How To: Know when to use subject or object pronouns

Know when to use subject or object pronouns

It is easy to make grammatical mistakes when there are, what seems like, endless rules to memorize. Focusing on a few rules at a time is helpful and today's lesson can be on how to use subject and object pronouns. If you don't know whether to use "I" or "me," it's easy to learn which pronoun when you follow a few simple tips.

Step 1: Know the subject and object pronouns

Know your subject and object pronouns. In English, "I," "you," "he," "she," "it," "we," and "they" are subject pronouns. "Me," "you," "him," "her," "it," "us," and "them" are object pronouns.

Step 2: Use subject pronouns as the subject of a sentence

Use subject pronouns to replace the noun that is the subject of the sentence – the person or thing that is doing something.

Step 3: Use subject pronouns after a state-of-being verb

Replace nouns with subject pronouns when they follow a verb that conveys a state of being, like "were" or "am."

Step 4: Use object pronouns as the object of a sentence

Use object pronouns to replace the noun that is the object of the sentence – the person or thing to whom or which something is being done.

Step 5: Use object pronouns in a prepositional phrase

Replace nouns with object pronouns when they are the objects of a prepositional phrase – a phrase starting with a preposition like "to" or "after" – and are telling where or when something is happening.

Step 6: Simplify the sentence

Simplify the sentence by mentally eliminating subjects or objects other than your pronoun and dropping extra phrases.

Step 7: See if your pronoun sounds right

Read the simplified sentence using your chosen pronoun and see if it sounds right. With practice, you won't have to give much thought to finding the right word – it will come naturally.

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