Before you study mixed conditionals, it's a good idea to check you understand second conditionals and third conditionals. Then read about mixed conditionals below. When you are ready, try these mixed conditional practice exercises.

Mixed Conditionals

The mixed in mixed conditionals refers to the mix of present/future time (from second conditionals) and past time (from third conditionals).

Second Conditionals

If I had a good job, I'd be rich.
This is an imaginary present situation, with its present result.

Third Conditionals

If I had studied medicine, I'd have become a doctor.
This is an imaginary past situation, with its past result.

Mixed Conditionals

A mixed conditional gives a situation and result - but one is in the past, and the other is in the present / future. For example:

If I had studied medicine at university, I'd be rich now.
A past situation (I didn't study medicine), with a present result (so I'm not rich now).

It is also possible to have a past result, with a situation that is still true (present).

If I was more imaginative, I would have bought you a better present.
present / permanent situation (I'm not imaginative), with a past result (so I didn't buy a good present).

How to make mixed conditionals

Imagined past situation: If + had(n't) + past participle

Imagined present result: wouldn't + verb (infinitive)

If we had taken the car, we wouldn't be late.

 

Imagined present situation: If + past simple

Imagined past result: would(n't) have + past participle

If I didn't love him, I wouldn't have married him.

 

As with all other conditionals, it doesn't matter which half of the sentence comes first:

If I didn't love him, I wouldn't have married him.

= I wouldn't have married him if I didn't love him.


 Now try these mixed conditional practice exercises.