Monday, March 12, 2012

Have you ever heard of an ACRONYM?

I'm sure you already know many acronyms in English, but maybe you have never heard of the term acronym before.  The word itself is a combination of the Greek words akro (tip or end) and nym (name or word).  Therefore an acronym is a type of word that uses only the first letter to create a new word; for example, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), The United States of America (USA), as soon as possible (ASAP), (and of course!...) English as a Second Language (ESL).

Acronyms are used in both formal and informal English.  They are used as much in Washington, DC, with the innumerable government agencies and organizations, as they are used in online chats and text messages.  The following short lists include both formal and informal acronyms most commonly used in English that will prove to be useful additions to your vocabulary!  There are many more acronyms than those listed below, so share them if you have them!

*Grammar Tip:  Whenever using an acronym in a formal document, always spell out words and follow with the acronym in parentheses.  After you have spelled out the acronym once, from that moment on, you can use just the acronym.  For example:   The Department of Energy (DoE) has undergone transformations since President Obama took office in 2008.  The DoE is responsible for...

  • NP: No Problem
  • LOL: Laughing Out Loud
  • GF/BF: Girl/Boyfriend
  • BRB: Be Right Back
  • BTW:  By The Way
  • IDK:  I Don't Know
  • KIT: Keep In Touch
  • TTYL:  Talk To You Later
  • SMS:  Short Message Service
  • NOYB:  None of Your Business
  • DoJ:  Department of Justice
  • DoD:  Department of Defense
  • ED:  Department of Education
  • CIA:  Central Intelligence Agency
  • NRA:  National Rifle Association
  • NAACP:  National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
  • AARP:  American Association of Retired Persons
  • NAFTA:  North American Free Trade Agreement
  • DMV:  Department of Motor Vehicles
  • AA:  Alcoholics Anonymous
  • AAA:  Triple A (towing service)
  • YMCA: Youn Men's Christian Association
  • OJ:  Orange Juice
  • PJ'S:  Pajamas
  • FYI:  For Your Information
  • KISS: Keep It Simple Stupid!
  • AKA:  Otherwise Known As
  • DOB:  Date of Birth
  • SSN:  Social Security Number
  • PT/FT/OT:  Part/Full/Overtime 
  • OTC:  Over the Counter (You can buy OTC at the pharmacy without a doctor's prescription.)
  • DOA:  Dead on Arrival  (This is in the Friend's theme song...)
  • BA/BS:  Bachelor's of Art/Science
  • MA/MS:  Master's of Art/Science
  • MBA/MPA:  Master's of Business/Public Administration

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