Choosing the right verb tense depends on the perspective the writer adopts in connection with time. Usually, current events are narrated in the present tense (e.g. “I am at the office right now.”). Past events are narrated in the past tense (e.g. “I was at the office yesterday.”) but a “past event” could also be coded in the present perfect tense (e.g. “I have been at the office the whole day”) when it still has some present relevance. Here is a list of frequently used tenses:

Tense

Example

Simple Present

I study English.

Present Progressive/Continuous

I am reading a book.

Simple Future

I will eat pasta tomorrow.

Future Progressive/ Continuous

I will be staying with my sister tomorrow.

Simple Past

He visited London last year.

Past Progressive/ Continuous

I was working on a project when she came.

Present Perfect Simple

You have lived in New York and Singapore.

Present Perfect Progressive/ Continuous

I have been listening to you for an hour.

Past Perfect

She had finished her homework when John came.

Past Perfect Progressive/ Continuous

She had been studying hard until he came.

Present tense VS. Present perfect tense

 
In example 1, the present perfect tense should be used, because the sentence describes an action (i.e. implement) that started in the past and has continued up till now.
 
Similarly, in example 2, the present perfect tense should be used as the actions that happened in the past have continued up to now. 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

1.

More subjects such as Liberal Studies, which put more emphasis on students’ abilities to think critically and express their opinions freely rather than recitations, are implemented in schools in recent years.

More subjects such as Liberal Studies, which put more emphasis on students’ abilities to think critically and express their opinions freely rather than recitations, have been implemented in schools in recent years.

2.

Apart from the economic aspect, creativity starts to be integrated into society in recent years, which is highly supported by the government.

Apart from the economic aspect, creativity has started to be integrated into society in recent years, which is highly supported by the government.

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Click here for a list of exercises on verb tenses.

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