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GRAMMAR Questions form (B2 Upper-intermediate)

Learn or review GRAMMAR about Questions form at B2 Upper-intermediate level of English. Register and try our English courses for free.

Positive and negative questions

Most questions have an auxiliary verb (e.g. be, do, did, have or modal verbs) before the subject. The auxiliary verb can be positive or negative (e.g. wasn’t, don’t, didn’t, haven’t or wouldn’t):

How do you spell that? Why isn’t your car parked near?

Prepositions usually come at the end of questions.
Where are you from? NOT~

In very formal questions they can go at the beginning.


We can make short questions from who / what / why + preposition:
A: I’m going out tonight. B: Who with?
A: Can I borrow your car? B: What for? (Why?)


We use negative questions to express surprise:
Haven’t they finished yet? (I’m surprised)

When we ask about the subject of a sentence the word order doesn’t change and we don’t use an auxiliary verb.

Somebody broke the window. → Who broke the window?
NOT Who did break the window?

Indirect questions

We use indirect questions to sound polite. Start indirect questions with Can you tell me … / Do you know … We don’t use an auxiliary verb and the word order doesn’t change: Use if in indirect yes / no questions.

Why did she come so late? → Do you know why she came so late?
Do you like foreign languages? → Can you tell me if you like foreign languages?

We can also use indirect questions in sentences starting with:
I ‘m not sure … I know I don’t know … I wonder … I can’t remember … etc.

Is this answer correct?I’m not sure if this answer is correct.
Where have they been?I wonder where they’ve been.


We use which + noun when there is a limited number of options and what + noun when there are many possibilities:
We can meet at 10.00, 12.15 or 14.30. Which time would you prefer?
I’m free all day. What time do you want to meet?


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