Many English writers and speakers get confused between using the present perfect and the present perfect continuous because of the overlaps in their structures and functions.
Answer this three-part worksheet to check your knowledge about present perfect vs. present perfect continuous tense.
What Is the Present Perfect Tense?
The present perfect tense talks about:
- Uncompleted actions that started in the past and are still true at present.
- An action performed during a time that has yet to finish.
- An action that was completed very recently.
A verb in the present perfect tense has the following structure:
- has/have + past participle
- I have read Oscar Wilde’s book.
- I have just finished my work.
- She has lived in Berlin for four years.
What Is the Present Perfect Continuous Tense?
The present perfect continuous tense discusses actions that began sometime in the past and are still ongoing at present.
A verb used in the present perfect continuous has the following structure:
- has/have been + present participle
- I have been living in London since 2004.
- I’ve been studying French for three years.
- She has been traveling around the world lately.
Present Perfect or Present Perfect Continuous?
We use the present perfect tense with verbs that emphasize the completion of an event and the present perfect continuous for ongoing actions that started in the past.
Hopefully, these English grammar exercises helped you differentiate between the two tenses and produce grammatically correct sentences using them.