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General Writing and Grammar Help/I would like....what tense!


HI, Id be so grateful for your help.  Im a TEFL teacher in training and Im English but still confused about all the verbs and always terrified in class situation that Ill be asked.  

Im teaching tomorrow on writing a formal letter and I want to know (for sure) why we use, I would like. Isnt would the past tense of will....all help much appreciated.  Sorry sure its a very basic question.

Thank you.


Hello Jacqui

Thanks for your question

Here's a study guide on verbs

It's from our English Language program - which covers every aspect of the English language

'Would like' is what's called the 'conditional tense'

It's not the future - because it hasn't happened yet :-)

Hope that helps a little

Come back to me if you want to know more

Best wishes

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Roy Johnson


I can answer questions on English language, grammar, writing skills, and study skills. I am particularly experienced in the writing skills required for academic essays, term papers, reports, dissertations, and post-graduate theses.


I have forty years experience as a tutor and as the author of books on writing and study skills. For thirty years I was a tutor for the Workers' Educational Association, which specialises in courses for adult students and preparing mature students for university. I was also a tutor for the Open University between 1975 and 2010. During that time I have also written a number of books on writing and study skills. In the last ten years or more I have specialised in creating computer-aided learning materials and online learning courses.

"Making the Grade" (Manchester University Press) 1990 "Studying Fiction" (Manchester University Press) 1991 "Marking Essays" (Clifton Press) 1993 "Revision and Examinations" (Clifton Press) 1993 "Writing Essays" (Clifton Ress) 1996 "Study Skills" (Clifton Press) 1996 "Electronic Writing" (Clifton Press) 1996 "Improve your Writing Skills" (Clifton Press) 2010 "Writing Essays 3.0" (Clifton Press) 2008 [computer program] "English Language 3.0" (Clifton Press) 2008 [computer program] "Study Skills 2.0" (Clifton Press) 2008 [computer program]

My first degree was in mechanical engineering (HNC). I then switched to literary studies and philosophy. My second degree was a BA in English and American Literature (from Manchester University - UK). I also have an MA in Comparative Literary Studies, and my doctoral thesis (PhD) was in the relationship between literature and politics.

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