I have this question from the university that I am applying to:

Why have you chosen this type of mobility?

my answer is:

I would prefer to study a degree seeking mobility rather than exchange mobility because I would have enough ....

is it correct to use would even when the question is past perfect?

For those who have asked what is "mobility"

There are two types of mobility which are exchange and degree seeking. The exchange means that the university where I will study my master's degree, will send a student to the university where I am currently studying for my bachelor's degree.

The degree seeking means that I will pay the fees of the master. And no student will go back to my current university.

These are eurabean types

3 Answers 3


These terms are new to me, but a little Googling suggests that what you select is not exchange mobility or degree-seeking mobility but an exchange or degree-seeking mobility program or mobility scheme. Since "scheme" can in some contexts be a little negative, I think you are better off using "program", as this site does.

A couple of ways to say this might be:

I have chosen a degree-seeking rather than an exchange mobility program because ... This echoes the actual question, "Why have you chosen ... ".

I prefer the degree-seeking to the exchange mobility program because ... This preserves your own word prefer. I suggest dropping the would because your preference is not contingent on being accorded a choice; and in any case the form of the question implies that you are to answer as if you have already made your choice.

  • See my comment below the OP's question. I believe the "degree seeking" is work experience program. I'm not sure how this is called in the US or in Europe, but at least it makes sense. Hope this helps.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 0:59
  • I'm not sure, I think you can either stay with a host family or rent a room within the university campus. As for the "tironcino" program I don't think that is abroad, but it may well mean the student has to change city. I'm sorry, but I don't have any direct experience with any of this.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 1:17
  • Oh, I know that the degree is awarded at the university where you attend. The Erasmus program is whereby students from different universities in different countries swap /do an exchange. This can be a period lasting as little as three months or up to one year. It's called Erasmus in Italian, I have no idea if the same term is used in the rest of Europe, I would imagine so.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 19, 2014 at 1:27

Verbs that follow prefer, love, like, or dislike can take either the gerund or the infinite.
For more information, see the ELU question:When should a verb be followed by a gerund instead of an infinitive?
Hence in the case of prefer either form is acceptable :

I prefer studying
I prefer to study

To avoid repeating the same noun twice in the same sentence use the pronoun, one.

one and ones

We use one (singular) and ones (plural) to avoid unnecessary repetition.

  • See those two girls? Helen is the tall one and Jane is the short one.
  • Which is your car, the red one or the blue one?
  • My trousers are torn. I need some new ones.

Therefore I would advise the OP to write

I would prefer to participate in the student mobility placement (SMP) program rather than the SM Erasmus exchange one because...


The question asks:

Why have you chosen this type of mobility?

Therefore the OP SHOULD reply using the present perfect:

I have chosen the student mobility placement (SMP) program because...

It is unnecessary to add rather than XXX because the question is not asking why you preferred one program over another, the OP has already made his decision.

In addition, the auxiliary would is inappropriate in this case. I would prefer to XXX is used to express what you want to do or wish you could do in a polite manner in the present and NOT in the past.


The question is present perfect.

However, yes, would is fine in this case provided you haven't yet started the course, since you're referring to it conditionally (that is, when/if you are accepted).

If it were the case that you had been accepted, the question would likely be:

Why did you choose this type of mobility?

And your answer:

I wanted to study a degree....

  • Thanks for answering. also, for your comment on the question. the sentence becomes I would prefer to study a degree in seeking mobility rather than exchange mobility is it possible to replace exchange mobility with exhcnage onec or exchange one or what please? Commented Jan 18, 2014 at 21:44

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