I am trying to write a contract. This is what I am trying to write:

Instructor must ensure a clean, tidy and well-lit teaching environment.

Maybe I am overthinking things but should I add an article in front of the word "Instructor?" I am not talking about any specific instructor so I assume the is out of the question. At the same time, a sounds weird to my ear as well. What is the rule here?

  • 1
    It would be normal to use the, meaning the person who has the post of instructor. May 31, 2020 at 8:07
  • It depends on the type of a contract. If it is an employee contract under the Labour Law, then it is usually 'the Instructor.' There are much more determiners than the two of them mentioned. Determiners show that a word is a noun and qualify its semantic properties in addition. E. g., the word 'every' is a determiner too. Absent article is a determiner also. Just change the word 'instructor' to the plural form.
    – kngram
    May 31, 2020 at 11:23
  • The title of your question is actually asking something different than the body of your question. Is it possible? Yes. But the count noun has to be plural. I ate scallops when I was in Boston. May 31, 2020 at 15:45
  • I believe that is not always the case. For example some proper noun is never preceded by an article. For example , “Canada is a beautiful country” I guess what I want to figure out is if the zero article can be followed by ordinary noun as well
    – jxhyc
    May 31, 2020 at 23:17

1 Answer 1


"The" is the right choice here (and throughout the contract) You mean "the instructor who has signed the contract".

It is possible that another determiner could be more appropriate: For example if the contract is between you and a company that provides many instructors you might say "Each instructor" or use a plural: "Instuctors must"

But the most likely case is "The".

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