10/4/18 Difference between ‘Discuss’ and ‘Argue’


These two verbs are often confused by non-native English speakers. Let’s look at the differences.

Both of the verbs involve the idea of having an intense conversation. So, what’s the difference?

  • According to the Oxford-University-Press-Dictionary:

ARGUE (verb)


[v] ~ (with sb) (about / over sth) to speak angrily to sb because you disagree with them.

So, to argue means that there is an element of anger or disagreement involved the conversation.


My brothers are always arguing. We’re always arguing with each other about money.

DISCUSS (verb)

1 ~ sth (with sb) to talk about sth with sb, especially in order to decide sth: [vn]


Have you discussed the problem with anyone? I’m not prepared to discuss this on the phone.

And, to discuss means that your conversation is friendly and often involves making a decision or learning more about a topic.