HomeGrammarModal Auxiliaries

Modal Auxiliaries

Modal Auxiliaries- Know more about it

Modal auxiliaries are a type of auxiliary verb used to express various degrees of possibility, necessity, permission, ability, or obligation in a sentence.

They are often used to modify the meaning of the main verb in a sentence.

See Common modal auxiliaries in English below.

1) Can: Used to express ability, permission, or possibility.


i) She can speak English fluently.

ii) You can go to the party if you finish your homework.

2) Could: Used to express past ability or polite requests.


i) When I was younger, I could run faster.

ii) Could you please pass the salt?

3) May: Used to express possibility, permission, or a wish.


i) It may rain later, so bring an umbrella.

ii) May I use your phone?

4) Might: Similar to ‘may’, used to express possibility, but with a lower degree of certainty.


i) He might come to the meeting, but I’m not sure.

ii) They might help me but my friend hasn’t confirmed it.

5) Must: Used to express necessity or obligation.


i) You must complete your assignment before the deadline.

ii) Radha must remember to buy milk on her way home.

6) Should: Used to express advice, recommendation, or expectation.


i) You should eat more vegetables for a healthier diet.

ii) He should call his parents tonight.

7) Shall: Used to indicate a future action, often in formal or legal contexts, or to make suggestions or offers.


i) We shall meet again tomorrow at 9 AM.

ii) Shall I help you with your bags?

8) Will: Used to express future actions or intentions, as well as willingness or insistence.


i) She will visit her grandparents next weekend.

ii) I will help you with your project.

9) Would: Used to express hypothetical situations, polite requests, or preferences.


i) If I won the lottery, I would travel the world.

ii) Would you like some tea?

These modal auxiliaries can be combined with other verbs to convey a wide range of meanings in English sentences.

Table to learn use of Modal Auxiliaries

Modal Auxiliaries and their uses –

Sr No.Modal AuxiliaryUse
2ShouldAdvice , duty, Suggestion
3MustObligation, compulsion
4MayPermission, probability, less certainty
5May notProhibition
7Would, CouldRequest

Test on Modal Auxiliaries

1) I shall buy a scooter next month.

          (Use modal auxiliary showing ability)

2) Students may obey their parents.

          (Use modal auxiliary advice)

3) They need to be protected.

          (Use modal auxiliary showing obligation)

4) You should do what your teacher tells you

          (Use modal auxiliary showing possibility)

5) I will teach you this lesson next month.

          (Use modal auxiliary showing less certainty)

6) Can I Come in?

          (Use modal auxiliary showing permission)

7) Will you give me a pen?

          (Use modal auxiliary showing request)

8) She will enter the class.

       (Use modal auxiliary showing prohibition)


1) I can buy a scooter next month.

2) Students should obey their parents.

3) They must be protected.                                                  

4) You might do what your teacher tells you

5) I may teach you this lesson next month.

6) May I come in?

7) Could you give me a pen?

8) She may not enter the class.

See More-

Do solve the following online tests

  1. Online test on Articles
  2. Online test on Framing wh- question
  3. Online test on Conjunctions
  4. Online test on If and Unless
  5. Online test on Adjectives
  6. Grammar Quizes
  7. Adverbs

Test on Modal Auxiliaries

Do solve the online test and see your score.

Click on each correct option

Solve all ten sentences.

Click on ‘Submit’ button. See end of the test.

Scroll up and click on ‘view Score’ button

See the result.

Solve the test again if needed.

Do use the following activity workbook for more practice

English Grammar Activity Workbook

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