For context, I was writing about different activities that took place during a programme. I discussed five out of six different types of activities and then said:

'The final type of activities was organised trips '

as an introduction to paragraphs that discuss these trips.

My supervisor corrected me and suggested that it should be:

'The final type of activities were organised trips'

However, I think that the subject is 'the type' (singular) and not 'organised trips' (plural). So in my mind it should be was not were...

Am I wrong? Please help...


1 Answer 1


Since "type" is the subject, "was", not "were", would be technically correct. But why not avoid the issue by switching to "activity" singular or using less awkward phrasing like "Organized trips was the final type of activities"?

  • 1
    You can't do that, because trips is plural and following it immediately by was is decidedly odd. That's hardly avoiding the issue!
    – Andrew Leach
    Aug 2, 2019 at 17:16
  • Thank you, I'm glad that it is technically correct and while I could rephrase it, I also need to know what is correct for any future writing of my 80,000 words thesis :) My supervisor is British native speaker so I wonder if his version is grammatically correct or is it just more widely used?
    – Karolina
    Aug 2, 2019 at 17:21
  • @AndrewLeach Looks to me like "organized trips" is a type (i.e. category) in this case, not a plural collection of nouns. Still, much less awkward to just make activities singular. Aug 2, 2019 at 17:25
  • “type of activities” is the problem. It contains the error. Once you’re in the frying pan, it’s hard to go anywhere but the fire.
    – Xanne
    Sep 2, 2019 at 0:32

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