Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules, Examples and Structure

Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules, Examples & Sentence Structure. What is the Present Perfect Continuous Tense with Examples? Definition of Present Perfect Progressive Tense with Examples and meaning in English Grammar. The verb forms of this tense are very common in English Grammar. Learn how to make this tense correctly.

What is Present Perfect Continuous Tense?

The Present Perfect Continuous Tense is a verb form that expresses that an action has been started in the past and continued until now or finished recently. This tense is used to describe an activity that has been recently completed or still continuing.  Read the examples below;


  1. She has been working in the company since 1998.
  2. You have been playing since morning.
  3. The teacher has been explaining this chapter for 30 minutes.
  4. Since when has he been watching this movie?
  5. I haven’t been studying geography since Monday.

Note: In the above sentences, the auxiliary verbs have been and have been with the verb I + ing (Present Participle) have been used with the subjects. These sentences are expressing that action was started in the past and continued until now. The actions in these sentences may extent.

Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules, Examples and Structure
Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules, Examples and Structure

Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules and Examples

The Present Perfect Continuous Tense Rules and Examples can help you understand the tense and its rules and sentence structures. Learn how to make the sentences of Present Perfect Continuous Tense. Follow the steps below to make the sentences;


Rule. 1 Use ‘has been’ with the singular subjects, nouns, and pronouns.

Subject  Helping Verb
He has been
She has been
It has been
The girl has been
The boy has been
Jack has been

Rule. 2 ‘Have Been’ is used with the plural subjects.

Subject Helping Verb
I have been
We have been
You have been
They have been
The girls have been
The boys have been
The men have been
Those children have been
These women have been
George and Willy have been

Rule. 3 The main verb ‘Verb I +ing‘ (the present participle) is used after the helping verb or auxiliary verb.

Rule. 4 If there is an object, put it after the main verb.

Rule. 5 At the last of sentences, we put the other words like adverbs or prepositions ‘since or for‘ and time.

Rule. 6 ‘Since’ is used with the point of time.

  • Since 2 o’clock
  • Since 1999
  • Since 5 pm
  • Since 15 August 2010
  • Since Monday
  • Since January
  • Since Morning
  • Since Evening
  • Since Afternoon
  • Since Childhood
  • Since Yesterday
  • Since Night
  • Since Midnight
  • Since Sunset
  • Since Sunrise
  • Since Noon
  • Since dusk/dawn/twilight
  • Since last night/week/month/year
  • Since Christmas
  • Since Autumn
  • Since his arrival
  • Since their marriage
  • Since Sunday last
  • Since last week

Rule. 7 ‘For’ is used for the Period of Time.

  • For an hour
  • For two hours
  • For thirty minutes
  • For a week
  • For two weeks
  • For five days
  • For many days
  • For a day
  • For a month
  • For two months
  • For a long time
  • For a while
  • For a long period
  • For ever
  • For a moment
  • For the last five hours
  • For the past six months
  • For hours
  • For months

Sentence Structure of Present Perfect Continuous Tense

The sentence structure of this tense is based on the above rules. Now look at the structure below;

Sentence Structure for statements/affirmative sentences

Subject + has been/have been + verb I + ing + object + since/for + time

  • George has been filling water tank since three o’clock.
  • The girl has been selling the products of this company for five years.
  • The kids have been studying since evening.

The above examples of Present Perfect Continuous Tense are formed using the structure of Affirmative, Negative and Interrogative Sentences. All the rules of making sentences are given above. Before reading the Examples of the present perfect continuous tense, study the rules carefully.

Affirmative Sentences/Statements of Present Perfect Continuous Tense

Affirmative Sentences or statements of Present Perfect Continuous Tense can be formed by using the above rules and sentence structure of Present Perfect Continuous Tense. Here is a simple chart to understand the structure of the affirmative sentences. As we know that it is used to express an ongoing action that was started in the past. Let’s observe the table and examples.

