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This question already has an answer here:

Please have a look at the sentence below:

Before one votes on the propositions, it's truly vital that he or she becomes familiar with the reasons for voting both for the proposition and against the proposition.*

My book says, become familiar… proposal. That is, becomes should be become. Is there a grammatical difference? Is one more correct than the other?

marked as duplicate by Edwin Ashworth, tchrist, Centaurus, Misti, Chenmunka Feb 25 '15 at 18:23

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  • You seem to be mixing up proposal and proposition. Is this accidental, or do you actually mean to ask something about that? As for the use of the subjunctive, I'm afraid that is general reference on this site. A question about that would fit better on English Language Learners. – oerkelens Feb 24 '15 at 17:01
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    The choice between "become" and "becomes" is here a choice between subjunctive and indicative moods, respectively. Either is acceptable, but the subjunctive is more formal. By the way, if you start by using the pronoun "one" for a single person of indeterminate sex, you really should stick with it, though it tends to sound stuffy, that is, painfully formal. At that level of formality the contraction would be spelled out: "Before one votes on the propositions, it is vital that one become familiar with the reasons for voting either for or against each." – Brian Donovan Feb 24 '15 at 17:36
  • My problem is which one is correct. – abbasi Feb 24 '15 at 17:43
  • As I said, either is acceptable, but the subjunctive, "become," is more formal. – Brian Donovan Feb 24 '15 at 17:45
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The subject of "votes" and the subject of "becomes familiar" refer to the same person in the example:

Before one votes on the propositions, it's truly vital that he or she becomes familiar with the reasons for voting both for the proposition and against the proposition.

So it would be peculiar to have one subject be singular and the other plural. But you could make both plural, I suppose:

Before people vote on the propositions, it's truly vital that they become familiar with the reasons for voting both for the proposition and against the proposition.

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