he
going
to work?
I‘m going to go. I‘m not
going to go.
Am I
going
to go?
He‘s going to go. He‘s not
going to go.
Is he
going
to go?
Future Continuous  
  • An action will be in progress at a certain time in the future. This action has begun before the certain time.
  • Something happens because it normally happens.
will + be
infinitive
ing
I‘ll be
working.
won’t be
working.
Will I be
working?
He‘ll be
working.
He won’t
be
working.
Will he be
working?
I‘ll be
going.
won’t be
going.
Will I be
going?
He‘ll be
going.
He won’t
be going.
Will he be
going?
Future Perfect
Simple
  sth. will already
have happened
before a certain
time in the
future
will + have
past participle*
I‘ll have
worked.
won’t
have
worked.
Will I have
worked?
He‘ll have
worked.
He won’t
have
worked.
Will he have
worked?
I‘ll have
gone.
won’t
have
gone.
Will I have
gone?
He‘ll have
gone.
He won’t
have
gone.
Will he have
gone?
Future
Perfect
Continuous
 
  • sth. will already have happened before a certain time in the future
  • emphasis: length of time of an action
will + have
been
infinitive
ing
I‘ll have been
working.
won’t
have been
working.
Will I have
been
working?
He‘ll have
been
working.
He won’t
have been
working.
Will he have
been
working?
I‘ll have
been going.
won’t
have been
going.
Will I have
been
working?
He‘ll have
been going.
He won’t
have been
going.
Will he have
been
working?
Conditional Simple  
  • sth. that might
    happen
  • main clause in
    type II of the
    Conditional
    sentences
would
infinitive
would
work.
wouldn’t
work.
Would I work?
He would
work.
He wouldn’t
work.
Would he work?
would go. wouldn’t
go.
Would I go?
He would
go.
He wouldn’t
go.
Would he go?
Conditional
Continuous
 
  • sth. that might
    happen
  • emphasis:
    length of time of
    an action
would + be
infinitive
ing
would be
working.
wouldn’t
be
working.
Would I be
working?
He would be
working.
He wouldn’t
be
working.
Would he be
working?
would be
going.
wouldn’t
be going.
Would I be
going?
He would be going. He wouldn’t
be going.
Would he be
going?
Conditional
Perfect
Simple
 
  • sth. that might
    have happened
    in the past (It’s
    too late now.)
  • main clause in
    type III of the
    if clauses
would +
have +
past participle*
would have
worked.
wouldn’t
have
worked.
Would I have
worked?
He would
have
worked.
He wouldn’t
have
worked.
Would he
have
worked?
would
have gone.
wouldn’t
have
gone.
Would I have
gone?
He would have gone. He wouldn’t
have
gone.
Would I have
gone?
Conditional
Perfect
Continuous
 
  • sth. that might
    have happened
    in the past (It’s
    too late now.)
  • emphasis:
    length of time of
    an action
would + have
been
infinitive
ing
would have been
working.
wouldn’t
have been
working.
Would I have
been
working?
He would have been
going.
He wouldn’t
have been
going.
Would he have
been
working?
would have been
going.
wouldn’t
have been
going.
Would I have
been going?
He would have been
going.
He wouldn’t
have been
going.
Would he have
been
going?

*(infinitive + -ed) or (3rd column of table of irregular verbs)
We sometimes use Continuous instead of Progressive. Some signal words can be found in more tenses. We did not list signal words in the future tenses as there are no definite ones. Always remember what action is described.