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Differences between American, Australian, British, Canadian, and New Zealand English

Differences between American, Australian, British, Canadian, and New Zealand English

Posted by Grant Richardson, 9th September, 2015

In addition to accents, you may have noticed other differences between American, Australian, Canadian, New Zealand and British English.

I grew up in Australia. Many of my favourite TV shows and movies were from England, America, and Canada.

I remember some differences, but have checked with colleagues and online for a few others. Below are some examples.

Feel free to post a comment with any other examples, or if you think any need to be corrected.

Prepositions

on the weekend” (Australia, Canada, US) / “at the weekend” (UK)

Grammar

“I‘ve seen it before.” (Australia and UK) / “I saw it before.” (Common in US)

Past participle verbs

get-got-gotten (Canada, US and sometimes in Australia) / get-got-got (UK and Australia)

Vocabulary

mobile (phone) (UK and Australia) / cell (phone) (US)

flip-flops (New Zealand, UK and US) / thongs (Australia)

sofa (UK) / couch (US) / lounge (Australia)

flats (UK and Australia) / apartments (US and Australia)

the drug store (US) / the chemists (UK and Australia) / the pharmacy (everywhere, more formal)

soft drink (Australia and UK) / soda (US)

Spelling

litre (Australia, Canadia, New Zealand, UK) / liter (US)

realise (Australia, New Zealand, UK) / realize (Canada, US)

Pronunciation

schedule : “SHED-ual” (UK and Australia) / “SKED-ual” (US, sometimes in Australia)

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