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Unit 1: English In A Minute
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Session 1

Have you ever wondered when to use 'will' and when to use 'be going to'? Watch Georgina explain in this English In A Minute.

Activity 1

Will vs Be going to

Let Georgina teach you when we say 'will' and 'be going to' in this English In A Minute.

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Georgina

What are the differences between will and be going to?

We use will when we make a decision about the future at the moment of speaking.

What do I want to drink?

I think I will have a coffee.

We use be going to when the decision is made before speaking.

I know what I want!

I am going to have a tea.

We can also use will to talk about predictions based on something we expect to happen.

I will probably be late because the buses are often delayed.

We use be going to to talk about a prediction based on evidence.

Look at those black clouds! It is going to rain soon.

Right I’m off now! I’m going to buy a coffee.

Bye!

Future decisions

We use will when we make a decision about the future at the time of speaking.

  • PERSON A: I'm cold. 
  • PERSON B: OK, I'll get your coat.

We use be going to when the decision is made before speaking.

  • I've decided! I'm going to go and see my boss!
  • I'm going to go to Brazil next year.

Predictions

We can also use will to talk about predictions based on something we expect to happen.

  • He'll probably forget the meeting. He always does.
  • It'll probably be cold next month. It'll be winter!

We use be going to to talk about a prediction based on current evidence or what we can see.

  • That chair looks broken. The leg is going to snap.
  • Someone is coming up the drive. I think they are going to knock on the door.

For general predictions, you can often use either form.

  • One day we will live on the moon.
  • One day we are going to live on the moon. 

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