Instalment Or Installment – British vs. American English

27.11.23 British English vs. American English Time to read: 4min

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To achieve coherence and clarity of content in academic writing, it is crucial to maintain consistency. However, many students find it challenging to differentiate between British English vs. American English, which can lead to confusion when selecting the appropriate spelling, such as the words “instalment” or “installment.” To better understand the distinctions between these two English styles, please read on.

“Instalment” or “installment”

“Instalment” or “installment” is a noun that refers to a portion or a part of a larger sum of money or a series of things that are paid or delivered at intervals over a period. It can also refer to sections or chapters of a story or a series. The word “installment” originated from the Latin “installare,” which means “to install.” It is also related to the word “institute.” The use of “instalment” or “installment” to refer to a portion of a payment or series dates to the 18th century.

Instalment or Installment UK flag

British English

instalment

Instalment or Installmen US flag

American English

installment

In British English, “instalment” is the more common spelling for the noun referring to a portion of a payment or series. In American English, “installment” is the more common spelling for the same meaning.

Examples of using “instalment” and “installment”

The following examples will illustrate the difference in the spelling of the noun “instalment/installment” in British and American English.

Instalment or Installment - noun UK flag
  • She paid the first instalment of her student loan last month.
  • The novel was published in monthly instalments in the magazine.
  • The car dealership offers the option to pay in monthly instalments.
Instalment or Installment - noun US flag
  • She paid the first installment of her student loan last month.
  • The novel was published in monthly installments in the magazine.
  • The car dealership offers the option to pay in monthly installments.

“Instalment” or “installment” in the “-ing” form

The correct spelling is “installing,” not “instaling.” “Installing” is the present participle form of the verb “install,” and it is used when referring to the act of setting up or putting something in place. “Instaling” is not a standard word in the English language.

Instalment or Installment -ing UK flag
  • He is installing a new software program.
  • The technician will be installing the cameras.
  • He is installing new lighting fixtures.
Instalment or Installment -ing US flag

“Instalment” or “installment” in the “-ed” form

The accurate spelling is “installed,” rather than “instaled.” The word “installed” serves as the past participle of the verb “install,” utilized to describe the process of establishing or fitting something into position. “Instaled,” on the other hand, is a grammatical error and is not recognized in the English lexicon.

Instalment or Installment -ed UK flag
  • They recently installed a security system.
  • We had solar panels installed on the roof.
  • The company installed advanced machinery.
Instalment or Installment -ed US flag

FAQs

The Oxford English Dictionary spells it as “instalment,” following the British English spelling convention. However, it’s worth noting that in American English, “installment” (with two ‘l’s) is the more commonly used spelling. The OED typically reflects British English usage and spellings.

In the UK, “instalment” is a noun that refers to a portion or a part of a larger sum of money or a series of things that are paid or delivered at intervals over a period. It can also refer to sections or chapters of a story or a series.

“Instalment” or “installment” refers to a portion or part of a larger sum of money or a series of things that are paid or delivered at intervals over a period. This term is often used to describe payments made in multiple parts over a specified schedule.

In the UK, the preferred spelling is “instalment.”

You can use “instalment” or “installment” in a sentence when referring to a portion or part of a larger sum of money or a series of things that are paid or delivered at intervals over a period.

Example

  • I paid the first instalment/installment of my car loan this month.
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