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Speaking Tag Questions

Tag questions are used when seeking confirmation of what one believes to be true. They restate, in question form, the previously spoken sentence. For example,

She is an English teacher. Isn't she?

They're not from Hong Kong. Are they?

Tom is a superman. Isn't he?

Jake is going to Singapore, isn't he?

You have never been to Macau. Have you?

Beyond from Hong Kong. Aren't they?

You went to the Tian an men square. Didn't you?

Robin doesn't live in Shanghai. Does he?

Ms. Chang has a iphone5. Doesn't she?


(Positive statement, negative tag)

(Negative statement, positive tag)

(Positive statement, negative tag)

(Positive statement, negative tag)

(Negative statement, positive tag)

(Positive statement, negative tag)

(Positive statement, negative tag)

(Negative statement, positive tag)

(Positive statement, negative tag)

In tag questions, the corresponding pronoun and the first verb of the corresponding yes/no question are used. Also, notice that with positive statements, negative tag questions are used and vice versa.

See also : Grammar : Yes/No Questions

Common mistakes :

You are the zookeeper. Yes

You're the zookeeper. Aren't you?

You come from Japan. No?

You come from Japan. Don't you?

You're a teacher. Are you?

You're a teacher. Are you?

Role is from Congqin. Isn't it?

Role is from Congqin. Isn't he?


(Incorrect)

(Correct)

(Incorrect)

(Correct)

(Incorrect-in most situations)

(Correct)

(Incorrect)

(Correct)

Some modals can be used in tag questions: can, will, would, could, should and must.

Mr. Peng will be at the speech. Won't he?

They couldn't do it. Could they?

Note : When the subject is ?I? and the statement is in present tense, aren't is commonly used for tag questions.

I'm the winner. Aren't I?

I'm the winner. Am I not?


(Common usage)

(Formal)

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