Reported Questions: Direct and Indirect Questions

Reported Speech Questions! Learn how to form Reported Questions in English with useful grammar rules and example sentences.

Reported Questions

When you are changing a question from direct speech into indirect speech, you follow the same kinds of rules as for statements. The only differences are that you need to use a different word to introduce thereported speech, and the word order of the question becomes like that of a statement. You end the sentence with a full stop, not a question mark.

To report a question, we use verbs such as:inquire,wonder,want to know,ask

Onlyaskcan take an indirect object.

Reported Speech Questions Examples:

Direct speech:Have you got a computer?

Reported speech:Hewanted to knowwhether I had a computer.

Reported Questions: Direct and Indirect Questions

Reported Questions | Direct vs. Indirect Questions Pin

How to Report Wh and Yes/No Questions

Reported Speech Questions:Yes/No Questions

– We use “if” or “whether” to introduce a “yes‑no question”.


Direct speech:Did you receive my e-mail?

Reported speech:The teacher asked meifI had received his e-mail.ORThe teacher asked mewhetherI had received his e-mail.

– You introduce questions where there is a choice in the same way ‑ more usually by usingwhether” than by using “if“.


Direct speech:I asked, “Is it John’s phoneorRichard’s?”

Reported speech:I askedwhetherit was John’s phoneorRichard’s.

Reported Speech Questions:Questions Words (Wh- Questions)

– You introduce questions that begin withwho,why,what,how,when,whereby using the wordwhich begins the question in direct speech.


Direct speech:She asked, “Wheredid he stay?”

Reported speech:She asked mewherehe had stayed.

Direct speech:She asked, “Whenwill you go back to London?

Indirect speech:She askedwhenhe would go back to London.

– You often mention the person who is being asked the question, by using apronoun(him,her,them, etc.) or by mentioning their name.


I askedhimif he ate meat.

She askedMichaelwhen he would go back to Japan.

Notes for Reported Questions

In reporting questions:

– The tense of the verb changes as it does in reported speech but there isno auxiliary verbandthe word order is like anaffirmative sentence.

– We don’t use question marks in reporting questions except beginning withCould you tellme…?,

Do youknow…?,May I ask…?, …(when we ask for information.)

Reported Speech: Useful Rules & Examples

Reported Speech in English

(Reported Questions: Direct and Indirect Questions)

Last Updated on March 1, 2021

1 thought on “Reported Questions: Direct and Indirect Questions”

Leave a Comment