Difference Between Between and Among

We use “between” and “among” as a preposition. But when using them in a sentence, they deliver the meaning differently.


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Their uses are similar, and while speaking and writing, people tend to use them inaccurately.

When discussing their meaning, “Between” is a preposition that can express various meanings. It can indicate to be in the same place by separating two or more things.

It also generates the meaning of an abstract “space” or connection between two to more things or people. “The boy had to choose a laptop between Lenovo, Acer, and Hp brands because these electronics are individual things.”

When more than two objects or persons are involved in a sentence, and we must choose from several options, the preposition “among” can be used. Another meaning of using “among” is that this preposition can be used when there is an extensive option as a mass or collectivity.

‘He wanted to purchase perfume among those popular three trendy brands.’

Key Takeaways

  1. Between is used when referring to two things that are distinct and separate.
  2. Among refers to three or more items in a group or collective.
  3. Between implies a sense of separation, while among means a sense of inclusion.

Between vs Among

The difference between Between and Among is that “Between” is used to differentiate two things, and it can also be used for something in the middle of something, while among is used to describe that someone is part of a group. Examples: Between – You have to choose between Ray and Cooper. Among – David shared his notes with his friends.

Between vs Among

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Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonBetweenAmong
DefinitionIn the case of having a choice that involves distinct and individual things or places, “between” is the preposition that can be used.In the case of having a choice that involves a large group of things or people, “among” is the preposition that can be used.
TimeTo indicate the things that happened in the middle of two or more distinctive people or things between is used.To indicate the things that happened in the middle of more than two or a bunch of non-distinctive people and things, among is used.
UsageBetween can be used when discussing two or more individuals, things, or items.Among can be used when discussing more than two individuals, things, or items, and they are non-distinctive.
What do they imply?The preposition “between” implies an actual or figurative location in the middle relative to two or more points on either side.The preposition “among” implies a position within a group larger than two or more.
ExampleThey have been feeling the chemistry between them for a long time.We are not among those people whose first instinct is to judge.

When to Use the Word “Between”?

When a comparison is supposed to happen in the middle of two or more things, it requires the preposition “between”. “This semester, you can only choose one course between finance, accounting, and marketing.”

There is a common and wrong miss belief that has been going on for a long time that between should be used only when there are two elements or people, and when there are more than two objects, “among” should be used.

It is only a myth, or it is more like an understatement. We can use between when there are more than two objects involved.

We can use between for any number of elements, as long as everything is isolated and distinct.

Here is an example- “He had to pick between a play station, a sound system for his room, a pair of sneakers, and a new bicycle as his birthday was near.”


When to Use the Word “Among”?

In general, “among” is applied in a sentence of collective arrangements. We use “among” to say something or someone is in the middle of a group of things or people. It is either part of a group or surrounded by something.

“There was not much agreement among the group of politicians” is another example to consider. Here, among is indicating that something belongs to a particular group.

When we refer to any spatial relationships, “among” shows us that something is surrounded by something else. “Davina always liked to practice magic among other witches.”

Here we can say “among” is used for undefined or unspecified relationships, often between groups. These are neither disconnected nor specified individuals.

When indicating a direction, “among” also delivers various meanings. Regarding that, follow the example below- “His wallet fell among the mess.”

The sentence expresses the idea that the boy’s wallet fell into a mess, and he may find his wallet somewhere in the midst.


Main Differences Between “Between” vs “Among

  1. To divide things up, “among” and “between” can be used in a sentence. Usually, we can use “among” when discussing dividing a group of things and giving them to three or more people, but if there are only two persons or elements, it is best to use “between” in a sentence.
  2. “Between” refers to the position in the middle of two or more individuals or objects. And among is used to refer to the position of being surrounded by or in the middle of something.
  3. “Between” is used with two, but plenty of times more than two separate and distinct things. And we use “among” to describe being in a group or the middle of a group.
  4. In a sentence, “between” is followed by distinct and separate two or more objects. On the other hand, “among” tend to be followed by a plural noun.
Difference Between Between and Among
  1. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/between
  2. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/among
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