Cities offer larger salaries to people rather than small towns.
Here the comparison is between ‘salaries’ and ‘small towns’. The writer is saying that cities offer people large salaries and do not offer them small towns. Hmm. I would be quite happy if someone gave me a small town!
If we want to compare the salaries offered by cities with the salaries offered by small towns, then we need:
Cities offer larger salaries compared to small towns. (= salaries in cities vs. salaries in small towns)
And if you really must use rather than, then you could also write:
Cities offer larger salaries rather than smaller salaries. (= larger salaries vs. smaller salaries)
Most of the timeinstead of is synonymous with rather than:
Cities offer larger salaries instead of smaller salaries.
However, instead of is quite often a replacement for something that came before:
City companies now use electronic transfer instead of cash payment for salaries.
Next time make sure you’re comparing what you mean to compare!
Recently I was telling students that for certain statistics, generic labels like number and amount might not be suitable, for example when you’re writing about employment. Then today I saw this up-beat news item from the BBC, which contains some nice examples of ’employment speak’! Continue reading →
Common people watch television every night for six hours.
I don’t think the writer intended to be so negative, or worse – insulting! Let’s explore the meaning of common, first of all by looking inside an opera house.
Some seats in opera houses have always been more expensive than others. The cheapest seats are in ‘The Stalls’ or in ‘The Gods’, because in these areas the view of the stage is limited. Wealthier people can afford to pay for a private ‘box’, and they get a better view. The best view, meanwhile, is from the ‘Royal Box’. Continue reading →
Disclaimer: I didn’t create the Academic Word List. That distinction goes to a lady called Averil Coxhead. And I know there are other sites offering academic word highlighting, but I need my own app because I’m planning to integrate the AWL with other @guruEAP posts and pages in the near future.
So, you wanna know how ‘academic’ your vocab is?
Type or paste some text into the field below, then click ‘Check for academic words!’ Continue reading →
Ok so I admit that occasionally we might not recognise somebody’s gender. But when their gender is obvious then we need to use the right pronoun, at least when we’re taking an exam!
Many languages, including Bahasa Indonesia, use non-sexist pronouns. And many languages use the same pronoun for subjects and objects, and even for possessives! It’s hardly surprising that students find English pronouns challenging, but for IELTS they have to be right!
colleagues (2 syllables: /kɒliːgz/) – the people we work with
Whoever you are, and wherever you are, you’re extremely unlikely to go out with your colleges! What you mean is:
I’m very busy during the week, but at weekends I go out with my colleagues.
But even here there’s a problem. English native speakers are unlikely to refer to the people they study with as colleagues. If the context is education, then a native speaker is more likely to use the following:
I go out with my classmates.
I go out with people from my class.
I go out with fellow students.
If you go out with colleagues, you are going out with the people you work with, and not the people you study with! If you are hanging out with college colleagues then you are probably a teacher or professor hanging out with fellow teachers or professors!