Modal Verbs: Practice Exercises Questions & Answers

Many Modal verb related exercises are given here for practice. Attempt and master the use of modals. Click here to learn about Modal verbs and their usage with examples.

Modal Verb Exercises

  1. She knew that he …….. to reach school in time. (would/must) be able
  2. You, rascal!  ……..  (dare/could) not call me again.
  3. I thought he  …….. school. (should/would) be at
  4. Reena …….. (can/should) write with two hands.
  5. I  …….. (can’t/couldn’t) write what you spoke.
  6. You  …….. (should/can) have told me about it earlier.
  7. ……..(Can/Should) I get some water to drink, please? 
  8. …….. (Can/Should) I use your cycle, please?  
  9. You  …….. (can/would) go in now and meet the doctor.
  10. I  …….. (would/should) just love to teach the poor children living in slums..


  1. would
  2. can
  3. Can
  4. dare
  5. couldn’t
  6. would
  7. should
  8. Can
  9. Can
  10. Would

  1. She _____ speak French fluently when she lived in Paris.
    a) must
    b) would
    c) can
    d) should
  2. You _____ borrow my book, but please return it soon.
    a) may
    b) can
    c) must
    d) might
  3. It _____ rain tomorrow, so bring an umbrella.
    a) could
    b) shall
    c) might
    d) would
  4. We _____ finish the project by tomorrow if we work hard.
    a) can
    b) must
    c) may
    d) should
  5. Children _____ eat their vegetables before dessert.
    a) must
    b) ought to
    c) could
    d) may


  1. c) can (She was able to speak French fluently)
  2. a) may (Permission is being granted)
  3. c) might (Possibility is being expressed)
  4. a) can (Ability to finish the project is indicated)
  5. b) ought to (Obligation or expectation is implied)

  1. If you studied more, you __________ pass the exam easily.
  2. I __________ some help carrying these groceries.
  3. John __________ be home soon, he left just a few minutes ago.
  4. You __________ enter the library without showing your ID card.
  5. __________ I borrow your phone to make a quick call?


  1. could (Possibility based on an action)
  2. could use (Request for assistance)
  3. should (High probability based on recent event)
  4. cannot (Prohibition)
  5. May (Request for permission)

  1. Scenario: You ask your friend for permission to use their computer.
  2. Scenario: You advise your classmate to study for the upcoming test.
  3. Scenario: You express your desire to travel to a specific location.


Dialogue 1:

You: “Hey, can I use your computer for a few minutes? I need to check something online.”

Friend: “Sure, no problem. Just let me know when you’re done.”

Dialogue 2:

You: “The test is tomorrow, so you should really study tonight. There’s a lot of material to cover.”

Classmate: “Thanks for reminding me. I guess I should hit the books then.”

Dialogue 3:

You: “I would love to travel to Japan someday. The culture and history seem fascinating.”

Friend: “That sounds amazing! Maybe we can plan a trip together sometime.”

Another set of Answers:

1. Scenario: You ask your friend for permission to use their computer.
You: Hey, [Friend’s name], would you mind if I used your computer for a bit? Mine is dead.

Friend: Sure, no problem!

2. Scenario: You advise your classmate to study for the upcoming test.
You: Hey, the test is tomorrow! You should probably hit the books tonight.

Classmate: Thanks for the reminder, I will!

3. Scenario: You express your desire to travel to a specific location.
You: I’ve always wanted to visit Japan. Maybe we could plan a trip there someday!

Friend: That sounds amazing! We definitely should.

  1. I could have finished the project on time, but I decided to wait.
  2. You must not eat in the library.
  3. We might go to the beach this weekend, depending on the weather.
  4. She can speak three languages fluently.
  5. I would love to help you with your homework, but I have to go now.


  1. I should have finished…
  2. Correct sentence
  3. Correct sentence
  4. Correct sentence
  5. I would like to help you…


It was getting late, and I knew I should be heading home. However, I couldn’t resist staying a little longer to finish the game. By the time I finally left, the streets were empty, and I might have gotten a bit lost.

