The Use of 'Beyond'

soni   Saturday, July 31, 2004, 04:39 GMT
I want to ask you whether the following usage of beyond is correct or not. For example, an employee must push a red button first, before continuing with the next step of a system, so that the system will work properly. But, one day, the employee does not follow an instruction written in a manual. He does not push the red button, so that the system does not work properly.

Can I say that the employee has done "beyond the normal procedure"? I mean, can I use "beyond" in this case?

For another case, for example, I expect my favourite team, a football team, will win a tournament, but it does not happen at all. Can I say it is "beyond my expectation?"

Thank you.
Julian   Saturday, July 31, 2004, 06:40 GMT
>>For another case, for example, I expect my favourite team, a football team, will win a tournament, but it does not happen at all. Can I say it is "beyond my expectation?"

That's not quite how the word is used. If the football team that you expected to win lost, then they fell short of your expectations. But if the team played exceptionally well and scored a huge victory over their competitors (a kind of victory that caught even you by surprise), then they went beyond your expectations.
CalifJim   Saturday, July 31, 2004, 07:44 GMT
<<Can I say that the employee has [gone] "beyond the normal procedure"? I mean, can I use "beyond" in this case?>>

No, the employee has not performed the procedure correctly. His performance is less than adequate. You use "beyond" when something is more than adequate.
If the employee performs better than required, he has gone beyond the requirements of his job.

<<I expect my... team [to] win a tournament, but it does not happen.... Can I say it is "beyond my expectation?">>

No, the team failed to win. The team performed less well than you expected. You use "beyond" when the team performs better than you expect. If you expect them to win by 2 points and they win by 5 points, they have gone beyond your expectations. (Notice that in this expression, there is an "s": 'expectations')

"beyond" always has the idea of "more".

He lives in a little house beyond the mountains.
(He lives in a little house more distant than the mountains.)

Some common expressions with "beyond" which you may want to look up to help you understand "beyond":

"above and beyond the call of duty"

"beyond my wildest expectations"

"beyond my wildest dreams"

"beyond the pale"

"It's beyond me."
soni   Tuesday, August 03, 2004, 04:19 GMT
Thanks for all the answers. I think I could say that your anwsers are beyond my expectations.
CalifJim   Tuesday, August 03, 2004, 06:06 GMT
Yes, beyond your expectations. Perfect! I think you've got it!
Damian   Tuesday, August 03, 2004, 07:12 GMT
Ever since I can remember my Mum has used the expression:
"This is beyond a joke!" It usually followed on from some misdemeanour her only son had committed......and still does. Who cares!? (Is that a rhetorical question btw?)
soni   Wednesday, August 04, 2004, 02:59 GMT
Now, still with the usage of 'beyond', how about this term: "beyond reasonable doubt". I know what 'doubt' means. But, reasonable doubt? And, even, 'beyond reasonable doubt'?

Thanks a lot.
Julian   Wednesday, August 04, 2004, 04:59 GMT
beyond a reasonable doubt – standard used by a jury to decide if someone is criminally guilty of an offense. To be beyond a reasonable doubt means that to the jury there isn't a real possibility that the defendant didn't commit the act.

soni   Thursday, August 05, 2004, 05:14 GMT
Sorry, the explanation is rather complicated for me. Can I say that it means the jury is 100% sure that the defendant is guilty?

soni   Friday, August 06, 2004, 08:30 GMT
Hello everybody?

If you have time, please read this thread and answer my last question above....

Thanks a lot!
CalifJim   Saturday, August 07, 2004, 04:22 GMT
REASONABLE DOUBT - The level of certainty a juror must have to find a defendant guilty of a crime. A real doubt, based upon reason and common sense after careful and impartial consideration of all the evidence, or lack of evidence, in a case.

Proof beyond a reasonable doubt, therefore, is proof of such a convincing character that you would be willing to rely and act upon it without hesitation in the most important of your own affairs. However, it does not mean an absolute certainty.

BEYOND A REASONABLE DOUBT - The highest level of proof required to win a case. Necessary to get a guilty verdict in criminal cases.