Passive Voice VS. Active Voice Buthaina Al Othman There are five reasons for using the passive tense instead of the active tense.
Reason (1) Use the passive voice to emphasize the action not the person who performs it. Notice that: The object of the sentence replaces the subject. Example: 1- Farmers grow grapes in the North.(Present Active) 2- Grapes are grown in the North.(Present Passive) 3- Grapes were grown in the North.(Past Passive)
Reason (2) Use the Passive voice in formal writing: Scientific and technical reports. News stories. Examples: 1- Vertebrates are classified into four groups. 2- The computer was invented in the 1960s. 3- H.H. the Amir was treated by the best British doctors, according to recent press reports.
Reason (3) Use the passive voice when you don’t know who performed the action. Example: 1. The dogs are let out! (Who let the dogs out?) 2. All the cookies were eaten last night! 3. The bell was rung.
Reason (4) Use the Passive voice when the person who performed the action is obvious. Example: 1. Wheat is cultivated in the East. 2. Kuwaiti POWs are treated cruelly. 3. The two Italian immigrants were executed.
Reason (5) Use the Passive voice when you don’t want to tell who performed the action. Example: 1. A mistake was made. 2. He/She was provided with little information. 3. The students were given the wrong schedule.