As I know, usage of going to + infinitive structure is preferred for future plans. For instance:

I'm going to learn English this year.

But we can you will for "future prediction":

I will learn English this year.

What actually different between these sentences?


Arguably, "I will learn English" is a more definite assertion, whereas "I'm going to learn English" can be read as a statement of intention rather than a statement of fact. This is not always a clear distinction, though, and can depend on the context.

  • Could you improve your answer, providing an example within corresponding context? – Dmitrii Bundin Jul 4 '14 at 5:59
  • I think, that stressed "will" can be also denoted in such way. I will learn English. I will learn. Am I right? – Dmitrii Bundin Jul 4 '14 at 6:04
  • Yes, emphasising the verb "will" in spoken English can certainly override any subtleties of text. Also, a common construction is precede the assertion with an opinion, "I think I will learn English this year", which serves to make it softer, more of an expression of intent. – drenerbas Jul 4 '14 at 7:49
  • @DmitryFucintv: Actually the example sentence is a bit tricky because it includes a temporal reference. If you just wanted to compare "I'm going to learn English" to "I will learn English", then the grammar defines the meaning. One is present continuous while the other is plain future tense. However, once you add a reference to when the action will happen it becomes more subtle, allowing shades of intent and degrees of certainty to be expressed. – drenerbas Jul 4 '14 at 7:52
  • surprisingly, if you see the first sentence from a different angle, it induces probability as well! It's going to rain tonight! Because, it's just your prediction and it may not rain tonight! – Maulik V Jul 4 '14 at 7:53

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