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  5. "Señor, ¿cuál es su oficina?"

"Señor, ¿cuál es su oficina?"

Translation:Sir, which is your office?

May 28, 2018

120 Comments

Sorted by top post

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kento711

I answered "what" is your office, as in "what is the office of special things." Shouldn't that also be a correct translation?

June 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/muppethp

"Which" indicates that there is a limited set of options.

I think English often uses "what" in places where the grammatical meaning is "which." If I go to an ice cream shop and they say, "What flavor would you like?" I understand it to be "which flavor." If I run into a friend at the cinema and they say, "What movie are you here to see?" I understand it to be "which movie". The word "which" tends to be used in primarily formal English, but Spanish keeps what and which distinct.

January 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Spanish does not make a difference between "what" and "which" most of the time. You mostly don't get to choose whether you use qué or cuál as a question word.

¿Qué helado te gusta? - Which/what ice cream do you like?
¿Cuál es la capital de España? - What/which one is the capital of Spain?

January 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Caleb-Barrow

So do we just memorize an arbitrary list of when to use Qué and when to use Cuál?

April 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

It's about as arbitrary as the distinction of "what" and "which" in English. :)

There's a system behind using qué and cuál, but it's not very obvious. Here is a good article that lists six cases that you need to distinguish.

April 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Margaret, are you accessing the comment section from the app? The app doesn't allow clicking links for some reason.

Here's the URL if you still need it: https://www.realfastspanish.com/vocabulary/que-vs-cual

September 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Margaret183302

Your link doesn't work :(

September 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

for me it does.

September 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Margaret183302

Gracias

September 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IsaacAnnea

BURNING CHEESE! ARE YOU GOING TO KNOW EVERY SINGLE LANGUAGE?!

June 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IsaacAnnea

Muppethp

June 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EugeneTiffany

Kento, don't know about that, but do know this lesson is about how Duolingo is meaning to teach us cuál means which, here. So that is what one should be learning. True enough, having one's prefered or hoped for meanings can be fun and there is a bit of pain in giving them up. Still, there is an advantage in doing that, which is learning the lesson.

August 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PatriciaJH

Duolingo's policy since I've been on it (2013) has been to accept all correct translations, whether or not they address the current lesson. New material won't have all correct translations -- we're expected to report them via the Report flag -- "My answer should have been accepted." (Developers will look those over, and reject ones that are actually wrong.)

IMO, purposely rejecting correct answers is lying for no good reason. It harms advanced students. It's like telling someone that 3+8 doesn't equal 11 "because we haven't learned that yet." Duolingo expects us to be learning from the entire world, not just from a rigid set of exercises.

August 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@PatriciaJH

The issue that your post is not discussing is the issue about whether the answer by Kento711 is right or wrong. But I understand that your post was written in reply to EugeneTiffany.

In hindsight, your reply to EugeneTiffany has little to do with the highest scoring post by Kento711 because the answer to the exercise by Kento711 was the wrong answer to the exercise.

If anybody wants to read the explanation for why the answer to the exercise by Kento711 is wrong, then scroll down to read the reply to Mskb1 by RyagonIV. And afterwards, read my reply to Mskb1.

April 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsPuddles

Cuál can mean which or what, actually. There is no "preferred or hoped for" meaning. There are even rules that help one determine whether to use one over the other. Don't believe me? Look it up.

August 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MexicoMadness

MsPuddles, I agree with your comment. There have been many sentances in lessons on dl where the English uses "what", but the Spanish translation has been given as "cuál", so it took me a while, but I am still learning.

September 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

Today is April 8, 2019. Today I received credit for the following answer. I am pasting my answer into this post.

Sir, which one is your office?

April 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

Have you reported it using the "report"-button as well?

April 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

@PhillipMcN2: well, I'm not a native English speaker, but to me your suggestion sounds ok. So I think it could be a good idea to report it next time. The contributors of this course don't (can't) read all the forum discussions.

April 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@fehrerdef

I don't bother to report my correct answers to Duolingo unless I believe that Duolingo made a mistake. So in this case, no, I did not report my experience to Duolingo because Duolingo did not make a mistake. (Edit: I am a native English speaker.)

cuál
― which
― which one
― what

April 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HansEnsink

Su translates into his, not your office.

July 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dodoyce

This is in usted form.

August 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jjzlvJ

Thanks, I was wondering about this!

