Learnt vs Learned: Which is Correct?

learned vs learnt

There are lots of discrepancies when it comes to British and American English. Some words that seem correct in British English are very unacceptable in the American accent. Words like “Learnt vs Learned” are easily mistaken for the as one is best in American English while the other is British.

One thing I want you to understand about the English language is that no one is a master of all, there are times that you have to check the dictionary to confirm the exact spelling or meaning of a word before using it.

So don’t feel bad if you find it difficult to differentiate the two. In this article, I will explain these two words and help you understand how to use them with respect to the right context.

Learnt vs Learned

Learnt vs Learned are used as the past tense of the word “Learn”. The word “learn” means acquiring knowledge or experience. These two words direct to the same meaning but with respect to the location.

What is Learned?

Learned is a verb(a doing word) and also an adjective. It is highly acceptable in the United States and Canada as the past tense of “learn”.

As an adjective, it means Knowledgeable or enlightened. It could also mean someone that has a good level of education. On the other hand, it is pronounced as (ler-ned).


  • The learned students amongst you understand what I’m saying.
  • If you want to place yourself as a learned teacher, then respect the students’ opinions.
  • You will see the world and everyone around you differently if you are learned.

Read this: Reoccuring vs. Recurring (Which is Correct?)

Learned – as a verb:

Learned as a verb means to acquire knowledge or to be enlightened. It has a different meaning when it serves as a verb. Here are more examples of “learned as a verb”.


  • I remember what I learned in our 11th grade when the teacher asked about the botanical name for waterleaf.
  • What you learned in biology class has more effect when you study medicine or any medical course in college.


Learnt is also highly acceptable in British English and other parts of the world as the past tense of “learn”.


  • My mummy asked me what I learnt in school yesterday.
  • Whatever you have learnt in school updates in you as you grow.
  • The word, “learnt” is the past tense of “learn” in British English.

Read this: Judgement or Judgment (Which is correct?)

Learnt vs Learned: How to know the difference:

The first and foremost difference is that “Learned” is acceptable in the United States and Canada while “Learnt” is for British English. On the other hand, most people use “learnt” as the past tense of “learn” because it’s similar to “burnt” in pronunciation.

Awesome one, I hope this article answered your question.

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