  1. You wake up feeling unwell.
  2. You see a friend struggling with their groceries.
  3. You’re planning a surprise party for your sibling.


Embark on a journey through time and explore the wonders of ancient civilizations. You can marvel at architectural marvels and should prepare to be amazed by historical discoveries. This tour might not be for the faint of heart, but it will definitely be an unforgettable experience!

  1. I might go to the movies tonight, but I’m not sure yet.
  2. You must be quiet in the library.
  3. She can’t speak English very well, but she’s learning.
  4. We may visit your grandparents this weekend.
  5. He has to finish his homework before he can go outside.


  1. (might -> could)
  2. (must -> should)
  3. (can’t -> could)
  4. (may -> might)
  5. (has to -> must)
musta) Asking for permission politely.
mayb) Expressing obligation or necessity.
couldc) Offering advice or suggestion.
shouldd) Expressing possibility.
mighte) Expressing ability in the past.


mustb) Expressing obligation or necessity.
maya) Asking for permission politely.
coulde) Expressing ability in the past.
shouldc) Offering advice or suggestion.
mightd) Expressing possibility.


It was getting late, and Sarah knew she should head home. She might be in trouble if she didn’t get there before her parents arrived. She could try calling them, but her phone was almost dead. Maybe she could take a shortcut through the park, but it wasn’t the safest option at night. Finally, she decided to call a taxi and hoped it would arrive quickly.

  1. She must be tired after working all day.
  2. You shouldn’t talk on the phone while driving.
  3. I might visit my grandparents this weekend.
  4. We have to finish this project by Friday.
  5. The children would be playing outside if it wasn’t raining.


  1. (must > could) “Must” implies certainty, while “could” suggests possibility.
  2. (shouldn’t / can’t) Both options are correct. “Shouldn’t” emphasizes the negative advice, while “can’t” highlights the inability due to safety concerns.
  3. (might / may)  Both options are correct. They both express possibility, with “might” leaning slightly towards less certainty.
  4. (have to > should) “Have to” indicates obligation, while “should” suggests a recommendation.
  5. (would > could)  “Would be” indicates a hypothetical situation, while “could” suggests possibility in the current situation.
  1. I’m not sure if it will rain today. (original)
  • Rewrite to express possibility: It _________ rain today.
  1. You passed the exam! That’s fantastic! (original)
  • Rewrite to express obligation to study: You _________ have studied hard to pass.
  1. It’s a good idea to eat breakfast before school. (original)
  • Rewrite to express prohibition: You _________ skip breakfast before school.
  1. She is able to speak three languages fluently. (original)
  • Rewrite to express permission: She _________ speak three languages fluently.
  1. I would love to travel to Italy someday. (original)
  • Rewrite to express necessity: I _________ travel to Italy to learn about its culture.


  1. It might rain today.
  2. You must have studied hard to pass.
  3.  You shouldn’t skip breakfast before school.
  4. She can speak three languages fluently. (Both options are technically correct, but “can” emphasizes permission in this context.)
  5. I may need to travel to Italy to learn about its culture. (This rewrite introduces “need” to suggest a potential future requirement.)

Here are some prompts to get you started:

  • What are some common challenges people face?
  • How can a positive attitude help overcome difficulties?
  • What role does perseverance play in achieving goals?
  • Why is it important to ask for help when needed?

This exercise allows students to demonstrate their understanding of modals in a creative and practical way.


This exercise is open-ended and allows for creative responses. However, here are some ideas to incorporate modals in a blog post about overcoming challenges:

  • Common challenges: People may face setbacks in their careers, relationships, or personal goals.
  • Positive attitude: Maintaining a positive outlook can help you see possibilities even in difficult situations.
  • Perseverance: Don’t give up! You should persevere through obstacles to achieve your dreams.

Asking for help: It’s okay to ask for help! Sometimes, you might need the support of others to overcome a challenge.

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