+0

Could you please tell me which is right:

'How many years of experience are required' or 'How many years of experience is required'?

Thank you in advance.

+2

With time periods expressed in units of time, the choice between the singular and the plural is decided on the basis of whether the focus is on the time period as a single entity (singular) or whether the focus is on a count of the number of units of time (plural). That means that either way might be possible in many sentences.

Nevertheless, I interpret "years of experience" as a single length of time, so I would use the singular in the case of your example:

How many years of experience is required?

In the following case there may have been a lengthy discussion of the exact number of years of exile that were appropriate. Five? Ten? So in the example below I would use the plural, focusing on each year as a separate addition to the terms of punishment:

According to the council's decision, how many years of exile were agreed upon?

CJ

Comments  
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CalifJimAccording to the council's decision, how many years of exile were agreed upon?

CJ, here, can we also use "was" meaning the decision on the length of time? That is, the agreement could be against the number of years wherein the verb is plural or against the decision on the length of the exile?

Suresh

vsureshcan we also use "was" meaning the decision on the length of time?

Yes, if that's the way you read the situation.

It just wasn't the way I was explaining the situation because I wanted an example that contrasted with the first example. (Flexibility as part of pedagogy? Emotion: smile )

CJ

CalifJimIt just wasn't the way I was explaining the situation because I wanted an example that contrasted with the first example

I was able to get that. I wanted to check rather was interested in seeing your views on the way I was interpreting it.

CalifJim(Flexibility as part of pedagogy? )

Some times you are almost sure you are right but when the teacher endorses your answer you feel happy.

It is always like that for me with you.

(Is this construction—It is always like that for me with you—meaningful and natural?)

Suresh

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vsuresh... was interested in seeing your views on the way I was interpreting it.

Your interpretation is also valid. Yes.

vsureshwhen the teacher endorses your answer you feel happy.

Emotion: smile OK. You should feel happy then.

(But do try to build your self-confidence. Emotion: wink )

vsureshIt is always like that for me with you.

Yes, it's meaningful and natural. It gets the point across, even though maybe it's not something people usually say. More expected, perhaps, is I always feel that way about your opinions. Either way is OK.

CJ

Thank you, CJ.

Suresh