GRAMMAR Exercise D [B2-] Past Present or Present Perfect


We use past perfect to report

  • events that happened before some point in the past

had + 3rd form of the main verb

Past perfect sentences

  • Last visit (in May), you said that you had started on a new drug. Are you still taking it?
  • Since May, Ms. Brown has been on donepezil for her Alzheimer’s. Before May, she had done only memory exercises.

Past perfect questions

  • We only use the helping verb ‘had’
  • The word order changes

‘had’ + (person/place/thing) + 3rd form of the main verb


  • Before the new drug, had you tried relaxation techniques?
  • Before donepezil, had Ms. Brown taken any other drugs?

In past perfect w-questions (who, what, when, where, why, which, how), the w-word goes before ‘had’:


  • What techniques had you tried before you started the drugs?
  • What had happened before they started the donepezil?



Practice repeating aloud each example sentence in this tutorial. Focus on the common collocations, running them together until they flow as one expression.  The collocations are underlined.


Past perfect or present perfect?

Instructions: Choose the correct option. 

Review MODULE 2 Lesson D for present perfect tense.

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