Considering that “you” can refer to either a singular or plural quantity, it is confusing to know whether to put “is” or “are” after the word “you.”
Well, you shouldn’t worry because this page explains precisely which form is correct and shows how they are both used in sentences.
You Is or You Are – Which Is Correct?
The correct term is “you are” for addressing one or multiple people. E.g. “You are a doctor” or “you are doctors.” The phrase “you is” can appear in sentences but not to address “you.” E.g. “What I wanted to give you is amazing”, or “one of you is wrong.”
The pronoun “you” has no singular or plural form in English and is used to address both. Therefore, you can address one person or a group of people as “you”, and there is no difference.
Furthermore, regardless of how many people you address, the verb “be” will always appear as “are” rather than “is.”
- You are welcome to come by yourself or bring someone if you want.
- You are all invited to my party.
When addressing the “you” or the “subject” in the sentence, it is not correct grammar to say “you is.”
- You is a doctor. – INCORRECT
- You is all doctors. – INCORRECT
Consider the following examples that directly address the subject: The only correct option from “you is” and “you are” is the second because we are directly addressing the person “you.”
- You are enough. I don’t need anyone else.
- I have always thought that you are beautiful.
If we change the structure of the sentences, then it is possible to insert “you is” but not to directly address the subject.
- Being with you is enough. I don’t need anyone else. (Being with you = singular)
- One of you is beautiful, and one of you isn’t. (In this case, we use “is” because of the word “one”).
The term “you is” is not correct as a standalone term or as the first two words in a sentence. Even though “you” can refer to one or multiple people, the correct term to directly address the subject (you) is to use “you are.”
- You is a teacher – INCORRECT
- You are a teacher – CORRECT
However, sometimes it is correct to say “you is”, but only if we add other words.
- All of you is coming with me. – INCORRECT
- One of you is coming with me. – CORRECT
There are other circumstances in which “you is” is correct, but as with the above example, we need to add more words so that the thing “is” refers to is singular.
- All I ever want for you is that you are happy. (All I wanted = singular)
- One of you is lying, and I will find out which one of you it is. (One of you = singular)
- If anyone of you is willing to help, I will welcome the assistance. (Anyone of you = singular)
- The only thing I want from you is respect. (Only thing = singular)
The term “you are” is correct for when you are directly addressing a singular or plural subject as long as the word “are” is referring to the word “you.”
- You are all good people. – CORRECT
- You are a good person. – CORRECT
- You is a good person. – INCORRECT
- You is all good people. – INCORRECT
Also, when starting a sentence, you can use “you are” as the first two words, but it is impossible to begin with the term “you is.”
However, if you include other words that make the thing you refer to as singular, you should use “is.”
- One of you is right, and one of you is wrong. – CORRECT
- One of you are right, and one of you is wrong. – INCORRECT
- What I want from you is your commitment. – CORRECT
- What I want from you are your commitment. – INCORRECT
The correct term for directly addressing a subject or starting a sentence with the word “you” is “you are.” E.g. You are a student/You are students. In these examples, there is no need to change “are” to “is” even when addressing one person.
In contrast, the term “you is” cannot be used to address a subject directly. However, it can be used in other ways, such as “one of you is guilty” or “what I want from you is your word that it won’t happen again.”