Ser Conjugation Guide (How To Conjugate Ser In Spanish)

  • Jada Lòpez
    Written byJada Lòpez
    Jada LòpezSpanish teacher, translator
    🎓 B.A., Translation and Interpreting English and Spanish, Universidad de Granada
    🎓 M.A., Formación de Profesores de Español como Lengua Extranjera (ELE), Universidad Pablo de Olavide

    Passionate language teacher and translator. Wife, mother of 3 and amateur surfer.
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Ser Conjugation Guide (How To Conjugate Ser In Spanish)

Ser is an irregular verb, so it’s one of the more challenging verbs to learn how to conjugate.

In this guide, I’ll help you learn how to fully conjugate all moods and tenses of the Spanish verb ser.

Below you’ll find conjugation charts of all tenses of ser categorized by mood (there are 3 moods in Spanish). I’ve also included sample sentences for each.

Ser isn’t the only verb meaning “to be” in Spanish. Estar is another one. The differences between ser and estar have been explained in detail here. For now, just remember that ser is used for permanent characteristics, while estar is used for temporary states, locations, conditions, or emotions.

I’ll start with the Indicative mood but you can jump ahead using this navigation.

Conjugations:

  1. Indicative Mood
    • Present Indicative
    • Preterite (Past) Indicative
    • Imperfect Indicative
    • Future Indicative
    • Conditional Indicative
    • Present Perfect Indicative
    • Past Perfect (Pluperfect) Indicative
    • Future Perfect Indicative
    • Conditional Perfect Indicative
  2. Subjunctive Mood
    • Present Subjunctive
    • Imperfect Subjunctive
    • Future Subjunctive
    • Present Perfect Subjunctive
    • Past Perfect (Pluperfect) Subjunctive
    • Future Perfect Subjunctive
  3. Imperative Mood
    • Affirmative Imperative
    • Negative Imperative
  4. Non-Finite Forms

Indicative Mood

The Indicative mood in Spanish is used for expressing factual statements, objective information, and actions that are considered real or certain.

Your simple tenses fall under this category.

Some of the Indicative and Subjunctive tenses below follow a haber + sido pattern. Technically, you’re not conjugating ser for these, but haber. I will put out a similar guide shortly covering haber conjugations and link to it below.

Present Indicative

The Present Indicative is the simplest and most basic tense in Spanish, which is commonly used for facts and descriptions in the present, as well as for habits and actions that happen in the present.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yosoyi am
eresyou are (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedeshe/she is, you are (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrassomoswe are
Vosotros/Vosotrassoisyou are (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedessonthey are, you are (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo soy estudiante.

I am a student.
Listen to audio

eres inteligente.

You are intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él es alto.

He is tall.
Listen to audio

Ella es amable.

She is kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros somos felices.

We are happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros sois trabajadores.

You (plural) are hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos son divertidos.

They are funny.

Preterite (Past) Indicative

The Preterite — or Past — Indicative is used to describe actions that finished at a point in the past.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yofuii was
fuisteyou were (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedfuehe/she was, you were (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasfuimoswe were
Vosotros/Vosotrasfuisteisyou were (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesfueronthey were, you were (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo fui estudiante.

I was a student.
Listen to audio

fuiste inteligente.

You were intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él fue alto.

He was tall.
Listen to audio

Ella fue amable.

She was kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros fuimos felices.

We were happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros fuisteis trabajadores.

You (plural) were hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos fueron divertidos.

They were funny.

Imperfect Indicative

The Imperfect Indicative is used to talk about past actions that were ongoing or never finished.

This is often the equivalent of “was/were doing” in English.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yoerai was
erasyou were (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustederahe/she was, you were (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotraséramoswe were
Vosotros/Vosotraseraisyou were (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeseranthey were, you were (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo era estudiante.

I used to be a student.
Listen to audio

eras inteligente.

You were intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él era alto.

He was tall.
Listen to audio

Ella era amable.

She was kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros éramos felices.

We were happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros erais trabajadores.

You (plural) were hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos eran divertidos.

They were funny.

Future Indicative

The Future Indicative is used to express future actions or conditions.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yoseréi will be
serásyou will be (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedseráhe/she will be, you will be (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasseremoswe will be
Vosotros/Vosotrasseréisyou will be (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesseránthey will be, you will be (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo seré estudiante.

I will be a student.
Listen to audio

serás inteligente.

You will be intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él será alto.

