Difference Between British and American English

The list below highlights the difference between British English and American English.

Apart from the spelling differences - you can see those by clicking on the USA - UK differences at the left hand side of this page - there are a number of differences in vocabulary listed below.

I suggest you look them over because you never know when you may run into an American after studying British English, or when you may run into a Brit after having studied American English.
British English vs American English
Having been to England a number of times now myself, I can assure you that the differences between American and British vocabulary are just enough to cause a few laughs.

Well, maybe a few... misunderstandings. ;-)

What's important to remember?

That both British English and American English are accepted on the examinations as long as you consistently use either one or the other. In other words, don't mix!

Common Differences
  • English    American English
  • all right    all right, alright (disputed)
  • analyse    analyze
  • centre     center
  • cheque    check
  • colour     color
  • counsellor    counselor
criticise, criticize    criticize
defence    defense
doughnut    donut
favour    favor
fibre    fiber
flavour    flavor
fulfil    fulfill
grey    gray
honour    honor
humour    humor
jewellery    jewellery, jewelry
judgement, judgment    judgment
kerb    curb
labour    labor
license, licence (verb)
licence (noun)    license (verb)
license (noun)
litre    liter
metre    meter
mould    mold
neighbour    neighbor
offence    offense
practise (verb)
practice (noun)    practice (verb)
practice (noun)
pretence    pretense
programme    program
pyjamas    pajamas
realise, realize    realize
savour    savor
speciality    specialty
theatre    theater
travelling    travelled, traveled
travelling, traveling
tyre    tire
valour    valor
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3 comment for "Difference Between British and American English"

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