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From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
Related topics: Education
distinctiondis‧tinc‧tion /dɪˈstɪŋkʃən/ ●●○ W3 AWL noun  1 difference [countable, uncountable]DIFFERENT a clear difference or separation between two similar thingsdistinction between the distinction between formal and informal languageclear/sharp distinction There is often no clear distinction between an allergy and food intolerance.make/draw a distinction The Act makes no distinction between children and adults (=it treats them as if they were the same).RegisterIn written English, people often use draw a distinction rather than make a distinction, because it sounds more formal:The law draws a distinction between temporary and permanent employees.2 excellence [uncountable]GOOD/EXCELLENT the quality of being excellent and important Eliot’s distinction as a poet3 being special [singular]IMPORTANT the quality of being special in some wayhave/earn/achieve etc the distinction of doing something At that time, it had the distinction of being the largest bridge in the UK. The US enjoys the dubious distinction of being the lawsuit capital of the world.4 result [countable, uncountable]SERESULT a special mark given to a student whose work is excellentwith distinction He obtained a law doctorate with distinction.COLLOCATIONSverbsmake a distinction (also draw a distinction formal) (=say or show that one exists)It isn’t easy to make a distinction between these two words.blur the distinction between something and something (=make it less clear)Both sides in the war had been blurring the distinction between military and civilian targets.see a distinction (=recognize that one exists)He saw no distinction between religious beliefs and superstition.adjectivesa clear distinctionThe legal system makes a clear distinction between adults and children.a fine/subtle distinction (=small)Language enables us to make fine distinctions between similar ideas.a sharp distinction (=very clear)The president drew a sharp distinction between his party and the Republican Party.an important/crucial distinctionThere is an important distinction between these two types of cancer.a fundamental distinction (=a basic one)There is a fundamental distinction between authors and readers.a useful distinctionHe makes a useful distinction between the two theories.
Examples from the Corpus
distinctionLife was hard for the peasants, especially in the conservative south, where class distinctions were pronounced.There is a clear distinction between lawful protest and illegal strike action.When conceptual distinctions are expressed in language they are referred to as semantic relations.Pablo insists that he is Basque, not Spanish - an important distinction.In addition to the main distinction based on participant roles, the person system may be organized along a variety of other dimensions.a poet of distinctionThe plan would introduce a single class of bearer shares, abolishing the distinction between registered and bearer shares.Perhaps the neatest way of expressing the distinction is to contrast unilateral and cooperative procedures.To many, the distinction between rote memorization and understanding is unclear and leads to confused teaching and learning.One of the few notions from game theory to penetrate the popular culture was the distinction of zero-sum and nonzero-sum games.The distinctions between the three cell types are quite subtle and may only be obvious after quite extensive testing.makes no distinctionTable 6.1 makes no distinction between different types of dementia sufferer.The-Data Protection Act 1984 makes no distinction between adults and children.At present, the Government makes no distinction between the two.In an age in which we have a keen sense for the difference between fact and symbol, Wilson-Kastner makes no distinction.The formalism of quantum mechanics makes no distinction, in this respect, between single particles and complicated systems of many particles.dubious distinctionSarah, left alone, had the dubious distinction of being the last of all the Titfords in Frome.with distinctionHe graduated with distinction in all subjects.
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