What is the alternative questions in English?

How to ask a question in English?It seems that it is very simple, but the newcomers do not always cope with this task.The fact is that few understand what you need to ask, you should still do it correctly in terms of grammar.In fact, it is not so difficult, if you understand the general principles of interrogative sentences.


In English, there are several traditional types of questions.

  • total.The answer to it will serve as a consent or refusal.Reverse the order of words: Do you work in the office?
  • Special.It uses the interrogative wh-words. Where do you work?
  • Separation.In this case, the proposal is divided into two parts: the statement + question.Sometimes, this type is also called "a tail".At the end of the translation is usually transmitted trafficking "is not it?": You work in the office, do not you?
  • indirectly.This type is characterized by special structure.It direct order of the words, and he is considered to be more polite and formal form of communication: I wonder, if you work in the office.
  • alternative.Finally, this type involves a choice between two or more are usually mutually exclusive possibilities: Do you work in the office or at home?

It is an alternative type of problem today and will be discussed in detail.The English language school course it rarely concentrate attention, and yet even in such a seemingly simple design is not too difficult to make mistakes.Although this is not as common to know some of the subtleties of foreign speech interesting and useful - in the future this increases the level of proficiency that allows you to speak it as well as do its speakers.

Features alternative type

We often have to make choices, or to offer it to others.As is clear from their names, alternative questions in English and bear the function.Usually, they contain two components, that is, a choice of two approximately equivalent performance.

As with almost all other matters, this kind of inherent in the reverse order of the words, that is the subject comes after the predicate or verb-binding.By the way,
sometimes there are design combines the features of several types. What do you like: tea or coffee?

Associates alternative questions in the English language can both supplement and complex grammatical constructions with the predicate: Do you prefer playing the piano or reading books? In any case, this proposal will be contained in the Union or .

unequivocal answer "yes" or "no" in this case does not apply.This differs this type.The response should be a replica of a grammatically complete.In colloquial speech also possible to simply say "Reading books" , though it would not be correct.

Regarding the use of design in the spoken language, the alternative questions in English are quite well-established color scheme intonation.Traditionally, before or voice increases, sometimes putting the emphasis on the Union and the second part, and at the end, and especially the last stressed syllable, the tone goes down.


As has become clear alternative questions in English, based on the principle of common but connect several options, one of which will serve as a possible response.As a rule, the second part is incomplete as drops a complex structure with a common predicate.

His scheme is approximately as follows:

binder verb + subject + verb + option 1 or option 2?

In response to the proposal can be applied as follows:

subject + verb + option 1 (2).

If both possibilities offered are not suitable, the reaction will be:

None of it + subject + verb + option 3.

Build alternative questions in English, and can be to the subject.This option sounds a little strange, but grammatically remains true:

Bundle + subject + verb 1 + or auxiliary verb verb + 2?


Do you drive the car or does your husband?

Is Ann here or is Jenny?

main thing in this case - not to forget the auxiliary verb before the second subject.The answer to the question of such a structure can be brief:

My husband does.

Ann is.

study of the theory can be very exciting thing, but learning a language is impossible without a constant and diverse practices.The same applies to the development of the theme of "alternative questions."English offers a variety of options for the transfer of a particular thought, but as is the case with the Russian?Interpreters are primarily interested in the adequacy and semantic equality.So how best to play this type of question, so as not to lose its meaning?

transmission in Russian

Usually this is no problem.Although the alternative questions in English, Russian, unlike in their structures utilize reverse order word translation seldom causes problems.Union or successfully replaces "or":

you work in an office or at home?

What do you like: tea or coffee?

you prefer to play the piano or read a book?

You can drive your car or your husband?

There Anne or Jenny?

Obviously, the design of these issues are similar both in Russian and in English, except for the absence in the latter verb ligament in this explicitly.Incidentally, here they are of the same type - also called alternative.So the idea that all languages ​​are somewhat related, can not be devoid of meaning.