our teacher gives us (an) MP3 player

VicNicSor

Banned
Russian
From an exercise on articles:
Every Monday, our teacher gives us __ MP3 player with all our listening for the week on it.
The answer is "an".

Does it imply they use one player for all the group, or for each student?
If the former, is that the same player each time? And if so, it's still "an"?
Thank you.
 
  • Florentia52

    Modwoman in the attic
    English - United States
    We don't know from the sentence whether the teacher gives one MP player to the entire group, or one to each student. We also don't know whether it's the same MP player each time. Whether it's the same one or ten different ones in rotation, we would still use "an."
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    Thanks to all.

    The most likely alternative, I mean in case if there are more than one player, is "gives us MP3 players", isn't it?
     

    e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    The singular most likely expresses in a clearer way the same as gives each of us an MP3 player.
    But there is always the possibility that there is only one such player.
     

    Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Another question is "Should it be 'an' or 'a' "? The article is followed by the consonant M, so one might think "a" is correct, but it is the sound that matters, not the letter. "MP3" is pronounced "emm-pee-three," which begins with a vowel sound. It must therefore be "an."
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    Another question is "Should it be 'an' or 'a' "? The article is followed by the consonant M, so one might think "a" is correct, but it is the sound that matters, not the letter. "MP3" is pronounced "emm-pee-three," which begins with a vowel sound. It must therefore be "an."
    Thank you!
    I'm aware of such traps in using articles:)
     
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