Which one is correct and what is the diffrent between.

I went to Canada to learn English


I went to Canada for learning English.

I heard the former is correct and the latter is wrong. I just wanted to know about "for learning" meaning. Thank you.

1 Answer 1


I don't think it's really helpful to think in terms of "correct" or "wrong" in contexts like this, but the short answer is that almost all native speakers would use to learn rather than for learning in OP's specific case.

Here, for example, is a similar utterance where for [+ gerund] might be more likely...

1: On Saturdays I often pick up a few beers for watching the football on TV on Sunday.

The reason for this difference is that to [+ infinitive] more strongly implies in order to make the specified action or result possible. But for [+ gerund] can often imply a much weaker relationship (I could still watch the football even if I hadn't bought any beers the day before).

2: I use these glasses for reading the paper.
3: I use these glasses to read the paper.

I think most people would agree that #3 more strongly implies that without the glasses, I might not be able to read the paper at all. Where #2 might simply mean that's my most common reason for using those glasses, even if I can read reasonably comfortably without them.

  • 1
    Thanks for your comprehensive explanation. I guess your last paragraph is with some typo, e.g. #2 and #1, which might be #3 and #2
    – WXJ96163
    Mar 18, 2020 at 9:15
  • @WXJ96163: You're quite right. I can't actually remember, but maybe at the time I was thinking in terms of the "first" + "second" of my two "glasses" examples, and forgot that I'd already assigned #1 to the single earlier example. Anyway, thanks for pointing it out. Mar 18, 2020 at 13:58

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