He will be tall.
Listen to audio

Ella será amable.

She will be kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros seremos felices.

We will be happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros seréis trabajadores.

You (plural) will be hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos serán divertidos.

They will be funny.

Conditional Indicative

The Conditional Indicative is used to express hypothetical situations and actions, as well as politeness.

It often corresponds to the English “would”.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yoseríai would be
seríasyou would be (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedseríahe/she would be, you would be (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasseríamoswe would be
Vosotros/Vosotrasseríaisyou would be (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesseríanthey would be, you would be (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo sería estudiante.

I would be a student.
Listen to audio

serías inteligente.

You would be intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él sería alto.

He would be tall.
Listen to audio

Ella sería amable.

She would be kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros seríamos felices.

We would be happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros seríais trabajadores.

You (plural) would be hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos serían divertidos.

They would be funny.

Present Perfect Indicative

The Present Perfect Indicative is used to talk about something that started in the past and is still relevant or continuing in the present, or about something that has happened in the recent past.

It’s formed with the present indicative of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohe sidoi have been
has sidoyou have been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedha sidohe/she has been, you have been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashemos sidowe have been
Vosotros/Vosotrashabéis sidoyou have been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshan sidothey have been, you have been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo he sido estudiante.

I have been a student.
Listen to audio

has sido inteligente.

You have been intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él ha sido alto.

He has been tall.
Listen to audio

Ella ha sido amable.

She has been kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros hemos sido felices.

We have been happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros habéis sido trabajadores.

You (plural) have been hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos han sido divertidos.

They have been funny.

Past Perfect (Pluperfect) Indicative

The Past Perfect (Pluperfect) Indicative is used to describe something that had occurred before another action in the past.

It’s formed with the imperfect indicative of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohabía sidoi had been
habías sidoyou had been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhabía sidohe/she had been, you had been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashabíamos sidowe had been
Vosotros/Vosotrashabíais sidoyou had been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshabían sidothey had been, you had been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo había sido estudiante.

I had been a student.
Listen to audio

habías sido inteligente.

You had been intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él había sido alto.

He had been tall.
Listen to audio

Ella había sido amable.

She had been kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros habíamos sido felices.

We had been happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros habíais sido trabajadores.

You (plural) had been hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos habían sido divertidos.

They had been funny.

Future Perfect Indicative

The Future Perfect Indicative is used to indicate that something will have happened by a certain point in the future.

It’s formed with the future indicative of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohabré sidoi will have been
habrás sidoyou will have been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhabrá sidohe/she will have been, you will have been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashabremos sidowe will have been
Vosotros/Vosotrashabréis sidoyou will have been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshabrán sidothey will have been, you will have been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo habré sido estudiante.

I will have been a student.
Listen to audio

habrás sido inteligente.

You will have been intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él habrá sido alto.

He will have been tall.
Listen to audio

Ella habrá sido amable.

She will have been kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros habremos sido felices.

We will have been happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros habréis sido trabajadores.

You (plural) will have been hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos habrán sido divertidos.

They will have been funny.

Conditional Perfect Indicative

The Conditional Perfect Indicative is used to express what would have happened but did not.

It’s formed with the conditional indicative of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohabría sidoi would have been
habrías sidoyou would have been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhabría sidohe/she would have been, you would have been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashabríamos sidowe would have been
Vosotros/Vosotrashabríais sidoyou would have been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshabrían sidothey would have been, you would have been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Yo habría sido estudiante.

I would have been a student.
Listen to audio

habrías sido inteligente.

You would have been intelligent.
Listen to audio

Él habría sido alto.

He would have been tall.
Listen to audio

Ella habría sido amable.

She would have been kind.
Listen to audio

Nosotros habríamos sido felices.

We would have been happy.
Listen to audio

Vosotros habríais sido trabajadores.

You (plural) would have been hardworking.
Listen to audio

Ellos habrían sido divertidos.

They would have been funny.

Subjunctive Mood

The Subjunctive mood in Spanish is used to express subjective or hypothetical situations.

This includes doubts, desires, wishes, and emotions.

It’s often used in dependent clauses to convey uncertainty, possibility, necessity, or unreality.

English translations for these subjunctives might sound strange, because English typically doesn’t use the subjunctive in the same way as Spanish. They’re literal translations.

Present Subjunctive

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yoseai be
seasyou be (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedseahe/she be, you be (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasseamoswe be
Vosotros/Vosotrasseáisyou be (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesseanthey be, you be (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Espero que tú seas un buen estudiante.

