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How to Change a Verb to a Noun Expert

Reviewed
Three Methods: Adding Suffixes Adjusting the Sentence Avoiding Common Mistakes

Many verbs in the English language can easily be converted into nouns with the addition of suffixes. You can also change
certain verbs to nouns depending on the context of a sentence. Sometimes, using the noun form of a verb can sound clunky
and jargon-heavy. Use your discretion when changing verbs to nouns to keep your writing clear and concise. While it can be a
little tricky to change around words, especially if you're not a native speaker, don't get discouraged. With a little time and
patience, you can get the hang of changing verbs to nouns.

Method
Adding Suffixes
1

1 Add "-ance" or "-ence" to verbs. A wide variety of verbs can be changed to nouns with the addition of
the suffixes "-ance" or "-ence." For example, the verb "appear" can become "appearance." The verb
"resist" can become "resistance."[1]
For example, look at the sentence, "He appeared on many talk shows while promoting his book." If you
wanted to change the verb to a noun, you could say, "He made many talk show appearances while
promoting his book."

2 Add "-ment" to verbs. Other verbs require the suffix "-ment" to be converted to nouns. For example,
"appoint,", "assign," and "enjoy" can become "appointment," "assignment", and "enjoyment."[2]
For example, look at the sentence, "The man enjoyed his lunch." If you wanted to change the verb to a
noun, you could say, "The man's lunch brought him enjoyment."

3 Add "-tion" or "-sion.". The suffixes "-tion" and "-sion" are found at the end of many nouns. A wide variety
of verbs turn into nouns with these suffixes. For example, "inform", "decide", and "describe" can become
"information," "decision," and "description."[3]
For example, look at the sentence, "He decided to decline the job offer." If you wanted to use a noun,
you could say, "He made the decision to decline the job offer."

Method
Adjusting the Sentence
2

1 Locate the verb. A verb is an action word. It describes the act of doing something in a sentence. If you
want to adjust a sentence to change a verb to a noun, locate the verb and see if it can double as a noun.
For example, look at the sentence, "The film impacted the students." The verb here is "impacted."
As another example, consider the sentence, “The athlete prepared to run.” The verb in question is “run”
(although “prepared” is also a verb).

2 Add an appropriate determiner before the word. A determiner is a word like "the" or "a", which usually
signifies the following word will be a noun. To change a verb to a noun in a sentence, add a determiner
before the noun.[4]
If you're changing "impacted" to a noun, you would need the determiner "an" or the determiner “the.”
To change “run” to a noun, you would need the determiner “the” or the determiner “a.”
3 Rewrite the sentence. Once you've added a determiner, you may need to tweak the sentence further. The
verb may need to be tweaked slightly to become a noun and the sentence may need minor rearranging.[5]
For example, "The film impacted the students," can be changed to, "The film had an impact on the
students."
For instance, “The athlete prepared to run,” can be changed to, “The athlete prepared for a run.”

Method
Avoiding Common Mistakes
3

1 Consult a dictionary to double check your suffixes. If English is your second language, which suffix to
use when converting verbs can get confusing. As there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to which
suffix to use, don't be embarrassed to consult a dictionary after changing a verb to a noun. It can never hurt to
double check.

2 Avoid conversations that sound like jargon. Many people consider changing verbs to nouns a form of
poor writing. This is because it often sounds jargon heavy. Terms used in business, computing, or sports
can sound like meaningless jargon if you use the noun form over the verb form.[6]
For example, take the sentence, "The boss conducted an investigation about the allegations." It's a little
wordy, and it's easier to simply write, "The boss investigated the allegations."
For instance, while you could say, “The team did a review of the tape,” it doesn’t flow well. Instead, go
with, “The team reviewed the tape.”

3 Use conversions only if it better conveys your tone. Using nouns as verbs can be helpful if you're
trying to sound less emotional and more objective. If dealing with sensitive information, for example, it can
be beneficial to sound a little technical. Be aware of when you're using conversions and whether they convey
the proper tone.[7]
For example, take the sentence, "He retaliated by filing a lawsuit." As this is a sensitive situation, you
may want to phrase it in gentler terms. You can use the noun form to write the more played down
sentence, "The lawsuit may have been a form of retaliation."

Community Q&A New! Make a stranger's day. Answer a question.

Question

What is "improve" changed into noun form?

Donagan
Top Answerer

As suggested in in the above article (Method 1 Step 2), change "improve" to "improvement."

Question

What is the noun for of verb "do"?

Donagan
Top Answerer

The gerund "doing," as in "This was of your own doing."

Question

How do I change 'outgoing' to a noun?


wikiHow Contributor
Community Answer

Not every adjective or verb can be immediately transformed into a noun. In this case, you would use a synonym for
outgoing, such as extroverted, which can then be transformed into the noun 'extrovert'.

Question

What is mixed tense?

Donagan
Top Answerer

It probably refers to the use of more than one verb tense in a single sentence.

Question

"Gradually these systems were modified and perfected." How do I rewrite this sentence in noun form?

Donagan
Top Answerer

Gradually these systems were subjected to modification, finally resulting in perfection. (This is an example of
Method 2 above.)

Question

How do I change "jog" into a verb?

Donagan
Top Answerer

"Jog" can be either a noun ("I am going for a jog") or a verb (I am going to jog").

Question

What's the noun form of the word 'buy'?

Donagan
Top Answerer

"Buy" can be a noun: "This is a really smart buy."

Question

What is the noun form of free?

Donagan
Top Answerer

Freedom, freeness.

Question
How do I make a verb of 'starvation'?

Donagan
Top Answerer

The verb is starve.

Question

How do I change the verb "admire" into a noun?

Donagan
Top Answerer

Admiration. Admirer.

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Quick Summary

To change a verb to a noun, first locate the verb, or action word, in the sentence. Then, add a determiner like
“the” or “a” before the verb to make it into a noun. Next, rewrite or rearrange the sentence so that it makes
sense. If adding a determiner won’t work, you can simply add a suffix like “-ance” or “-ence” to the verb to make
it into a noun. However, if you do, check the dictionary to make sure the word you’ve come up with is correct.

Sources and Citations

1. http://www.englishlessonsbrighton.co.uk/how-to-use-suffixes-to-create-nouns-from-adjectives-and-verbs/
2. http://www.englishlessonsbrighton.co.uk/how-to-use-suffixes-to-create-nouns-from-adjectives-and-verbs/
3. http://www.englishlessonsbrighton.co.uk/how-to-use-suffixes-to-create-nouns-from-adjectives-and-verbs/
4. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/grammar/verbs-from-nouns
5. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/grammar/verbs-from-nouns
6. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/grammar/verbs-from-nouns
7. https://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/30/those-irritating-verbs-as-nouns/