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BLOG /Modal Auxilary

  • Syaifull Rully
  • Jumat, 06 Agustus 2021
  • English 11

can, could, had better, may, might, must, ought to, shall, should, will, and would.
Modal Auxiliary

Modal auxiliaries in English are can, could, had better, may, might, must, ought to, shall, should, will, and would.

Modal auxiliaries generally express a speaker's attitudes or moods. For examples, modals can express that a speaker feels something is necessary, advisable, permissible, or possible.

The modals should, ought to, had better, would, will, shall, may, and can are used to give advice and make offers.

  1. Should, Ought to, Had better

Should and ought to have the same meaning: they express advisability. The meaning ranges in strength from a suggestion to a statement about responsibility. In meaning, had better is close to should and ought to, but had better is usually stronger. It often imolies a warning or a threat of possible bad consequences.

  • Should

If you should do something, it is the best thing for you to do it because it is either good for you or it will help you.


    • I should give up smoking.
    • You should go to bed early if you're feeling tired.
    • Should not/shouldn't
    • Should not is used when it is the best thing for you to avoid something because it is bad for you.


    • They shouldn't worry so much. Everything will be all right.
    • They shouldn't come late.
  • Ought to

Use this modal to say that you think someone should do something because it is good for them or will help them.


    • The doctor told Dan he ought to exercise more.
    • You ought to ask Eric. I'm sure he'd help.\


  • Ought not/oughtn't

Ought not is used when you think it is best for someone not to do something.


    • She oughtn't drive if she's been drinking.
    • He oughtn't bully the new student.
    • Had better (especially in spoken language)

Use this modal to say that you think someone should do something because it is sensible or it will help them avoid problems.


    • You'd better ask your teacher for advice.
    • It was starting to snow and we thought we had better go home.


  1. Will, Shall, Would

Both will and shall are generally used to express future tense.

  • Will

This is the most common way of expressing future time. When we speak English, we often use contractions or short forms. The short form of will is 'II and the short form of will not is won't. You usually use these in spoken English instead of will or will not. The main verb can be either in its simple form or in its progressive form.


    • I will talk to them.
    • We'll have a break at six o'clock. He'll be arriving later.
    • Don't worry, I won't break it.

You can also use will to give your opinion about something in sentences that begin with I'm sure, I think, I expect, I suppose, I doubt, etc., or with words such as probably, perhaps, certainly, etc.


    • "Do you think Carta will pass her test?" "Yes, I'm sure she will."
    • I'll see him again soon.
    • They say it'll probably snow tomorrow.
    • Perhaps things will be better next week.
  • Shall

In British English, you often use shall in questions when making suggestions about what to do, or when discussing what to do.


    • Shall we go now?
    • What shall i tell Mike?

In formal British English, you can sometimes hear I shall used to express future time.


    • I shall try to persuade them.


If you want to say that you intend to do something, use will or shall. You can emphasize the meaning of intention if you say the modal louder than the surrounding words.

Shall is only used with the first person (I or we), and is much less common than will. It is hardly ever used in American English.


    • This letter says they will definitely give us our money back.
    • I shan't (shall not) stay long.


  • Would

To express an intention at a time in the past, use would.


    • I tried to explain, but nobody would listen.

Use would if there are conditions controlling whether something will take place.


    • I would leave tomorrow, if I had the money.

Would is also used for polite offer and request.


    • Would you like a glass of hot tea?
    • Would you mind repeating that?


  1. May, Can

May and can are used to make offers, requests, and to ask for permission. May is equally polite as could. Can is used informally, especially if the speaker is talking to someone he knows fairly well.


    • May I get you a glass of water?
    • Can i give you a hand?

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