Hello, in this video we're going to look at two tenses in English, Simple Past and Present Perfect. We will first examine one use of each tense and how we form them. When writing your cover letter, it is very important that you can understand how to use both tenses correctly. To begin, let's look at these sentences. They are taken from a sample cover letter. I have worked in my current job for the past three years. I began here in 2013. Before my current job, I studied in college for four years. In which of these sentences is the action complete or finished? In which of these sentences is the action still continuing to now? What do you think? That's right. The correct answer is, I began here in 2013 and I studied in college are complete or finished actions. I have worked in my current job for the past three years, is still continuing. So we can see there is an important difference in use between these two tenses. Do you know what tense I began and I studied is? It's called the simple past. And do you know what tense I have worked is? It's called the present perfect. So, to sum up, we use the simple past tense to describe a complete, or finished action in the past. We use the present perfect tense to describe an action that began in the past, but continues to now. Now, let's look at how we form each of these two tenses. In the simple past, there are two types of verbs, Regular and Irregular verbs. I studied in college for four years, is an example of a regular verb. In this case, we simply add -ed or -ied. If the verb ends in y like study, add -ied to the base form of the verb. So I studied, you studied, he studied, she studied, etc. I began here in 2013, is an example of an irregular verb. We call it irregular or not regular because its form changes from the present to the past tense in an irregular way. So in the case of, I began in 2013, the present form is I begin as in, I begin work each day at 9 AM. This verbs do not follow a regular pattern like regular verbs do. So you should try and study the forms of each verb. Many English grammar books have a list of past tense irregular verbs. We usually use the simple past for the time phrase. Do you know what the time phrase is in this sentence? I began here in 2013. That's right, in 2013. Other examples of popular time phrases used with the simple past are ago, as in I finished college 3 years ago. I began at my present job in 2013. Next, let's look at the present perfect. Like the simple past, there are regular and irregular verbs. In the example, I have worked in my current job for the past three years, the verb worked is a regular verb. We use the verb, have or has, plus what we call the past participle, to form the present perfect. In this case, the past participle is worked. So we could say, I have worked, you have worked, he has worked, Mary has worked, etc. With regular verbs, the past participle will be the same as the simple past form. However, with irregular verbs, it will usually be different. Again, good English grammar books will list the past participle of irregular verbs. You should become familiar with them. The verb be is an example of an irregular verb. The simple past form is was or were and the past participle is been. So we might say, I have been a receptionist for six years. Am I still a receptionist? Is Patricia a doctor now? The answer to both questions is yes. To sum up, we have discussed in this unit the simple past and the present perfect, two important tenses that you can use in your cover letter. We use the simple past to talk about complete or finished actions and the present perfect to talk about actions that began in the past but are still continuing in the present. Next, we will play a game to practice these two tenses.