Key: subject = yellow, bold; verb = green, underline
Subjects and verbs must agree in number. In addition to the explanations on this page, also see the post on Subject—Verb Agreement.
Example: She writes every day.
Exception: When using the singular "they," use plural verb forms.
Example: The participant expressed satisfaction with their job. They are currently in a managerial role at the organization.
Example: They write every day.
Sometimes, however, it seems a bit more complicated than this.
Example: The doctoral student and the committee members write every day.
Example: The percentage of employees who called in sick and the number of employees who left their jobs within 2 years are reflective of the level of job satisfaction.
Example: Interviews are one way to collect data and allow researchers to gain an in-depth understanding of participants.
Example: An assumption is something that is generally accepted as true and is an important consideration when conducting a doctoral study.
Example: The student, as well as the committee members, is excited.
Example: The student with all the master’s degrees is very motivated.
Example: Strategies that the teacher uses to encourage classroom participation include using small groups and clarifying expectations.
Example: The focus of the interviews was nine purposively selected participants.
Example: The chairperson or the CEO approves the proposal before proceeding.
Example: The student or the committee members write every day.
Example: The committee members or the student writes every day.
Example: Each of the participants was willing to be recorded.
Example: Neither alternative hypothesis was accepted.
Example: I will offer a $5 gift card to everybody who participates in the study.
Example: No one was available to meet with me at the preferred times.
Example: Education is the key to success.
Example: Diabetes affects many people around the world.
Example: The information obtained from the business owners was relevant to include in the study.
Example: The research I found on the topic was limited.
Example: The earnings for this quarter exceed expectations.
Example: The proceeds from the sale go to support the homeless population in the city.
Example: Locally produced goods have the advantage of shorter supply chains.
Example: There is little administrative support.
Example: There are many factors affecting teacher retention.
Example: The group meets every week.
Example: The committee agrees on the quality of the writing.
However, the plural verb is used if the focus is on the individuals in the group. This is much less common.
Example: The committee participate in various volunteer activities in their private lives.