That Clauses

Understanding 'That Clauses'

'That clauses' are one of the core concepts in English grammar and are integral to sentence construction and meaning. This tutorial will provide a comprehensive overview of 'that clauses', highlighting their definition, usage, types, and examples. By the end, you should have a solid understanding of 'that clauses' and be able to use them confidently in your writing and conversation.

Definition of 'That Clauses'

'That clauses', also known as noun clauses, are subordinate or dependent clauses used as the object of a sentence or as the subject in some cases. They are typically used to share information or statements and are often introduced by the word 'that'. However, 'that' is sometimes omitted, particularly in informal language.

Types of 'That Clauses'

There are primarily three types of 'that clauses' you should be aware of:

1. 'That Clauses' as the subject of a sentence

When a 'that clause' is used as the subject of a sentence, it is usually positioned at the beginning of the sentence, before the verb. Here is an example:

  • That you are upset is quite clear.

2. 'That Clauses' as the object of a sentence

When a 'that clause' functions as the object of a sentence, it typically comes after the verb. It usually elaborates on an idea or situation introduced by the verb. Here is an illustration:

  • She believes that she will succeed.

3. 'That Clauses' after adjectives

'That clauses' are also used after adjectives to give additional information about the adjective. Example:

  • It is important that you arrive on time.

How to Use 'That Clauses'

Using 'that clauses' effectively involves knowing when to include 'that' and when it can be omitted. Here are a few key rules to bear in mind:

1. Usage after verbs of saying and thinking

'That clauses' are often used after verbs of saying or thinking, such as 'say', 'think', 'believe', and 'suggest'. In such cases, 'that' can usually be omitted. However, it is typically included in formal writing. Example:

  • He thinks (that) he will win the game.

2. Usage after certain verbs

Some verbs are usually followed by a 'that clause' and cannot be followed by an infinitive (to + verb). Some of these verbs include: 'agree', 'decide', 'promise', 'refuse', 'suggest', etc. Example:

  • She refused that she would help with the preparation.

3. Usage after certain adjectives

As mentioned earlier, 'that clauses' are often used after adjectives to convey further information. In this case, 'that' cannot be dropped. Example:

  • I am happy that you will be joining us.

4. Omission of 'that'

In everyday English, it's common to omit 'that' in conversation or informal writing. However, in academic or formal writing, you may be expected to include it. Example:

  • He said (that) he was tired.

Examples of 'That Clauses'

Let's look at some additional examples to further your understanding of 'that clauses' in context:

As the subject of a sentence:

  • That they have been trying their best is evident from their progress.

As the object of a sentence:

  • We know that the train is delayed.

After adjectives:

  • I am sure that you will do well.


Understanding 'that clauses' and how to accurately use them in your writing and conversation can significantly enhance your English communication skills. Always remember that 'that clauses' can function as the subject or object of a sentence and can also feature after certain adjectives. Practice is essential for mastering the usage of 'that clauses', so do not hesitate to craft sentences using 'that clauses' and experiment with the different uses discussed in this tutorial.

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