3 Commonly Confused WORD PAIRS in English

Some everyday words are used incorrectly every day. Did that last sentence make any sense to you? Don't worry if it didn't. Even native English speakers sometimes do not know the difference between "maybe" and "may be". In this lesson, you will learn the difference between three word pairs and how to use them correctly every time. Try our quiz at the end to test your knowledge and get extra practice.
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TRANSCRIPT

"To be strong and to have speed is not the same as having power and quickness. These are easily confused." Hi. James from engVid. I'm reading Miyamoto Musashi on strategy. Hiya! Except Mr. Musashi said something rather interesting, and that's today's lesson. Confusing words. You probably heard me talk about speed and strength being confused with power and quickness. We native speakers regularly confuse it, thinking that they are the same things, and there are other words that I know you probably have problems with, and maybe some native speakers as well, and we're going to learn them today. You ready? Let's go to the board.

So. Confused words. Mr. E, Sensei. What do we have? "Everyday, I ain't learned nothing, but may be I should have studied harder!" Okay, I'm putting on an accent and playing. Mr. E is saying: "Every day…" And "ain't" is bad English. We've got a video on that, so go check it out, okay? It talks about when people say it, and then you'll understand my strange accent. Okay? And: "Learned nothing, but I should have studied harder." Well, there are… There's a confused word here and here, and this word is wrong. When we finish the lesson, you'll understand why I say that, and why these confuse people.

The first one we're going to do is "study" versus "learn." What does it mean to study, and what does it mean to learn? It's often been said: "You can study a lot, and learn nothing." Why? Because learning, when you learn something, you gain knowledge by studying, by practicing. You know, you play the piano again, and again, and again, that's practice. You don't look at the keys, ding dong dong, you actually practice it to get it into your body, so to speak. When you study, that's more like reading or trying to memorize things, right? For a test.

So learning, you are going to gain a skill, or you will get knowledge. You will learn something new, something you didn't understand, you will now understand. Okay? There's something you will have. It may not be something you put in your hand, but it's something you put in your head. Okay? And the best thing about it is not only have you put it in your head, you can now take this information and use it to learn new things, or use it to do things. Right? You can study how to make a cake, but when you learn how to make a cake, you have a recipe. Right? And you can use that recipe again and again.

Studying is a little different. Why? Because studying is actually a part of learning. If you look carefully up here, it says: "Studying, practicing, being taught." You know, somebody… Somebody will teach you. You go and you get a teacher. A teacher says: "You're doing this, this, this, and this." You're not reading and memorizing; someone is speaking to you. And even when we talk about learning experience, right? Trust me: if you get hit by a car… I've been hit by a car three times, man. Not fun. Riding a bicycle, boom! You learn: look both ways, and be smart. You didn't have to memorize that. One hit by a car – you will learn, okay? So, that's what learning means.

When you study, we talk about studying being reading, right? Memorizing facts, that means trying to put it in your memory so you don't have to keep thinking about it. But another thing about study which is a little confusing is when you attend school. What do I mean? Well, when you attend school, you go for classes, right? So sometimes you hear people say: "What do you study?" And they're talking about what is the subject, right? Or: "What are your classes? Do you take mathematics?" You say: "I'm studying math, geography, and history this term." Studying, that means memorizing some facts from these and reading about them. Okay? Or: -"What are you studying?" -"The law. I'm going to get a law degree", or: "I'm going to get a medical degree." You cannot learn a medical degree, you study for a medical degree. So when we say "study," we talk about attending school. What school do you go to? What subject, what classes?

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