What is difference between modification and change?

cateran

New Member
Chinese - Mainland
Hi All,

Can anyone tell me the difference between "change" and "modification"?

For example, which one of the following sentences is correct?

(1) Make some changes to something.
(2) Make some modifications to something.


Thanks in advance!
 
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  • chamyto

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    I have tried to see differences between them and maybe modification is less stronger than change . This is what I can tell .

    Let´s wait for more responses .
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    To modify means to make a partial change, so a modification should be seen as being less than a change. However, I doubt anybody would see any significant difference between your two sentences.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    which one of the following sentences is correct?

    (1) Make some changes to sth something.
    (2) Make some modifications to sth something.
    Neither (1) nor (2) is a sentence, cateran - and as usermane says, we need some context in order to advise you properly.

    I've changed your abbreviations, by the way, because we don't use "sth" here:)
     
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    George French

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Hi All,

    Can anyone tell me the difference between "change" and "modification"?

    Thanks in advance!

    Yes. If you look at the definitions given in the WR dico ..................... dictionary.

    GF..
     
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    cateran

    New Member
    Chinese - Mainland
    Neither (1) nor (2) is a sentence, cateran - and as usermane says, we need some context in order to advise you properly.

    I've changed your abbreviations, by the way, because we don't use "sth" here:)

    Is "sth" not the short form of "something"?

    Yes, I know neither of them is not a sentence. They are phrases, right?
     

    cateran

    New Member
    Chinese - Mainland
    Cateran, please be more specific about what you are asking. In particular, we need context and background if you want more than a dictionary definition that you can find on your own.

    (By the way, there are very few abbreviations allowed in this forum. "Sth" is not one of them.)

    Nunty, moderator

    Nunty, sorry for the abbreviation because I am a newcomer and know nothing about the rules here.

    About the context and background,it's for a document. I mean "changes to a document" or "modifications to a document". But I always confused when I use these two words. Therefor, I want some general ideas about how to use these two words. Thanks!
     

    cateran

    New Member
    Chinese - Mainland
    Without knowing what kind of changes or modifications you mean, I don't see how we can add to what has been already said.

    (Please take a moment to read the WordReference Forums Rules and English Only posting guidelines.)

    I had a document. I deleted some lines of it and added some lines to it. Now I want to tell other people what I did. I don't know I should say " I have made some modifications to the document" or " I have make some changes to the document". I don't know which one is correct or I should use which one. Do you understand my question? If you don't, I really don't know how to describe my question much more clearly. Please forgive me for my poor English!
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Neither (1) nor (2) is a sentence, cateran - and as usermane says, we need some context in order to advise you properly.

    I've changed your abbreviations, by the way, because we don't use "sth" here:)
    Actually, they could both be perfectly correct sentences:
    "Make some changes to something!"
    ie, don't just sit there doing nothing, get up and find something to change.

    After all, that's what new managers and newly-elected politicians seem to say to themselves. :D
     
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    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    I had a document. I deleted some lines of it and added some lines to it. Now I want to tell other people what I did. I don't know whether I should say " I have made some modifications to the document" or " I have make some changes to the document". I don't know which one is correct or which one I should use which one. Do you understand my question? If you don't, I really don't know how to describe my question much more clearly. Please forgive me for my poor English!
    That is now pretty clear. Normal BE would be "I have amended the document". Both of your sentences are correct and understandable.
     

    Sikaranista

    Senior Member
    American English
    There is a subtle difference.

    A change simply means making something different.
    I changed my clothes.
    He changed his mind.
    The runner changed course.

    A modification refers to a change in form or character/characteristics.

    The electrician had to modify the wiring in order to meet the current building code.

    We modified our website, do you think it is easier to use?

    The mechanical engineer modified the gasoline engine to run on biodiesel instead.

    The landscaping company will start work on March 1, not April 1. Could you modify the contract to reflect this change?
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    There is a subtle difference.
    But inconsistently so

    I modified the wiring = I changed the wiring
    I modified the engine ≠ I changed the engine
    (ie, I made changes to the engine ≠ I took out the engine and put in another)

    I would not modify a contract, I would amend it.

    This may be a difference between our native versions of English.
     

    Sikaranista

    Senior Member
    American English
    But inconsistently so

    I modified the wiring = I changed the wiring

    Technically speaking, they don't mean the same thing...granted, I am in engineering so I might be looking at this with a more critical eye.

    I changed the wiring in the computer lab. (no change in fundamental characteristics)

    I modified the wiring in the computer lab to include 100 BaseT and gigE connections. (change in characteristics).

    I modified the engine ≠ I changed the engine
    (ie, I made changes to the engine ≠ I took out the engine and put in another)
    Agreed.

    I would not modify a contract, I would amend it.

    This may be a difference between our native versions of English.
    Now that you mention it, I think so too. Here in the U.S., the word "amendment" is tied closely to additions to our Constitution, so "amending a contract" is usually used to mean "adding something in addition to what is already there".

    I think in the UK you might say "the new contract reflects the amended dates" where in the US we would usually say "the new contract reflects the modified dates".
     

    cateran

    New Member
    Chinese - Mainland
    That is now pretty clear. Normal BE would be "I have amended the document". Both of your sentences are correct and understandable.

    Your corrections are very helpful! In fact, when I wrote the sentence, I was aware that "I should use which one" seemed incorrect. Now I know it's truly incorrect!

    About the "whether" you added, I really did not know it's needed there. Thank you, I will remember it.

    Thank you again!
     
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