Mastering Grammar: 'Like' versus 'As'

Students often get confused in the usage of 'like' and 'as'. In this article, we use simple examples to help you learn the difference for the two words.
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While both the words are used for comparison, the difference between the two is a small one. The basic bone of contention for the usage of these two words is because of the fact that 'like' is a preposition and 'as' is a conjunction. This is often forgotten and 'like' is used as a conjunction. 
What is a preposition and what is a conjunction?
Definition of Prepositions: Prepositions are words governing, and usually preceding, a noun or pronoun and expressing a relation to another word or element in the clause, as in 'the person on the platform', 'he arrived after lunch'.
Definition of Conjunctions: Conjunctions are words used to connect clauses or sentences or to coordinate words in the same clause/a connecting word.
When to use 'Like' and 'As':
In case you are comparing clauses (a clause is a part of a sentence that contains a subject and a verb), you must use 'as'. On the other hand, 'like' is used when the comparison only includes a subject.
Usage of 'Like': "Tarun cooks like his father."
Usage of 'As': "Tarun cooks as his father does."
Example for incorrect usage: "Tarun cooks like his father does."
The last sentence is incorrect as a verb; i.e. 'does' cannot be used when we use like.
Incorrect: Vipin and Nitin, as their father Hiten, are extremely short..
Correct: Vipin and Nitin, like their father Hiten, are extremely short.
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Like versus As: Key Learning
An easy way to differentiate between 'like' and 'as' is to simply remember to use 'like' when no verb follows.
For example: Arun sleeps like a baby. (If the clause that comes next includes a verb, then you should use 'as'.)
For example: Arun sleeps as if he were a child.
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