Subject Verb Agreement with Compound Subjects Exercises

Subject Verb Agreement with Compound Subjects Exercises

Do you remember the basics of subject-verb agreement? It’s a fundamental aspect of grammar that we all learn in our early school years. However, as we grow and advance in our education, we often encounter more complex structures that challenge our understanding of this concept. In particular, compound subjects can create confusion when it comes to subject-verb agreement. Let’s explore this topic in depth and provide some exercises to help you practice.

What is a Compound Subject?

A compound subject is formed when two or more subjects are joined together by a coordinating conjunction such as ‘and’, ‘or’ or ‘nor’. For example:

– Jasmine and Mark are meeting us at the park.

– The cat or the dog is responsible for the mess.

In these examples, ‘Jasmine and Mark’ and ‘The cat or the dog’ are compound subjects.

Subject-Verb Agreement with Compound Subjects

When a sentence contains a compound subject, it is important to ensure that the verb agrees with both subjects. This means that if the subjects are plural, the verb must be plural, and if they are singular, the verb must be singular. Here are some examples:

– The dog and the cat are sleeping. (plural subject, plural verb)

– The cake or the cookies are delicious. (plural subject, plural verb)

– The book and the pen is on the table. (incorrect – plural subject, singular verb)

– The teacher or the students are responsible for the mistake. (plural subject, plural verb)

As you can see from these examples, it’s essential to pay attention to the subject-verb agreement to ensure that the sentence makes sense.


Let’s practice subject-verb agreement with some exercises. Choose the correct verb form for each sentence.

1. The birds and the bees (is/are) buzzing around the flowers.

2. Either the cake or the cupcakes (was/were) baked by Sarah.

3. The teacher and the principal (disagree/disagrees) on the new school policy.

4. Neither the cat nor the dog (likes/like) to be left alone.

5. The team of players (was/were) victorious in the championship game.

6. The movie and the book (is/are) both great.

Answers: 1. are, 2. were, 3. disagree, 4. likes, 5. were, 6. are


Subject-verb agreement with compound subjects may seem challenging at first, but with practice, you’ll master it in no time. Always remember to check whether the subject is plural or singular, and match the verb form accordingly. You want to avoid creating confusion or ambiguity in your writing. Keep practicing, and you’ll soon become a pro at subject-verb agreement.