When to use “also” and “as well”
“Also” and “as well” are two words that are commonly used interchangeably in speaking and writing in the English language because most people think they are synonyms. There is a correct and incorrect way to use these words and knowing the difference between them will help you improve you communication skills. English is a widely used language and with so many English speakers in the world it is very easy to communicate with people from different countries and cultures. Sometime English language learners do have difficulty with words that are similar in meaning and do not use them in the correct context. Two of these are “also” and “as well”.
Also can be used an adverb. When it is used in this way, it describes a verb, an adverb, or an adjective. There are several different meanings that it can have in this part of speech in a sentence. It can mean “in addition to”, “besides”, “moreover”, or “in the same way”. The following sentence is an example of “also” used as an adverb:
Since you are going shopping today, I am also going.
Also can be used as a conjunction in a sentence and in this usage, it connects words in a sentence. You can also use it to connect clauses or phrases. In the following sentence, also is a conjunction. An example of “also” used as a conjunction is:
You are rude, also ignorant.
It can be used anywhere in a sentence – beginning, middle or end – and the sentence will still be grammatically correct.
“As well” is a very commonly used phrase in the English language. It is not a part of speech and it can have different meanings, such as “similar to” it can also mean the same thing as “also”, such as “in addition to”.
An example sentence using “as well”:
I bought several different pairs of pants, as well as matching shirts.
One of the ways in which “also” and “as well” differ is that you cannot use “as well” at the beginning of a sentence.
- Both also and as well are used as connectors in a sentence.
- They can have the same meanings.
- Also is a part of speech, but as well is not.
- Also can be used in any part of a sentence, but as well cannot be used to begin a sentence.