Order of words in indirect questions

An indirect question is not a question at all. In an indirect question, we do not put an auxiliary verb before the subject, and we do not use a question mark.

He wanted to know where I was going. (NOT He wanted to know where was I going.) (NOT He wanted to know where I was going?)
I asked where they were staying. (NOT I asked where were they staying.)

The auxiliary do is not used in indirect questions.

I want to know when he proposes to start. (NOT I want to know when does he propose to start.)

Indirect yes/no questions are introduced with if / whether.

The driver asked if / whether I knew where I wanted to go.


Change the following direct questions into indirect using the introductory clauses given in brackets.

1. (I would like to know) ‘When are you going to get a good job?’
2. (She wondered) ‘Why did you refuse the offer’
3. (Tell me) ‘What do you mean by that?’
4. (Can you tell me whether) ‘Is that true?’
5. (She wants to know) ‘Why do Scottish men wear skirts?’


1. I would like to know when you are going to get a good job.
2. She wondered why I refused the offer.
3. Tell me what you mean by that.
4. Can you tell me whether that is true?
5. She wants to know why Scottish men wear skirts.