Difference Between: Lead vs. Led

Lead (liːd) and led (led) are different forms of the same verb. The base meaning is ‘to control or guide a situation to reach a destination or objective’ – e.g. I lead a yoga group on Wednesdays. Led has the same meaning as lead, but is used to talk about the past – e.g. I led a yoga class last week. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Advice vs. Advise

Advice (ædvaɪs) and advise (ædvaɪz) look and sound similar. Advice is a noun (thing or idea) that means ‘an opinion that offers a recommendation, suggestion or information’ – e.g. The teacher’s advice was to study every day’. Advise is a verb (action) that means ‘to tell someone what you think they should do’ – e.g. My friend advised me to take a holiday’. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Inquiry vs. Enquiry

Inquiry and enquiry sound the same (ɪnkwaɪəri), but have different meanings in British English. Inquiry means ‘official investigation’ – e.g. The government launched an inquiry into corruption. Enquiry means ‘a question about something’ – e.g. The gym received an enquiry about its opening hours. Americans only use inquiry. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Anyway vs. Any Way

Anyway (one word) is an adverb that means ‘in any case’ – e.g. It started to rain, but the family went to the beach anyway. Any way (two words) is a phrase that means ‘in any manner’ – e.g. The mechanic tried to start the car any way possible. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Lay vs. Lie

Lay and Lie are both verbs (actions). They have similar meanings, but lay means ‘put something on a surface carefully’ – e.g. Chloe lays her clothes on the bed. Lie means ‘move into a horizontal position (independently)’ – e.g. Sarah lies on the sofa after work. Simple rule: Lay (put something down flat) vs. Lie (get into a horizontal position).

Warning! We are not talking about the verb lie that means ‘to tell an untruth’. Here, we are only interested in lie – movement into a horizontal position. Continue reading

Difference Between: It’s vs. Its

It’s is a short form (contraction) of ‘it is’ or ‘it has’. The apostrophe replaces the missing letters. E.g. It’s (it is) cold outside. Its is a possessive pronoun (like ours or hers) for nouns without gender. We never use an apostrophe with a possessive pronoun. E.g. The dog is in its bed. Both words sound the same. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Practice vs. Practise

Practice is a noun (a thing) that refers to ‘the time someone regularly spends on an activity because it’s a habit / custom or they want to get better at it’ – e.g. I go to band practice three times a week. Practise is a verb (an action) that means ‘to repeat an activity in order to master it or because it’s part of a routine / custom’ – e.g. I practise with the band three times a week. Continue reading

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Difference Between: Which vs. That

Which and that refer to a subject we have already introduced. That provides essential information, specifying what makes the subject unique. Which adds non-essential detail. If we remove this, the sentence still makes sense. E.g. The cat that lives next door loves eating fish, which is a rare treat. Continue reading

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Difference Between: There vs. Their vs. They’re

There, their and they’re all sound the same. What’s the difference? There shows location (over there, I’m there for you) or introduces a subject (there are too many cars). Their indicates possession or connection (their house is huge). They’re is the short form of ‘they are’ (they’re always happy). Continue reading

Difference Between: Effect vs. Affect

Effect is a noun that means ‘result, consequence of change’ – e.g. cause and effect. Affect is a verb that means ‘influence, make a difference to’ – e.g. The accident affected her health. We confuse the spellings of these words because their pronunciation and meanings are very close. Simple rule: Effect (End result) vs. Affect (Action). Continue reading

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Using Nouns In English (All You Need To Know)

In this study guide, you will learn about different types of nouns, with examples of how to use them in a sentence. Check out the exercises at the end to test your understanding! You can also download this guide as a free pdf to use offline. Continue reading

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How To Use Modal Verbs In English (The Complete Guide)

Modal verbs in English can be confusing! In this guide, we’ll explain what they are, why and how we use them correctly, and give you examples to improve your understanding. Mastering modals like should, would, may and might will help you express yourself clearly in the English. Don’t forget to download the pdf so you can study more at home! Continue reading

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Useful English Phrases For HR And Recruitment

HR and Recruitment is a profession that uses a lot of specific terminology. In this study guide, we’ll share the most useful expressions to help you succeed at work and impress your English-speaking colleagues! We’ve included plenty of vocabulary with meanings, examples, dialogues and exercises to build your understanding of how English is spoken in HR departments in the UK. Let’s get cracking! Continue reading

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Moving To The UK For Work (After Brexit)

Due to Brexit, the days of mainland Europeans and Brits moving to work freely in each other’s countries are sadly over. However, this doesn’t mean you have to give up on your dream of living and working in the UK! In fact, it may be easier than you think to get a job in Britain today. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the information and steps you need to know… Continue reading

Understanding English Conditionals: Types, Sentences, Exercises

Conditionals (or ‘if clauses’) show us how one situation depends on another happening. If it rains, you will get wet. They give us the cause and the possible result. There are 4 types of conditionals in English. These can be used to talk about the past, present and future – what might have happened, always happens or could happen later as a result of something else. Continue reading

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English For The Office: Polite Expressions, Tips & Examples

To be successful in business, it is important to sound polite, helpful and professional with your colleagues and clients at the office. Brits and Americans use specific language and etiquette to achieve this. In this guide, we will show you how to make the right impression so that your English sounds polite at work. Let’s jump in! Continue reading

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How To Score Band 7+ On IELTS Reading

Need to brush up on your IELTS Reading skills? In this guide, we will show you how to pass this section of IELTS with a band 7+. We’ve included all you need to know about the exam, marking and task types, along with our top tips on exam technique and time management. Check out the bonus IELTS Reading resources at the end to improve your skills at home. Let’s get started! Continue reading

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Linking Words And Phrases In English (List With Examples)

In this study guide, you will learn how to use linking words in English. You will discover the meaning of common linking words and learn how to use them in a sentence. Examples are provided to show you the sentence position and use of common linking words in English. Check out the exercises at the end to test your understanding! Continue reading

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