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You should have done it.

You should have been doing.

You should be doing it.

It is almost confusing.

  1. When we say You should have done it , does it always mean that you were supposed to do it but you did not do? Can it also mean as an equivalent to "you would have done" or "you will have done" ? Could you list all possible useages of the "You should have done" , please?

  2. What are all possible usages of "should have been doing" , rather than possibility in the future?

closed as too broad by Lambie, SamBC, Hellion, Chenmunka, Varun Nair Feb 26 at 4:57

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  • "You should have been doing" must also have it or that or this at the end, otherwise it makes no sense. – CowperKettle Jan 28 '16 at 16:42
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"You should have done it." always mean that you were supposed to finish it. Whether you actually did it is not stated.

Is it an equivalent to:

  • "you would have done" - no, this implies a missed opportunity
  • "you will have done" - no, this implies experience

The exact meaning would depend on a full sentence context..

Examples:

  • You should have done research before asking this question, did you?
  • You would have done a lot of algebra review if you had taken pre-calculus.
  • You will have done this type of problem before because you are an advanced student.

"You should have been doing (it)" means you were supposed to be working on or participating in an activity. This phrase also does not state whether or not you were doing it or not.

Examples:

  • You should have been doing your homework. Were you? Have you finished it yet?
  • You should have been more careful.
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When you say "Should have done it", it means pretty much what you said "you were supposed to do it", and it generally implies that "you did not do it".

I was supposed to clean the dishes last night, but I forgot to.

But it is possible that you were "supposed to do it", (and) you did do it.

I was supposed to do the dishes last night, so I did.

Now I guess it could also mean you "Would have done it", (and didn't).

I was supposed to do the dishes last night, and I would have, but I was gone all night.

Now to answer you other question about when to use "You should have done it", "You should have been doing it", and "You should be doing it". The answer is about tenses.

You should have done it. (Past tense) (In the past you should have done it).

You should have been doing it. (Present perfect continues tense) (In the past you should have been (In that present) doing it).

You should be doing it. (present tense) (In the present you should be doing it)

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