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- They are playing football in the field.
- The cow is grazing in the field.

I was once told when it comes to "field" and when it comes to sentences like that you cannot use prepositions other than "in". This is pretty debatable between the other teachers and me, they claimed "on" or "at" is acceptable. So can we use prepositions other than "in" in these situations?

If I was going to be proven wrong I prefer to hear it somewhere reliable, thanks in advance.
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Hi again,

"Field" is an odd one. For your first, I would use "on," but for the second, I would use "in."

It has to do with how you picture the field. If you see it only as an open plane, as I do with sports, then it's "on." If you see the field as having boundaries, particularly physical boundaries, like a fence or a tree line, then it's "in."

You can use "at" for things like "I'll meet you at the football field after practice" to mean "the general area associated with the field."
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Hi,
- They are playing football in the field.
- The cow is grazing in the field.

I was once told when it comes to "field" and when it comes to sentences like that you cannot use prepositions other than "in". This is pretty debatable between the other teachers and me, they claimed "on" or "at" is acceptable. So can we use prepositions other than "in" in these situations?

As you perhaps realize, prepositions are tricky. They are hard to learn, and hard to teach. Usage is often idiomatic.

You can use various prepositions here, but let me just offer you a few brief comments to try to give you a basic feeling for how we think of these prepositions.
- The cow is grazing in the field. Sounds fine. The focus is that the field 'contains' the cow.

- The cow is grazing at the field. Sounds odd. 'At' here focuses on the field as a location. eg You might say 'The cow is not grazing at the Mall.' The reason for the oddness is that we expect cows to be at a field, and not at a mall, so the sentence feels like it is atstaing a fact that is already obvious.


- The cow is grazing on the field.
Sounds OK, if you want to focus on the field as a surface.
Let me switch examples. During a soccer game, spectators are not allowed on the field. ie they are not allowed on the playing surface.

Best wishes again, Clive

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Comments  
There is a difference between UK English and American English here.  

In the U.S.A. You could use "on" rather than "in".  They are playing football on the field.  They were playing football at the field.  

But the cow is grazing in the field or on the field, but not "The cow was grazing at the field" - well maybe depending on the meaning you wish to convey. 
We were at the field watching them play football.  We saw a cow grazing at the field.
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The cows are ______ the field??? (in/on)
I just do an examination last week and i was confused with in/ on the field sentence. But i think your opinion was right ( im come from Vietnam so my writting skills not correctly sorry if my oppinion was not helpful for you)