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  1. #1
    shane is offline Senior Member
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    Default 'Study' & 'Learn'

    Whilst teaching today a question entered my mind: What's the difference between 'study' and 'learn'?
    A student told me "Learn is when you have a teacher, and you watch / listen to them in order to gain knowledge. Study is when you do things alone"

    The example in the book used this dialogue:

    A: "Did you learn English at high school?"
    B: "No I didn't. I studied it at college"

    I then asked the student who gave me the explanation:
    "Don't these two place both use classrooms? Teachers? Don't you have to watch / listen at both of these places? How are they different?"


    So, can anyone tell me the difference between these two words? I was never taught a difference, and IMO, there is very little difference, save for usage. To learn the different usage of these words, you'd have to listen to many different examples.

    Can anyone help?



    Shane

  2. #2
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    Care of Merriam-Webster

    to STUDY
    1 : to read in detail especially with the intention of learning

    to LEARN
    1 : to gain knowledge or understanding of or skill in by study

    Both entries refer to each other, so in my book they are very closely linked. If you try hard enough I'm sure you could find some subtle difference between them - but ask yourself: is it important? Is it useful? Will my head explode in the endeavour? :wink:

    Iain

  3. #3
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    RonBee is offline Moderator
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    They are not the same thing, although they are closely linked. Learning is the goal and, hopefully, the result of study. It is possible to say, "I studied, but I didn't learn." In practice, the two words are often used pretty much the same way. If a person says "I studied English at college" the unspoken assumption is that he learned it too. If a person says "I learned English at college it is naturally assumed that he did at least some studying. So while the two words do not mean the same thing, they are closely linked.

    :)

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Study is the work and learn is the result, although you can study without learning and learn without studying. Of the two, learning is better IMO.

  5. #5
    shane is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by dduck
    If you try hard enough I'm sure you could find some subtle difference between them - but ask yourself: is it important? Is it useful? Will my head explode in the endeavour? :wink:

    Iain
    You ask these questions, but here, it IS important. In fact, it's life or death - if the students don't know the difference between these words, they will fail their exam. If they fail the exam, they don't get to go to university. If they don't go to university, their lives are effectively ruined; they won't find a good job, ever

    Thanks for all your help guys!! I thought they were pretty much the same thing :)

  6. #6
    lucyarliwu Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by shane
    You ask these questions, but here, it IS important. In fact, it's life or death - if the students don't know the difference between these words, they will fail their exam. If they fail the exam, they don't get to go to university. If they don't go to university, their lives are effectively ruined; they won't find a good job, ever
    :)

    HI Shane, I can understand what you said here for that I'm lucky to have passed by that terrible period preparing for the entrance exam, and I succeeded finally.

    So I still remembered the difference between 'study' and 'learn' told by my teacher just as Tdol and Ronbee mentioned above: 'study' is a course or work, while 'learn' is a result no matter the result is good or not. Hope what I said here can help.

    Lucy wu

  7. #7
    shane is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Lucy, good to see you back here :D

    Did you have a nice time on your travels??

  8. #8
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucyarliwu
    Quote Originally Posted by shane
    You ask these questions, but here, it IS important. In fact, it's life or death - if the students don't know the difference between these words, they will fail their exam. If they fail the exam, they don't get to go to university. If they don't go to university, their lives are effectively ruined; they won't find a good job, ever
    :)

    HI Shane, I can understand what you said here for that I'm lucky to have passed by that terrible period preparing for the entrance exam, and I succeeded finally.

    So I still remembered the difference between 'study' and 'learn' told by my teacher just as Tdol and Ronbee mentioned above: 'study' is a course or work, while 'learn' is a result no matter the result is good or not. Hope what I said here can help.

    Lucy wu
    Congratulations.

  9. #9
    lucyarliwu Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by shane
    Hi Lucy, good to see you back here :D

    Did you have a nice time on your travels??
    Hi Shane, thanks for your hot greeting! :)

    Ya I do have a good time by travelling and I'm now in Qingdao enjoying the hilarious International Beer Festival. That's a great fun here!

    Lucy wu in Qingdao

  10. #10
    shane is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucyarliwu
    I'm now in Qingdao enjoying the hilarious International Beer Festival.
    Cool! We have the International beer festival here in Dalian, too!! I haven't been there though; I'm too busy working

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