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As IBPS has asked 10 Questions from Errors in IBPS PO Pre Examinations, so, there are chances to repeat the pattern and they may ask Error more in IBPS Clerk Pre too. So, in order to tackle the English Section, we are providing you with the Subject-verb Agreement Concepts which will help you for solving the English Section very easily, especially Spotting Errors of all the upcoming Examinations. So, make most of it and do well in all the upcoming Examinations.

Subject verb agreement is an important topic and can be very helpful when solving sentence correction and error detection type of questions in the English section. So, we are here providing you with some rules on subject- verb agreement that will enhance your scores in the upcoming examinations. Go through it, work on it and it’ll surely help you

Basic Principle: Singular subjects need singular verbs; plural subjects need plural verbs.


1. The indefinite pronouns anyone, everyone, someone, no one, nobody are always singular and, therefore, require singular verbs.

Everyone has done his or her assignment.
Somebody has left her mobile.
  • Some indefinite pronouns — such as all, some — are singular or plural depending on what they’re referring to.
Some of the books are missing.
Some of the milk is gone.
Books are countable and milk is uncountable. So choose carefully
  • There is one indefinite pronoun, none, that can be either singular or plural. None is used in the singular or plural as the sense may require.
    • none as meaning not any , use a plural verb, as in “None of the teams have arrived.”
    • none as meaning not one, use a singular verb, as in “None of the food is fresh.”
    • When none is followed by of, look at the noun in your of phrase (object of the preposition). If the object of the preposition is singular, use a singular verb. If the object of the preposition is plural, plural verb is more apt but a singular verb does not make it incorrect.Examples:None of the cake was eaten.None of the students were hungry. BUT None (as in, “not a single one”) of the student was hungry is not incorrect.


2. Each is often followed by a prepositional phrase ending in a plural word (Each of the cars), thus confusing the verb choice. Each, too, is always singular and requires a singular verb.

Each of the players is responsible for his performance.
Don’t let the word “players” confuse you; the subject is each and each is always singular — Each is responsible.


3. Phrases such as together with, as well as, and along with are not the same as and. The phrase introduced by as well as or along with will modify the earlier word (minister in this case)

The minister as well as his cousins is going to prison.
The minister and his cousins are going to jail.


4. As a general rule, use a plural verb with two or more subjects when they are connected by and.

Example: A car and a bike are my means of transportation.
But note these exceptions: Single Unit 
  • If two singular nouns refer to the same person or thing, the verb must be singular. Ex- The poet and the critic has been honoured.
  • If two subjects together express one idea, the verb is in the singular. Ex- Bread and butter is essential for one’s life.


5. The pronouns neither and either are singular and require singular verbs even though they seem to be referring, in a sense, to two things.

Neither of the two mobiles is working.
Either is fine with me.

6. When nor or or is used the subject closer to the verb determines the number of the verb. Whether the subject comes before or after the verb doesn’t matter; the proximity determines the number.

Either my father or my brothers are going to sell the house.
Neither my brothers nor my father is going to sell the house.

7. The words there and here

The subject follows the verb but still determines the number of the verb.
There are two reasons [plural subject] for this.
There is no reason for this.
Here are two apples.

8. Fractional expressions such as half of, a part of, a percentage of, a majority of are sometimes singular and sometimes plural, depending on the meaning.

Sixty percent of the students are in favour of reviewing the process.
Sixty percent of the student body is in favour of reviewing the process.

9. When all, any, more, most and some act as subjects.

Some of the citizens are still happy.

10. Sums and products of mathematical processes are expressed as singular and require singular verbs.

Two and two is four.
Four times four divided by two is eight.

11. The expression “more than one” takes a singular verb:

More than one student has cracked this exam.

12. If your sentence compounds a positive and a negative subject and one is plural, the other singular, the verb should agree with the positive subject.

  • It is not the faculty members but the principal who decides this issue.
  • It was the speaker, not his ideas, that has provoked the students to riot.

13. Subjunctive Mood: Were

A verb is in the subjunctive mood when it expresses a condition which is doubtful or not factual. It is most often found in a clause beginning with the word if. It is also found in clauses following a verb that expresses a doubt, a wish, regret, request, demand, or proposal.
Ex- I wish it were true that he loved me.
If i were you, I’d fix that leaky pipe.
I wish I were more perceptive. 
Indicative mood: Was
If Ram was to come over for coffee, we would talk about music.
It’s not contrary to fact, presupposed to be false, or wishful. It’s likely to happen. It’s an indicative statement.
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