Advice vs. Advise: Its meaning & how to use it in a sentence

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There are some words in English which have similar spellings and/or pronunciation but have a different meaning. This can be tricky. To learn English better, you must know the difference between such words. A set of said words is advice and advise.

They are often confused because they are used in a similar context and are separated by just one letter.

ADVICE

Advice (ends with /s/ sound) is a noun and means a suggestion or opinion about what someone should do. The -ice ending of advice is pronounced like “ice” – (Pronunciation)

If it is uncountable

Examples

  • I need some advice on how to improve English.

          Not: I need an advice

  • He gave her a lot of advice on how to speak English fluently, but she did not listen.

         Not: He gave her a lot of advices

If it is countable

If we want to use advice in a countable way, then we can add ‘a piece of’ before advice.

Examples

  • I have two pieces of advice for you about your vacation.

       Not – I have two pieces of advices

ADVISE

We use the verb advise (ends is /z/) to mean ‘to give counsel to; offer an opinion or suggestion worth following’. The -ise ending of advise is pronounced like the “-ize” in realize. (Pronunciation)

Examples

  • I strongly advise you to start driving.

       Not – I strongly advice you to start driving.

  • She advised him not to buy a new car.

       Not – She gave him an advise

Why the confusion?

Indians usually adopt a mix of British and American English. This can not only lead to confusion sometimes but also adversely impact our business negotiations.

When we see a slight change in spelling, for example, when the center becomes center, we assume that the difference is not in the usage but only in the spelling.

While this may stand true for a lot of words, it can be challenging to differentiate between words which do have a different meaning.

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