succeed in /at raising public awareness

english apprentice

Senior Member
Argentina-Spanish
Hi fellers :)

I know that you can use "succeed" with the preposition "in" ,but someone told me that you can use with "at " as well.

The campaign has certainly succeeded in/at? raising public awareness of the issue.

Is it possible??

Thanks :)
 
  • Joel - Spanish

    Member
    British English
    I´m just going by instinct here...

    I don´t think the preposition has much to do with the verb "to succeed". It all depends on the object.

    But as a general rule you can succeed in a specificsituation, or you can succeed at a general activity.

    I´m going to succeed in life.

    I´ve succeeded at public speaking every time.


    Careful, sometimes we´ll use at when describing a physical place: I want to succeed at school.

    Your choice may depend on interpretation, so

    So:

    The campaign has certainly succeeded in raising public awareness of the issue.

    This sounds better to me because it´s talking about an individual situation.

    Contrast with: That advertising agency has succeeded at public awareness-raising in all its campaigns.
     

    Mr. Barnes

    New Member
    English - Canada
    The preposition in is used when followed by a standard noun. Generally is used when talking referencing a specific situation/location.

    I succeeded in school.
    I did well in mathematics.
    He always succeeds in activities like these.
    The goalkeeper is very good in tournaments

    The preposition at is used when followed by a verbal noun (-ing form)

    He excels at writing, public speaking, swimming etc.
    He succeeded at convincing me.
    She is very good at singing, teaching, studying etc.

    You will often hear things like “I’m good at math/chess/poetry.” which seem to break the rule, but the speaker is just omitting the verb.
    I’m good at [doing] math. I’m good at [playing] chess. I’m good at [writing] poetry. in would no longer work when the verb form is added.

    The ‘exceptions’ which Joel - Spanish listed appear incorrect. “I want to succeed at school” sounds completely awful. in is absolutely required there. “succeeded in raising public awareness” sounds acceptable to the ears but ‘at’ would sound just as well if not better.
     

    Bevj

    Allegra Moderata (Sp/Eng, Cat)
    English (U.K.)
    The ‘exceptions’ which Joel - Spanish listed appear incorrect. “I want to succeed at school” sounds completely awful. in is absolutely required there.
    I disagree.
    I want to succeed at school sounds OK to me and at least in BrE,'in school' does not.
     

    gengo

    Senior Member
    American English
    I disagree.
    I want to succeed at school sounds OK to me and at least in BrE,'in school' does not.

    And this American thinks both succeed at school and succeed in school sound perfectly fine. So there you have it, perfect disagreement between three native speakers from three countries. :)

    Sometimes language is less like math (logical rules) and more like ice cream flavors (personal preference).
     

    Forero

    Senior Member
    Hi fellers :)

    I know that you can use "succeed" with the preposition "in" ,but someone told me that you can use with "at " as well.

    The campaign has certainly succeeded in/at? raising public awareness of the issue.

    Is it possible??

    Thanks :)
    Yes, but I see a slight difference in meaning here:

    The campaign has certainly succeeded in raising public awareness of the issue.
    This means that raising awareness was a goal that was obtained. The campaigned intended to raise awareness, and they have done so.

    The campaign has certainly succeeded at raising public awareness of the issue.

    This means that raising awareness was something tried perhaps as a means to a goal or as some sort of challenge. The campaign raised awareness and while doing so has succeeded at the goal or met the challenge.
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian, Armenian
    Hi. I still don't understand why "at" is sometimes used if it's not in the official dictionaries like Macmillan, Longman or Cambridge.

    "Everyone can succeed at something."

    Why "at"?
     

    gengo

    Senior Member
    American English
    Hi. I still don't understand why "at" is sometimes used if it's not in the official dictionaries like Macmillan, Longman or Cambridge.

    You can't expect dictionaries to list every possible use of a preposition. There are just too many.

    "Everyone can succeed at something."

    Why "at"?

    Why not? That's just how we say it. A veces la respuesta es simplemente "Porque sí."

    Similar usage:
    to be good at something
    to be bad at something
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian, Armenian
    You can't expect dictionaries to list every possible use of a preposition. There are just too many.



    Why not? That's just how we say it. A veces la respuesta es simplemente "Porque sí."

    Similar usage:
    to be good at something
    to be bad at something
    Thanks for your response.
     
    Top