November 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/warren2007

what is your secret to maintaining a long streak?????

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/warren2007
<h1>loveyourprofilepic !!!!!!!!! so funny!!!! :D</h1>
March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaggiePye

Incorrect. Su can have many translations, including "his," "her," "its," "your," and "their."

November 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HSuter14

I was incorrect for saying "Mister" instead of "Sir." Both should be counted right. How many times are we told to say "Senor (name)." In English we would translate this to "Mr. (Name)" not "Sir, (name)." So here you should be able to translate it to "Mister" and/or "Sir."

May 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kento711

I agree that Mister should be an acceptable translation - I have been fighting this with MANY of the new questions, for both señor (mister) and señora (lady). Where I grew up, both Mister and Lady were taught as the preferred form of address by a young child to an unknown adult. And it is the primary way Jerry Lewis talked in many of his movies!

June 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ConnieHayd

I don't think mister and lady are good substitutes for sir, and ma'am. If you do not follow lady with a name such as a title, or Mr with a last name, you may very well come off as being rude.

In my opinion sir and ma'am should be the choices. Mr and lady are a very impolite way to address a stranger. I would say lady to a child in my family or perhaps I would call her "little lady" and in a similar manner jest with the little boys as mister but never would I address a strange man as mister, only sir. You see, it's perfectly alright to refer to strangers as mister or lady when speaking to someone about them but never to them. Sir and ma'am are not only polite but also respectful. I hope my opinion makes sense. Graciad

July 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PatriciaJH

Whether or not these are considered polite or rude vary depending on region and culture. Duolingo's policy to date has been to accept people's regional idioms.

Kento711 has just told us that he was taught that Mister was the polite form that he was taught growing up.

Your polite idiom would have been unacceptable in my childhood, except from someone with Southern accent, which would be tolerated. I'm from New England; I gather you are from the South.

August 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsPuddles

It doesn't work that way in Spanish. It is only Mister/Mr. if there is a name to go with it(Señor Pérez, ¿cuál es su oficina?). If there is no last name, then señor will always be sir. It doesn't matter how we as native English speakers would say it. There are rules in Spanish that are to be followed. This is one such rule.

On a personal note, I have never called anyone Mister in my life. Mister, which is your office? vs Sir, which is your office? The latter sounds better to my ears. Might be due to my southern roots

July 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EugeneTiffany

The word "mister" in my experience mainly is spoken by old time street kids in movies. "Mister, you got a spare dime?"

It is certainly not ever used in a form of true respect as sir is. Can't be. Does not come across that way.

August 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsPuddles

I agree. Back in the days you are speaking of, that was(while impolite) was socially acceptable. It is not socially acceptable colloquial speech where I live.

I asked my neighbor who was born and raised in Mexico. She says the same. It is not "Mister, which is your office?" but "Sir, which is your office?" She says that the culture of Spanish speaking countries is that of respect and she said that Mister, unless followed by a surname, is quite rude where she comes from.

August 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tobibeer

DuoLingo should not enforce English language usage in a spanish course where preferences vary, even to the point of being commonplace.

February 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lambisqueiro

Very interesting! As a learner of English, I have a problem with the passive voice. You say: "How many times are we told to say" I suppose that a possible translation would be: Cuantas veces se nos dijo que teníamos que decir" " or ' cuántas veces se nos dice que digamos" . Is this right?

There is a sentence in this course that can be a great problem for Spanish speakers:

" He was told to go to sleep" Se le dijo que fuera a dormit.

June 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daniel849735

Why "su" and not "tu" for the word "your"

July 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Su is used here because the person is addressed as "señor". It's a formal addressing, so you go on with usted grammar, which uses su as a possessive form.

September 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CaraDalton57

Ahhh, ok. That makes sense to me. I have just missed it. Thanks!!! It's been driving me crazy not to understand why that sometimes tu and others su when speaking of your. I get it!!

March 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kaytlin850270

Tu means you if I'm right, and su means your, her, his, etc.

July 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsPuddles

Tu is your. Tú with the accent is you. Su is used with his/hers/yours(formal). Tu(without the accent) is used when talking to tú, the familiar people in your life. Pay attention to the accents. If you are using DL on a computer, search the internet for how to change your keyboard to Spanish. The accents change the meaning of words. Esta/está. El/Él. Tu/Tú. All words in Spanish that mean different things because of the accent.

