Subject-verb agreement is like a musical duet; it ensures that the subject and the verb in a sentence harmonize correctly. Just as singers must match their tones, subjects and verbs must agree in number (singular or plural) to create grammatically correct sentences.
Singular Subjects and Singular Verbs:
When the subject of a sentence is singular, the verb must also be singular.
The cat jumps over the fence.
She plays the piano every day.
Plural Subjects and Plural Verbs:
When the subject of a sentence is plural, the verb must also be plural.
The cats jump over the fence.
They play soccer on weekends.
Collective nouns refer to a group of individuals, but they can take either a singular or plural verb depending on the context. If the group is seen as a single entity, a singular verb is used. If the focus is on individual members of the group, a plural verb is used.
The team is winning the match. (Singular verb, treating the team as a single unit)
The team are celebrating their victory. (Plural verb, focusing on individual players)
Indefinite pronouns (e.g., everyone, somebody, nobody) are considered singular, and therefore, they require singular verbs.
Everybody wants to be successful.
Nobody knows the answer.
When two or more subjects are connected by “and,” they form a compound subject, and a plural verb is used.
Tom and Jerry are good friends.
Apples and oranges are fruits.
Subject-Verb Agreement with “Or” and “Nor”:
When the subjects are connected by “or” or “nor,” the verb agrees with the subject closest to it.
Neither the cat nor the dogs are allowed inside.
Either the manager or the employees is responsible for the project.