When in a sentence we want to express something in the middle of two or more people, we either use between or among. Most of the English speakers often make a common mistake while using these two words, as they are not known about the basic rule. While between is used when there is something in the middle of two objects, among is used to mean something which is a part of a group.
- I divided the cold drink between the two kids, but not among others.
- She was among the dancer’s group, who called me to meet between 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM.
In the first sentence, between is used to express a division, whereas among is used to denote the rest people. In the next one, we have used among to indicate a noticeable part of the group or focus someone, whereas between is used to refer to a period of time.
Content: Between Vs Among
|Basis for Comparison
|Between is a preposition that represents something in the middle or one that separates two things.
|Among is also a preposition, which is used to indicate something being a part of a group.
|When discussing about two people, things or objects.
|When discussing about more than two people, things and objects.
|Non-specific or Indistinct
|Alisha is sitting between Jane and Lavina.
|We are not among those who smoke.
|What is the difference between may and might?
|Priya distributed the chocolates among her friends.
|She divided the chocolates between Joe and Peter.
|She is among my best friends.
Definition of Between
Basically, we use the word ‘between’ in our sentences when we want to express something being in the middle of two persons, places, objects, etc. It is a preposition but can be used as an adverb also. Now we will discuss where to use between in our sentences:
- To imply space separating two things:
- There is a small hut between the two buildings.
- It may also mean something between the two amounts, which is more than the first amount but less than the second one:
- Her weight is between 60 and 65 kilograms.
- All the candidates between 21 to 30 years, can apply for the post.
- It demarcates two different time periods or events:
- You should take the medicines between 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM.
- I go shopping every weekend and sometimes in between.
- To mean sharing among two persons, places or things:
- There is a good relationship between the customer and the company.
- To express a choice:
- Abhinav has to make a choice between going for an outing or watching a movie.
- One that connects or relates:
- The train runs between Delhi and Mumbai.
Definition of Among
We use the word ‘among’ in our sentences to refer to something which is a part of a larger group and is usually followed by a plural noun. Now let’s discuss how we can use among in our sentences:
- To mean something in the middle or surrounded by objects:
- There are some goats among the sheep.
- Pallavi lived among engineers and architects.
- To highlight something that is occurring in a group:
- Fogg is popular among men.
- The news spread quickly among the villagers.
- Being a part of a group of people:
- Among other members of the board, she knows the Managing Director as well.
- To represent a division, or choice having three or more participants:
- Ajay’s uncle divided the estate among his daughters.
- The members of Rajya Sabha are elected among the members of Legislative Assembly of the States.
Key Differences Between Between and Among
The difference between between and among, are given in detail in the points below:
- In English, the word ‘Between’ is a preposition, and is used in sentences when we want to express something in the middle of two things. As against, among is also a preposition which is used in a sentence to express something as a part of a group.
- When it comes to usage, between is used when we compare or relate two persons, objects or places. However, we can use between also when there are two or more persons are referred but the name of the entities is specifically indicated. On the contrary, among is used when the comparison is to be made between two or more objects or we want to relate multiple objects.
- When we use between, there is a one to one relationship between entities. Conversely, we use among when we are talking about a general relationship and not about specific relationships.
- She has to take a decision between M.Phil and PhD.
- There is an agreement on the conflict between the trade union and the management.
- Could you please suggest a common route between Bhopal and Nagpur.
- Caroline shouted, knowing she was among elders.
- The upgradation in technology can result in 10 lakh job losses among IT employees.
- Lavina was youngest among all the contestants.
How to remember the differences
The best way to remember their difference is to understand that we use between while we are talking about two persons, among is used only when the number of persons or anything we are talking about is more than two.