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“Your” is a determiner. It can be described as belonging to or associated with someone that is being addressed. “You’re”, on the other hand, is a contraction and is used to shorten “you are”. 

Because they are pronounced the same but have different meanings, we call these words homophones. These words are often confused – even by native English speakers. So, how do you tell the difference between them? In this IELTS Grammar 101, we’ll give you some tips on telling them apart. 

  • Difference between your and you’re 

  • Synonyms of your and you’re 

  • Use your and you’re in a sentence 

Your or you’re: the difference


Is a determiner: A modifying word that determines the kind of reference a noun or noun group has.


Is a contraction: A word that commonly combines a pronoun or noun and a verb, or a verb and not, in a shorter form. 

Your or you’re: the definitions


A word used to relate something to someone.  


A shortened word for “you are”. 


Your or you’re: in a sentence


  • Is this your dog? 

  • Drinking water is good for your health. 

  • This is all your fault! 

  • What is your name? 


  • If you’re free this weekend, do you want to go out for lunch? 

  • Do you watch TV when you’re at home? 

  • You’re welcome to join us for dinner. 

  • She asked if you’re free for a call at 3.

Want to learn more about commonly confused words?

In written English, it is important to know the correct spelling of a word you want to use. You don’t want to write “weak” when you mean “week” even though they sound the same. In spoken English, spelling is less important, but pronunciation is. Think about the word “lead” which can be pronounced as “led” or “leed.” Because these words cause a lot of confusion, it’s well worth to spend a few minutes to know the difference: homophones vs homographs vs homonyms. Read more here.

People often use elude when they mean allude, or write allude when they should really write elude. There are other commonly confused words too: Do you know the difference between belief or believe? That is the question of another article where we explain the difference between these two commonly misused words. Read it here.