Difference between an abbreviation and an acronym
Abbreviation vs acronym:
An abbreviation and an acronym can both be described as short forms that are used instead of utilizing more longer words. Yet, there are differences between these two terms that this article seeks to determine.
What is an abbreviation?
An abbreviation can generally be defined as a shortened form of several words and yet, these words should be pronounced from letter to letter in order to make sense. Some examples for abbreviations would be QPSK – Quater Phase Shift Keying, UK – United Kingdom, USA- United States of America, etc. yet, abbreviations would not always be made out of the first letter of the word. One can take St- Saint, Sgt- Sergeant as examples for this.
What is an acronym?
An acronym too is a shortened form of a term which usually consists of several words of which the end result can be pronounced together. This leads to the creation of new words which should be pronounced as such. Acronyms are always formed with the collection of the first letter of every word and then putting them together. Some examples for acronyms would be UNESCO- United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, AIDS- Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome, RADAR- Radio detection and ranging, LASER – Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission from Radiation, etc.
What is the difference between an Abbreviation and an acronym?
The main difference between these two forms would be that an acronym makes up a new word which can be pronounced as a new word in itself whereas an abbreviation is merely a different form of the original word itself. Also, whereas the abbreviation has to be pronounced letter by letter in order to make proper sense, an acronym is a word in itself which can be pronounced as a separate word which is separate from its original form.
Also, an acronym is typically formed with the very first letters of the term. For example, one can take BBC which means the British Broadcasting Corporation. And yet, abbreviations are not always formed with the first letters of the words one can take the terms, Dr- Doctor, Mr- Mister, St.- Saint for example.
An abbreviation usually contains periods in between the letters such as I.D, I.Q, etc. it serves merely as a compact version of the word whereas an acronym serves sometimes as a catchy word or a catchy phrase which is bound to catch the attention of the reader. Also, an acronym has no intervals between the letters. It is pronounced and used as one word.