By 2013 the theoretical and practical courses are organized

Is it already organized or is it about to get organized?
I mean, is it past or future?

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    2013 was last year, so clearly past. Unless you have a time machine. It's an odd sentence, in any case, devoid of context. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Aug 13 '14 at 10:10

It's describing events in the past. This is indicated by "By 2013", which is in the past. It's a particular device called the historic present tense, by which the events being described are intended to be more immediate and vivid: the reader is actually there in the midst of the action.

In linguistics and rhetoric, the historic present or historical present (also called dramatic present or narrative present) refers to the employment of the present tense when narrating past events. Besides its use in writing about history, especially in historical chronicles (listing a series of events), it is used in fiction, for 'hot news' (as in headlines), and in everyday conversation (Huddleston & Pullum 2002: 129–131). In conversation, it is particularly common with 'verbs of communication' such as tell, write, and say (and in colloquial uses, go) (Leech 2002: 7). Historic present is the form recognised by the Oxford English Dictionary, whereas historical present is the form in Merriam Webster.

Literary critics and grammarians have said that the historic present has the effect of making past events more vivid. More recently, analysts of its use in conversation have argued that it functions not by making an event present, but by marking segments of a narrative, foregrounding events (that is, signalling that one event is particularly important, relevant to others) and marking a shift to evaluation (Brinton 1992: 221).


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