♔ THE PRESENT PERFECT

key_small  THE FORM:

HAVE + PAST PARTICIPLE

Example with  TO WORK   (a regular Verb)   and   TO SEE   (an irregular verb).

 

AFFIRMATIVENEGATIVEQUESTION
I HAVE ('ve) WORKED / SEEN I HAVEN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE I WORKED / SEEN ?
YOU HAVE ('ve) WORKED / SEEN YOU HAVEN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE YOU WORKED / SEEN ?
HE HAS ('s) WORKED / SEEN HE HASN'T WORKED / SEEN HAS HE WORKED / SEEN ?
SHE HAS ('s) WORKED / SEEN SHE HASN'T WORKED / SEEN HAS SHE WORKED / SEEN ?
IT HAS ('s) WORKED / SEEN IT HASN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE IT WORKED / SEEN ?
WE HAVE ('ve) WORKED / SEEN WE HAVEN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE WE WORKED / SEEN ?
YOU HAVE ('ve) WORKED / SEEN YOU HAVEN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE YOU WORKED / SEEN ?
THEY HAVE ('ve) WORKED / SEEN THEY HAVEN'T WORKED / SEEN HAVE THEY WORKED / SEEN ?

 

key_small  THE USES:

1.  We use the Present Perfect for Actions which started in the past and are still continuing.

 

The present perfect is often used for an action which started at some time in the past, and are still continuing now. Often, the words for (with a period of time) and since (with a starting time) are used along with the present perfect.

He has lived  in London for five years.

(He started living in London five years ago, and he's still living there now.)    

She has worked at the University since 2010.

(She started working at the University in 2010, and she's still working there now.)

 

2. We use the Present Perfect for Actions which happened at some unknown time in the past.

 

Sometimes, it's important to say that something happened (or didn't happen), but it's not important (or not known) when it happened. In this case, we can use the present perfect too. We often use the words already, yet, ever or never along with the present perfect. These words usually go before the past participle in the sentence. You can use the Present Perfect to describe your experience. It is like saying, "I have the experience of..." You can also use this tense to say that you have never had a certain experience. The Present Perfect is NOT used to describe a specific event.

I've already seen that film. I don't want to see it again.

(It doesn't matter when I saw it.)

Have you ever visited Ireland?

(It doesn't matter when you went, I just want to know whether you have been there or not.)

 

3. We often use the present perfect with time adverbials which refer to the recent past:   just;   only just;   recently;

 

Scientists have recently discovered a new drug for some cancers.

 

We have just got back from our holidays.

 

or adverbials which include the present:  ever  (in questions);  so far; until now; up to now; yet  (in questions and negatives)

 

Have you ever seen a ghost?

Where have you been up to now?

Have you finished your homework yet?

No, so far I’ve only done my essay.

 

4. We also use the Present Perfect to talk about Actions which happened in the past, but have an effect in the present.

 

This use is a little more difficult than the other two. In this case, the action happened at some time in the past, but the effect of the action is still important now. It's easiest to understand this use if we compare present perfect sentences with simple past sentences. 

 

TENSESENTENCEMEANING
PRESENT PERFECT I've lost my keys. I haven't found the keys yet. They're still missing.
SIMPLE PAST Yesterday, I lost my keys. I've probably found them again already.
PRESENT PERFECT I've broken my arm. My arm is still injured.
SIMPLE PAST I broke my arm last year. My arm is probably OK by now.

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