sign up: meaning and explanation

The phrasal verb to sign up for something means to decide to join or participate in something (usually in an official way, e.g. by registering). e.g. I’ve decided to sign up for the gym – it’s time I did some exercise.

We can add an additional object (to sign sb up for sth) if want to describe registering someone else for something. e.g. I’ve signed you up for dancing classes.

We can also use the structure ‘to sign up to do something’ when you want to describe formally agreeing/registering to do something. e.g. I’ve signed up to show new students around the university, so I’m going to be very busy next week.

Have a go at these micro-dictation exercises to hear this expression being used in context – how much can you understand?

Listening exercises

Dictation #1

Accent: North America

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I the course couldn't to sign website.

About the sentence

…I couldn’t work out how to sign up…

Here’s an exercise focussing on the phrasal verb work something out?

Dictation #2

Accent: Northern England

Available soon

Dictation #3

Accent: Scotland

Available soon

Extra practice

Here are some questions/links to help you learn the new vocabulary:

  • What is the last thing you signed up for?
  • Have you ever signed up for something and then regretted it?

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