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Aug 31 2012   1:22PM GMT

The difference between “dependent” and “dependant”

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Which is correct?
The ________ variable is what is being measured in an experiment.

a. dependent
b. dependant


Answer: a.

Explanation:
Dependent is an adjective meaning reliant upon. Dependant is a noun, meaning one who is dependent, as a child is reliant upon her parents.

The value of the dependent variable depends on the input to the equation:

In a simple mathematical equation, for example:

a = b/c

the dependent variable, a , is determined by the values of b and c.

@grammarmonster provides more examples of dependent vs. dependant and a quiz.

Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

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