MYTUTOR SUBJECT ANSWERS

155 views

What’s the difference between descriptivism and prescriptivism?

Descriptive rules try to describe how native speakers of a language use it, while prescriptive rules tell speakers how they should use language.

Many people think that it is “better English” to say “To whom were you talking?” rather than “Who were you talking to?”. The underlying “rule”, “Don’t put a preposition at the end of the sentence” is a prescriptive rule. However, it is perfectly grammatical (i.e. possible) to put a preposition at the end of a sentence (such as in the example above). It is thus a descriptive rule to say that in English you can put a preposition at the end of a sentence.

Nina M. GCSE German tutor, A Level English Language tutor, GCSE Engli...

5 months ago

Answered by Nina, an A Level English Language tutor with MyTutor

Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist

16 SUBJECT SPECIALISTS

£20 /hr

Jean S.

Degree: English (Bachelors) - Nottingham University

Subjects offered: English Language, Maths+ 2 more

English Language
Maths
English Literature

“I am passionate about education and hope to become a secondary school teacher in later life. I love working with children and feel that I am skilled in building up good working relationships with both students and parents. I do this b...”

MyTutor guarantee

£20 /hr

Lucy B.

Degree: Liberal Arts (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: English Language, Sociology+ 2 more

English Language
Sociology
Media Studies
-Personal Statements-

“Hi, my name is Lucy and I am 18 years old. I am a first year studying BA Liberal Arts at The University of Exeter. What is Liberal Arts? I hear you say. It's a super cool degree which allows you to major in two humanities subjects, of...”

£20 /hr

Tess B.

Degree: International Relations (Bachelors) - Birmingham University

Subjects offered: English Language, Politics+ 3 more

English Language
Politics
History
English
-Personal Statements-

“About Me: Hi, I’m Tess! I’m an International Relations student at the University of Birmingham. I’ve always had a great passion for Politics and find it a subject that constantly surprises me. My secondary passion is History which I ...”

MyTutor guarantee

About the author

£20 /hr

Nina M.

Degree: Linguistics and English Language (Bachelors) - Edinburgh University

Subjects offered: English Language, German

English Language
German

“Who are you and what do you do? I am a 20-year-old Linguistics and English Language student at the University of Edinburgh. “What is Linguistics?” you ask? Linguistics is the science of language. It’s about how language works, on ...”

You may also like...

Posts by Nina

Are there fun ways to learn German?

What’s the difference between a dialect and an accent?

What’s the difference between descriptivism and prescriptivism?

When do I capitalise the first letter of a word?

Other A Level English Language questions

What is the Universal Grammar Theory?

How do I start writing an essay?

How do I analyse English Language exam texts?

(Paper 4) Language Acquisition: What are the different functions of 'young people's' language?

View A Level English Language tutors

Cookies:

We use cookies to improve our service. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss

mtw:mercury1:status:ok