I would like to ask about these words. Which one is grammatically correct?

"The decision will vary in a given factors"


"The decision will vary in given factors" ?

Since the word "factors" refers to more than one thing, I think it should be plural. I have searched in google, but the result shows both of them exist.

  • In English, /to vary in a factor is not idiomatic/. By that, do you mean: Various factors will vary in arriving at a decision? Or something else. Kindly explain. Thanks.
    – Lambie
    Jan 21 '17 at 17:09
  • I commented on this yesterday and my comment seems to have disappeared....:)
    – Lambie
    Jan 21 '17 at 17:15

given factors

is surely plural, so the second example is correct. One example I find is

a given factors-levels setting

here we are referring to the setting, which is singular.

The overall sentence doesn't seem quite right to me. I would not say that decisions vary in something, rather

The decision will depend upon the given factors.

This assumes that earlier in the text we have stated (given) the factors that help us make the decision.


Since "factors" is plural, then the adjective "a" in the first sentence is incorrect.

The second sentence is better, but still very awkward. I think you're trying to say:

Depending on the given factors, the decision may change.


There are several ways to describe variance. The first is to say some thing has many different variations, in which case "vary in" is appropriate:

Apples vary in size, color, taste, and texture.

In this case it sounds more like you want to say the variance depends on some other factors. Here "vary with" is appropriate:

The size of the stadium crowds varies with the weather.

Singular or plural doesn't really matter:

What people eat varies with the available options.

Also, it is correct to use the definite article "the" before the factors, if you've already described them.

The decision will vary with the given factors.

However all that being said, the more "natural" way to say this would be:

The decision depends on the various given factors.

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