What to say when you know but you are not sure

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Sounds almost contradictory doesn’t it? How can you ‘know’ something if you are not ‘sure’?

When it comes to learning any language things get quite hard when you have to learn the small and subtle ways of saying the same thing.
Saying you know something can be simple “I know today is Wednesday” but what if you know something but you are not completely sure it is right?

Useful sentences to express uncertainty in English

As far as I know!

This is a very useful term. It will allow you to say what you know you think is true but clearly showing that you understand it may not be correct. It suggests that from the information that you have, or what you have been told it is correct but you may not have all the facts

Example “As far as I know we are meeting tomorrow morning”

To the best of my knowledge!

This phrase works in the same way as “as far as I know” but it is a lot more formal. This would work very well in a work situation where you wanted to say the same thing but with the right amount of respect and politeness.

Example “To the best of my knowledge we are meeting tomorrow morning”

What to Say When You Know But You are Not Sure
Correct me if I'm wrong

Correct me if I’m wrong…

This is a different type of phrase. which is a great way of politely disagreeing with someone in a formal way because you know or you believe that you are right and they are wrong

Example “Correct me if I am wrong but I think/believe we were meeting tomorrow morning (and not this morning)”

I thought…

This is a very useful phrase. It allows you to say what you think is correct but saying it this way shows you are very happy for someone else to have a different answer. It is perfect if you really do not know if you are correct or not.

While it is a statement you can also turn it into a question to reinforce your feeling of doubt,

Example: “I thought we were meeting tomorrow morning?”


These kind of phrases are good to try on your English speaking friends first, so they can let you know if you are using them in the right way.

Expressing uncertainty in a work environment

Expressing uncertainty in English

How to say I am not sure in a formal way

When you’re in a business or professional setting, choosing the right words is crucial. It’s important to communicate your thoughts clearly while maintaining respect for your workplace and colleagues. Here are some formal and professional ways to express uncertainty in a professional manner

  • “Correct me if I am wrong…”
  • “To the best of my knowledge…”
  • “I may be wrong, but…”
  • “As far as I know…”
  • “I believe so, however, I’d suggest double-checking.”
  • “It’s possible that…”
  • “I think that might be the case, however, let’s verify to be sure.”
  • “From my understanding…”
  • “Unless I’m mistaken…”
  • “Based on the information I have…”

Using these phrases instead of informal or slang expressions like “I dunno, but…” projects professionalism and helps maintain a positive impression in formal settings

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How to say I am not sure in email

Writing an email differs significantly from speaking directly to someone, yet when it comes to expressing uncertainty, the language used remains similar.
Whether it’s in a professional work email or a casual message to a friend, using phrases like ‘I am not sure but…’ or ‘I may be wrong but…’ is still considered polite and appropriate.

For instance, in a work email, you might write, ‘I am not sure, but I think the deadline is next Friday.’ In a more informal setting with a friend, you could say, ‘I may be wrong, but wasn’t the movie we planned to watch next week?’ Additionally, in a collaborative team email, you could use, ‘As far as I know, the meeting is scheduled for 3 PM, but let’s confirm with the team.’

These examples show how using such phrases can effectively convey your uncertainty in various email contexts

Expressing uncertainty in English in emails

Mastering the art of expressing uncertainty is a valuable skill in both personal and professional communication.

Phrases like “As far as I know,” “To the best of my knowledge,” “Correct me if I’m wrong,” and “I thought…” are not just linguistic tools; they are bridges that connect understanding and respect in conversations.

Whether it’s in a formal business setting, a casual chat with friends, or composing thoughtful emails, these expressions can enhance your clarity and politeness. Remember, effective communication is about conveying your thoughts accurately while being considerate of others’ perspectives.

Practising these phrases can significantly improve your confidence and competence in English, paving the way for more effective and respectful interactions.

Happy English learning!

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