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fail (in) the exam

English grammar help. Grammar questions from ESL learners

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fail (in) the exam

Postby SARDORBEK » Tue May 29, 2012 10:59 am

1) I failed my driving test the first time I took it. (no preposition)
2) Sanjar failed in the exam, but his sister got through.
3) He failed maths but passed all his other subjects.(no preposition)
4) I passed in history but failed in chemistry.
5) A lot of people fail their driving test the first time. (no preposition)

Is the preposition in optional after the verb fail?
In general, do we say [url]fail the exam[/url]or [url]fail in the exam[/url]?
Is there a difference between them?

Thanks a lot…
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Re: fail (in) the exam

Postby Alan » Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:17 am

In an academic context, 'fail' is transitive. Otherwise, 'in' is normally required.
I'll leave you to work out which applies in each of your examples!
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