I want to say that it (a course) was supposed to teach us to think in a certain way. Will the sentence still be grammatically correct if I omit the bold in and will it still convey the same meaning? To me the sentence, "It was supposed to teach us to think a certain way." seems correct and to be conveying the same meaning.

1 Answer 1


Both variants are equally common, although it seems that think in a certain way manages to keep the upper hand, being the complete formal expression. Removing in does not alter the meaning, and this is why probably many say think a certain way (it is less formal than the complete expression though).

The same issue can be raised with doing something (in) the right way.

Some say that there are specific verbs, like vote for example, who can legitimately be used without in to avoid ambiguity.

Electioneering—the effort parties and others make to persuade electors to vote a particular way [with one candidate or another - "in a particular way" could be misunderstood as "by post" or "in person"]. (Oxford reference)

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