Should you use British or American English in IELTS?
Updated: May 25th 2021
Some people are confused about whether to use British or American English in the IELTS test. The answer is that both types are fine. IELTS is not just based on British English, the IELTS listening test has various accents from English speaking countries around the world. You do not get a higher band score in the speaking section for using a British accent either.
In fact, your accent does not matter as long as the examiner can clearly understand you. If you prefer to use American English spelling or vocabulary in the writing section, then stick to that when doing the exam, don’t suddenly switch to using British English spelling or vocabulary and vice versa.
What are the differences between American & British English?
There are a few differences between the two but overall the language is very similar. The main differences are spelling, pronunciation, vocabulary and certain grammar structures. For example, the present perfect is used more often in British English.
British English: “I’ve lost my keys. Have you seen them?”
American English: ” I lost my keys. Did you see them?”
Another example is the past participle of “Got” ..In American English it is “Gotten”
British English: ” Your English has got much better”
American English: ” Your English has gotten much better”
The word ” Take” is often used in American English, In British English the word “Have” is more common, See the examples below.
|Have a Bath|
Have a Holiday
Have a Break
Have a Look
Have a Rest
|Take a Bath|
Take a Vacation
Take a Break
Take a Look
Take a Rest
Another difference is “Have you got…? “ and ” Do you have….? “ In British English we would say ” Have you got a car? “ But in America you would probably hear the phrase “Do you have a car?”
Below are some examples of Spelling and Vocabulary differences.
The Bill (in a restaurant)
Can (eg: a can of beer)
Tin (eg: a tin of beer)
Any Questions?… leave a comment below.