'Practice' or 'Practise'? What Is the Difference? | Mastering Grammar

(Last Updated: 26 February 2024)

practice vs practise

Practice and Practise: Understanding the Difference

In British English, practice is the noun, and practise is the verb:

✅ I did my violin practice.
✅ practised the violin.

We need more practice.
✅ We should practise more.

In American English, however, there is no such distinction. Practice is used for the noun and the verb, and practise is not used at all:

I did my violin practice.
✅ practiced the violin.

We need more practice.
We should practice more.

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Examples from the Media

One thing most people have heard about practice is that you need to do 10,000 hours of it to get really good at something. The Guardian (2021)

There is no longer any doubt that everyone needs to practise—there is no such thing, at least among the virtuoso athletes and musicians that Ericsson has studied, as a prodigy who simply didn't put in the hours and yet attained world-beating performance. —The Guardian (2021)

"We don't train boys to have vocabulary around their emotions beyond anger," said Fredric Rabinowitz, chair of the psychology department at the University of Redlands in California, whose research and private practice focus on men's mental health. —The Washington Post (2022)

Many people who practice stonewalling consider it a peacekeeping tactic, but it merely buries problems that need resolving. —The Washington Post (2022)

Real-World Examples of Misuse

1. The noun is required.
2. In Hong Kong, it does not really matter whether you use British spelling (e.g., orthopaedics and gynaecology) or American spelling (e.g., orthopedics and gynecology). What matters is that you be consistent.

The noun practice is required.

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