Word vs. Term

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"Word" vs. "Term" in English

What Is Their Main Difference?

Both indicate a collection of letters that form meaningful units in every language. However, a 'word' has a specific meaning, whereas, a 'term' is a 'word' or a group of words that have a particular meaning when they are contextualized.

Differences

A 'word' is a single, meaningful element. Every language is comprised of an infinite number of 'words'. There are some words for you below:

Apple, Hannah, fruit, student, university

A 'term', however, includes one or more words that have a particular meaning when they are contextualized. Take a look at some common musical terms below:

Mezzo: medium

Adagio: the music must be played slower.

Similarities

Both refer to meaning units in every language. Look below:

Soprano: the highest female voice type

Banana, pizza, alcohol, school

Are They Interchangeable?

All 'terms' are made up of words, but not all 'words' are terms. So, they cannot be used interchangeably.

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