Assistance and AssistantsThe words assistance and assistants sound identical, but their meanings are different. Here's a very quick summary:
- Assistance means help.
- Assistants are helpers.
AssistanceThe noun assistance means help. It usually means providing money, resources, or information to assist. Assistance can usually be substituted with the word help.
- I am unable to drive without assistance from my glasses.
- Obviously, because of my disability, I need assistance. But I have always tried to overcome the limitations of my condition and lead as full a life as possible. (Stephen Hawking)
AssistantsThe word assistants describes people who provide help. It is the plural of the noun assistant.
- Rees and his assistants work at Columbia University, New York.
- I don't like to work with assistants. I'm already one too many; the camera alone would be enough. (Photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt)
A Quick Test
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Much Assistance and Many AssistantsAssistance is a non-countable noun; i.e., it doesn't have a plural form. Therefore, many cannot be used with assistance because many is only used with countable nouns (like assistants). With assistance, use much. For example:
- My many assistants provide me with much assistance.