Have you ever wondered when to use “Could you open the door?” or “Can you open the door?” What is the difference between Can and Could? What kind of words are they in the sentence?
In the above example, “can and could” are called modal verbs or modal verbs. In the process of learning English, you will encounter many cases of using such modal verbs. Let’s find out with Riclix.vn English UK Vietnam.
Watching: What’s behind can
Modal verbs are verbs that do not only act, but only help modify the main verb.
1.Why is it called a modal verb
?– Verbs that do not need to be conjugated in the 3rd person singular: I can, She can, He can
– There is no infinitive or participle form like other regular verbs
– The main verb is followed without conjugation, in the infinitive form (with or without “to”)
– No need for auxiliary verbs in questions, negative sentences, question tags…
2. Common modal verbs:
Modal Verbs Function Example Notes Can Describe a present or future possibility that a person can do something, or a possible event You can speak Spainish. It can rain. – Can and Could are also used in questions asking, asking for permission, asking. For example: Could you please wait a moment? Can I ask you a question? -Can use “be able to” instead of “can or could” Could (past tense of “Can”) To express possibility in the past My brother could speak English when he was five. Must Express a present or future necessity Give advice or inference with certainty, ask for emphasis You must get up earily in the morning. You must be hungry after work hard. You must be here before 8 a.m Mustn’t – indicates prohibition Have to Describe the need to do something but objectively (rules, regulations…) I have to stop smoking. My doctor said that. Don’t have to= Don’t have to= Don’t need to May Express what is possible in the present May I call her? -May and might are used to ask permission. But might is rarely used in spoken language, mainly in indirect sentences: May I turn on TV? I wonder if he might go there alone. See also: What is Abstraction – The Meaning of Abstract -Might is used not the past tense of May Where is John? I do not know. He may/might go out with his friends. Might (past of “May”) Expresses something that might have happened in the past. She might not be his house. Will Expresses, predicts something that will happen in the future Make a decision at the time of speaking Tomorrow will be sunny. Did you buy sugar? Oh, sorry. I’ll go now. Using Will or Would in sentences of suggestions, requests, invitations Will you have a cup of coffee? Would you like a cake? Would Expresses a presumption or prediction of a possible event in the past. She was a child. She would be upset when hearing this bad news. Shall Used to ask for ideas and advice. “Will” is used more than Where shall we eat tonight? Should Indicates an obligation or obligation, but to a lesser extent “Must” Give advice, opinion Use speculation You should send this report by 8th September. You should call her. She worked hard, she should get the best result. See also: What Is An English Salesperson, Job Trends Singing Ought to Mandatory Indications. Stronger than “Should” but not as strong as “Must” You ought not to eat candy at night.
The level of politeness in the required sentence when using modal verbs (ranked from highest to lowest):
May I- Could/Would you (please)- Will you- Can I
For those of you who are preparing for the IELTS or TOEFL exam, you should learn how to use modal verbs fluently to do well in writing. For courses and more details, please contact us: