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English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


LIKE - AS : When are they used?
  • Like

    Like is a preposition, used before a noun or pronoun, to say that two things are similar.
    They behave or operate in the same way.

    • In his job he works like a slave.
    • The children swim like fish.
    • The boy runs like a hare.

  • As

    As, as a preposition, before a noun or pronoun, is used to refer to jobs or functions,
    the role of a person or the use of something.

    • My father worked as an accountant.
    • Caroline was employed as a teacher.
    • The author is respected as a writer.
    • He used a saucer as an ashtray.

  • Compare

    • I am your friend, and as your friend I advise you to be careful.
      = It is my role as a friend to warn you.

    • I don't know you, but like your friend, I advise you to be careful.
      = I think the same way as your friend. I am like your friend in that respect.

LIKE and AS are also used as below:

As a verb meaning ‘enjoy’

• Sam likes chocolate. / Children like milk.
• I like going to the beach. / She likes getting up early.

As a noun :
the ‘like’ (=similar types)

• I enjoy classical music but I prefer jazz, rock and the like.
• You’re not going to associate with the likes of him!

As an adjective meaning ‘similar’

• They’re as like as two peas in a pod. (= as similar as)
• The two experts were of like mind. (= of similar mind)
• We responded in like manner. (=in a similar way)

In spoken English, ‘like’ can be
used as a conjunction connecting
two clauses.
*NB: Considered incorrect in traditional grammar books, so avoid in academic writing.
• He acted like he owned the place. (= as if)
• Nobody can sing like you do. (= the same way as)
Like I said, you’re welcome to join us for lunch. (=as I said)

As an adverb
- ‘just like’

• She was extremely polite, as always.
• The ‘h’ in ‘heir’ is silent, as in ‘hour’

As a conjunction
-connection two clauses
- meaning ‘while’
- meaning ‘although’
- meaning ‘the way in which’
- meaning ‘because’ or ‘since’*
  (*use carefully to avoid any confusion)
• It's very expensive, as you know.
• He won the election, as was expected.
• The phone rang as I was watching television. (=while)
• Tired as he was he still finished the race.(although)
• We left the room as it was. (the way in which)
• Julie may need help as she’s new to the job. (=because)


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