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I am writing study aims. Are the "to"-s necessary or redundant in the following sentence?

Article "to" use necessary: The aims of the study were: (1) to evaluate, (2) to present ...

Article "to" use necessary: The aims of the study were: (1) evaluate, (2) present ...

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  • If you're trying to create a grammatical sentence you need "to" at least before the first verb (you could say "to evaluate, present, etc"). If you're presenting a list and don't care about full sentences, you can drop "to". So it depends if you're trying to write in proper sentences (as in an essay or prose work) or doing something more casual like a PowerPoint, personal study aims, or an informal document/memo/email. It would be useful to know the rest of your sentence too rather than stopping halfway through.
    – Stuart F
    Mar 18 at 10:48
  • Note, this is not a preposition. Here, "to" is part of an infinitive.
    – GEdgar
    Mar 18 at 22:08
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The "to" is necessary, because this is a construction that takes the infinitive form of a verb ("to evaluate", "to present", etc.). So this is correct:

The aims of the study were: (1) to evaluate, (2) to present ...

But this is not:

The aims of the study were: (1) evaluate, (2) present ...

However, it's not necessary to repeat the word "to" for each one: you could use it once at the start, and use the parallel construction to apply it to all of them. So this would also be acceptable:

The aims of the study were to: (1) evaluate, (2) present ...

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“We aim to please”. “Aim” as a verb is followed by “to”+ infinitive.

“You ask what is our aim. The answer is victory.” “Aim” as a noun is defined by another noun. If you begin with “our aim is”, follow with a noun. Evaluation. Presentation.

But you don’t absolutely have to be Puritan. “Our aim is to...” is okay. At least in the US.

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