The present perfect continuous expresses an action that recently stopped or is still going on. It puts emphasis on the duration or course of the action.
Form of Present Perfect Continuous
|I / you / we / they||I have been speaking.||I have not been speaking.||Have I been speaking?|
|he / she / it||He has been speaking.||He has not been speaking.||Has he been speaking?|
Exceptions in Spelling
|Exceptions in spelling when adding -ing||Example|
|final e is dropped
(but: ee is not changed)
|come – coming
(but: agree – agreeing)
|after a short, stressed vowel, the final consonant is doubled||sit – sitting|
|l as final consonant after a vowel is doubled (in British English)||travel – travelling|
|final ie becomes y||lie – lying|
Use of Present Perfect Continuous
- puts emphasis on the duration or course of an action (not the result)
Example: She has been writing for two hours.
- action that recently stopped or is still going on
Example: I have been living here since 2001.
- finished action that influenced the present
Example: I have been working all afternoon.
As with all continuous tenses remember:
Non-Continuous Verbs/ Mixed VerbsIt is important to remember that Non-Continuous Verbs cannot be used in any continuous tenses. Also, certain non-continuous meanings for Mixed Verbs cannot be used in continuous tenses. Instead of using Present Perfect Continuous with these verbs, you must use Present Perfect.
- Sam has been having his car for two years. Not Correct
- Sam has had his car for two years. Correct
Key Words of Present Perfect Continuous
- all day, for 4 years, since 1993, How long,.......?, the whole week
- Time for practice!