Who vs. that

Which statements are grammatically correct?

  1. Companies who do business with China should be on alert.
  2. The candidate that wins the election will face a divided Congress.
  3. A lion named Cecil, which sparked a debate about wildlife conservation, also taught scientists about big cats.
  4. The mice who were given the supplement died by the end of the study period.

(Scroll down for answers.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

ANSWER: None. All of these statements are incorrect because they misuse “who” and “that.”

who vs. that

So, when do you use “who” versus “that”?

 

  • Use “who” with humans, as well as animals with names.
  • Use “that” in all other instances, including for animals without names, as well as words like “group” (which may or may not include humans).

 

Here are the correct versions of the statements:

  1. Companies that do business with China should be on alert.
  2. The candidate who wins the election will face a divided Congress.
  3. A lion named Cecil, who sparked a debate about wildlife conservation, also taught scientists about big cats.
  4. The mice that were given the supplement died by the end of the study period.
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