July 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Thylacaleo

It's not necessary to change the keyboard to Spanish. You can use the US International keyboard to type diacritical marks - windoze instructions here

August 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dream341277

People who use a MacBook like myself only need to press and hold the intended key until the diacritic interface comes up, luckily.

August 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EugeneTiffany

You can't just use either tu or su in a coin flip choice. Both require their corresponding verb conjugation.

August 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JenniferOD234340

I thought "cual" meant what. Now I see it also means which. Does it mean anything else?

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kesslerramirez

If you hover the word when you're on the question, it gives a drop down of all the meanings.

Cuál= what's, which, which one, and what

June 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JenniferOD234340

Thank you for answering. And, wow, that's really helpful about the hover. Something I wish I had figured out sooner.

June 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PatriciaJH

Beware though -- the hover has some issues. Sometimes it gives translations that don't apply in the current context. In particular, if a word appears twice in a sentence, but translates differently in each place, the hover shows the same translation in both places, even though it's only right for one of them. Use it as a reminder, and don't expect it to be correct everywhere.

August 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mskb1

My answer: "Sir, what is his office?" I interpreted it as asking for the name of a third person's elected position. I don't see anything wrong with my interpretation for the following reasons.

I am confused on two fronts: 1) what or which? 2) his/her or your?

1)" Which office" would be asking which among various offices belongs to the person, whereas "what office" would be asking which elected or appointed office belongs to the person.

2) "su oficina" = "his/her office" for él/ella as well as "your office" for usted.

Q: Sir, what is HIS office? A: "He is president." But also it could be asking the person being addressed what his elected office is. Q: Sir, what is YOUR office? A: "I am president." Thanks for your help.

July 31, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Oficina is not used for the political position of a single person. Oficina is either the room where people do work, or, more expandedly, the office work environment, as in "There's a lot of chit-chat in the office."

The "elected position" is ususally called puesto.

Considering this, "what" doesn't really work here. Maybe as a colloquial way of "What does your office do?" but that's a bit far out there. The Spanish sentence is asking about the location of the [person]'s office.

Either of "his", "her", "its", "their" or "your" would be fine here, depending on the context. "Your" is the most likely one, though.

September 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NightmareM5

according to my Spanish teacher, su can also be used as the formal version of tu

April 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

exactly.

April 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@Mskb1

Before reading my post, first read the reply (to Mskb1) by RyagonIV. I will wait for you.


Extracurricular Activities:

Sir, what is your position in the organization?

Translation number one:
Señor, ¿cuál es su cargo en la organización?

Translation number two:
Señor, ¿qué cargo ocupa en la organización? (Sir, which position do you hold in the organization?)

April 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@MsPuddles

Great article! :-D

The post by Mskb1 discusses an issue regarding qué versus cuál. Other students might not be completely clear about this issue. For many of us, it is helpful to read the article that MsPuddles is suggesting.

April 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cecelia493597

We just had a question using cual as what and now they want us to know it's meaning is which? Context, context, context.

March 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FilleDeTheatre

Could you translate as which one is your office?

April 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Yes, that would be a very good translation.

April 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsPuddles

In response to which to use, cuál vs qué, please see the provided link

http://www.spanishdict.com/answers/238606/a-little-help-with-qu-vs-cul

July 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeavensEbu1

I used "sir, which is their office? "

September 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JOYLISTER

my question is { senor cual es su oficina?} and i wrote sir what is your office and it said it was wrong and i was like what but that what i exactly typed in it said it was wrong :{ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! anyway it should be {sir where is you office?}

October 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

It is supposed to be "Which one is your office?"

"Where is your office?" would be "¿Dónde está su oficina?"

October 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nickbishop69

"Which is you office sir" is the same thing, just a different way of saying it. Should be accepted.

October 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/asmaa7860

Isnt su for his or hers and tu for yours?

November 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/panos86gr

Yes, but in Spanish (and other languages like mine 'Greek') when you speak in formal and being polite you have to use 3rd person because it's kinda rude to address directly to the person you don't know very well.

November 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephanie910099

I answered "wich one is your office" and it said I'm wrong.....

Am I ?

November 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

It's correct in principle, but you might have worked a misspelling in: "which", not "wich".

November 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stephanie910099

Oh hooo....

Thank you so much for answering !!

