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Hey guys. So, as you all know countries have different languages, and there are always variations. Since I’ve moved to Bournemouth to study I’ve found some differences between the English that we speak in North America and British English, and here they are:

S or Z and E or I

Two words that are spelled differently in British English are the words ‘analyze’ and ‘artifact’. Here in the UK, analyse is spelled with an S, and artefact is with an E. The best thing to do when you arrive here is to change the dictionary on your laptop so that it picks up these mistakes, as they can cost you some points in your homework.

Different word, same meaning.

First things first. Crisps are chips and chips are fries, puddings are desserts and biscuits are cookies – a little confusing! Going to the grocery stores and looking at the aisle guides threw me for the first few weeks. As for getting take out, like pizza, Chinese food or Thai, here in UK they say ‘take away’. Similar, but still odd to say. When it comes to money, you have the pound, or as Londoners say, ‘a quid’, which is our equivalent of a dollar or ‘a buck’. I’ve caught myself a few times still saying ‘cents’ rather than pence – the Brits find this a little funny.

Commercials are called ‘adverts’, cross walks are ‘zebra crossings’, parking lots and parkades are ‘car parks’, semi-trucks are ‘trolleys’, dorms are ‘halls’, and as we Canadians call them ‘tuques’ are just plain ‘hats’. I still say tuque. A period at an end of a sentence, is called a ‘full stop’ – it seems like a long word for such a simple dot. There’s one other word that I just can’t seem to use – in North America we call them erasers, in the UK they call them ‘rubbers’. I still remember how shocked I was when a male student in my class asked me to pass him ‘a rubber’ at the beginning of the semester.

Same word different sound

I was sitting in class a month ago, when my teacher started talking about boys.  Now, I’m doing my Masters in Maritime Archaeology. Confused? I was. I looked at one of my classmates from the USA, and she was just as confused. Deciding to ask the teacher what a “boy’ was, he tells us it is the flotation balls you find in the water. That’s right, what we call a buoy (boo-ee), they make the U silent, making the word sound like ‘boy’. Aluminium is the other word that is pronounced differently, here it sounds like ‘Al-loo-MIN-ee-um’. There are others like privacy, schedule, and many more, google it and you can find so many differences.


In Canada, we are known for saying sorry, while the Brits are known for ‘cheers’ – a word that can be used for sorry, no problem, thank you, good bye and the good old fashion glass-clicking cheers.

Well that’s all I have for now guys. Cheers!