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  • Writer's picturePaul Nicholsen

Their, they're... it's not so bad!

Today's SAT tip of the day is about the difference between there, they're, and their. Honestly, this is one of those grammar tips that you'll actually need in real life beyond the SAT (as if such a thing existed!) True story: I was working at an educational company just out of college. We got a resume where the writer messed this one up, and the resume was immediately thrown into the trash. Not very fair, I'd agree, but it happens!


Anyway, let's look at these three words and some tricks to remember which one to use where.


This is always a contraction for they are. If you wouldn't say one, don't use the other.

They're going scuba-diving in the morning.


This is the possessive form of 'they'. In other words, "belongs to them".

Leave their wetsuits on the table.


This refers to location, like "over there". I remember it by thinking of "here and there, everywhere." They all end the same way, and all are about location.

The ocean out there is filled with many large sharks.

Try a few examples!

1. Theyre about to give out the award for the best example SAT question.


B. They're

C. There

D. Their

2. Leave the instructions for the ritual over their on the bookcase.


B. they're

C. their'

D. there

3. The students said there homework was eaten by a rabid clown who had escaped from the circus.


B. they're

C. theyr'e

D. their

4. Get away from theyre; it's covered in toxic chemicals and glitter.


B. their

C. there

D. they're

5. There going to put they're raincoats their on the staircase.


B. They're, there, their

C. They're, their, there

D. Their, they're, there


Check your answers below and leave a comment if you have any questions! Visit for more SAT help!


1. B - "They're" is the correct contraction for "They are," which is appropriate here

2. D - "there" would be used to show the location of the instructions.

3. D - "their" is the correct form to use to show possession

4. C - "there" is the place you wouldn't want to be if you didn't want to sparkle.

5. C - "They are" going to put "their" coats "there" on the staircase.

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