Penser + à + infinitive


Kwiziq community member

18 November 2015

2 replies

Penser + à + infinitive

In an article on, Laura Lawless explained that no preposition is needed when an infinitive follows "penser" eg "Je pense aller au marché" ( So why is it that in the given example "We are thinking about doing our homework" the preposition "à" is used before "faire". The example given is "nous pensons à faire nos devoirs". Isn't that a contradiction? I have found other links that seem to agree with the article:,,; but i also encounter a French natives and learners who say you can use the preposition "à" before an infinitive. It seems that without the preposition the sense is someone is close to doing something/intends on doing something (it is already planned) and that with the preposition "à" then idea is someone is just thinking ABOUT doing something. At first I could find nothing to support this theory but today I seem to find such explanations everywhere! So which is it? If there is more to the topic, can Laura add to it on her page "All About Penser"?

This question relates to:
French lesson "Y can replace à + thing / object / location (adverbial pronoun)"


Kwiziq language super star

18 November 2015


Bonjour C,

Penser can be followed by à or not, with a very slight difference in meaning.

Penser faire = to consider doing, hope to do

Penser à faire = to have in mind to do

I left About nearly a year and a half ago, but I will keep your question in mind for when I write a new lesson on this topic. (To find my new site, just search for my name and French).


Kwiziq community member

19 November 2015


Hi Laura, I am on Lawless French. That is where I posted this question. Is that the site you mean?

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