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  1. Gamma Ray's Avatar
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    #1

    Probability vs. Likelihood

    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.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Probability vs. Likelihood

    Quote Originally Posted by Gamma Ray;721527[SIZE=2

    I wonder what is the difference between probability and likelihood. These two words have exactly the same meaning. How we can use them correctly?
    [/SIZE]
    Probability seems slightly more 'scientific', likelihood less formal. That's a personal response, not based on any research.

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    #3

    Re: Probability vs. Likelihood

    Probability and likelihood are related but different concepts in mathematics. Have a look at Likelihood function - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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    #4

    Re: Probability vs. Likelihood

    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 07:13.

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    #5

    Re: Probability vs. Likelihood

    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.

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