“I think I get the gist.”

English Lesson: I think I get the gist.

You've just started at a new job at a restaurant. A coworker has been training you in how to enter customers' orders into the computer system. She asks if you understood. You say that you mostly understood.

I think I get the gist.

Want Video and Sound? Follow us on YouTube

I think (clause)

In spoken English, you can say "I think ___" before the idea that you're thinking.

I think I'm finished.

I think she's coming.

In formal writing or when you're speaking carefully, you should use "I think that ___" instead:

I think that we need to do a lot more testing before we release it to the public.

get the gist (of something)

To "get the gist" of something means to understand it a little bit, or to understand the general idea of something. Use it like this:

A: Do you understand?

B: Yeah, I get the gist.

You can "get the gist" of things like:

  • the idea of a T.V. show
  • how to play a game
  • how to do a task at work

It doesn't make sense to say that someone "gets the gist" of a large subject like mathematics or psychology.

If you want to name the topic that a person understands, use "of ___":

He got the gist of how to do it with just a couple of minutes of explanation.