Difference between Chairman and Chairperson | Chairman vs Chairperson

Do you know what the difference between chairman and chairperson is? Do both the terms mean the same thing? After reading this article, you will have a better understanding of these terms. There are times when students have to use the words ‘chairperson’ or ‘chairman’ in their passages, but since most of them don’t know whether these two are different or not, it creates confusion. The article will talk about all the details that one needs to know when they are using these terms.

The English Language has plenty of such words that have proved to be confusing for students. The common reason is that most students think those commonly confused words mean the same, and as a result, they misinterpret them. Let’s see the points of difference between ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’.

Table Summarising the Difference between Chairman and Chairperson

Chairman Chairperson
Meaning Chairman refers to a person who presides over any meeting/organisation/board. Chairperson is a gender-neutral term that’s used to refer to a person who presides over any meeting/organisation/board.
Usage It is used as a Noun. It is used as a Noun.
Example Ratan Tata is the chairman of Tata Group. Miss Emily is the chairperson of a multinational company.

This table shows that although ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’ refer to people who head a meeting/committee or organisation they can’t be used interchangeably. Once the students go through the entire article, it will become clear to them when and how to use these terms.

The Difference between Chairman and Chairperson – Meanings

The word ‘chairman’ has been in use for ages, but problems arise when a woman holds such a high position – who presides over a committee/board or organisation. Using the word ‘chairman’ to refer to a woman in power can prove to be problematic. So if you are looking for a term to address a woman holding such a position, then the word ‘chairperson’ is perfect. Both the terms ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’ mean the same thing, but if you understand the terms properly, then you’ll realise that ‘chairperson’ is a gender-neutral term. This term can be used to refer to both a woman or a man who presides over any meeting/organisation/board. Once students understand this concept, it will be easy for them to use these words in the right context.

Examples of Chairman and Chairperson

The following examples will help students understand the terms ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’:

Chairperson – Miss Elena Peterson is the youngest chairperson the company has appointed in ages. (noun)

Chairman – Mr Rahul is the present chairman of the startup company. (noun)

Once students understand the difference between the words ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’, they can easily apply them in proper contexts in sentences.

Chairman and Chairperson – Conclusion

In conclusion, the words ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’, though are synonymous, can not be used interchangeably. This article points out the difference i.e., when to use the terms ‘chairman’ and ‘chairperson’ along with examples to make it easy for students to use these in sentences. BYJU’S offers various articles on many such ‘Differences Between Two Words’ that students often get confused with.


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