Lecture vs. course

The words lecture and course are both used in connection with education. Consulting the Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries, we have lecture = a talk that is given to a group of people to teach them about a particular subject and course = a series of lessons or lectures on a particular subject. Especially German native speakers

Read More

A scrupulous false friend in English and German

I recently came across an interesting false friend in the form of the word scrupulous, providing great potential for thorough confusion. According to Merriam-Webster, scrupulous means, in particular, having moral integrity, acting in strict regard for what is considered right or proper. Its opposite is unscrupulous. As a German native speaker, I find that quite

Read More

Looser oder Loser?

[Switch to an English version of this post] Das englische Wort loser wird auch im Deutschen gerne verwendet. Loser hat sogar den Weg in den Duden gefunden, obwohl es mit Verlierer und Versager eigentlich brauchbare Alternativen gibt. Abgesehen davon, dass man sich fragen sollte, ob man wirklich jemanden so bezeichnen möchte, machen viele den Fehler,

Read More

How to pronounce interpret

This week’s seminar speaker (German, but currently working in the US) made several interesting pronunciation mistakes. Most notably, he kept pronouncing the verb interpret so incorrectly that I did not even recognize it immediately. To understand what went wrong, we best look at the phonetic spelling. The are actually several pronunciations of interpret that are

Read More

Can you really count to five?

I’m quite sure that even people who are not very confident about their English in general would not hesitate to claim that they can of course count to five. However, if you take pronunciation into consideration, this is not be true for many of them. (This post was inspired by an announcement I recently heard

Read More

Monotonic/monotone vs. monotonous

At a physics conference I attended last week in Berlin, I came across yet another example of tricky distinctions to master. Several speakers confused the words monotonic or monotone with monotonous. While these words can be used interchangeably in some situations, only monotonic and monotone are correct in a mathematical context. The Oxford online dictionary

Read More

Wordpress Social Share Plugin powered by Ultimatelysocial