Person Singular Plural
First I have been eating. We have been eating.
Second You have been eating. You have been eating.
Third He/She/It has been eating. They have been eating.
Nouns Jack has been eating Jack and Jones have been eating.


  1. He has been searching his wallet for 2 hours.
  2. She has been reading this novel for two days.
  3. It has been raining in India for 3 days.
  4. The train has been running since morning.
  5. Mr. Jack has been living in New York for three years.
  6. I have been learning English for 3 months.
  7. We have been working on this project for 2 years.
  8. They have been repairing this road for 3 days.
  9. These children have been waiting for you since evening.
  10. Those men have been working hard since morning.
  11. I have been working in this company since 2015.
  12. She has been running here and there for fifteen minutes.
  13. She has been been working there for two hours.
  14. I have been instructing them since morning.
  15. The teacher has been checking the notebooks since 8 o’clock.

Read also:

Negative Sentences/Statements

Negative Sentences or statements of the Present Perfect Continuous Tense are formed by putting not between has been and have been.

Subject Helping Verb
I have not been
We have not been
You have not been
He has not been
She has not been
It has not been
They have not been
Henery has not been

Structure: Subject + has/have not been + verb I + ing + object + since/for + time


  1. He hasn’t been looking for you for two hours.
  2. They haven’t been studying in the USA for two years.
  3. We haven’t been working hard on this project since January.
  4. Those children haven’t been swimming for 3 hours.
  5. Jessica hasn’t been working in this company for two 2 months.
  6. Jane’s brother hasn’t been learning Russian for two weeks.
  7. Ben hasn’t been waiting for you for 30 minutes.
  8. Mariya hasn’t been teaching English for 5 years.
  9. Johny hasn’t been buying anything for an hour.
  10. Tom is not tired. He hasn’t been working for 2 hours.
  11. They haven’t been waiting for the train for an hour.
  12. He hasn’t been doing his homework since five hours.
  13. John hasn’t been cutting the tree for two hours.
  14. William has been traveling by car since three o’clock.
  15. David and Anderson have been repairing the car for three years.

Read Also:

Interrogative Sentences

The sentences for asking questions are made in two ways; yes-no type questions, wh-word type questions. Yes-No Type Questions begin with an auxiliary verb or helping verb and Wh-word Type Questions begin with Questions words or interrogative words. Let’s learn how to make interrogative sentences.

Yes-No Type Interrogative Sentences

When someone asks a question, we answer by yes or no. ‘Yes-no’ type questions can be framed by using the following sentence structure. Put the words as written in the structure.

Sentence Structure: Has/Have + subject + been + verb I + ing + object + since/for + time +?


  1. Have you been driving for three hours?
  2. Has your friend been talking to you on the phone for 50 minutes?
  3. Have they been writing many emails since morning?
  4. Have we been jumping off the tree for two hours?
  5. Have you been watching the movie for the last half an hour?
  6. Has anyone been knocking at the door for ten minutes?
  7. Has she been preparing coffee for five minutes?
  8. Have they been doing shopping since morning?
  9. Has George been solving your problems for the last two years
  10. Have those people been beating the thief since 12 o’clock?
  11. Have they been working for few months?
  12. Has the professor been teaching in this college for five years.
  13. Have they been using the computer for 3 months?
  14. Have you been waiting for your father at the station for an hour?
  15. Has she been decorating house for Christmas for 3 hours?

Wh-word Type Interrogative Sentences

Some sentences start with interrogative words. The sentence structure of these types of sentences is given below.

Sentence Structure: Question word + has/have + subject + verb I + ing + object + since/for + time


  1. Where have you been working for thirty years?
  2. What has she been writing for the publication since 2015?
  3. Which book have you been reading since last Monday?
  4. What has he been trying to fix since 5 o’clock?
  5. Why have you been ignoring me for many days?
  6. Why hasn’t your child been doing his homework for five years?
  7. Where have you been driving for five hours?
  8. Why haven’t they been coming here for the last six days?
  9. Who has been checking the passports of the travelers at the airport for an hour?
  10. Which girl has been singing songs since 8 pm?
  11. What has the boy been buying from the store for half an hour?
  12. Where have you been setting since 5 o’clock?
  13. Who has been singing a song there for ten minutes?
  14. Whom have you been teaching Physics for five years?
  15. What has the girl been talking to you since evening?

