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Subordinating conjunctions

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Yeah, we know. Just the name makes you not want to read any more, right? Right!

Actually, I bet you know a lot of subordinating conjunctions already. Just look at these examples:

Examples of subordinating conjunctions

  • that
  • if
  • although
  • because
  • while
  • since
  • after
  • before
  • when
  • where
  • how
  • whether
  • in that

 

You already know all or most of these words, right? Right!

So, I think we can safely say that you already know the most important stuff about subordinating conjunctions, but just in case, here's the most important rule:

subordinating conjunction + sentence

If you can remember this question, you'll be able to answer 85% of the TOEFL questions you'll see on the grammar section no sweat!!

Yeah, we know that the name is kind of hard to remember. A lot of other books or teachers use different words because they think that their students won't remember the term subordinating conjunction, but, to tell you the truth, the term is actually very descriptive and helpful.

First, you need to understand that a subordinating conjunction is a conjunction. In other words, we use it to joing two things that are the same. In the case of subordinating conjunctions, we are joining two sentences.

Trust me, many TOEFL grammar questions are related to whether or not we have a conjunction between two sentences.

Let's look at some examples, maybe that will help us understand better.

Look at this sentence:

I was late to class.

Now look at this sentence:

The bus was late.

Now, grammatically, we have two sentences. If we have two sentences, we need something between them to 'connect' them; this is a basic English rule.

In this case, we can use the subordinating conjunction because. We would end up with this sentence:

I was late to class because the bus was late.

 

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