Prepositions before Verbs

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Using prepositions before verbs is a tricky business, but it is important to learn the relevant prepositions to help you improve your formal writing.
This vocabulary exercise contains key words and phrases relevant to ones regularly covered in the IGCSE ESL exam.
Vocabulary QuizExplanation

The words used in the quiz are commonly found in formal writing. Learning how to spell and use these different prepositions properly will help improve your chances of being successful in your exams.

Some verbs and adjectives are followed by a certain preposition. To find which preposition(s) follow(s) the verb or adjective, look the verb or adjective up in an online dictionary, such as the Cambridge Dictionary, or use a corpus, such as the British National Corpus. Memorising these phrases instead of just the preposition alone is the most helpful.

Common verb + preposition combinations + verb -ing

About: worry, complain

  • She worries about not going well in her exams.
  • He complained about not knowing the answer.

To: object, listen

  • I object to being treated like a child.

Common adjective + preposition combinations + verb -ing

Of: enthusiastic, proud

  • She is enthusiastic about going to the cinema.
  • He is proud of getting an A in her exam.

To: accustomed

  • She is accustomed to studying on his own.


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