British English or American English: 10 ways to spot the difference

Two roads diverge in the metaphorical woods of your mind, and you know that you cannot travel both. Which one to pick? The email that you have just typed asks you the same question over and over again: Is your university recognized or is it recognised?

In a world where languages are evolving all the time, its hard to tell the difference between American English and British English at times. Here are ten ways you can spot the differences:

– America is built on capitalization and not capitalisation. Whereas Britain is built on colonisation, not colonization. (However the American z” is starting to replace the British s” in most countries including commonwealth nations.)

– For America, Canada is a neighbor that favors the outsourcing of labor. In Britain, the Labour Party favours working with their nieghbours.

– Just like Leeds, Cardiff, and Belfast, Oxford is in Britain but the Oxford comma in this sentence (the comma followed by ‘and) is American. This comma is also known as the serial comma.

– America said I use double quotations in the initial quote but when I quote someone saying ‘Hey there! I use single quotes
Britain replied ‘Oh! I use single quotations instead and when I quote you saying Hey there” I use double quotes within the single quotes

– Americans love the period (); they put it after every title (Mr. , Mrs and St) while the British dont. They also put it between the hour and minute section of written time (10.12 am) instead of the Britishs colon (10:12 am).

– NYC in USA is 789 kilometer square however UKs London is 1572 kilometre square. New York is the Broadway and Theater capital of America whereas Britain flaunts an active Theatre scene in London.

– There is a rightward shift in the American political system. Britain too moved rightwards in its public opinion by accepting Brexit. Trump wants to move America toward a greater future while the British parliament is hoping to move towards a self sufficient UK.

– Defense spending is high in USA and UK tries to curb the money spend on defence.

– Britain has gone digital; analogue systems are no longer catalogued. In America there are still some analog systems cataloged.

– American wine is aging whereas British wine has been ageing for years. The one from USA is likable but the one form Britain is likeable.

—–Sharada Satapthy, a student from Mount Carmel College, Bangalore, currently interning with EducationWorld.




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