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    #1

    take a decision or make a decision

    Hi dear experts, Could you comment on the difference between the two phrases:
    "take a decision"
    "make a decision"

    Which one sounds better in my sentence:

    " Consequently, children are usually raised in obedience and discipline (the father gives orders the children obey). This has resulted in passivity: someone in a higher position in the hierarchy is expected to take the decisions. It is the parents who decide for their children what to study, what to work, who to marry. "


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    #2

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Quote Originally Posted by snade17 View Post
    Hi dear experts, Could you comment on the difference between the two phrases:
    "take a decision"
    "make a decision"

    Which one sounds better in my sentence:

    " Consequently, children are usually raised in obedience and discipline (the father gives orders the children obey). This has resulted in passivity: someone in a higher position in the hierarchy is expected to take the decisions. It is the parents who decide for their children what to study, what to work, who to marry. "
    Howdy there Snade.

    I never encountered/I had never encountered 'take a decision' in my fairly long life until I started my ESL teaching career. It is foreign to my dialect and when I first encountered it I thought that it was an ESL "mistake", possibly a direct translation from the mother tongue.

    Though it sounds strange to my ear, I can't see any reason why it couldn't be used and why it couldn't hold the same meaning as 'make'. Frequent usage normally dispels any notions of strangeness.

    Possibly - I'm only hazarding a guess and this, from the text - it is a form that was more common in previous generations.

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    #3

    Smile Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Thank you very much, riverkid!

  1. banderas's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Make a decision suggests make your mind up. Take a decison is make your mind up and follow through. Example? I hear expressions like this: " A country takes the decision to go to war". What do you think native speakers?
    Anyway there is a common opinion that make decision is more popluar and I agree here


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    #5

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Quote Originally Posted by banderas View Post
    Make a decision suggests make your mind up. Take a decison is make your mind up and follow through. Example? I hear expressions like this: " A country takes the decision to go to war". What do you think native speakers?
    Anyway there is a common opinion that make decision is more popluar and I agree here
    I don't see the distinction, Banderas, but as I mentioned it's not part of my dialect and I mean in a wide sense, NaE, because it's likely that I' would have heard it at least.

    There may well be pockets of NaE where it is used and where it carries a meaning that is different from 'make'.

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    #6

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    The parents make the decisions.

    The children take the decision of the parents and are expected to obey them.

    Example: Mary wanted to go to Stanford. Her parents wanted her to go to UCLA and said they would give her a new car if she did. Mary took the decision and is now driving on campus.

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    #7

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Quote Originally Posted by susiedqq View Post
    The parents make the decisions.

    The children take the decision of the parents and are expected to obey them.

    Example: Mary wanted to go to Stanford. Her parents wanted her to go to UCLA and said they would give her a new car if she did. Mary took the decision and is now driving on campus.
    And this is exactly what I like about English. One word might have plenty of meanings so that we can play on them.


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    #8

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Quote Originally Posted by susiedqq View Post
    The parents make the decisions.

    The children take the decision of the parents and are expected to obey them.

    Example: Mary wanted to go to Stanford. Her parents wanted her to go to UCLA and said they would give her a new car if she did. Mary took the decision and is now driving on campus.
    Now I'm really puzzled. Do we really 'take a/the decision' with this meaning, Susie? We can accept or reject a/the decision.

    Or maybe the question is, do we ever use 'take a decision' with the same meaning as 'make a decision'?

    Snade, where did you come across the example you posted?

    'take a decision' can be used to mean "react to a decision", as in,

    I don't know how she'll take the decision,

    I googled a few examples to see what came up following Banderas's ideas.

    Results 1 - 5 of 5 English pages for "The USA took the decision ".

    Results 1 - 9 of 9 English pages for "The country took the decision ".

    Now, don't get me wrong. Even with this "poor showing", I'm not trying to suggest this collocation out of existence. I'm just curious as to its frequency.

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    #9

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    hi folks, I found something interesting, have a look

    "Do you "take" or "make" a decision?
    by
    Tim North, Better Writing Skills


    A friend e-mailed me recently and asked why some people write
    (and say) "take a decision" instead of "make a decision".

    Being a good friend, he researched his own answer before I got
    around to replying. His investigation suggested that "take a
    decision" is primarily British usage, whereas "make a decision"
    is more common in the US.

    A 'net denizen named "Trocco" provided the following insightful
    comment:

    I was also surprised at the number of times I've read and
    heard "take a decision" in the last couple of years. Most
    of the sources were British (BBC, The Economist), but I've
    also noticed it creeping a bit into American speech as well.

    As far as I know, there is not yet a "decision-taking
    process". You can never be wrong with "decision-making
    process".

    Recent feedback from a reader named "Cip" adds this helpful
    information:

    In Spanish you "take" a decision, you never "make" one.
    Perhaps the rationale behind it is that you do not
    create/generate choices; the choices are there, available to
    you.
    ...
    You will hear many Spanish speaking people in the US say
    "I need to take a decision" due to their native language
    influence.

    Interesting. "Taking a decision" still sounds a little strange to
    me, but Cip's explanation is eminently reasonable".

    From my side let me add that in polish we literally "undertake" decision.
    As far as I know Germans literally "meet" decisions.
    What about other languages? Jump in folks

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    #10

    Re: take a decision or make a decision

    Here's what I found in my favourite English dictionary:

    ... | to take a decision (= to decide) | (BrE) to make a decision (= to decide) | ...

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