How to Conjugate the Japanese Verb "Suru"

This common, irregular verb translates as "to do"

Getty Images/Kaligraf

Conjugating the irregular Japanese verb "suru".

suru (to do)
Informal Present
(Dictionary Form)
suru
する
Formal Present
(~ masu Form)
shimasu
します
Informal Past 
(~ ta Form)
shita
した
Formal Past shimashita
しました
Informal Negative
(~ nai Form)
shinai
しない
Formal Negativeshimasen
しません
Informal Past Negativeshinakatta
しなかった
Formal Past Negativeshimasen deshita
しませんでした
~ te Formshite
して
Conditionalsureba
すれば
Volitionalshiyou
しよう
Passivesareru
される
Causativesaseru
させる
Potentialdekiru
できる
Imperative
(Command)
shiro
しろ

 

Examples

Shukudai o shimashita ka.
宿題をしましたか。
Did you do your homework?
Asu made ni shite kudasai.
明日までにしてください。
Please do it by tomorrow.
Sonna koto dekinai!
そんなことできない!
I can't do such a thing!

The Extended Use of the Verb "Suru"

 

The verb "suru (to do)" has many extended uses that you'll run across frequently.

To Make

(a) Adverb form of I-adjective + suru
To change I-adjective to adverb form, replace the final ~i with ~ku. (e.g. ookii ---> ookiku)

Terebi no oto o ookiku shita.
テレビの音を大きくした。
I turned up the volume of the TV.

(b) Adverb form of Na-adjective + suru
To change Na-adjective to adverb form, replace the final ~na with ~ni. (e.g. kireina ---> kireini)

Heya o kireini suru.
部屋をきれいにする。
I'm cleaning the room.

To Decide

It should be used when you are choosing from several available alternatives. Click here to learn more expressions when ordering at a restaurant.

Koohii ni shimasu.
コーヒーにします。
I'll have coffee.
Kono tokei ni shimasu.
この時計にします。
I'll take this watch.

To Price

When accompanied by phrases indicating prices, it means "cost."

Kono kaban wa gosen en shimashita.
このかばんは五千円しました。
This bag cost 5,000 yen.

To Feel, Smell, or Hear

Ii nioi ga suru.
いい匂いがする。
It smells good.
Nami no oto ga suru.
波の音がする。
I hear the sound of the waves.

Loan Word + suru

The loan words are often combined with "suru" to change the word into a verb.

doraibu suru
ドライブする
to drivetaipu suru
タイプする
to type
kisu suru
キスする
to kissnokku suru
ノックする
to knock

Noun (of Chinese origin) + suru

When combined with nouns of Chinese origin, suru turns the noun into a verb.

benkyou suru
勉強する
to studysentaku suru
洗濯する
to do the washing
ryokou suru
旅行する
to travelshitsumon suru
質問する
to ask questions
denwa suru
電話する
to telephoneyakusoku suru
約束する
to promise
sanpo suru
散歩する
to take a walkyoyaku suru
予約する
to reserve
shokuji suru
食事する
to have a mealsouji suru
掃除する
to clean
kekkon suru
結婚する
to get marriedkaimono suru
買い物する
to shop
setsumei suru
説明する
to explainjunbi suru
準備する
to prepare

The particle "o" can be used as an object particle after a noun. (e.g. "benkyou o suru," "denwa o suru") There is no difference in meaning with or without "o."

Adverb or Onomatopoetic expression + suru

Adverbs or onomatopoeic expressions can be combined with "suru" to change them into verbs.

yukkuri suru
ゆっくりする
to stay long
ぼんやりする
to be absent minded

ニコニコする
to smilewaku waku suru
ワクワクする
to be excited