Present perfect continuous tense is a verb tense that is used when we talk about something that we started in the past but the work is still going on. This indicates the duration of an action taking place or the amount of time which has been used for completing a task. Read on to know about the facts and formula of present perfect continuous tense.
Simple Definition of Present Perfect Continuous Tense
The present perfect continuous tense is also referred to as a progressive tense. Why so? Because this is used when we talk about the things that are still progressing but was started sometimes back in the past.
What are the Forms of Present Perfect Continuous Tense?
Just like any other tense, this also has different forms. The way we use this verb tense changes according to the person.
Facts to Know about Present Perfect Continuous Tense for First Person Singular and Plural
When the first-person talks about a thing that started in the past but is still going on, then it is said as – I have. For first-person plural it is – we have.
Present Perfect Continuous Examples for First Person:
- I have been living here for the last seven months.
- I have been reading books every day since March.
- Recently, I have been feeling a bit depressed.
First Person Plural Examples
- We have been staying here for the last five days.
- We have been going to the cooking class on Fridays for the last 3 weeks.
- We have been working a lot lately.
The Formula of Present Perfect Continuous Tense in Negative Sentences For First Person Singular:
- I have not been feeling well since last week.
- I have not been going to the market for the last few days.
- I have not been practising dance since Wednesday.
Negative Sentences For First Person Plural:
- We have not been feeling good since last week.
- We have not been going to the gym for the last few days.
- We have not been practising drama since Tuesday.
Facts to Know about Present Perfect Continuous Tense for Second Person
When someone talks about the second person who has been indulged in some work since sometime in the past and the work is still on progress, is it said as – you have.
Present Perfect Continuous Tense Examples for Second Person:
- You have been working hard for the presentation since Tuesday.
- You have been playing chess on Fridays for the last 2 years.
- You have been waking up early every day for the last 3 months.
The Formula of Present Perfect Continuous in Negative Sentences For Second Person:
- You have not been studying hard for the exam for the last few days.
- Lately, You have not been talking much in the office.
- You have not been watching movies since June.
Facts to Know about Present Perfect Continuous Tense for Third Person
When someone talks about the third person singular (he/ she) who had started some work in the past and is still continuing that, then it is said as- he has, she has.
When it is about the third person plural (they), it is said as- they have.
Present Perfect Continuous Examples for Third Person Singular:
- He has been living there for the last three years.
- John has been reading novels every day since December.
- Recently, Jenny has been feeling a bit relaxed.
Third Person Plural Examples
- They have been staying here for the last one and a half years.
- Girls have been going to the yoga class on Saturdays for the last few weeks.
- Boys have been jogging a lot lately.
The Formula of Present Perfect Continuous Tense in Negative Sentences For Third Person Singular:
- John has not been sleeping late on Fridays for the last 1 week.
- He has not been eating properly since last week.
- She has not been swimming for the last three months.
Negative Sentences Examples For Third Person Plural:
- They have not been staying there for the last five years.
- Girls have not been going to the dance classes on Mondays for the last few weeks.
- Boys have not been playing a lot lately.
How to Use this Tense in Spoken English?
This is a very important grammar tense and is commonly used in spoken English. It helps to express what the first person, second person or the third person have been doing in the past.
It can also be used to talk about some event that started in the past and recently stopped like – John is tired because he has been running. This sentence indicates that John is not running any more, he just stopped running and is tired because of that.
The other usage of this is to describe a still going action that started in the past, like- my sister has been dancing since this morning. This sentence means that my sister started dancing earlier and she is still doing that.
Comparison with Other Related Tenses
Most of the time, people have confusion between present perfect continuous and other tenses. It is important to remember that the present perfect continuous is only used when an action is being talked about which was started in the past but still going on.
The other tense, which is usually confused with this is the present perfect tense. This tense is used to talk about the actions which are finished.
English is a pretty simple language if you can learn it properly. Keep the above-mentioned facts about present perfect continuous tense in mind and take part in practice activities that will enhance your skills.
So, how are you going to start using this lesson in your daily life? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.