The expression ‘which of the following’ is used to introduce a list of potential answers to a question. It is most commonly used in schools, surveys, and a variety of decision making scenarios.
There are many synonyms you can use in place of ‘which of the following’ including but not limited to ‘Which one of these’, ‘Among the options’, and ‘Among these alternatives’.
In this post, we’ll further explain the meaning of ‘which of the following’, how to use it in a sentence, common synonyms, and how frequently its use in the English language.
What’s The Definition Of ‘Which Of The Following’?
The phrase “which of the following” is commonly used in various contexts, especially in exams, surveys, and decision-making scenarios. More specifically, it is a question that prompts respondents or test-takers to choose from a list of options provided.
Which of the following are prime numbers?
What Are Some Contexts The Phrase ‘Which Of The Following’ Can Be Used?
The expression “which of the following” is most commonly used to introduce a multiple choice question. Here are the main 3 contexts this phrase is used.
- Academic Assessments. Exams, quizzes, and standardized tests.
- Surveys and Questionnaires. Researchers and pollsters use this format to gather specific and structured responses from participants.
- Decision-Making Scenarios. During meetings, presentations, or problem-solving sessions, facilitators might present a set of options to team members or stakeholders.
Just like we saw in our recent analysis of the phrase low-key, writers need to understand context before picking the proper word choice.
How Do You Use ‘Which Of The Following’ In A Sentence?
Below are 5 example sentences that contain the phrase ‘which of the following’.
- In the multiple-choice exam, students were asked to determine which of the following options best described the protagonist’s motivation in the novel.
- During the job interview, candidates were presented with a scenario and asked to choose which of the following strategies they would implement to resolve the given workplace conflict.
- The chef demonstrated different culinary techniques and then asked the cooking class attendees to identify which of the following methods resulted in a perfectly seared steak.
- In the survey, participants were required to indicate which of the following factors influenced their decision to purchase organic products at the supermarket.
- The workshop participants were presented with a list of potential solutions and were tasked with discussing which of the following options would be the most feasible for improving public transportation in the city.
What Are The Synonyms For ‘Which Of The Following’?
Here are synonyms that can be used instead of the saying ‘which of the following’.
- Which one of these
- Among the options
- Among these alternatives
- Picking from these
- Identify the correct one
The phrase ‘which of the following’ is very commonly used by teachers & different educators to ask a question with multiple answers. Google’s own Ngram data shows that this phrase has become popular since the 1980’s & increases in popularity every year. However, just like we saw in our analysis of the phrase “where are you from“, the popularity of certain vocabulary can change quickly!
The Bottom Line
Yes, there can be more than one correct answer to “which of the following” style questions. However, they typically are designed to have a single correct answer.
No, they are also prevalent in surveys, questionnaires, decision-making scenarios, and various professional contexts. The format provides a clear way to present options and gather specific responses from individuals.
Frequently Asked Questions
By now you should be an expert on the phrase ‘which of the following’. This expression should be used to introduce a list of one or multiple answers to a specific questions. It is grammatically incorrect to say ‘which of the followings’ in your writing. If you need more help with grammar rules like this, check out our own Grammar Tool to make proofreading your writing that much easier!