There are some terms that people may often use interchangeably because they seem to be the same. When you say “like,” the item that you are going to say after an item is normally part of the frame of reference. This means that you know that what you are going to say is related to what you are talking about.
When you say “such as,” this means that what you are going to say next is part of whatever group that you are talking about. For example, you may say, “A rat is like a mouse in terms of their appearance.” When you need to use “such as,” you can say, “There are different big cats in the world such as the tiger.”
The terms “such as” and “like” are two different terms that are different in meanings but can as well have similar meanings a few times. The word “like” can actually be versatile in its usage and can be used in almost all parts of speech. "Like" can be used in a sentence as a noun, verb, adjective, adverb, conjunction, preposition, and interjection. On the contrary, “such as” is more or less an idiomatic expression, which basically takes preposition as its part of speech in sentences. The term “such as” can mean “for example,” “for instance,” “like” (usually in its adjectival form), and other similar meanings. Hence, you can use “like” to describe things with similar qualities, degrees, or quantities. “Like” can just be used with any kind of item, which might be indefinite, while “such as” is used when the items are more precise and specific.
Sometimes people use two terms interchangeably without realizing that they may have different meanings. When you say “like,” this means that what you are going to say after will be used as a frame of reference. This means that you are talking about something that is not a part of the group that you are talking about. When you use the word “such,” this means that you are using some examples from the group that you would like to talk about. You can also use “such as” when you would like to give more specific examples. You are going to use “like” when the examples that you are giving out are more general.
Charlie Rogers, Manager, Bachelor of Management Studies (BMS), Lexington, Kentucky
Answered Jul 23, 2020
Such as and like are two words that are used in the English language that have a similar meaning. Like is a preposition and it is used to describe nouns that are similar to one another. An example of using the word like is "The moon was shinning bright like a diamond".
It is used to link to different things together, by a characteristic they share. Such as can also be used as a preposition to give an example to describe a noun. An example of using the statement such as can be "Animals such as fish and turtles live in the water".
Like is known to be something that you can use when you are describing people or items that are highly similar to each other. This means that if you know that there are two people who share the same hobbies, you can use like when you would want to show how similar they are. When you use “such as,” this means that you would like to give some examples. For example, there are certain objects that you know are definite. You would like to show people that these are the examples for what you are describing so that they will know exactly or they will understand what you are talking about.
The usage of these two words "such as" and "like" to convey similar meaning is very common these days that we can't completely figure out the right context that fits each of the two. The word "like" as a preposition is used to describe things that have similar characteristics. For example: John hates wild animals like tiger and lion. According to this example, it shows that John hates wild animals and does not necessarily mean that he hates lion and tiger. It can also be used when approximating certain figures or an amount of money.
For example: pizza costs something like $10 at the cinemas. On the other hand, the word such as a preposition is used to give example of things or persons you are specific about.
For example: wild animals such as lion and tiger are very dangerous to play with. Another difference is that the word "like" can be used as a verb, adverb, adjective, noun, whereas "such as" can only be used as a preposition.