How to Use Gerunds in the PTE Writing Test
Writing an essay is one of the tasks in the PTE writing test. In this task, you need to write a 200- to 300-word argumentative essay in response to a prompt. You only have 20 minutes to write an essay. As a student enrolled in PTE online packages, developing your vocabulary is crucial as it will help you construct sentences properly and showcases your extensive linguistic skills. For instance, using gerunds is an awesome writing tip that you can use to expand your vocabulary and ace the PTE writing test.
What is a Gerund?
When a verb is used as a noun in a sentence, it is called a gerund. Gerunds are words ending in -ing such as sleeping, eating, and writing. A gerund can be a single word or a phrase. Gerund phrases consist of a gerund with modifiers, pronouns or noun phrases. Do you want to know more? For test takers who want to boost their PTE exam preparation online, the following are the functions of gerunds in a sentence:
• Gerunds as a subject
Since gerunds act as a noun, they always function as the subject in a sentence. Check out the following examples:
• Eating sweets is bad for your teeth.
• Singing brings back memories of my father.
• Whispering is the most intimate form of communication.
“Eating sweets” is a sample of a gerund phrase used as a subject in the first sentence. “Singing” and “Whispering” are both gerunds used as a subject in the second and third sentences.
• Gerunds as a subject complement
A subject complement is a word/s that follows a linking verb in a sentence. Gerunds can also be used as a subject complement. Here are some examples:
• Tim’s ideal move is walking away from his friends.
• My favorite hobby is trekking.
• The ending of the movie was disappointing.
“Waking away” is a gerund phrase used as a subject complement in the first sentence. It followed the linking verb “is.” In the second and third sentences, “trekking” and “disappointing” are gerunds used as subject complements and followed the linking verbs “is” and “was.”
• Gerunds as a direct object
A direct object is the recipient of the transitive verb used in a sentence. Gerunds can be used as a direct object. For test takers enrolled in PTE online packages, the following are examples of gerunds used as a direct object in a sentence:
• I enjoy shopping with my friends.
• Joy hates cooking.
• Jhon loves reading books.
In the first sentence, “shopping with my friends” is a gerund phrase used as a direct object receiving the action of the transitive verb “enjoy.” “Cooking” is the gerund used as a direct object in the second sentence. It received the action of the transitive verb “hates.” The last sentence used a gerund phrase “reading books” as a direct object receiving the action of the transitive verb “loves.”
• Gerunds as the object of a preposition
A gerund or gerund phrase can also be used as the object of a particular preposition in a sentence. Check out the following examples:
• He might get into trouble for faking an illness to avoid work.
• Sarah’s criminal record disqualifies her from serving on a jury.
• Fear and anxiety inhibit him from talking.
The first and second sentences contain gerund phrases “faking an illness’’ and “serving on a jury.” These gerund phrases were used as the objects of a preposition in the sentences by following the prepositions “for” and “from.” In the last sentence, “talking” is a gerund used as an object of a preposition in the sentence. It followed the preposition “from.”