Spelling differences between British and American English : Through-thru Night-nite Light-lite High-hi

University essay from Växjö universitet/Institutionen för humaniora

Abstract: Although the British and the Americans use the same language, i.e. English, the differences in vocabulary, pronunciation, and spelling between these two varieties doubtlessly exist. However, this paper deals particularly with the spelling differences between British English and American English since spelling seems to cause confusion and problems to the learners of English the most. The American spelling is considered to be informal; therefore, the essay focuses on the standard British English spelling of words through, night, light, and high and their equivalents in American English, i.e. thru, nite, lite, and hi. This study investigates how extensively the British and the Americans use the standard and the informal spelling of these words in different written sources such as newspapers, magazines, leaflets and advertisements, and books. In addition, the collocations of these particular words are investigated. In order to do this quantitative research, the Collins Cobuild corpus material was searched and analyzed. The results of this study reveal that the informal American spelling of these four words appears in British texts more often than in American texts. However, the informal spelling tends to appear in non-American sources when speaking about America or American cultural phenomena.

  AT THIS PAGE YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE WHOLE ESSAY. (follow the link to the next page)