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      • Tagalog
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      • Philippines
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    #1

    engineer, engine driver, train driver, train operator

    An engineer (American and Canadian), engine driver, train driver, train operator (British and Commonwealth English) is a person who operates a train - wikipedia.

    I just want to know if Americans really use engineer more than the other terms. Apparently, Ngram isn't very helpful in this regard. I'm asking because I find that if you use engineer, sometimes you'd have to clarify further, and that's kind of inefficient, like in this conversation for example:

    Parent: What do you want to become when you grow up?

    Child: I want to become an engineer!

    Parent: What kind of engineer?

    Child: A train driver!
    Not a teacher.

    • Member Info
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    #2

    Re: engineer, engine driver, train driver, train operator

    Engineer is the only term Americans use commonly for train drivers (but not for subway, streetcar or tram drivers). A child answering your question would say "a railroad engineer".
    I am not a teacher.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
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    • Join Date: Apr 2009
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    #3

    Re: engineer, engine driver, train driver, train operator

    I would say that most people who are or want to be "engineers" are not involved in driving trains. The ambiguity can be cleared up easily, if need be.

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