past perfect for past

Damien Hall djh514 at
Fri Aug 13 17:29:46 UTC 2010

Danielle Cyr said:

> My students at York University in Toronto are from a highly multicultural 
> and multilingual background. Very few of them, and even fewer of their 
> parents, have English as their first language. Most of them, however, 
> have had their high school years in Canada. They do not have the faintest 
> notion of the difference between simple past and past perfect, especially 
> of the resultative aspect in past perfect. Only a couple of mature 
> students still know the difference.

This is very interesting! So do you mean that many of your students use the 
past perfect and the simple past forms interchangeably, with the meaning of 
simple past? Or do they use only one of the forms but with both meanings?


Damien Hall

University of York
Department of Language and Linguistic Science
YO10 5DD

Tel. (office) +44 (0)1904 432665
     (mobile) +44 (0)771 853 5634
Fax  +44 (0)1904 432673


More information about the Funknet mailing list