English as a Second Language/English Grammar


QUESTION: Please tell which is correct and why.
A. Application for the post of a teacher.
b. Application for the post of teacher.

ANSWER: Hello Sunny,

none of the two sentences above are correct, they do not follow the basic English grammar rules. They're fragments of sentences to begin with ... there is no verb in any of the two and that's incorrect. Also, I'm not sure what you mean by "post" here as a post is usually an online posting, or a pole, a long, sturdy piece of timber or metal set upright in the ground and used to support something or as a marker... so that doesn't make any sense in the context above.

I hope this helps.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks, Amy, for your reply.
Actually, what I should have asked, or written, is something like this:

Which is correct: "Write an application for the post of a teacher" or  "Write an application for the post of  teacher".

J C Nesfield uses "a",  but L. Gartside( in Model Business Letters, p. 437), writes " Application for a post as foreign correspondent."
My query is : Is "a" required here or not? Or is it optional?


Hi again Sunny,

This is making more sense now. Thank you for providing the extra details.

First of all, in the context above "post" means position/job.

"Write an application for the post of a teacher" or  "Write an application for the post of  teacher".

Of the two sentences, the second one sounds more close to something a British English speaker would say. The first is not correct in my opinion.

I'd actually say: "write an application for a teaching position/job" instead of any of the version you have provided.

Back to the question about the use of the indefinite article "a" - it's not needed here.

Another thing to perhaps keep in mind is the fact that Nesfield grammar book was written in the 19th century (if not mistaken) for the English speakers in colonial India and English language has since evolved. Gartside's book is much more recent and reflects the language spoken nowadays.

I hope that helps.


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Amy Baker


I can answer question about grammar, spelling, syntax, idioms, reading and/or writing that pertain to English as a Second Language. I am knowledgeable about both TOEFL and IELTS.


I'm a certified ESL teacher with 12 years of experience teaching K-12 and adults.

BSc MEd TESL post grad program for k-12 TESL post grad program for adult ed

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