When I was writing this:

The university is for educational purpose.

everything was fine. But when I wrote this:

The universities are for educational purpose.

The Grammarly said it's a mistake and "purpose" should be replaced by "purposes", but I don't understand. Does it have something to do with "universities"?

Thanks for your time.

  • 1
    'The university is for educational purpose' sounds fairly unnatural to a native speaker. The normal expression uses the plural form; a reasonable example would be '... the use of the internet for educational purposes.' The university is for educational purposes' may have the normal form, but sounds faintly ridiculous and clumsy. Jul 24 '20 at 13:54
  • Use "purposes" in both cases. But it seems a little redundant to say it at all: by definition universities are for educational purposes.
    – nnnnnn
    Jul 24 '20 at 14:05
  • I have detected that you may be a non-native speaker. English Language Learners may be able to help you.
    – David
    Jul 24 '20 at 18:04

If you use the singular, you should use an article:

  • The university is for an educational purpose.
  • The universities are for an educational purpose.

If you don't use an article, you should use the plural:

  • The university is for educational purposes.
  • The universities are for educational purposes.

Which of those four variations you use is a matter of context and personal opinion—although the plural noun is probably the more common use.

But a singular count noun requires an article or some kind of pronoun in front of it. (It's possible to interpret purpose here as a mass noun, but it would be somewhat unusual.)

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