Difference Between Accent and Dialect

Main Difference – Accent vs Dialect

Accent and dialect both refer to a distinctive way of using a language, especially one associated with a particular country, region or social class. Dialect refers to a variety of a language that contains distinctive variations in grammar, syntax, vocabulary and pronunciation. Accent refers to the variations in the pronunciation. Therefore, the main difference between accent and dialect is that accent deals with phonetics and phonology whereas dialect deals with many areas such as morphology, phonology, syntax, semantics, etc.Difference Between Accent and Dialect- infographic

What is Accent

Accent deals with the phonology of the language. It is a way of pronouncing words that occurs among the people in a particular region or country. For example, someone from Alabama, in the south of US would have a Southern accent. This means that the way he or she pronounces the way is different from the way a Northerner would pronounce.

In addition, when standard language and pronunciation are defined by various standards, an accent may also refer to the deviation from the standard. For example, if someone says that another person is speaking English with a French accent, it is implied that his pronunciation is out of the standard norms.

Accent is a special element of dialect which solely focuses on pronunciation. Accent is usually associated with factors like geographical region, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, class, and first language.Difference Between Accent and Dialect

What is Dialect

A dialect is a variety of a language spoken in a particular geographical area or by a particular group of people. A dialect differs from the standard variety of a language. A dialect is characterized by variations in grammar, pronunciation, or vocabulary.  A dialect can also reflect a person’s geographical location, social background, education, and occupation.

Dialects can be classified into two categories: standard and non-standard.  A standard dialect is a dialect that is approved and supported by institutions, and non-standard dialects are those that are not supported by institutions. 

There is no standard method to identify the difference between language and a dialect of a language. Mutual intelligibility is the most common standard to identify the difference between the two. If two speakers of two varieties can understand each other, then it is accepted that the two varieties are two dialects, not languages.

Accent can be a part of a dialect. For example,  cockney English, which refers to the variety of English traditionally spoken by working-class Londoners is both referred to as a dialect and an accent. When referring to the pronunciation cockney English, one uses the term accent. When referring to the other linguistic aspects, the term dialect can be used.

Main Difference - Accent vs Dialect

Dialects of Macedonian language

Difference Between Accent and Dialect

Definition 

Accent is a way of pronouncing words that occurs among the people in a particular region or country.

Dialect is a variety of a language spoken in a particular geographical area or by a particular group of people.

Pronunciation

Accent is the variations in pronunciation.

Dialect is characterized by variations in grammar, syntax, pronunciation, or vocabulary.

Order

Accent is a part of a dialect.

Dialect is a variety of a language.

Associations

Accent is associated with geographical location (region), socioeconomic background and status.

Dialect is mainly associated with the geographical location.

Image Courtesy:

“Two-people-talking-logo” By Selena Wilke – Own work (Public Domain) via

“Dialect of Macedonian language” via

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.


Related pages


what is ribose and deoxyribosecell protoplasmunpolarizedwhat is the difference between angiosperms and gymnospermsadverbs of affirmationdifference between satan and devildifference between anaerobic respiration and aerobic respirationchop suey chow mein differencedefine complainsferromagnetic paramagneticwhat are autosomecompare and contrast hypertonic and hypotonicstationary homophonewhat is chromyl chloride testbuoyancy and upthrustsparkling wine and champagne differencedifference between sarcoma and carcinomaexample of homogenous mixturesdifference between recession and depressionzoospores in algaedefinition of predicate adjectivewhat is confessional poetrydifference between sherbert and sorbetdefinition demonstrative adjectivemolecular formula of petroleum etherwhat is the difference between folktales and fairy taleswhereas thesaurusmeaning of the word didacticpetrarchan conceitcentrioles definitionbull dog pitbullinhalation and exhalation processethanol organic chemistryinverting and noninverting amplifiercharacteristics of unicellular and multicellular organismsdefine simple pendulumhow to claim gst in singaporethe difference between wine and champagneoxymoron examples in literaturedefine dominant recessivedifferences between turtles and tortoisesnucleoplasm functionssucrose definitiondented meansdistinguish between electrolysis and electrophoresisindian flag representsformula of chlorophyll bdifference between soldering and brazingthe difference between protons and electronsexplain why transcription occurs in the nucleus of eukaryoteswhat is spermatogenesis and oogenesissigma bond is stronger than pi bonddifference between food poisoning and the flusi units for angular momentumcerebral palsy vs autismwhat is an example of the tyndall effectdifference between dietician and nutritionistdifference between illicit and elicitdifference between viral and bacterial meningitiscurriculum syllabus differencewriting a eulogy for grandfathermalamute siberianthymine cytosinetuff hardexamples of gustatory imagerycontinuous spectrum chemistryrum vs whiskeydifference between yeast and bacteriawolf coyote differencedifference between sexual and asexual reproduction biologycentrioles microtubulesfrozen custard vs ice cream