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Language tip of the week: doctor

Learn English with Macmillan DictionaryIn this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. These tips are usually based on areas of English which learners find difficult, e.g. spelling, grammar, collocation, synonyms, usage, etc.

This week’s language tip helps with the differences in usage in American and British English of the word doctor:



In the UK, a doctor who works in a local community, not in a hospital, is called a GP or a general practitioner (or sometimes a family doctor), and has the title Dr:

Could I have an appointment with Dr Jones, please?

But surgeons (=doctors who perform operations on people) and vets (=doctors who look after animals) are referred to by the titles Mr, Mrs, Ms or Miss.

Dentists (=doctors who look after people’s teeth) in the UK used to use these titles, but nowadays many of them prefer the title Dr.

In the US, however, all of these doctors use the title Dr.

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