Grammar Lesson J [B2]


Usually we use active voice and focus more on the person/thing who does the action (the doer or the subject). The subject comes first:    

  • Antibiotics treat bacterial infections.

But sometimes we want to focus on the receiver or outcome of the action (the object). For this, we change to passive voice. The object comes first:

  • Bacterial infections are treated by antibiotics.

Sometimes, we don’t care about the subject (the doer) at all and completely omit them (leave them out):

  • We care about the doer = active voice: Many organisations are promoting interest in healthcare communication.
  • We don’t care about the doer = passive voice: Interest in healthcare communication is being promoted (by many organisations).

How is the passive voice formed?

See ‘APPENDIX 4.3 – Active and Passive Voice’ tenses

Passive is used most often for:

  • more formal speech
  • reporting
  • emphasis



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