Asking for and giving permission

In asking and giving permission politely, you can use ‘can’, ‘could’ or ‘may’. Below are some tips on how you can use these modal auxiliaries;

Can

You use ‘can’ to ask for or giving permission. ‘Can’ is less formal than ‘could’ or ‘may’.

For example:

Asking for permission Giving/ refusing permission
Can I go to KLCC tomorrow, dad? Yes, you can but you need to finish your homework before you go.
Can I use your handphone, Ita? I’m sorry you can’t because I’ve left it at home.
Can we go now, Miss Nor? Yes, you can/ No, you can’t.

Could

You use ‘could’ to ask for and give permission. It is more polite than ‘can’. It is also used to show permission given in the past.

For example:

Asking for permission Giving/ refusing permission
Could I give my opinion? Yes, you could/ No, you couldn’t.
Could we go back earlier, Miss Akeena? Yes, you could.
When you were small, could you watch television every night? No, I couldn’t. I could watch television from 5.00 p.m. till 6.30 p.m. during weekdays.

May

You use ‘may’ in a formal situation when you ask for and give permission.

For example:

Asking for permission Giving/ refusing permission
Miss Afsyah, may I ask a question? Yes, you may.
May I submit the assignment tomorrow? I’m sorry. Everyone must submit it today.
May I see you at 5.00 p.m. today, Miss Kate? I need to discuss my project paper. Yes, you may. I’ll be in my office from 2.00 p.m. to 6.00 p.m. today.

Making and responding to apologies

An apology is usually made when you feel regret on something that you have done. The simplest and the most common way of apologising are by saying “sorry”. However, the way you apologise and response to it depends on the degree of formality of the situation that you are in.

In a formal situation

Apologising Responding to apology
I would like to apologise for…. Your apology is accepted
Forgive me. I’m terribly sorry about…. That’s quite alright! / That’s alright.
Please accept my apologies. Apologies are accepted!
I apologise for… It doesn’t matter/ It’s not your fault.
I beg your pardon. I understand completely.

In an informal situation

Apologising Responding to apology
Sorry. I didn’t mean to… That’s / its okay.
I’m sorry about that. Not to worry.
It was wrong of me. I’m sorry. Forget it.
I can’t tell you how sorry I am for/ about… Never mind.

adapted from Aida Mustapha.2011.Be Empowered in English: A coursebook: Cengage Learning Asia Pte Ltd.


About these ads

About NaSuHa

just a simple person...a little bit craze...epy n go lucky

Posted on May 18, 2012, in 1.3 Lesson 3. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.