The verbal section of the GMAT exam tests your proficiency in the English language. One of the main grammar topics that you are tested upon is verb tense. Verb tense questions are mainly asked in the sentence correction question of the verbal section. To do well in this section, it is important to practice some GMAT verb tense practice questions. Before you give you verb tense practice question examples, let’s understand what is verb tense. 

A verb tense is classified into the Past, Present and Future tense. Let’s look at the various tense forms of the verb in detail.

Simple form (Simple past, Simple present and Simple future)
Continuous and Perfect forms ( for example – Past perfect, Present perfect,Future continuous, Past continuous. etc) — These forms are also referred to as aspects rather than tense forms, it talks about an action which happens once, is continuing or is completed.
An irregular verb, with both singular and plural forms (Infinitive, Simple past and Past Participle) – These are verbs which don’t follow the rule of adding ‘d’ or ‘ed’  to form past tense like – drink – drank, blow – blew, spring – sprang.

The basic classification with tense is future, past and present. As the names suggest and as we all know, the past is over, and the future is yet to happen. And the present is what is happening.

Simple past tense: she went, they went
Simple present tense: he goes, they go
Simple future tense: she will go, they will go
Past perfect tense: he had gone, they had gone
Present perfect tense: she has gone, they have gone
Future perfect tense: he will have gone, they will have gone
Past progressive tense: she was going, they were going
Present progressive tense: he is going, they are going
Future progressive tense: she will be going, they will be going
Past perfect progressive tense: he had been going, they had been going
Present perfect progressive tense: she has been going, they have been going
Future perfect progressive tense: he will have been going, they will have been going

Now, let’s look at an example.

Since the online magazine’s popularity ranking dropped last year, the editors have been determined to update the online content daily, and they are.

  1. have been determined to update the online content daily, and they are
  2. are determined to update the online content daily, and have been
  3. were determined to update the online content daily, and they were
  4. have been determined to update the online content daily, and they do
  5. had been determined to update the online content daily, and they have

“Dropped’ is in the simple past. It’s over! We mean to say that the stakeholders are trying (they are still trying) to keep the content updated. It is an on-going process. So, we are looking at the present continuous form of the verb tense when it comes to what the editors are doing. They are determined. And they are updating content regularly. The only option that has both verbs in the right tense is an option is D. When you say that they have been determined, it means that their determination is still continuous. And the simple present verb means that it’s happening right now. so, D makes the cut.

It is essential to identify the base and auxiliary forms of verbs so that you can answer the questions more easily.

Examples of Base Verbs: Working, Talked, Jump, Crawl, Play.

Examples of Auxiliary Verbs (Helping verbs): You should eat your medicines on time, she has been waiting for the cab for over an hour, etc. 

There are multiple forms of verb tenses as mentioned below and it is necessary that you know each of them:

Simple Present Tense
Simple Past Tense
Present Progressive Tense
Past Progressive Tense
Future Progressive Tense
Present Perfect Tense
Future Perfect Tense
Future Perfect Progressive Tense

Besides the above-mentioned, there are also Linking verbs that link the subject to the remaining section of the sentence.

Examples: He looked at the books with great interest, the cake appeared delicious, etc. 

We hope this article helped you to understand a basic overview about the various verb tenses. Make sure to practice some GMAT verb tense practice questions so that you are able to answer these questions perfectly. 

Good Luck!


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