What is an Acronym? As part of speech, acronyms can spice up your language and make you impress a number of listeners around you.

These acronyms are initials in a phrase or words and they might appear as individual letters as well as syllables.

In English, like in other languages, acronyms had some limitations pertaining to their usage. But with time, acronyms became common in the course of the 20th century.

Therefore, an acronym can be said to be a word created from the first letters of other words which, in this case, is pronounceable as a word.

That being said, we need to have an understanding of an acronym and how it is used generally.

Acronym Definition

What is an AcronymThe acronym definition is simple and clear. To be precise, they are words consisting of letters, even though any other group of letters cannot be termed as acronyms.

Generally, an acronym is a word created from the initial letter or the very first letters of each word from a particular phrase.

For instance, we have the follow words that are created from acronyms:

R.A.D.A.R. = Radio Detection And Ranging


L.A.S.E.R. = Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation

However, not every word is a result of initial letters that forms an acronym.

Instead, a clear distinction is needed to clarify the term as used by different groups. Some individuals define acronym as an abbreviation for a pronounceable word while others base their definition of the word on initialism which is an abbreviation resulting from a string of initials.

In most cases, acronyms formed from a string of initials are sometimes pronounced as individual letters. Here you need to draw a line between the two categories of acronyms that follow a sequence of how letters are pronounced.

To make it clear, the acronym POTUS is different from the acronym CIA based on how the abbreviated words are pronounced.

Common Acronyms

Acronyms have found their usage in various fields and appreciations. As the English language evolves, use of acronyms increases at the same time.

Starting with the internet, one can easily get confused all along for the fact that the language used there is totally different from what we know.

The internet language is evolving so fast that even the frequent users find it a challenge catching up with the trend. The slang used there changes the language completely.

Examples of Internet Messaging Acronyms

AMA: it stands for “Ask Me Anything” which is a common trend on Reddit to pose a question to the other person.

BAE: used to mean “Babe” or “Before Anyone Else” but the word itself is Danish for something completely different from what English users know.

DAE: means “Does Anyone Else?”

DM: stands for “Direct Message”, a feature on Twitter that enables you to send or receive a private message to those you are connected with.

Examples of Military Acronyms

We have those acronyms that are primarily classified and used in the military such as:

AWOL: means “Absent WithOut Leave”

MIA: stands for “Missing In Action”

POW: short form of a “Prisoner Of War”

POTUS: a common short form for “President Of The United States”

CSI: shortened from the phrase, Crime Scene Investigation

Examples of Texting Acronyms

There are those acronyms that are frequently used to express how you feel about something and in return, you wish to show some appreciation while in a hurry.

There are acronyms used when chatting especially, texting and instant messaging such as:

LOL: short form for “Laughing Out Loud”

TY: means “Thank You”

YW: abbreviated from the words, “You’re Welcome”

BFF: stands for “Best Friends Forever”

WTG: a short version of “Way To Go”

AFK: which means, “Away From Keyboard”

KIT: is “Keep In Touch”

BEG: it stands for “Big Evil Grin”

Examples of Medical Acronyms

Some acronyms can be used when someone is passing a word of advice or important information to you. Mostly, these kinds of acronyms are applicable in the medical field although they might not be having anything to do with the health-related topic as shown in a few examples below:

DOA: an abbreviation for “Dead On Arrival”

DARE: stands for “Drug Abuse Resistance Education”

ADD: short for of “Attention Deficit Disorder”

OTC: simply means “Over The Counter”

MD: stands for “Medical doctor”


Usage of acronyms in your English language is a great way of expressing yourself to save time and pass information to the right audience in a more precise but abbreviated manner. Therefore, it is important to learn a few acronyms and enrich your English language for effective communication.

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