Number one for English language teachers

Your English: Word grammar: forward

Type: Article

If word grammar is troubling you, try a little forward planning with this helpful article from Tim Bowen.

Apart from its use as an adverb, forward can also function as an adjective, a verb and a noun, the latter being the term used for an attacker in sports such as football or basketball. 

As an adjective, it can refer to thinking about or planning for the future, as in ‘In this line of business, forward planning is essential’. It can also be used to refer to someone who is very confident and direct about saying what they think in a way that is not socially appropriate, as in ‘I hope you don’t think I was being too forward when I asked for a pay rise’. 

The verb to forward is mainly used to refer to the act of sending a letter or email that has been sent to your address on to another recipient, as in ‘Your enquiry has been forwarded to our legal department for consideration’. It can also be used to mean ‘to help something to progress or get better’, as in ‘Acquiring further skills of this nature can only help to forward your career’. 

The adjective forward-looking is used to describe an action that looks at the future in a positive way and probably involves trying out new ideas and methods, as in ‘The new business plan embodies the forward-looking strategies the company needs to meet the challenges it faces in a competitive market’. 

The adverb forward can also be rendered as forwards. Speakers of American English tend to use forward where British English speakers often use forwards, as in ‘People are reminded to move their clocks forward by one hour on the last Sunday of March’.

Rate this resource

  • 1 star out of 5
  • 2 stars out of 5
  • 3 stars out of 5
  • 4 stars out of 5
  • 5 stars out of 5

You must be signed in to rate.

  • Share

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

sign in register

Powered by Webstructure.NET

Access denied popup