Answered By: Writing Center
Last Updated: May 06, 2015     Views: 0

We can use either will or be going to to talk about something that is planned, or something that we think is likely to happen in the future. We often prefer be going to in informal contexts.

e.g.: We will/are going to study climate change in a later part of the course.

We use will rather than be going to to make a prediction based on our opinion or experience.

e.g.: Why not come over at the weekend? The children will enjoy seeing you again.

We use be going to rather than will when we make a prediction based on some present evidence.

e.g.: The sky has gone really dark. There is going to be a storm.

To predict the future we often use will with I expect, I hope, I imagine, I think I wonder, and I am sure and in questions with think and reckon. Be going to can also be used with these phrases, particularly in informal contexts.

e.g.: I imagine the stadium will be full for the match on Saturday.

We use will when we make a decision at the moment of speaking and be going to for decisions about the future that have already been made. However, in a formal style, we use will rather than be going to to talk about future events that have been previously arranged in some detail.

e.g.: Are you going to talk at the meeting tonight. The meeting will begin at 9 a.m.


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