IMPORTANCE OF WH-QUESTIONS
"A prudent question is one half of wisdom." – Francis Bacon
How you ask questions is very important in establishing a basis for effective
communication. Effective questions open the door to knowledge and understanding. The
art of questioning lies in knowing which questions to ask when. However, questions are
used for many other purposes in addition to seeking information. Consider the following
use of questioning.
Wh-questions are used to request specific information, so that the need to use
them arises often. Wh-questions are used when the speaker is missing one specific piece
of information. What are we trying to do when we ask a question? How are questions
used by speakers? What are we trying to communicate? Do questions always ask for
information?. For instance, wh-questions are used in social interaction (What's your
name?), for getting directions (Where's the post office?), in seeking explanations (Why is
the plane late?), for eliciting vocabulary (What's this?), and so forth.
Points to remember:
'Why' questions is used to discover the roots of the problem
'How' questions is used to discover different routes to significant improvement.
(to inquire about person or
Who is that?
(to inquire about things)
What is this?
(to inquire about times)
When will you go?
(to inquire about locations)
Where will you be?
(to inquire about reasons)
Why are you crying?
(to inquire about manner)
How did you do that?
(to inquire about a specific
member of a group)
Which one was it?
(formal objective case for
Whom do you seek?
(to inquire about ownership)
Whose are these?
(to inquire about amount)
How much does it cost?
(to inquire about number)
How many are there?
(to inquire about duration of
How long have you been
(to inquire about distance)
How far is it to the station?
(to inquire about frequency)
How do you
(to inquire about method)
How often do you come
How do you say it in
Directions: Change the statements to questions using the question word in parenthesis.
Check verb tense
Example: The bus arrived at ten o’clock. (what time) What time did the bus arrive?
Ram can do this work.(who)
I want a cup of coffee. (what)
I will come next week to your house. (when)
My residence is in T. Nagar. (where)
I don’t get up early because I like to sleep late. (why)
She felt better after she took a nap. (how)
I am searching for Thomas Hardy’s novels. (which)
We want to meet the Director. (whom)
This is Keerthana’s pen. (Whose)
The check was for twenty thousand. (how much)
There are about ten files to be completed. (how many)
The party lasted all night. (how long)
My house is three miles from the station. (how far)
We have an English class every day. (how often)
I feel little better now. (how do you)
Who can do this work?
What do you want?
When will you come to my house?
Where’s your residence?
Why don't you get up early?
How did she feel?
Which book are you searching?
Whom do you want to meet?
Whose pen is this?
How much was the check for?
How many files are still to be completed?
How long did the party last?
How far is your house from the station?
How often do you have an English class?
How do you feel now?