present perfect continuous

Present Perfect Continuous


The Present Perfect Continuous refers to activities that began in the past and continues to the present. It also refers to an activity with a result in the present.

Form of the Present Perfect Continuous:

The present perfect continuous uses the auxiliary verb have, the word “been”, and the present participle (ing-form). See PRESENT PARTICIPLE.

 His customers/The days + have been + ing-form.
 The laborers/Our cars  
 Dr. Nazem + has been + ing-form.
 My guardian  

1. Began in Past and Continues to the Present

Like The present perfect simple, the present perfect continuous describes actions and states that began in the past and continues to the present. We usually include a time reference.

• Muruli has been studying computer engineering for the past three years.
• Mr. and Mrs. Rogers have been living in Spain since 1979.
• I’ve been watching TV all morning.
• My former classmate has been working at Burger King for the past 20 years.

2. Happened in Recent Past, but Relevant in the Present

It also talks about something that began and ended in the recent past, but still effects the present in some way.

• The boys have been playing rugby football. That’s why they are all sweaty and dirty.
• Why is Lisa crying? —> She has been slicing onions.
• I’m too pooped to go out; I’ve been travelling all day.

Answer or respond to the following. Say why and give examples.


1. How long have you been studying English? Where have you studied English?

2. How long have students in your country been studying English (as the main foreign language)? What did they study before English?

3. What’s your job? Where do you work? How long have you been working at your present job? How long has your company, school, or organization been in existence?

4. How long have you been living in your village, town or city? Were you born at your current residence? How long has your family been living where they now live?

5. How long have you been using the internet? A cell phone? Laptop? Does it feel like people have always been using these devices?

City, Country

6. What’s the official language of your country? How long have people in your country been speaking this language? What did people speak before that?

7. What is the population of your city? How old is your city? How long has your town or city been a town or city?

8. Do people in your country eat hamburgers, hotdogs, pizza, French fries/chips and, or shaorma/gyros/doner? If yes, how long have people been eating them? What about cola?

9. What is the fashion in clothes these days? How long have people been wearing these clothes?

10. How long has your nation been independent or a country?

11. How long has your (or your friend’s) country had a democratic form of government?

Explain the following. Why did it happen? Why is it happening?

12. Mr. Uribe has a stomach ache. Why does he have a stomach ache?
His colleague has a headache. Why?

13. Ms. Hill’s clothes are dirty. Why does she have dirt on her clothes?

14. Julian is all wet. His hair is wet, his clothes are wet. Why?

15. Mr. Richardson has greasy, oily dirty hands. Why?

16. Dilbert is very tired; he is exhausted.


17. Pat doesn’t have any money; he is flat broke.

18. Tim is perspiring (sweating).

19. Dr. O’Brian is yawning.

20. Mrs. Beauchamp has a hard time falling asleep this evening.

21. Ms. Barboza has a large balance in her bank account.

22. Tina’s cousin is overweight.


23. My roommate (flatmate) has a tan.

24. Garret’s uncle feels very stressed.

25. James’ friend feels depressed.

26. Many people have been protesting and demonstrating in front of the parliament building.

27. Members of Parliament have been fist-fighting (brawling).


28. Stella has been studying and practicing her German intensely. Why?

29. Mr. Takemoto is on a long vacation.

30. Hubert has been spending lots of time on the computer and internet these days.

31. Bong Soo has been observing and recording the eating habits of people in downtown. Why?

32. Mr. Jennings has been wishing, hoping and praying all week.


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