Here are some examples to show what I mean:

some sports that I like to practice are basketball, tennis...


some sports I like to practice are basketball, tennis...

In what situation should I add "that" to sentences like these? Are both of these examples correct? What meaning does "that" have in this context?

  • 1
    Thanks for editing my post, I didn't know my english was this bad :/
    – Donegan
    Dec 30, 2016 at 11:05

1 Answer 1


Short answer: I would leave "that" in.

Long answer: Leaving "that" in is more formal than taking it out.

According to this blog, which itself was a summary of two different grammar books on this subject, it's a question of formality (see 5 in the above link).

Meanwhile, both are correct and it's just a question of who your audience is and how you want to sound when speaking to them.

If you want to know which we would choose for your exact situation, I would suggest you let us know in which context your writing this. If it is an essay, as I am assuming it is, I would leave in "that".

  • 2
    It sounds incomplete to my ear when that is omitted. I think omitting that is just something that native speakers learn unconsciously Dec 30, 2016 at 12:22
  • @user178049 You're probably right :D. Native speakers do often like to butcher their own languages. Dec 30, 2016 at 12:30
  • There is no context behind these exemples, I asked this question because I could'nt figure the grammatical rule concerning the use of "that". Well, thanks for your answer !
    – Donegan
    Dec 30, 2016 at 12:34
  • @Donegan I understand. Good to know and good luck! Dec 30, 2016 at 12:41
  • 1
    @Donegan There are many rules about omitting that like reduced relative clause and nominal complement. You should search that, but sometimes it depends on the idiomaticality of the sentence itself and I think only native speakers have this sense. Dec 30, 2016 at 12:43

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