Shift from British to American English
Formal writing doesn’t lend itself to bent rules: either American English or British English will be acceptable but not both at the same time. Choose one or the other, depending on local preferences, and stick with it. If you’re using a word processor, you should be able to set your spelling and grammar checkers to let you know if you’re switching between the two types of English.
There are hundreds of words that changed their spelling when they crossed the Atlantic Ocean. In particular, check the vowels. Here are a few examples:
The big difference between British and American punctuation involves quotation marks and final punctuation. Americans put everything inside the quotation marks, and the British put everything outside the quotation marks unless it’s part of the quote.
“I’ve finished my homework,” said Mark. (American)
“I’ve finished my homework”, said Mark. (British)
Mark said, “I’ve finished my homework.” (American)
Mark said, “I’ve finished my homework.” (British)
Because the period is part of the quote, it goes inside the quotation marks.
“Discombobulated” means “confused.” (American)
“Discombobulated” means “confused”. (British)
- Previous article Shifts From Indirect To Direct Questions/Quotations