"예쁜 여자가 수영하고 있어요."
Translation:The pretty woman is swimming.
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I wasn't paying full attention and just wrote "The pretty lady is swimming", which is (apparently) not acceptable. I guess lady and woman have more significantly differing connotations than they do in English. If not, I vote that lady ought to be added as an alternative. Not really important, more just a suggestion. I saw the post from the course contributor and how much work goes into even small sentences with the many possibilities for alternative correct answers... It's insane.
If you are talking about verbs, it is because some verbs are formed from nouns so they have to add 하다. For example 행복 (happiness) + 하다 = 행복해요, and 일 (work) + 하다 = 일해요. So those continuous verbs end with 하고 있어요. However, 가다 (to go) and 듣다 (to listen) and 쓰다 (to write) are already verbs. So those continuous verbs end with only 고 있어요.