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    #1

    Question Interpretation of "either"

    I have a question concerning the use of the word "either" in a sentence. The sentence in question is a statement on minimum eyesight requirements for a job application and the numbers each refer to how strong eyesight is:

    "Corrected distance visual acuity must be 6/12 in either eye and 6/6 or better, binocularly."

    Does the user of either in the above sentence mean:

    - That corrected distance visual acuity must be 6/12 in only one of two eyes

    or

    - That corrected distance visual acuity must be 6/12 in both eyes

    To give the question further context, the sentence is used as the official guidelines by a number of organisations in order to assess a candidate for the job.

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    #2

    Re: Interpretation of "either"

    Corrected Distance Visual Acuity: Must be 6/6 or better binocularly and 6/12 in each eye.
    Source: Do you meet the Requirements



    either –adjective
    1. one or the other of two:
    You may sit at either end of the table.

    2. each of two; the one and the other:
    There are trees on either side of the river.

    Source: either definition | Dictionary.com


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    #3

    Question Re: Interpretation of "either"

    Thanks for the reply - but the original source is actually from the official Scottish government guidelines on recruiting a police officer (see)

    Scottish Executive:

    The Fife constabulary source is an interpretation of these guidelines (which are mandatory for Scottish forces to implement). In the case of Fife constabulary the word "either" has been translated as "each".

    The association of optometrists also use the word "either":

    Police - Association of Optometrists

    So does this still mean "both" eyes instead of just one?

    (To give context I'm not applying for the Police - I just picked up on the possible contradiction across two official documents)

    Thanks

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    #4

    Re: Interpretation of "either"

    Quote Originally Posted by spenglish View Post
    Thanks for the reply - but the original source is actually from the official Scottish government guidelines on recruiting a police officer (see)

    Scottish Executive:

    The Fife constabulary source is an interpretation of these guidelines (which are mandatory for Scottish forces to implement). In the case of Fife constabulary the word "either" has been translated as "each".

    The association of optometrists also use the word "either":

    Police - Association of Optometrists

    So does this still mean "both" eyes instead of just one?

    (To give context I'm not applying for the Police - I just picked up on the possible contradiction across two official documents)

    Thanks
    6/12 in each eye means, 6/12 in the left eye and 6/12 in the right eye. The reason they use "each" is to clarify that it's not 3/12 in the right and 3/12 in the left, meaning 6/12 all together.

    Hope that helps.


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    #5

    Smile Re: Interpretation of "either"

    Thanks again for the reply! To add confusion into the mix I've now found another document which states:

    http://www.policecouldyou.co.uk/officers/Eyesightform.html

    (Halfway down on the second page):

    Distance vision
    6/12 or better with either your right or left eye


    Again, would this change the implication? The structure of this sentence and inclusion of the word "or" implies to me a definitive choice between one of two options?

    Thanks again!

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    #6

    Re: Interpretation of "either"

    Quote Originally Posted by spenglish View Post

    Distance vision
    6/12 or better with either your right or left eye


    Again, would this change the implication? The structure of this sentence and inclusion of the word "or" implies to me a definitive choice between one of two options?
    I agree with you on that one.

    If I were you, I'd call a police station in the area and ask them what the 6/12 means. But that's just me. I hate to waste time thinking about something that someone else out there knows the answer to.

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