November 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kelseykw

can't senor also be translated as mister? it marked me wrong for saying "mister, which is your office?" I think mister and sir are interchangable in english

November 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

You can use it, but "sir" is the more common standalone addressing. "Mister" is usually used together with the person's surname.

November 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/john726148

Why is "which is your office" "su oficina" rather than "tu oficina"?

January 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

You're addressing the man formally, as señor, so you have to continue with usted grammar.

January 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BluePrinc

Mister where is your office.

February 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

"Sir" is the better addressing when you're not going to mention the name of the man. Also cuál is specifically "which one" in this case. "Where is your office?" would be "¿Dónde está su oficina?"

February 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MJGoodchil

Why is this 'su' (meaning his) and not 'tu' (meaning your) when DL has translated it as 'your office'?

March 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/panos86gr

Check other replies like RyagonIV's:

"You're addressing the man formally, as señor, so you have to continue with usted grammar."

March 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GladysS.1

I answered, Mr. Which is your office and was marked wrong. Duo has always accepted Mr as translation for señor. This inconsistency is maddening.

March 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Yeah, it should be removed. The abbreviation "Mr." should only be used in front of the name of the man.

March 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pancake82

"Which office is yours" or "What is your office"

March 16, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

The first sentence doesn't match the grammar used in the Spanish sentence, and the second has the wrong meaning.

March 16, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dirk248111

Which office is yours? Has anyone tried that?

March 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CaraDalton57

Ok, I answered Sir, which is his office. Because it said SU oficina. Why would it not be TU for your office? This has bitten me more than once.

March 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

In Spanish (like in many other languages) there are four different translations of the word "you". You have to discriminate between
a) if you are talking to one single person or to several
b) if you talk to very close friends of yours, family members or children on the one hand or to everyone else (strangers, your boss, ...)

  • one person informal is "tú", the respective possessive pronoun is "tu"
  • several persons informal is "vosotros" with poss. pron. "vuestro"
  • one person formal is "usted" with poss. pron. "su"
  • several persons formal is "ustedes" with poss. pron. "su" as well

(and note that "usted" and "ustedes" take the 3rd person (singular resp. plural) of the verb).

March 26, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Note that vosotros is generally not used in Latin America. They use ustedes for any group of people.

(Also vos.)

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Blue271142

what is the difference between su and tu?

April 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

See my comment above.

April 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@fehrerdef

Are you referring to your reply to CaraDalton57 ?

April 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

yes

April 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shoshi1971

Cuál is killing me. It can be so many things.

April 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PrillanamA

@tobieer

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michelle335831

My issue with this lesson seems to be different from what I have read here. After repeatedly listening to the sentence, I answered, "tu," and then I was corrected with that word being, "su." Regardless of the right answer, no grammatical error has been made and the answer should be allowed, based on the verbal only sentence given.

May 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

Did you have an audio exercise? Then you have to use the exact wording, which is presented in the sentence, and this is "su". Of course using "tu" yields a grammatically correct sentence, too, but it's not the one presented.

May 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

Using tu here is indeed grammatically incorrect. You're talking to a señor, so you have to use usted grammar while talking to him.

May 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

well, it's not grammatically incorrect, but rather sociologically :-)

May 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David485162

But not tu?

May 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

read the other comments, please

May 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David485162

Thanks!

May 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WhatAPotato

When do you use cuál and que?

May 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

In regards to this sentence, the expression "¿Qué es ...?" is used when asking for a definition, and "¿Cuál es ...?" for when you want an answer.

  • ¿Qué es un águila? - What is an eagle?
  • ¿Qué es el águila más grande del mundo? - What is the largest eagle in the world?
May 20, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mablem3

Mr, which is your office? WHY am i WRONG?????!!!!

June 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

You shouldn't use the abbreviation "Mr" without the name of the man.

June 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LindaChic

Or you could use "Sir" and not need the name.

July 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rita857067

not a good answer it should be where is your office or which one is your office

July 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fehrerdef

"which one" should be ok, but "where is your office" is not a translation of the given sentence

July 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Harkil

I wrote, "which office is yours?" I think should be correct

September 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/S.A.Moore-

Sounded like "tu".

September 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Garrett115613

I have the same question as Roger below: why not "su oficina"?

February 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RyagonIV

"Su oficina" is part of the sentence. What are you asking?

February 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heta.edit

wth

January 30, 2019
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