When do you use you’re and when do you use your?
What’s the difference between it’s and its?
How do you use they’re or their and there?
(If you think you already know, go to the bottom of this page and take the grammar test. If you are not sure, keep reading… and then take the test)
There is a big grammatical difference and if you are sitting an English exam like the IELTS test, if you make a grammar mistake with these apostrophe (‘) and contraction issues, it will NOT look good and you will definitely lose points!
This is basic English grammar which you must get right in a written exam.
You’re = you are
Example: You’re late! / You are late!
*your late – INCORRECT
Your = shows ‘possession’
For other ‘people’ this is: mine/his/hers/its/ours/theirs
Example: Hey, you left your bag over there!
*You left you’re bag over there – INCORRECT
For more details and grammar examples, see the you’re vs your full grammar article here.
And….. You’re v Your – 10 question grammar test with pictures
It’s = it is
Example: It’s so warm today / It is so warm today
*Its so warm today – INCORRECT
Its = shows ‘possession’
You can use its to describe the qualities of things like places, pets and objects
Example: London is famous for its fish n chips. / My dog is so lovely. Its eyes are beautiful. / Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes is the fastest in F1. Its top speed is 290 km/h
*London is famous for it’s (it is) fish n chips – INCORRECT
Also…. it’s = it has
Examples: It’s been so nice to meet you face to face finally / My laptop is so slow. It’s been rubbish ever since I downloaded that torrent.
*Its been so nice to meet you… – INCORRECT
For more details and grammar examples, see the it’s v its full grammar article here.
They’re = They are
This is a contraction like: I am / you are / he is etc
Example: They’re making too much noise!
* There making too much noise – INCORRECT
Their = shows possession
This is like mine / your / its / our etc
Example: I think that is their car, isn’t it?
*I think that is there car, isn’t it? – INCORRECT
There = tells you where something is
That boy over there is looking at you
Look over there! What is that guy doing?
There = tells you something exists
There are 11 players in a football team
There is a problem with this laptop.
For more details and grammar examples, see the they’re vs there vs their full grammar article here.
Now take the 10 question test…
Grammar Test: your v you’re / it’s v its / they’re v there v their
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE…
You’re v Your – 10 question grammar test with pictures
They’re v there v their – 10 question grammar test with pictures
It’s v its – 10 question grammar test with pictures
Full English grammar test from SGI English school – 40 questions to find out your current English grammar level