It is important to test products on animals before releasing them commercially to markets.
The problem here is that there are two kinds of market – physical and virtual – and in this example, markets (plural) suggests more than one physical market, while releasing them commercially suggests more than one virtual market. Let’s take a look at some examples.
- The crowd around the market were given free water.
- The town centre markets were also discussed briefly.
- A big favourite at local farmers’ markets.
These are the places you go early in the morning to buy cheap vegetables. Often this kind of market is outdoor:
If it’s an indoor market then it’s usually inside a large hall:
The featured image for this post shows people buying and selling things on the virtual market. They’re not buying anything inside that building, rather they are investing in things that are located elsewhere so that they can hopefully receive some of the profits from the sale of those things.
A particular virtual market or set of virtual markets may be mentioned explicitly:
- Funding costs rose amid renewed volatility in financial markets.
Sometimes more than one virtual market is implied:
- New products are constantly appearing on the market. (different products sold in different locations)
And sometimes a specific virtual market is implied but not mentioned explicitly:
- The property hit the market last week. (= the housing market)
Market(s) and collocation
If the name of a virtual market is not given, certain phrases can suggest that you’re talking about a virtual rather than a physical market.
- We put our house on the market last week.
- Anybody from anywhere can buy our house!
- The 1990 model is no longer on the market.
- It’s no longer available anywhere.
- The property hit the market last week.
- The property did not physically ‘hit’ a physical market building, rather it became available for purchase.
If it’s on the market (one or more virtual markets), it’s not at the market (a single physical market).
Our opening example implies a set of virtual markets that are not explicitly mentioned, and so we need:
- It is important to test products on animals before releasing them commercially to the market.
- More than one virtual market is implied (e.g. cosmetics, medicines, food products) but not mentioned explicitly!
Mobile phones are completed by advanced features.
OK let’s look at some examples of ‘completed by’:
- The questionnaires are completed by women aged 15–49.
- A complete site overhaul was completed by our editorial staff.
- The detailed project report has been completed by the consultants.
In all three examples we have to be + completed by + agent (the person doing the completing). In our opening example that would make ‘advanced features’ the agent, which is of course impossible. Continue reading
A song that demonstrates verb noun collocations relating to using, wearing and carrying all kinds of things!
Why not try the gapfill activity before listening? (See lyrics below..) Continue reading
Admittedly some people may not interests in the arts.
OK so ‘interest’ is potentially a problematic word.
Let’s say I’m one of those people who like the arts, I like attending arts events, and I like going to galleries, etc. In this case I can say any of the following:
- I’m interested in the arts.
- S.o. + (not) to be + interested in + s.th./s.o.
- The arts interest me.
- S.th./S.o. + (doesn’t) interest(s) + s.o.
- I find the arts interesting.
- S.o. + (doesn’t) find(s) + s.th./s.o. + interesting
- The arts are interesting to me.
- S.th./S.o. + (not) to be + interesting + to + s.o.
Returning to our original example, we need:
- Admittedly some people may not be interested in the arts.
- Admittedly some people may not find the arts interesting.
- Admittedly the arts may not interest some people.
- Admittedly the arts may not be interesting to some people.
Try this practice activity: Continue reading
Nowadays the demand of education is increasing around the world.
Once again we have to think about slightly different word forms with radically different meanings. Continue reading
IELTS often requires us to talk about money and how we spend it, so here’s a song illustrating some common collocations. Lyrics are embedded in the video.
Notice that we do not usually say “The price is expensive.” This is acceptable collocation in some languages (!), but not in English – see here, here and here.
It could be argued that a patient who doubts with modern medicines will take longer to heal.
Bahasa Indonesia often features with after certain verbs where it would not be used in English. In English the opening example would simply read:
- It could be argued that a patient who doubts modern medicines will take longer to heal.
Other examples of the redundant with include:
- In addition, patients do not fully believe with the capability of the doctor.
- I like with dangdut music.
- Please promise with your mother that you will meet her after work.
So that’s four verbs – doubt, believe, like, promise – that are not followed by with in English, but are followed by with in at least one other language. I’ll add more examples when I think of them. Meanwhile, if you can think of any other examples, please add comments below.
I will tag this post with the Indonesian word dengan – please come back another time and see if the list has grown!
Most patients think hard about the best way to recover their health and to accelerate the healing process.
This verb noun collocation – recover health – is very weak. Let’s take a look at the two words separately.
Recover + noun
The strongest collocation for recover + noun seems to be associated with money:
- Apple invested heavily in the iPhone but soon recovered their research and development costs.
- Fraud victims find it difficult to recover their money.
- The state’s Consumer Protection Assistance Fund (CPAF) can help victims, who have filed complaints with our office, recover their losses.
Verb + health
Meanwhile, verb + health gives us:
- Most people make an effort to improve their health.
- regular exercise and a balanced diet can help to maintain good health.
- I’m quite concerned about my uncle’s health.
Recover (no object)
In the context of health, recover is usually intransitive:
- I hope your uncle recovers quickly.
- If you take this medicine you will recover in a few days.
- You had a bad fall. You need some time to recover.
Returning to our opening example, either of the following are possible:
- Most patients think hard about the best way to recover and to accelerate the healing process.
- Most patients think hard about the best way to improve their health and to accelerate the healing process.
Animals that are used to perform are easy to get tired.
If we reduce this to its most basic grammar, we get:
Obviously that’s not what the writer intended. Maybe we should look at some examples!
- My answer was pretty easy to understand.
= My answer was easy.
- The daily instructions are very easy to follow.
= The daily instructions are easy.
- The game is really pretty easy to play.
= The game is easy.
Now contrast the previous examples with the following.
- Generally it is easier for men to handle horses.
= Handling horses is easy (NOT men are easy!)
- It is easy for smartphone users to use QR codes.
= Using QR codes is easy (NOT smartphone users are easy!)
- It is easy for people to misunderstand religious language and ritual.
= Misunderstanding is easy (NOT people are easy!)
It is easy for us to correct our opening example if we begin “It is easy for.!”
- It is easy for animals that are used to perform to get tired.
[it is easy/difficult for + noun + to + v1]
This structure is shown in several previous posts – here, and in the song Lemon Squeezy. Check them out!
An alternative improvement would be to use an adverb:
- Animals that are used to perform get tired easily.
..and for a higher IELTS score, avoid ‘get’ by using the verb form of ‘tired’:
- Animals that are used to perform tire easily.
If you’re studying in Australia you should make an effort to see the amazing Circus OZ – an animal-free circus!
In a recent post I looked at how unemployment statistics are written up in the news. In this post we look at statistics related to crime (BBC source). Continue reading