Explanation – How To Use Articles

How To Use Articles

The Mistake English Learners Make

Articles are the words “a” and “the”, though there are a few types of words that have similar meanings that you can use instead of articles. The main problems are not using them when you need to, and using “the” when you should use “a”.

Wrong Ways And Right Ways To Use Articles

“We went to park in forest. Park was beautiful.” -> “We went to A park in THE forest.” THE park was beautiful.”
“I read THE book yesterday.” -> “I read A book yesterday.”

What To Understand To Avoid These Mistakes

The best way is to understand when we have to use articles or words like them and after that, which articles or words like them we need to use.

We need articles or words like them when talking about particular instead of general things, meaning particular instances or examples of things instead of the general ideas of them.

Then, when talking about a particular thing or things, we have to use one or another type of article or word like articles depending on whether the listener knows, can figure out, or is being told in the same sentence which thing or things we’re talking about.

If the listener knows which, we use a determiner, including “the”, and if they don’t, quantifiers, including “a”.

Practical tip

Watch your writing and speech for nouns in the singular without articles or article like words – without a determiner or quantifier, in other words. These will usually need one of these since general nouns, the only that you can use without determiners or quantifiers, are always in the plural, except for uncountable nouns. Uncountable nouns are the only that can be singular and without an article or article like word, and then, only when being talked about in general.