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”:

WRONG
We included also the information that the holiday year starts on 1 January.
RIGHT
We also included the information that the holiday year starts on 1 January.

WRONG
The rules set out above apply also to the Confidential Information.
RIGHT
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:

WRONG
We have only time to finish the first part of the project by the deadline.
RIGHT
We only have time to finish the first part of the project by the deadline.

WRONG
Who has usually access to classified information?
RIGHT
Who usually has access to classified information?

WRONG
Do you know when Jan Kowalski started officially his work for the Company?
RIGHT
Do you know when Jan Kowalski officially started his work for the Company?

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 in this sector.

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.

More examples:

You must also send us the signed PoA.
(“must” is a modal auxiliary verb which modifies “send”)

We have already heard about the outcome.
(“have heard” = present perfect)

He is just arriving now.
(“is arriving” = present continuous)

The firm has frequently been praised for its commercial approach to problem solving.
(“has been praised” = present perfect passive)

In some of these examples the adverb could be put in a different place for particular emphasis. But these show standard word order.

 

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