Difference Between Since and For (With Table)

Since vs For

Since and For are commonly used prepositions in the English language. These two words are used for similar meanings but not for the same purposes. They work accordingly in the past perfect simple and past continuous tense and relate to what event happens.

English learners have often difficulties in using these two words in proper time. Since and for are mostly are used for time measurements and they get easily confused as people use different prepositions in the native language.

So, the main difference between since and for is that – since is used to describe the starting point of actions, events, or states and for is used to measure the duration of longness.

For is used when we try to mean how long something lasts. The present tense refers to a period that extends into the future.

Whereas Since refers to when things began and are used with present perfect tense or past perfect tense.


Parameter of ComparisonSinceFor
UsageThe word is used as both preposition and conjunction.For is used as a preposition but rarely as conjunction.
TenseIt is used with the present with present or past perfect tense till a later past time till now.It is a strong form of a preposition, used for indicating the person intended to receive or benefit from something.
TimeIt is used always with the present or past perfect tense for a specified period in the past.It is sometimes used after an adjective or before a noun indicating an unspecified period.
As a conjunctionIt is used as a conjunction with present perfect, past perfect or simple past tense in the main clause, till a later past event or till now.It is a rare but strong form of conjunction which is not at the beginning of a sentence.
Other useIt is also used as an idiom and adverb in some sentences.It is sometimes used as an idiom but not as an adverb.

 

When to Use the Word Since?

Since its a very essential word in the English language. It is used as both preposition and conjunction.

It is used with the present with present or past perfect tense till a later past time till now.

It is used always with the present or past perfect tense for a specified period in the past.

It is used as a conjunction with present perfect, past perfect or simple past tense in the main clause, till a later past event or till now.

Use of “since” in the tense:

  1. Present perfect continuous tense: I have been studying since 5 o’clock and now I am tired.
  2. Past perfect continuous tense: It had been studying since 5 o’clock and I was getting tired.
  3. Past perfect tense: I have known him since February.
RECOMMENDED  Difference Between Act and Law (With Table)

Use of since in time:

  1. It has been two months since I met her.
  2. It has been four years since the last Tsunami.
Since usage
Since usage
 

When to Use the Word For?

It is a strong form of a preposition, used for indicating the person intended to receive or benefit from something.

It is sometimes used after an adjective or before a noun indicating an unspecified period.

It is a rare but strong form of conjunction which is not at the beginning of a sentence.

Use of “for” in the tense:

To say For goes with any tense of grammar.

  1. Present perfect continuous tense: He has been living in India for three months.
  2. Past tense: I worked at the service station for five years.
  3. Present perfect tense: He has lived in Turin for a long time.
  4. Future tense: He will be in the hospital for at least a week.
  5. Present tense: They exercise for more than two hours a day.

Use of “for” in time:

  1. For how long have you been here for?
  2. I have lived here for ten years.
For usage
For usage

Main Differences Between Since and For

The key differences between them are listed below:

  1. The word since is used as both preposition and conjunction. For is used as a preposition but rarely as a conjunction.
  2. Since is also used as an idiom and adverb in some sentences. For is sometimes used as an idiom but not as an adverb.
  3. It is used always with the present or past perfect tense for a specified period in the past. It is sometimes used after an adjective or before a noun indicating an unspecified period.
  4. It is used with the present with present or past perfect tense till a later past time till now. It is a strong form of a preposition, used for indicating the person intended to receive or benefit from something.
  5. The formula for using For is:  for + a period. The formula for Since is:  since + a particular point of time.

 

Infographic

Since vs For


 

Conclusion

So, which one do you feel is the right fit for you – for or since? Always make sure that both these terms link to grammar and they expect you to use it properly.

Since is used for a specified period and it can also be used as idioms and conjunction. Whereas For is used for the unspecified period and it is rarely used as idiom and conjunction.

The common people often mistake it and its usage is always mismatched. Even people with good knowledge are expected to mistake it frequently.

Thus now you have a clear concept of these two grammatical terms. Use wisely!


 

Word Cloud for Difference Between Since and For

The following is a collection of the most used terms in this article on Since and For. This should help in recalling related terms as used in this article at a later stage for you.

difference between Since and For
Word Cloud for Since and For

 

References

  1. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/since
  2. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/for_1