progressive tense

The progressive tense (also called the progressive aspect) is sometimes referred to as the imperfect tense.

There are six progressive tenses: present, past, future, present perfect, past perfect, and future perfect. Some grammarians refer to the progressive tense as the progressive aspect of a verb. The progressive tense shows an “ongoingness” of the action denoted by the verb.

The progressive tense is formed by using the verb to be as an auxiliary verb and adding the present participle (-ing) of the verb. You form a particular tense simply by conjugating the verb to be in that tense and adding the present participle of the verb.

Here are the progressive tenses for the verb to study. The present participle of study is studying. Notice how the verb to be is conjugated in the various tenses.

Tense Example of Progressive Tense
Present He is studying the report.
Past He was studying the report.
Future He will be studying the report.
Present Perfect He has been studying the report.
Past Perfect He had been studying the report.
Future Perfect He will have been studying the report.

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