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What's the little difference between "may/might be doing" and "may/might do"?

The grammar says ''may/might do'' is used in talking about possible actions or happening in the future, while ''may/might be doing'' is applied in describing possible plans. They can be both fine in many cases with little difference of meaning.


But in the exercise:


What's Julia going to do when she leaves school?(go to university)

She hasn't decided yet. ____Answer_____


My answer is "She might/may be going to university", but the standard answer is "She might/may go to university'', so I wanna know if my answer works, since it's talking about future plan, and according to its own introduction, it should have worked. And I wanna know the slight difference between these two expressions.

Apr 7, 2018 7:40 AM
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Comments · 1

I would not use may/might be +ing for possible plans.  I would use it like this:

a) What is he doing now?  I don't know.  He might be sleeping. (possible present continuous action)

b) What might you be doing tomorrow morning?  I haven't decided yet.  I might be working in the garden. (possible future continuous action) 

In your case, I would say "might go" because neither a) nor b) apply. 

Contrast these with definite situations.

"I will go to university" / "I am going to go to university" - definite decision/plan

"I will be going to university next weekend" - definite future continuous action

April 7, 2018
Aven
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, German
Learning Language
English, German