Difference between British English and American English
British English vs American English:
English is considered as one of the official language of the United Nations and is therefore considered as a connecting language between all nations. Yet this language too differs from nation to nation and sometimes even from region to region. British English and American English can be taken as two such examples where some of these rather marked differences can be seen. British and American English are also the two main forms of English taught in ESL/EFL programs
What is British English?
British English, also known as the BBC English or the Queen’s English, is the English that is being spoken in the United Kingdom. This also includes all the dialects of regions that are being used there.
What is American English?
American English is the English that is being used within the united states. This too includes all the dialects that are being used withing the whole of America.
Differences between British English and American English.
In their essential features, written forms of British and American English as found in newspapers and textbooks vary very little. This kind of formal English is known as the standard English. Yet, there are many differences between the spoken English, spellings of words and also a significant difference in the accents used by both British and English people.
In terms of grammar, these two English types differ. Once can see the difference clearly in the use of present perfect as used in both types.
The present perfect in British English is utilised in order to express an action that has occurred in the recent past which also has an effect on the present moment. For example the sentence
I’ve left by book at the hostel. Can you come with me to bring it back?
In American English, it is possible to express the same sentence in the following manner
I left my book in the hostel. Can you come with me to bring it back?
Whereas the above form would be incorrect according to British English, both forms would be accepted as correct in standard American English.
Some differences exist in the usage of simple preset with words such as “already, yet and just” as well. For example, the sentences
‘I’ve just finished watching a movie’ would be also accepted as ‘I just finished watching a movie’ in standard American English. The sentence ‘she has already finished her homework’ would be equally accepted as ‘she already finished her homework’ in American English and likewise.
Differences ensue in terms of expressions of possessions as well. Although the forms “have you” and “do you have” are both equally accepted in both types of English, the British English speakers prefer the term “have you” whereas most American English users prefer the “do you have” form.
In terms of vocabulary, the differences between British English and American English is quite vast. Certain spellings of words may be considered as completely unacceptable in one type whereas that spelling would be considered as ideal in the other type of English. Not only the spelling of words but certain terms are typical to one form of English whereas the other form of English would be using quite another word for that term.