mindset vs mentality


Senior Member
Italian - Italy
Hi everyone,

could anyone, please, explain to me what the difference is between these two words: mindset and mentality?

I reckon there must be some subtleties between those words, however, I'll give you some contexts.

I don't like Italian people's mentality: the only thing they care about is football.

I don't like Italian people's mindset: the only thing they care about is football.

Thanks to all those who will give me a hand,

  • london calling

    Senior Member
    UK English
    They are synonyms, but you are right when you say you think there is a subtle difference. See this from Wikidiff. I would be hard-pushed to decide which word was better in your example sentences, however.;)

    Anushka Athukorala

    Senior Member
    [Threads have been merged at this point. DonnyB - moderator]
    Hello Members
    I would like to know the difference between "mindset" and "mentality". I have been searching for a good answer on the google but all I found was very confusing answers. so can somebody help me learn the difference? First I will quote some examples from reputable dictionaries with the definitions.
    From Cambridge dictionary

    noun [ C usually singular ]
    a person's particular way of thinking about things:
    I can't understand the mentality of people who hurt animals.
    He hopes that closer links between Britain and the rest of Europe will change the British mentality towards foreigners.

    noun [ U ]
    a person's way of thinking and their opinions:
    to have a different/the same mindset
    It's extraordinary how hard it is to change the mindset of the public and the press.

    From Collins Dictionary

    (mentælɪti )
    Word forms: plural mentalities
    COUNTABLE NOUN [usually singular]
    Your mentality is your attitudes and your way of thinking.
    ...a criminal mentality.
    Running a business requires a very different mentality from being a salaried employee.
    Synonyms: attitude, character, personality, psychology [informal] More Synonyms of mentality

    (maɪndset ) also mind-set
    Word forms: plural mindsets
    COUNTABLE NOUN [oft with poss, adjective NOUN]
    If you refer to someone's mindset, you mean their general attitudes and the way they typically think about things.
    We have to change people's mindsets and motivate them.
    Flexible working was part of the mindset of the company from the start.

    I would like to point out that Cambridge dictionary's definitions are very similar for both "mentality" and "mindset" but Collins dictionary's definitions are a little different. I think as native speakers you must be using these two words synonymously in some contexts and differently in other contexts so if there is any difference at all how can I learn it?
    appreciate your help.
    Last edited by a moderator:


    Senior Member
    English English
    I have been searching for a good answer on the google but all I found was very confusing answers.
    There's a good reason for that, Anushka, which is that the difference is a very fuzzy one, and probably varies from person to person. English is full of virtual-synonyms.
    To all intents and purposes they mean the same thing.
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