• Mai Duc Nguyen

Grammar Builder Exercise – Although, In Spite Of and Despite

In this article, we will learn how to use the 3 very popular sentence structures in the English language, including “Although”, “In spite of” and “Despite”.

1. Although:

“Although” is always followed by a full, complete sentence. It is used to introduce a statement which makes the main statement in a sentence surprising or unexpected. Sometimes people use “Even though” to emphasize the surprising nature of the main statement.

Example: Although the rates of economic growth in China have increased substantially over the past few decades, the income gap in the country shows no sign of being shortened.

2. In spite of:

“In spite of” has the same function but is not used in the same way as “Although”. To be specific, the difference is that “In spite of” is normally followed by a noun, and not a complete sentence. Sometimes the noun is represented by the form Verb-ing (e.g. In spite of its competition with company A, company B … => In spite of having to compete/ competing with company A, company B …).

Example: In spite of various demonstrations against gun violence led by students, parents and teachers, the US parliament is still reluctant to introduce stricter regulations on private gun ownership.

3. Despite:

“Despite” has the same function and is used in the same way as “In spite of”: A noun, and not a complete sentence, comes after the word “Despite”.

Example: Despite their benefit of helping people share their life stories, social media platforms can be so addictive that they lead to mental health problems such as anxiety.

4. Exercise:

Complete the following sentences with your own ideas. Please share your answers by leaving a comment below.

- Although an increase in the number of foreign tourists can benefit the local economy, …

- In spite of …, studying abroad can be a challenge if students have not been academically and financially prepared.

- Despite …, the number of cyber-security attacks on a global scale is on the rise.

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