What is the correct position in a sentence of the word “also”?
One of the most common mistakes associated with word order is the tendency to put adverbs in the wrong place. This particularly applies to the word “also”, but other adverbs are commonly misplaced too.
Consider the following examples with “also”:
- We included also the information that the holiday year starts on 1 January.
- We also included the information that the holiday year starts on 1 January.
- The rules set out above apply also to the Confidential Information.
- The rules set out above also apply to the Confidential Information.
As these examples show, “also” should go between the subject and the verb, NOT after the verb. The next examples – with other adverbs – follow the same pattern:
- We have only time to finish the first part of the project by the deadline.
- We only have time to finish the first part of the project by the deadline.
- Who has usually access to classified information?
- Who usually has access to classified information?
There is, of course, an exception to this rule. When the verb is “to be” the adverb usually goes after the verb:
- She is also an experienced adviser on mergers and acquisitions.
- The client is often unable to sign documents at short notice due to extensive foreign travel.
When a sentence has an auxiliary verb and a main verb, it is usual to put adverbs between them. For example:
- We have finally completed the project.
Here “have” is the auxiliary verb and “completed” is the main verb; “have completed” is the present perfect tense.
- We have already heard about the outcome.
- The firm has frequently been praised for its commercial approach to problem solving.