Probability seems slightly more 'scientific', likelihood less formal. That's a personal response, not based on any research.Originally Posted by Gamma Ray;721527[SIZE=2
Hello, my wonderful community!
I wonder what is the difference between probability and likelihood. These two words have exactly the same meaning. How we can use them correctly?
Grateful for your responses in advance.
Probability seems slightly more 'scientific', likelihood less formal. That's a personal response, not based on any research.Originally Posted by Gamma Ray;721527[SIZE=2
Probability and likelihood are related but different concepts in mathematics. Have a look at Likelihood function - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Some useful collocations:
Probability
ADJ. high, real, strong, greater, increased, low
e.g.: There´s a high probability that it will snow tonight.
QUANT. degree
e.g.: We can say with a high degree of probability that the poem was written by Shakespeare.
VERB + PROBABILITY have, increase, reduce, assess, calculate, judge
Likelihood
ADJ. every, greater, increased, real, strong
e.g.: There´s every likelihood that she´ll be able to help us.
VERB + LIKELIHOOD decrease, minimize, reduce, increase, maximize, raise, affect
e.g.: Taking regular exercise reduces the likelihood of a heart attack.
LIKELIHOOD + VERB grow, diminish
Source: Oxford Collocations Dictionary.
Last edited by mara_ce; 09-Mar-2011 at 06:13.
Outside of a mathematical context, I don't differentiate them at all, and I use "likely" and "probable" without any shades of difference in meaning as well.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.