Which one is appropiate?

I will submit my assignments by tonight

I will be submitting my assignments by tonight.

I want to express that before the end of the day, I will submit my assignments.

4 Answers 4


First off, with the preposition by, we would normally mention a specific time or point in time. I will submit my assignments by 10 tonight or by midnight tonight. Or you can say by the end of the day, because that also refers to a specific point in time. (By tonight does not really specify a point in time, unless there is a previously defined specific time that tonight refers to, such as a deadline that everyone knows about.)

As far as which construction to use, either one is fine. The first one has more of a promise meaning. The second one has a more matter of fact meaning. I explain the difference in detail here

  • I think, if one wants to emphasize that he will finish the process by this time, one can also say "I will have my assignments submitted by the end of day"
    – Alissa
    Commented Feb 10, 2016 at 14:58

I will submit my assignment by tonight.

I will be submitting my assignments by tonight.

Both the sentences express the future and are interchangeable, with a slight difference in meaning.

The first sentence formed with will + bare ininitive has the overtures of certainty, and intention and emphasizes the action. On the other hand, the second sentence formed with will be + present participle is merely a statement, which means that the assignments will be submitted in the normal course of events or a routine. It's therefore considered to be usual or not so promising as the first sentence.


In this case, "I will submit" is the correct usage.

"I will submit" focuses on the fact that there will be an event, where you submit the assignment. The listener can reasonably assume it will be swift.

"I will be submitting" focuses on the act of you engaging in submission. There will be a submission, but it concentrates on the time period where the submission is occurring, rather than the fact that it happens. I would use the phrasing "I will be submitting my assignments by tonight" if the listener knows I intend to submit my assignment in the form of an interpretive dance in the cafeteria drawn out over 3 acts, and I will be intentionally disrupting normal class to do so.

This is more obvious in other verbs. "I will pray for you" may be as little as "I'll pray for you once, but then I'm going about the rest of my business." "I will be praying for you implies a longer duration and many prayers. (though some people will say "I will pray for you" and pray many times over a long duration. Welcome to English. We're not as consistent as we'd like.)


1 will submit

2 will be submitting

In my view , the formula 2 here is not used for stressing the progressive aspect but simply to give the idea "will submit" more weight, simply because the formula "will be submitting" is longer. Whether this emphasis of the submitting act is appropriate or not is another question. I have the feeling "will be submitting" sounds a bit like a cheap rhetoric effect.

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