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Adviser v/s Advisor: Difference, Style Guides, Examples

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Adviser and Advisor: I have been making mistakes in using these words ever since I was a young girl. There is a difference of just one letter. But, do they mean different things? In this article, we will not only discuss the difference between ‘Adviser’ and ‘Advisor’ but we will also see their correct usage.

So, What is the difference between the words Advisor & Adviser?

There is NO difference between the meanings of the words Advisor & Adviser. They have different origins. The only difference between the words advisor and adviser is of formality. An Advisor or Adviser typically means a person who is knowledgeable and can give advice.

Adviser and advisor both mean a person who gives advice or counsel. These words have no difference. So, what is the fuss all about? Well, Both the words mean a person who gives advice. So, why did the spelling change? While both the terms are used interchangeably, there is a slight difference in them.

Adviser: Meaning and Usage

The word ‘Adviser’ has its origin in the Germanic language. The spelling ‘adviser’ came way after the term ‘advisor’, but it still remains more popular. It is more of an English word and it is a matter of preference to use it. It is believed that the word adviser is five times more popular than the word advisor.

Advisor: Meaning and Usage 

Advisor has Latin origins and came to be used in the 1500s. Advisor also means a person who gives advice. The only difference between the words is the spelling. The word advisor, however, is a more formal word. It is usually used to mark a designation.

Adviser as an Adjective 

The main reason that adviser and advisor are confused is that their verb forms are different. While adviser is the word in its noun form, the advisor is used in the context of an ‘advisory role’. This is the most pertinent reason that brings up the confusion about the use of these words.

The Difference Between Adviser and Advisor 

These words are also known as agent nouns. Agent nouns are the words that are used to describe a person who does something. There is no difference between them and

Advisor, Adviser—Which One to Use?

Since it is a matter of preference, you can use adviser and advisor interchangeably. You can decide on the word by trying to know which one is popular in your country. Advisor sounds more classical whereas, adviser is more modern.

Professional Style Guides 

Australia use: Uranium is considered an important chemical element by the scientific adviser

American use:

“President Obama had a great set of advisors.”

“You should find a good financial adviser if you have bad spending habits.”


A legal advisor should be hired for every corporate.

The US Government prefers to use the word adviser for their official posts.

He might want to work as a management advisor.

How to remember the difference

Since there is no difference between the words you don’t have to remember the difference. All you have to do is know about which country you’re writing the write-up. It’s simple: it’s simple, a translator is a person who translates, a dancer is a person who dances, and an advisor/adviser is a person who advises others.

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Jui Shirvalkar-Chandurkar

Founder, A Good Library

Documenting my study notes in this cute little study library here!

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