Verbs for describing difference:

contrast (contrasts, contrasting, contrasted)
VERB If you contrast one thing with another, you point out or consider the differences between those things.
■ [+ with] She contrasted the situation then with the present crisis.
■ In this section we contrast four possible broad approaches.

differ (differs, differing, differed)
VERB If two or more things differ, they are unlike each other in some way.
■ [+ from ] The story he told police differed from the one he told his mother.
■ Management styles differ.

differentiate (differentiates, differentiating, differentiated)
VERB If you differentiate between things or if you differentiate one thing from another, you recognize or show the difference between them.
■ [+ between] A child may not differentiate between his imagination and the real world.
■ [+ from] At this age your baby cannot differentiate one person from another.

distinguish (distinguishes, distinguishing, distinguished)
VERB If you can distinguish one thing from another or distinguish between two things, you can see or understand how they are different.
■ [+ from] Asteroids are distinguished from meteorites in terms of their visibility.
■ [+ between] Research suggests that babies learn to see by distinguishing between areas of light and dark.

vary (varies, varying, varied)
VERB If things vary, they are different from each other in size, amount, or degree.
■ Assessment practices vary in different schools or colleges.
■ [+ from] The text varies from the earlier versions.
■ [V-ing] Different writers will prepare to varying degrees.

Verbs for describing similarity:

compare (compares, comparing, compared)
VERB When you compare things, you consider them and discover the differences
or sim ilarities between them.
■ Compare the two illustrations in Fig 60.
■ [+ with] Was it fair to compare independent schools with state schools?
■ [+ to] Note how smooth the skin of the upper arm is, then compare it to the skin on the elbow.

resemble (resembles, resembling, resembled)
VERB If one thing or person resembles another, they are sim ilar to each other.
■ Some of the commercially produced venison resembles beef in flavour.
■ It is true that both therapies do closely resemble each other.

Adjectives and adverbs for describing difference:

ADJECTIVE Ideas, attitudes, or reactions that are contrary to each other are completely different from each other.
■ [+ to] This view is contrary to the aims of critical social research for a number of reasons.
■ Several of those present had contrary information.
■ people with contrary interests

ADVERB You say conversely to indicate that the situation you are about to describe is the opposite or reverse of the one you have just described.
■ If government saving is high private saving will be low. Conversely if government saving is negative then private saving will be high.
■ That makes Chinese products even cheaper and, conversely, makes American-made goods more expensive
to export.

ADJECTIVE If something is distinct from something else of the same type, it is different or separate from it.
■ [+ from] Engineering and technology are disciplines distinct from one another and from science.
■ This book is divided into two distinct parts.

ADJECTIVE If a group or range of things is diverse, it is made up of a wide variety of things.
■ a diverse range of habitats
■ Society is now much more diverse than ever before

Adjectives for describing similarity:

ADJECTIVE If two or more things are alike, they are sim ilar.
■ The two brothers look very alike.

ADJECTIVE Something that is comparable to something else is roughly similar, for example in amount or importance. ■ paying the same wages to men and women for work of comparable value
■ [+ to] Farmers were meant to get an income comparable to that of townspeople.

ADJECTIVE Something that is equivalent has the same value as another thing.
■ [+ to] A unit is equivalent to a glass of wine or a single measure of spirits.
■ They will react with hostility to the price rises and calls for equivalent wage increases are bound to be heard.

ADJECTIVE Things that are identical are exactly the same.
■ [+ to] The new buildings look identical to those built 200 years ago.
■ The two parties fought the last election on almost identical manifestos.


Track 25

1 Victor and Vincent are identical twins.
2 Boys and girls rarely think alike.
3 We enjoy watching a diverse range of films.
4 A Psychiatry and psychology are two distinct disciplines.
5 The average cost of a house today is equivalent to six years’ average annual salary.
6 The minister was sacked for expressing views that were contrary to those of the
7 The majority of female respondents reported spending more on sugary snacks; conversely, the majority of male respondents said they had spent more on savoury snacks.
8 People who do similar work should receive comparable rates of pay.

Track 26

1 In order to stay healthy it is important to eat a varied diet.
2 The risk of flying in a light aircraft is comparable to that of sailing in a small boat.
3 He decided to accept my recommendation, which was based on a detailed comparison of the two courses.
A There is a remarkable resemblance between this song and one that was recorded thirty years ago.
5 Every student in the class interpreted the essay question differently.
6 The opinions he expresses in his blog are often in complete contrast to those he expresses on television.
7 The lecturer contrasted the last three major economic crises.


Track 27

Many people today complain of job-related stress. Indeed numerous surveys have shown that most working adults today perceive the workplace to be a more challenging environment than in previous generations.

Although on the surface of it, stressful work and challenging work may appear to be identical, it is important to distinguish between the two terms. Job stress occurs when the demands of a job do not match the worker’s needs, resources or skills. A teacher who is required to teach a subject he or she knows nothing about or is not interested in is likely to experience job stress. Prolonged job stress can result in poor physical or emotional health, or what we call ‘burnout’.

A challenging job is very different in that it encourages the worker to develop skills and resources. Meeting a challenge is rewarding. It is comparable to stretching out to grasp a prize that is nearly within reach. Challenging work can be energizing and contribute to a greater sense of well-being. In
fact an appropriate level of challenge is essential for good physical and emotional health.

While we often see some jobs as being inherently stressful or challenging, it is important to remember that these qualities are a function of the match between the worker and the job. Two workers may well have very different experiences of the same job as no two workers are alike. What is a stressful job for one may well be a challenging job for another.