Are you wondering the difference between 'ahead' vs. 'a head?' 'A head' is a common misspelling of 'ahead.' However, you can use the phrase 'a head' in some situations. So, we created an in-depth guide with definitions, examples, usage tips, and phrases to help you learn how and when to use each correctly.
Need a quick answer?
Here it is:
While 'ahead' and 'a head' are grammatically correct depending on the context, they have different meanings and usages. 'Ahead' means that something will occur or happens before another event. 'A head' describes a single head or the head of something.
As I mentioned above, 'ahead' is an adverb or adjective that means something will occur in advance or before another event or activity or that it is in a better position. You only use 'a head' as a noun meaning one head or the leader of something.
So, how do you know which to use and when?
For example, I often say things like:
Keep up the good work! You are way ahead of schedule.
For example, I may use it to say something like:
Analysts believe the company has high employee satisfaction and retention because it has a head that leads by example.
Basically, you use 'ahead' to indicate that something will occur before an event or time and 'a head' as a noun to describe a person or anatomy.
You've already learned that 'ahead' is the adjective or adverb for the noun head. You use 'ahead' to indicate a time, period, or event before something else.
'A head' is a phrase that means one head or the leader of a company, country, or organization.
You could use the two together, too.
In the sentence above, 'ahead' refers to positioning yourself in front of competitors, and 'a head' refers to the company's leader.
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 'ahead' is an adjective or adverb that means:
It can also mean:
In comparison, when you search the same dictionary for 'a head,' it returns no results. However, you can use the noun phrase to describe:
It can also mean:
Knowing how and when to properly use 'ahead' and 'a head' will prevent you from sending communications with spelling errors. However, you are likely still wondering how to pronounce them.
If so, here is a helpful guide.
You pronounce 'ahead' according to the phonetic spelling:
The phonetic spelling of 'a head' is:
As you can see, the pronunciation is slightly different. However, when spoken by most people, they sound similar. So, keep that in mind when you use them in conversation.
Now that you know the definition, correct usage, and pronunciation of 'ahead' and 'a head,' let's take a look at each used in sentences.
You should have a good grasp on the difference between 'ahead' vs. 'a head.' However, we just covered a lot of information.
So, here is a quick recap:
However, 'a head' is also a common misspelling of 'ahead.' So, you have to be careful not to confuse the two, especially in casual communications when you are not using a grammar checker.
If you get tripped up in the future, come back for a quick refresher. You can also bookmark the confusing words section here to learn about other challenging words and phrases.
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