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Learning English Grammar | describing statistics | verbs

English Grammar | how to use verbs to describe statistics

The birth rate has reduced over the past ten years. [incorrect]
The birth rate has dropped over the past ten years. [correct]

The graph shows a rise in the number of accidents involving cyclists. [correct]
The graph represents a rise in the number of accidents involving cyclists. [incorrect]

Common verbs used to describe graphs, charts and diagrams include:
The chart/graph shows levels of post-school education in four countries.
The diagram illustrates/represents the structure of the political system.
The chart/graph compares average working hours in the USA and Europe.
We can see from the chart/graph that the number of visitors peaks in August.

Common verbs to describe figures and statistics include:
The statistics/figures suggest that people in rural areas are healthier.
The figure will increase further, reaching 6 million in 2020.
Demand rose by 48% in just 2 years. [not raised by 48%]
Time spent with the family dropped from 21% to just 6%.
[not reduced from 21%]

Verbs such as rise, drop, decline and fall describe a change which happens.

A person or organization can raise or reduce something:
The central bank has raised interest rates.
The Government has introduced measure to reduce traffic pollution in the capital.

See more English grammar mistakes

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