I hope you be a good student.
Listen to audio

Es importante que él sea puntual.

It's important that he be on time.
Listen to audio

Ella sugiere que seamos más pacientes.

She suggests that we be more patient.
Listen to audio

Recomiendo que seáis cuidadosos.

I recommend that you (plural) be careful.
Listen to audio

Quieren que sea honesto.

They want me to be honest.

Imperfect Subjunctive

In Spanish, the Imperfect Subjunctive can end in either -se or -ra.

Both are accepted, and they’re used interchangeably.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yofuese or fuerai were
fueses or fuerasyou were (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedfuese or fuerahe/she were, you were (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasfuésemos or fuéramoswe were
Vosotros/Vosotrasfueseis or fueraisyou were (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesfuesen or fueranthey were, you were (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Si yo fuera estudiante, estudiaría más.

If I were a student, I would study harder.
Listen to audio

Sería mejor si él fuera más comprensivo.

It would be better if he were more understanding.
Listen to audio

Nos gustaría que fuerais más colaboradores.

We would like it if you (plural) were more cooperative.
Listen to audio

Si fueran honestos, lo admitirían.

If they were honest, they would admit it.

Future Subjunctive

This mood is rarely, if ever, used, and it’s pretty much only used in legal documents and literature.

It can be replaced by the conditional or present subjunctive in nearly all contexts.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yofuerei were to be
fueresyou were to be (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedfuerehe/she were to be, you were to be (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasfuéremoswe were to be
Vosotros/Vosotrasfueréisyou were to be (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedesfuerenthey were to be, you were to be (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Si fuere estudiante en el futuro, sería dedicado.

If I were to be a student in the future, I would be dedicated.
Listen to audio

Sería necesario que fueras alto si aplicaras para ese trabajo.

It would be necessary that you were tall if you were to apply for that job.
Listen to audio

Si fuere amable, la gente lo apreciaría más.

If he were to be kind, people would appreciate him more.
Listen to audio

Si fuéremos exitosos, celebraríamos.

If we were to be successful, we would celebrate.
Listen to audio

Si fuereis responsables, seríais recompensados.

If you (plural) were to be responsible, you would be rewarded.
Listen to audio

Si fueren puntuales, la reunión transcurriría sin problemas.

If they were to be punctual, the meeting would run smoothly.

Present Perfect Subjunctive

The Present Perfect Subjunctive is used to express the same subjectivity as the subjunctive mood, but about something that has already happened.

It’s formed with the present subjunctive of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohaya sidoi have been
hayas sidoyou have been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhaya sidohe/she has been, you have been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashayamos sidowe have been
Vosotros/Vosotrashayáis sidoyou have been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshayan sidothey have been, you have been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Espero que hayas sido un buen estudiante.

I hope you have been a good student.
Listen to audio

Es importante que haya sido puntual.

It's important that he has been on time.
Listen to audio

Ella sugiere que hayamos sido más pacientes.

She suggests that we have been more patient.
Listen to audio

Recomiendo que hayáis sido cuidadosos.

I recommend that you (plural) have been careful.
Listen to audio

Quieren que haya sido honesto.

They want me to have been honest.

Past Perfect (Pluperfect) Subjunctive

The Past Perfect Subjunctive is formed using the imperfect subjunctive of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Just as the Imperfect Subjunctive, hubiera and hubiese are interchangeable.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohubiera sido or hubiese sidoi had been
hubieras sido or hubieses sidoyou had been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhubiera sido or hubiese sidohe/she had been, you had been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashubiéramos sido or hubiésemos sidowe had been
Vosotros/Vosotrashubierais sido or hubieseis sidoyou had been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshubieran sido or hubiesen sidothey had been, you had been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Si hubiera sido estudiante, habría estudiado más.

If I had been a student, I would have studied harder.
Listen to audio

Habría sido mejor si él hubiera sido más comprensivo.

It would have been better if he had been more understanding.
Listen to audio

Nos habría gustado que hubierais sido más colaboradores.

We would have liked it if you (plural) had been more cooperative.
Listen to audio

Si hubieran sido honestos, lo habrían admitido.

If they had been honest, they would have admitted it.

Future Perfect Subjunctive

This one’s archaic and rarely used in Spanish today.

