Detailed Explanation: Converting Assertive to Interrogative Sentences


25th June 2024

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Language is a powerful tool, and understanding the various forms and functions of sentences can significantly enhance communication skills. Two fundamental types of sentences are assertive and interrogative sentences. Converting assertive to interrogative sentences is a valuable skill, particularly in writing and rhetoric. This article will provide a detailed explanation of what assertive and interrogative sentences are, along with multiple examples and a step-by-step guide on how to transform assertive sentences into interrogative ones.

What Are Assertive Sentences?

Assertive sentences, also known as declarative sentences, state facts, opinions, or assertions. They are straightforward statements that relay information or express thoughts clearly and directly. An assertive sentence ends with a period (full stop) and does not require an answer.

Assertive Sentence Examples:

  1. The sky is blue.
  2. She enjoys reading books.
  3. The meeting starts at 10 AM.
  4. They have completed the project.
  5. I believe in hard work.

What Are Interrogative Sentences?

Interrogative sentences, on the other hand, are used to ask questions. These sentences seek information, clarification, or confirmation. They typically begin with question words like who, what, where, when, why, and how, or auxiliary verbs like do, does, did, is, are, and can. An interrogative sentence ends with a question mark.

Interrogative Sentence Examples:

  1. Is the sky blue?
  2. Does she enjoy reading books?
  3. When does the meeting start?
  4. Have they completed the project?
  5. Do you believe in hard work?

Converting Assertive to Interrogative Sentences

Transforming an assertive sentence into an interrogative one involves changing the structure and, sometimes, adding auxiliary verbs or question words. This can be quite challenging if you are learning English because your native language might not follow the same principles. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to convert assertive to interrogative sentences.

Step 1: Identify the Main Verb

The first step in converting an assertive sentence to an interrogative one is to identify the main verb. This verb will guide you in forming the correct question structure.

  • The sky is blue. (Main verb: is)

Step 2: Place the Auxiliary Verb or Main Verb at the Beginning

For sentences with an auxiliary verb (e.g., is, are, do, does, have, can), place the auxiliary verb at the beginning of the sentence to form the question.

  • Assertive: The sky is blue.
  • Interrogative: Is the sky blue?

If the assertive sentence does not have an auxiliary verb, you may need to add one to form the question.

  • She enjoys reading books. (Main verb: enjoys)

To convert it:

  • Interrogative: Does she enjoy reading books?

Step 3: Use Question Words if Necessary

For more detailed information-seeking questions, you might need to add a question word at the beginning of the sentence. This is common when the assertive sentence involves details about time, place, reason, method, etc.

Assertive Sentence Example:

  • The meeting starts at 10 AM.

Assertive to Interrogative Example:

  • When does the meeting start?

Step 4: Ensure Proper Subject-Verb Agreement

When converting, make sure the subject and verb agree properly. Adjust the verb form if necessary to match the subject, especially when introducing auxiliary verbs.

Assertive Sentence Example:

  • They have completed the project.

Assertive to Interrogative Example:

  • Have they completed the project?

More Assertive to Interrogative Examples

To better understand the process, let’s look at additional examples across different contexts:

  1. Statement of Fact:
    • Assertive: She is a doctor.
    • Interrogative: Is she a doctor?
  2. Opinion:
    • Assertive: Chocolate ice cream is the best.
    • Interrogative: Is chocolate ice cream the best?
  3. Future Events:
    • Assertive: They will attend the concert tomorrow.
    • Interrogative: Will they attend the concert tomorrow?
  4. Possession:
    • Assertive: He has a new car.
    • Interrogative: Does he have a new car?
  5. Habitual Actions:
    • Assertive: He goes for a run every morning.
    • Interrogative: Does he go for a run every morning?

Special Cases in Conversion

Negative Sentences

Negative assertive sentences require careful handling when converting to interrogative forms. Usually, the negative word (not) remains, but the structure changes to fit the interrogative form.

Assertive Sentence Example:

  • She does not like spinach.

Assertive to Interrogative Example:

  • Does she not like spinach?
  • Alternatively: Doesn’t she like spinach?

Complex Sentences

For complex assertive sentences, each clause might need separate conversion or a combined approach to form a coherent question.

Assertive Sentence Example:

  • Although it was raining, we went for a walk.

Assertive to Interrogative Example:

  • Even though it was raining, did we go for a walk?

Practice Exercises

To master converting assertive to interrogative sentences, practise the following exercises:

1. Convert the following assertive sentences into interrogative sentences:

    • The cat is sleeping on the couch.
    • They will travel to France next year.
    • She has finished her homework.
    • The teacher explained the lesson clearly.
    • He likes to play football in the evening.


  • Is the cat sleeping on the couch?
  • Will they travel to France next year?
  • Has she finished her homework?
  • Did the teacher explain the lesson clearly?
  • Does he like to play football in the evening?

2. Formulate interrogative sentences for the following assertions:

    • The sun rises in the east.
    • He can solve this puzzle easily.
    • They are planning a surprise party.
    • She owns a bakery downtown.
    • He studied at Oxford University.


  • Does the sun rise in the east?
  • Can he solve this puzzle easily?
  • Are they planning a surprise party?
  • Does she own a bakery downtown?
  • Did he study at Oxford University?


Understanding the difference between assertive and interrogative sentences is crucial for effective communication, but can be challenging if English is not your first language. Assertive sentences provide information, while interrogative sentences seek it. By learning to convert assertive to interrogative sentences, you can enhance your questioning skills, engage in more dynamic conversations, and improve your writing.

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