Read also:

Use of Present Perfect Continuous Tense

The Present Perfect Continuous Tense has different meanings. This tense has the same meaning as the perfect perfect tense. It is used to describe ongoing actions. Let’s read in detail how to use it in the sentences.

Ongoing Actions which started in the past (Unfinished Actions)

We use the present perfect tense continuous tense to express an action that began in the past but still going on in the present. ‘Since’ and ‘For’ are used to show the time.


  1. She has been reading this novel since yesterday. (In the above sentence, the action has been going on over time until now.)
  2. Jimmy has been talking to Billy for an hour.
  3. Children have been listening to the story since 7 pm.
  4. The girl is tired because she has been working. (Happening over time until now)
  5. John has been learning tenses for a long time.
  6. Jackie has been repairing his car since morning.
  7. Fred has been cooking the food in the kitchen for thirty minutes.
  8. You have been translating the letters into English from Chinese for 2 months?
  9. This boy knows it. I have been talking to him for ten minutes.
  10. Tom has been riding a bicycle for an hour.

Recently completed actions

The Present Perfect Continuous Tense is used to express an action that began in the past and has been just completed whose result is still present;


  1. His children are wet because they have been standing in the rain.
  2. This dress is very dirty because I have been wearing it at the party.
  3. She has been dancing at the party She is tired now.
  4. David has been driving his car for many hours. He can’t drive now.
  5. He has been studying for many hours. He is asleep now.
  6. Sorry! I am late. I have been traveling by train.
  7. Her clothes are dirty. She’s just been painting the walls.

Since When’ and ‘How long’

Some sentences start with ‘Since When’ and ‘How long. Using these words a person asks when an action has started and happened until now.


  1. Since when have you been working here?
  2. For how long Sohan has been reading this novel?
  3. Since when has she been painting the pictures?
  4. For how long has your grandfather been walking?
  5. Father said, “How long has it been raining?

Use of Recently or Lately

Recently and Lately are very common words to express new routines and habits. We can use these words at the beginning or end of the sentence.


  1. They have been talking to the teacher recently.
  2. Lately, the girl has been checking the IDs of the passengers.


We use the adverb ‘just’ with the present perfect continuous tense. It is used to emphasize that an action was completed in the recent past;


  1. Her clothes are dirty. She has just been painting the pictures.
  2. We’ve just been writing articles on the financial crisis.

Important Points to Remember

  • We should use ‘has been’ with Singular Nouns.
  • Don’t use ‘have been’ with Singular Nouns or Pronouns.
  • The passive form of this tense is very complex. It is not used in the passive form.
  • We can write the contraction forms of has been and have been.

Read Also:

Examples of Present Perfect Continuous Tense Sentences

  • He has been working with us for 3 hours.
  • Tess and Tom had been talking to each other for 30 minutes.
  • Peter has been swimming for 5 minutes.
  • Mary has been learning music since 2018.
  • Baby has been learning English grammar for three years.
  • He has been drinking water since morning.
  • He has been typing and email for 35 minutes.
  • I have been teaching your son for two months.
  • John and I have been running there for a long time.
  • You have been dancing at the party since evening.
  • Who has been writing letters to you for five years?
  • He has not been sing a song for an hour.
  • Has Harry been repairing his car since 4 o’clock?

Examples of Present Perfect Continuous Tense

Watch this video on the present perfect continuous tense


In this post you have learnt about the present perfect continuous tense examples rules and sentence structures. According to the above rules the present perfect continuous tense very common in English grammar. We should be attentive while using this tense because the present perfect tense has also the same meaning as this tense has. After learning the above rules, anyone can make the sentences of this tense.

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