You’ll most likely find it in literature and legal documents. It’s formed with the Future Subjunctive of the auxiliary verb haber and the past participle sido.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
Yohubiere sidoi will have been
hubieres sidoyou will have been (informal singular)
Él/Ella/Ustedhubiere sidohe/she will have been, you will have been (formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrashubiéremos sidowe will have been
Vosotros/Vosotrashubiereis sidoyou will have been (informal plural)
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedeshubieren sidothey will have been, you will have been (formal plural)
Listen to audio

Si hubiere sido estudiante, habría sido dedicado.

If I were to have been a student, I would have been dedicated.
Listen to audio

Sería necesario que hubieres sido alto para ese puesto.

It would be necessary that you were to have been tall for that role.
Listen to audio

Si hubiere sido amable, la gente lo habría apreciado más.

If he were to have been kind, people would have appreciated him more.
Listen to audio

Nos habría gustado que hubiereis sido más colaboradores.

We would have liked it if you (plural) were to have been more cooperative.
Listen to audio

Si hubieren sido puntuales, el evento habría transcurrido sin problemas.

If they were to have been punctual, the event would have gone smoothly.

Imperative Mood

The Imperative mood in Spanish is used to give commands, make requests, or offer instructions.

Affirmative Imperative

These are positive commands (telling someone to do something).

Affirmative commands use the tú, usted, nosotros/nosotras, vosotros/vosotras, and ustedes forms. For tú, the command is an exception to the usual formation rule, and is “sé”. For vosotros/vosotras, the ending “-d” is added to the root of the verb. Also, there’s no first person singular (yo) or third person singular (él, ella) command form in Spanish.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
be (you informal singular)
Ustedseabe (you formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasseamosbe (we)
Vosotros/Vosotrassedbe (you informal plural)
Ustedesseanbe (you formal plural)
Listen to audio

un buen estudiante.

Be a good student.
Listen to audio

Sed inteligente.

Be intelligent.
Listen to audio

Sea alto.

Be tall.
Listen to audio

Sean amables.

Be kind.
Listen to audio

Seamos felices.

Let's be happy.

Negative Imperative

These are commands telling someone not to do something.

Refer also to the note above under Affirmative Imperative.

Subject PronounSer ConjugationTranslation
no seasdon’t be (you informal singular)
Ustedno seadon’t be (you formal singular)
Nosotros/Nosotrasno seamosdon’t be (we)
Vosotros/Vosotrasno seáisdon’t be (you informal plural)
Ustedesno seandon’t be (you formal plural)
Listen to audio

No seas un mal estudiante.

Don't be a bad student.
Listen to audio

No seáis poco inteligentes.

Don't be unintelligent.
Listen to audio

No sea alto.

Don't be tall.
Listen to audio

No sean desamables.

Don't be unkind.
Listen to audio

No seamos infelices.

Let's not be unhappy.

Non-Finite Forms

In Spanish, non-finite verb forms don’t indicate tense or subject. They’re not conjugated to match a specific person or number, but rather function as verb forms that are not bound by time or subject agreement.

These are the three main non-finite forms in Spanish:

  • Infinitive: expresses the action of the verb in its most basic form. It is identified by the endings -ar, -er, or -ir.
  • Gerund: used to express ongoing or continuous actions. It is formed by adding -ando (for -ar verbs) or -iendo (for -er and -ir verbs) to the verb stem.
  • Past participle: used to form compound tenses and passive constructions. It is created by adding -ado (for -ar verbs) or -ido (for -er and -ir verbs) to the verb stem.
Part of SpeechSer ConjugationTranslation
Infinitiveserto be
Gerundsiendobeing
Past Participlesidobeen
Listen to audio

No quiero ser como los demás.

I don't want to be like everyone else.
Listen to audio

Estoy siendo sincero, no puedo hacerlo.

I'm being honest, I can't do it.
Listen to audio

He sido fanático de esa banda por años.

I've been a fan of that band for years.

So how do you conjugate ser?

You now have the complete conjugation for ser in this guide. You shouldn’t attempt to memorize it all at once - just use it as a reference point.

Here’s an important tip:

I recommend starting off by learning the Present Indicative and Preterite (Past) Indicative. These are the most common and an ideal place for any new learner to begin.

Don’t get hung up on some of the less important tenses either, like the Future Perfect Subjunctive. They’re not something you’ll use often, if ever, so there’s no rush for you to memorize these forms.

Also, as I mentioned above, some of these Indicative and Subjunctive tenses are actually conjugating haber, not ser (haber + sido structure). I’ll cover these in more detail shortly.

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