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I am currently writing a project report for my university project and I have the following question. In the introduction, I mention that in a following section I would explain my progress. My teacher corrected this usage of 'would' to 'will'. Which one is correct?

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'Will' is correct. Because you intend to explain something. It's a pretty definite plan - something you are going to do.

Your 'will' is your intention - something you pretty solidly are going to do. If you used 'would' then it means you haven't yet made up your mind - and as the other answerer said - 'would' also means your decision is also conditional on another factor.

For example 'I would explain my progress - if I had time. I would explain my progress - if I had more data. I would explain my progress - if I thought you were interested.

So using 'would' we feel that you have not yet decided - so we are not, actually, expecting a progress update - and we are kind of waiting for you to tell us - what that conditional factor is.

  • This is wrong. Would does not mean that you have not made up your mind. It is simply a conditional. – Chenmunka Dec 7 '17 at 12:46
  • If there is a conditional, then it often means that you have not yet made up your mind. You are waiting on a condition to be met, before acting or deciding to act. Thus 'would' often gives a sentence a passive feel, as in this example, whereas 'will' does not. – Jelila Dec 13 '17 at 21:20

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