Word Choice: Acclimation vs. Acclamation
  • 2-minute read
  • 18th April 2020

Word Choice: Acclimation vs. Acclamation

It’s easy to mix up words that look similar written down, such as “acclimation” and “acclamation.” But these terms have very different meanings, so check out our tips below to avoid confusion in your writing.

Acclimation (Adjusting to New Conditions)

“Acclimation” is a noun that refers to the process of adjusting to new conditions. We can use it in a range of contexts, but it is usually related to a new climate or surroundings. Take a look at the examples below:

His acclimation to the tropical weather took longer than he thought.

Their neighbors helped in their acclimation to their new surroundings.

The ermine’s seasonal molt is an important acclimation process.

Essentially, then, this is another word for “acclimatization.” “Acclimation” is a fairly rare variant of this word, though, especially outside American English.

Acclamation (Public Approval)

“Acclamation” is a noun meaning “enthusiastic public approval or praise.” For example, this could be support from a crowd at a political speech or a parade:

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The crowds lined the streets to greet the team with acclamation.

More rarely, “acclamation” may refer to a vote that does not use a ballot, such as a voice vote, where noisy agreement or a lack of opposition are enough to determine a winner. Think about it as like a clap-o-meter but political!

Keep in mind that “acclamation” is quite a specific term and only used in relation to enthusiastic public approval. The more frequently used “acclaim” refers to praise in a more general sense.

Summary: Acclimation or Acclamation?

While these words sound similar, they have very different meanings:

  • Acclimation refers to adjusting to a new climate or environment. However, “acclimatization” is a more common variant of this word, especially outside American English.
  • Acclamation refers to enthusiastic public approval, typically by a crowd.

If you struggle to remember which is which, keep in mind that acclimation is spelled with an “i,” like climate. Similarly, acclamation is spelled with an “a,” like acclaim. And if you want more help to make sure your writing is polished and error free, our expert proofreaders are available 24/7.

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