Lesson: Subject-Verb Agreement - Part I

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Nice video. I have a doubt though. Isn't orchestra singular?
gmat-admin's picture

In most cases yes. At 6:30 in the video, we discuss that, when the members in the group function as a unit, then the subject is considered singular. If the members in the group function individually, the subject is considered plural. When tuning their instruments, the members of an orchestra are not functioning as a unit. Each member is doing its own thing. So, in this case, orchestra is plural.

Is "enjoys" plural or singular?
gmat-admin's picture

"enjoys" is singular. He enjoys.
Singular form: She enjoys. It enjoys.
Plural form: They enjoy. We enjoy.

Hi, and thanks a lot for the great videos!
I have a question regarding the singular-plural example.
In a sentence "The jury has/have decided..." would it be correct to use "has" as the jury is considered a unit in this case?
gmat-admin's picture

Yes, in that case, the jury is functioning as a unit, so "has" would be appropriate.

In same example is it be right to say, The jury members have decided..... ?
gmat-admin's picture

That would be fine.

In that case, the subject is "members," and the word "jury" functions as an adjective." So, if we ignore the "fluff" (the adjective), we get: "The members have decided...", which is grammatically correct.

More on ignoring the fluff here: https://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-sentence-correction/video/1158

Hello, isn't number plural? Number of hours have increased? Have or has?
Another example- Number of my friends are coming to the party.
Thanks!
gmat-admin's picture

"Number" is singular and "numbers" is plural.

In "The number of hours..." the singular noun "number" is the subject, and "of hours" is a prepositional phrase that modifies "number." As such, we can ignore that phrase when trying to determine the appropriate verb. More here https://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-sentence-correction/video/1156 and here https://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-sentence-correction/video/1158.

So, we have "The number has/have increased."

At this point, we can see that we need "has."

For the last part, the first example is a gerund phrase and the second an infinitive phrase. What is the third one considered and are there particular ways of identifying it?

Also, in the case of "It is no one's concern whether the twins drive or fly to Baltimore", would the phrase become the object and "it" become the subject?
gmat-admin's picture

You're referring to the sentence "Whether the twins drive or fly to Baltimore is no one's concern."

I'm not sure whether there is a specific name given to the clause "Whether the twins drive or fly to Baltimore," but it doesn't matter. All you need to know is that this clause is acting as the subject of this sentence, in which case the subject is singular and needs a singular verb.

Yes, in the sentence, "It is no one's concern whether the twins drive or fly to Baltimore", "it" is the subject and "whether the twins drive or fly to Baltimore" is an object.

Declining values for farm equipment and land, the collateral against which farmers borrow to get through the harvest season, is going to force many lenders to tighten or deny credit this spring.

(A) the collateral against which farmers borrow to get through the harvest season, is
(B) which farmers use as collateral to borrow against to get through the harvest season, is
(C) the collateral which is borrowed against by farmers to get through the harvest season, is
(D) which farmers use as collateral to borrow against to get through the harvest season, are
(E) the collateral against which farmers borrow to get through the harvest season, are


help
confused between d and e
gmat-admin's picture

There's a nice discussion about this question here: http://www.beatthegmat.com/collateral-t279700.html

If you need any additional clarification, let me know.

What is verb in - Eating vegetables is good for you - ?

Initially I thought "you" is the subject.
gmat-admin's picture

The verb is "is" and the subject is "eating."

The word "is" is known as a linking verb. More here: https://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-sentence-correction/video/1151

Which one is correct? (keep or keeps)

1) A higher interest rate is only one of the factors, albeit an important one, that keep the housing market from spiraling out of control, as it did earlier in the decade.

2) A higher interest rate is only one of the factors, albeit an important one, that keeps the housing market from spiraling out of control, as it did earlier in the decade
gmat-admin's picture

The only difference is KEEP vs KEEPS.

So, I'll ask, "What noun is performing the action of keeping?"

The answer is "FACTORS" (the FACTORS KEEP the housing market from spiraling out of control)

Since FACTORS is plural, we need the plural form KEEP.

So, sentence 1 is the correct sentence.

Hello Brent,

In this statement,
'A higher interest rate is only one of the factors, albeit an important one, that keep the housing market from spiraling out of control, as it did earlier in the decade.'

Our focus is on the higher interest rate as it is one of the many factors. So basically, we are talking about the uniqueness (interest rates) rather than the generality (factors). So why factors become the subject of the sentence rather than the interest rates?

Also, I came across an interesting example which I would like to share.

Focus on the generality:

He is not one of those officers who follow orders blindly and unthinkingly. [The focus is on the set of officers.]

Focus on the uniqueness:

If you are one of the thousands who has already renewed your subscription… [The focus is on the addressee, the individual member of the larger set.]

gmat-admin's picture

I think the words "albeit an important one," cause most of the confusion.

Without those words, we get: A higher interest rate is only one of the factors that keep...'

There's a nice discussion of the question here: http://www.beatthegmat.com/a-higher-interest-rate-is-only-one-of-the-fac...

Are these both sentences correct?
1. The jury are arguing among themselves
2. The jury is arguing with the audience
gmat-admin's picture

Yes, they're correct.

In sentence 1, the jury members are NOT acting as a single entity, whereas in sentence 2, the jury members ARE acting as a single entity.

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