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Some may say that English is the same no matter who speaks it, but the reality is that there are distinct differences between British English and American English. While the majority of the words are the same across the two types of English spoken, there are subtle differences that must be acknowledged so as not to make any embarrassing mistakes. Differences between the two languages can be discussed by exploring six main areas: vocabulary, collective nouns, auxiliary verbs, past tense verbs, tag questions, and spelling. Vocabulary. According to Learningenglish.voanews.com, there are hundreds of differences in the types of vocabulary used. A few examples of the differences include the word ‘sneakers’ used in American English. To describe the same word in British English, one must use the word ‘trainers.’ Another word in American English is the word ‘vest.’ In British English, one would use the word ‘waistcoat.’ A word that has meanings in both languages is the word ‘chips.’ In American English, one would expect this word to refer to fried potato slices found in bags. Brands include Lays Potato Chips. In British English, ‘chips’ refers to fries. Collective Nouns. Collective nouns, according to Learningenglish.voanews.com, refer to a group of individuals. When using American English, collective nouns are typically singular. Examples, according to Grammer-monster.com, include ‘fleet’ of ships, and a ‘committee’ of members. In British English, collective nouns can be either singular or plural. An example would be: “The other team are all sitting down.” Auxiliary Verbs. Auxiliary verbs are verbs that help form a grammatical function. According to the site, onestopenglish.com, an example of the difference would be the use of the word ‘shall’ as an alternative to ‘will.’ This can be seen in the British sentence, “I shall be there later” versus the American “I will be there later.” Past Tense Verbs. There are notable difference is the past forms of irregular verbs between American and British English. American English tends to use the –ed ending when describing past tense while British English tends to use the -t ending. An example of this would be the word burn. In American English, one would write ‘burned’ while in British English, one would write ‘burnt.’ Tag Questions. As noted in Learningenglish.voanews.com, “a tag question is a grammatical form that turns a statement into a question.” While both American English and British English use tag questions, it is far more common to find it spoken and written in American English. Spelling. The last main difference between American English and British English is the way in which words are spelled. Common words that are spelled differently between the two include words such as ‘color’ versus ‘colour,’ and ‘labor’ versus ‘labour.’ There are hundreds of other words that have different spellings, but one can easily read both versions and understand the meaning to each. While differences exist between American English and British English, a student learning English can generally understand both versions either written or spoken. The main take-away is that one must be aware that the differences exist and take note when teaching students . https://learningenglish.voanews.com/a/six-difference-between-britsh-and-american-english/3063743.html https://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/collective_nouns.htm http://www.onestopenglish.com/grammar/grammar-reference/american-english-vs-british-english/differences-in-american-and-british-english-grammar-article/152820.article