Expressions using Themes (e.g. Collocations, IELTS, Business English)

Collocations With The Word Set

Collocations are words that usually go together in English.

Here we are going to look at words that go with 'set' to make useful and popular expressions you will hear in social and professional contexts.


Set in motion

'Set in motion' means to take action to start something, or cause something to begin. It is usually used in relation to a process or chain of events.

Examples

  • All the planning for the project has been done. Now we're just waiting for the boss to set things in motion.
  • In the movie, a case of mistaken identity sets in motion a chain of events that result in the lead character being wanted by the police.
  • The mayor was the person responsible for setting the plan in motion, so she deserves the lion's share of the credit.


(All) set for

When you are 'all set for' something, you are fully prepared, or ready for it to begin.

Examples

  • Are you set for school tomorrow? If not, go and sort out what you need now.
  • Once I've put the finishing touches to my speech, I'll be all set for the conference tomorrow.
  • I have my rain jacket, water flask, and walking boots, so I'm all set for our hike through the forest. 


(Dead) set against

If you are 'dead set against' somebody or something, then you are completely opposed to them, or determined not to do something.

Examples

  • Most of the staff are dead set against the idea, but in the end, the boss has the final say.
  • I'm absolutely set against my daughter bringing that boy to the house. He is nothing but trouble.
  • I wouldn't say that I'm dead set against working with that company, but we would need to establish clear ground rules first.


Set on

As opposed to 'set against', if you are 'set on' something, then you are determined to do or achieve it. This collocation can also be used to describe commanding an animal, particularly a dog, to attack somebody or something.

Examples

  • He's set on making it as a musician. That's why he spends hours every day singing and playing the guitar.
  • I've got my mind set on doing that, and nothing you say will persuade me otherwise.
  • Robert didn't want the fox in his back garden, so he set his dog on it.


Full/complete set

A 'set' in this context is a number of similar things that belong together in some way or are part of a group. A 'full/complete set', therefore, is one that is total or finalized.

Examples

  • If you do not have a full set of golf clubs, you will not be allowed onto the course.
  • He loves that TV show. I think he owns the complete set on DVD.
  • The full set of priorities for the upcoming project have been emailed to members of staff.


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