In this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. These tips are usually based on areas of English which learners find difficult, e.g. spelling, grammar, collocation, synonyms, etc.
This week’s language tip helps with using the patterns that follow the verb attend. When attend means ‘to be present at an event or activity’, it is not used with the prepositions to or at. It is simply followed by a direct object:
✗ You go to university,
attend to classes, but learn nothing about the real world.
✓ You go to university, attend classes, but learn nothing about the real world.
✗ They are able to
attend atimportant meetings.
✓ They are able to attend important meetings.
In the same way, when attend means ‘to go regularly to school, church etc’, use a direct object (not attend to or attend at):
✗ In some parts of our country, people still don’t let girls
✓ In some parts of our country, people still don’t let girls attend school.
✗ …a peak in the number of students
attending atuniversities in Sweden.
✓ …a peak in the number of students attending universities in Sweden.
Don’t confuse these meanings with the phrasal verb attend to something, which means ‘to deal with something’:
My assistant will attend to all your travel arrangements.
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