Many people are confused with the use of Could and would in English speaking. Could & Would are modal verbs are often used in daily English conversations. People often make some common grammar mistakes while using would and could, they think these modal verbs can be used interchangeably, but that’s not the case always. In today’s English speaking practice lesson in Hindi you will learn 3 main differences of could and would and how to use them correctly in the following context.
- Past Tense
- For possible situations
- For Imaginary situations
- In Polite expressions
- For Permissions
- For requests
- For making offers
At the end of this English Grammar lesson, take a quiz to understand how much have you understood from this lesson. At Learnex we always make an effort to bring you English lessons that could be used to speak English fluently in the real world. We just don’t teach you text book Grammar, rather we focus on the usage of Grammar in spoken English. Because, if you just learn grammar and don’t practice It in everyday conversations, you would just improve your writing skills and won’t develop English fluency. Also watch our other English lesson on Pronunciation, English conversantion lessons, Communication skills training to Improve your English speaking and speak English with confidence. All our English teachers are well read and understand how English is taught in the spoken prospective, meaning how you could speak fluent English easily and faster.
- Past Tense
Could past tense of ‘can’
Would past tense of ‘will’
I can run 3 Km daily. ( Present Tense)
I could run 3Km , when I was younger. (I had the ability in the past, but not now)
I know we will win the football match. ( I am confident that we will win)
I knew we would win the football match.
(But if it happened in the past, I want to say I was confident)
2. Possible Situations
He could buy a phone today. ( Talking to a friend, making a prediction)
Ram isn’t coming to the party. He could be busy. ( I am saying it is possible he is busy)
Note in these sentences ‘could is not in the past tense form, just used to show possibility.
Can I use ‘Would’ instead of ‘Could’
No you can’t (In possible situation we don’t use would)
3. Imaginary Situations
If I had a lac rupees, I would buy a laptop.
(Don’t get confused with the verbs in the past, We are only talking about an imaginary situation, it’s not a reality.)
If Aniket worked hard, he would pass the exam with good marks.(It means , Aniket doesn’t work hard, he’s lazy, he’s not going to get good marks, he might fail.)
Can we use could, with imaginary situations. We can use, but it’s less common, would is used more often.
I could buy a laptop.
He could pass the exam with good marks.
We can use, but it’s less common, would is used more often.
4. Polite Expressions
Making suggestions, Offers, Requests, Asking for permission
Making Suggestion – We normally use could.
We could try the newly opened Chinese restaurant. ( Using would is wrong)
We could go for a movie this weekend.
We could take a flight to Delhi.
Making Offers ( We normally use would)
Would you like some tea and biscuits?
(I am having tea, I am asking would you like to have)
Would you like to join us for a movie?
Would you like some help on this project?
Could you open the door please?
People make mistakes by using ‘Can’ Talks about capability.
You can also say –
Would you open the door please?
One more expression that you could use – WOULD YOU MIND?
Would you mind opening the door? But you cannot say ‘Could you mind?
Asking for permissions
Could I borrow your laptop for a couple of days. ( Asking for permission)
Could I take one more piece of cake.
Would it be Okay, if I borrowed your laptop for a couple of days?
Would you mind, If I borrowed your laptop for a couple of days?
Would you mind – can be used for permissions as well.
Note the verb is in the past tense, it is a grammar rule, but we are asking a permission in the future.