What’s the Difference Between an IDEA and an OPINION?


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Although the words IDEA and OPINION are similar in meaning, and sometimes they are even used interchangeably, there is a main difference. Learn how to use these words accurately in various contexts and improve your clarity when speaking or writing English.

Slide 1:
What’s the Difference Between an IDEA and an OPINION?

Slide 2:
The difference between IDEA and OPINION is easily seen when looking at the definitions:

IDEA:  a thought, a concept, a creation

OPINION: a viewpoint, a judgment, a belief

Although the two words are sometimes used as synonyms, look at these examples to understand the difference . . .

Slide 3:
IDEA: a thought, a concept, a creation

Slide 4:
The picture shows a woman’s fingernails coloured bright blue.

The sentence reads: Here are some blue nail ideas for beginners in the beauty industry.

Slide 5:
The picture shows a woman wearing a bright pink hat.

The sentence reads: “I have absolutely no idea who she is but I really like her hat!”

Slide 6:
The picture shows a student deep in thought.

The sentence reads: She tried hard to think of a fresh idea for her essay.

Slide 7:
OPINION: a viewpoint, a judgment, a belief

Slide 8:
The picture shows a young woman wearing a wedding dress.

The sentence reads: What’s your opinion about this tartan wedding dress?

Slide 9:
The picture shows a woman speaking with a lot of emotion to a reporter.

The sentence reads: She wasn’t slow in expressing her opinion.

Slide 10:
The picture shows a group of young people demonstrating.

The sentence reads: Opinion is divided as to whether cannabis should be legalized.

Slide 11:
Test Yourself!
Is it IDEA or OPINION in the following examples . . .

Slide 12:
The picture shows a red and black striped tie.

The sentence reads: He put on the tie and said: “Please, give me your honest __!”

Slide 13:
Answer: opinion

Slide 14:
The picture shows a business logo for a laundry in the shape of a coat hanger.

The sentence reads: That’s a clever __ for a business logo.

Slide 15:
Answer: idea

Slide 16:
The picture shows three people in an office having a discussion.

The sentence reads: She said: “As a team we desperately need new __!”

Slide 17:
Answer: ideas

Slide 18:
The picture shows a man and a woman having an argument in the street.

The sentence reads: There seems to be a difference of __.

Slide 19:
Answer: opinion

Slide 20:
Remember to use the word

IDEA if you are referring to a
thought, concept, or creation


OPINION when referring to a
viewpoint, judgment or belief

For information on my fluency and vocabulary courses, visit

If you are interested in correct word usage. be sure to check this  page:
What’s the Difference Between PRESCRIBE and PROSCRIBE?

Image Credits:

Slide 3 - blue nails
Creative Commons

Slide 4 - girl with hat
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Slide 5 - student essay
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Slide 8 - tartan wedding dress
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Slide 9 - expressing opinion
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Slide 10 - cannabis
Public Domain

Slides 12 & 13 - tie
Creative Commons

Slides 14 & 15 - logo
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Slides 16 & 17 - team meeting
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Slides 18 & 19 - arguing
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