Passive and Active Voice

Passive Voice
For a printable copy, click here: Passive Voice all handouts

Past and future action and the passive

Active past and future:
Sara revised the document
Sara will revise the document

Passive past and future:
The document was revised by Sara
The document will be revised by Sara.

Underline all verbs that express past action only.

1. Three methods were considered, and it was decided that ultrafiltration was the best method.
2. They decided that ultrafiltration was the best method.
3. With ultrafiltration, whey is concentrated by passing it through a semipermeable membrane.
4. Ultrafiltration concentrates whey when whey is passed through a semipermeable membrane.

Underline the form of the verb to be with one line and the past participle with two lines.

1. Once the image quality and mission requirements have been established, this knowledge can be translated into specifications for the sensor.
2. Noise inhibits all algorithms in their ability to distinguish differences between details.
3. The sensitivity with respect to image quality can be determined by repeated experiments with a variety of algorithms.
4. The algorithms impact the total sensor system design and encompass the processing hardware requirements.

Revise the following sentences by converting passive voice constructions to active voice ones.

1. Brief hotel descriptions and rates are also given in the brochure.

2. The organizational test is met by the articles of incorporation and bylaws of the corporation.

3. To maintain its tax-exempt status, the foundation must be organized and operated for exempt purposes.

4. The second form of variation is broken down into four types of variation, setup variation, order quantity variation, operation variation, and scrap labor variation.

Passive and Active Voice

A. Change from active to passive voice: B. Change from passive to active voice:

1. recycle 1. was voted

2. arrest 2. should be reread

3. serves 3. was announced

4. keeps 4. is switched

5. use 5. has been driven

C. Change active to passive and passive to active:

1. was hit

2. have been robbed

3. can strike

4. has moved

5. must be done

6. made

7. has been put

D. Change active to passive and passive to active. You may have to invent an actor in some cases:

1. We can recycle most ordinary materials.

2. Twelve protesters were arrested by the police.

3. You can use toolbar buttons instead of menu or keyboard commands.

4. Airplanes were downed all over the United States last Christmas season because of inclement weather.

5. A group of marine scientists and conservationists recently voted Palau, Micronesia’s coral reef, one of the seven underwater wonders of the world.

6. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens should be reread by everyone who thinks reading it in high school was enough.

7. In the summer of 1996, scientific evidence pointing to the possible existence of life beyond Earth was announced by NASA.

8. The purported evidence was found in a 4.5 pound meteorite that landed in Antarctica 13,000 years ago.

9. How many people were killed by tornados in 1999?

10. Did someone switch off the copier?

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