The Present Perfect is a common English tense, but do you know all of its uses? Today we are reviewing several Present Perfect uses, and then taking a look at how to use the Present Perfect with recently completed actions.

Whale Watching
HAVE you ever BEEN whale watching?


Many students know to use the Present Perfect with EXPERIENCES.

[has/have + past participle]

[has/have + not + past participle]

[has/have + never + past participle]

Click here for a past lesson about the Present Perfect with Experiences.

HAVE you TRIED surfing or other water sports in SD?

Students also recognize that we use the Present Perfect with FOR and SINCE.

[has/have + past participle + for + period of time]

[has/have + past participle + since + point in time] 

  • Example: I have lived in San Diego for two months.
  • Example: She has been a teacher since 2010.

We have looked at this before on the CISL Blog: click here to review this lesson.

San Francisco International Students-CISL San Francisco
These SF students HAVE JUST FINISHED their studies for the day. What should they do now?

Today we are looking at another use of the Present Perfect: for recently completed actions.

[has/have + just + past participle]

We often use the word JUST with these sentences to show that the action is recently completed.

Here are some examples:

  • I’ve just come from the store.
  • She has just finished her PhD.

In these sentences, we know that the action is recently completed, but we do not know when. We assume that it happened very recently.

They HAVE JUST COMPLETED their CISL course. What now?

The Present Perfect (+ Getting Involved in SD and SF!)

To practice the Present Perfect for Recently Completed Actions (and inspire you to get out and enjoy SD and SF!) we have some questions that use this tense. In these questions, the speaker is asking for advice regarding life as an ESL student in San Diego or San Francisco. What advice would you give?

The Present Perfect with Recently Completed Actions

1. I’ve decided to take an English proficiency exam. Which one do you recommend?

CISL’s response: Awesome! We can help with that. Why don’t you read our article on Choosing the Proficiency Exam That’s Right For You and then give us a call so we can help you select the test that meets your needs? We are looking forward to helping you prepare and pass your exam!

Books closed! These CISL students HAVE JUST FINISHED studying for their TOEFL exam.

2. Recently I have developed an interest in playing a new sport. Are there teams in SD and SF?

CISL’s response: You have come to the right places! SD and SF are known as incredibly athletic cities. Check out our article on Exercise in the U.S. for some tips regarding gyms, teams, and sports. Make sure to also read our article on Ways to Practice your English Outside the Classroom for a few more tips on joining teams, etc. Good luck!

The options for sports in SD and SF are endless!

3. I have just read about cooking classes in SD. Do you know anything about these?

CISL’s response: Absolutely! Check out Hip Cooks, a fun company that offers a wide selection of classes. Our article on Hip Cooks is here. Also, if you’re in SF, check out our article on Art Classes in SF. This is another great way to meet people and try something new.

Are you feeling artistic? Try taking an art class in SD or SF!

4. My friend has just passed the TOEFL exam with a very high score. What should we do to celebrate?

CISL’s response: Our student Saeed went skydiving! If you’re not that adventurous, why not blow off some steam by going to one of SD or SF’s many happy hours? Or if  you aren’t interested in drinking, try something sportive and outdoors-related, like Hiking in SF, Kayaking in SD, or Canoeing the Russian River? There’s always something fun to do!

Beautiful La Jolla Cove is an incredible place to go kayaking.

5. My friends and I have rented a car. Where should we go?

CISL’s response: Your choices are seriously endless: Lake Tahoe, Las Vegas, Wine Tasting in Napa, Palm Springs, Big Bear, Paso Robles . . . California is huge, beautiful, and offers something fun around every corner. The hardest part is choosing where to go, but the destination will most certainly be incredible!

Las Vegas-tripsforESLstudentsinSanDiego
Vegas, here we come!