I am confusing with the following sentence from a writing book,

People were randomly assigned to groups.

Although I agree and I think it is correct (instead of "to group"), but I don't know the reason.

Since the subject is plural, the verb should be without 's'. However, using verb+s, feel more natural for me.

  • 2
    Groups is not a verb; it's a plural noun, an indirect object. The verb is were.
    – Andrew Leach
    Dec 25, 2019 at 9:16
  • 1
    If "group" was going to be used as a verb here, you would have been right. "People were randomly assigned to group together." Dec 25, 2019 at 21:03

2 Answers 2


Because group is a noun and as your subject is plural so the noun will be plural too...


Context matters too...


all the people assigned to a single group vs people assigned to different groups.

So in the sentence in your question, may be the author wants to convey that they are assigned to different groups

Perhaps, it does not make any sense to me assigning people in just one group.

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