Competence vs Competency

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What’s the difference between them?

Competence

Meaning:

basic ability to do something successfully or efficiently; proficiency.

Examples:

1. His competence in the field was well-respected by his peers.

2. The team's competence in problem solving was key to their success.

3. She was commended for her competence in handling the difficult situation.

Competency

Meaning:

more advanced ability to do something successfully or efficiently.

Examples:

1. Employees must demonstrate competency in their job duties.

2. The competency of the candidate in the interview was impressive.

3. Learning new skills is essential for achieving competency in any job.

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference

Synonyms

Antonyms

Competence

1. Expertise

2. Proficiency

3. Ability

4. Capability

5. Adeptness

1. Incompetence

2. Ignorance

3. Unskilled

4. Helplessness

5. Inability

Competency

1. Proficiency

2. Expertise

3. Ability

4. Capability

5. Competence

1. Incompetence

2. Ignorance

3. Inability

4. Clumsiness

5. Ineptitude

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Competence", "Competency".

1. Competence is a noun that describes a person's ability to do a job or perform a task.

2. It is often used in reference to specific skills or knowledge that a person has acquired.

3. Competency, on the other hand, is a broader term that refers to a person's advanced qualifications and abilities.

4. It is often used to describe the set of skills a person possesses that may be relevant to a particular job or task.

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

Learn the difference

Frequently asked questions

What situations should the word 'competence' be used in?

Competence should be used when referring to an individual's ability to carry out a task or activity in a satisfactory manner. It is usually used to describe the skills or knowledge that a person has in order to perform a job.

When is the appropriate context for using the word 'competency'?

Competency is usually used when referring to more advance abilities to complete a particular task or activity. It could also refer to a set of skills or knowledge required to carry out a job successfully.

Do the two words share the same pronunciation?

No, competence is pronounced /ˈkɑːm.pə.t̬əns/, while competency is pronounced /ˈkɑːm.pə.t̬ənsi/

What are some common mistakes people make when using these words?

One common mistake is using the words interchangeably, when they actually have different meanings. Another mistake is confusing 'competency' with 'competitiveness'. While they have similar roots, their meanings are quite different. Additionally, some people make the mistake of thinking that 'competency' can only refer to a company's abilities, when in fact it can also refer to an individual's abilities.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. Believe in your own ____________ and you can achieve anything.

2. Employers will look for ____________ when hiring new staff.

3. It is important to build up your ____________ in any field of work.

4. Achieving ____________ is a sign of success.

5. The most successful people have ____________ in their chosen field.

6. It is not enough to have ____________ - you must also have the right attitude.

1. Believe in your own competence and you can achieve anything.

Explanation: Competence is the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. Believing in ones own competence means having faith in ones abilities and being confident in ones own capabilities.

2. Employers will look for competency when hiring new staff.

Explanation: Competency is the quality or state of having the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. Employers will look for those who have the necessary skills and knowledge to be able to fulfil the role they are hiring for.

3. It is important to build up your competency in any field of work.

Explanation: Competency is the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. Building up ones competency in a particular field involves acquiring the necessary knowledge and skills to be able to work in that field.

4. Achieving competency is a sign of success.

Explanation: Competency is the quality or state of having the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. Achieving competency in a particular field is a sign of success as it indicates that the individual has the necessary knowledge and skills to work in that field.

5. The most successful people have competency in their chosen field.

Explanation: Competency is the quality or state of having the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. The most successful people will have the necessary competency in their chosen field to be able to work in it and make a success of it.

6. It is not enough to have competency - you must also have the right attitude.

Explanation: Competency is the quality or state of having the ability to do something successfully or efficiently. It is not enough to just have the technical competency required, it is also necessary to have the right attitude and mindset in order to be successful.

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List of Commonly Confused Words

Finding your way around the English language can be hard, especially since there are so many confusing words and rules. So, a list of the most confusing words in English is an extremely useful tool for improving language accuracy and sharing the ideas clearly.