Main Difference – Ability vs Capability
Ability and capability are two words that refer to potential, aptitude, and capacity to do something. The difference between Ability and Capability is often not very clear since both these words have similar meanings. However, there is a difference between Ability and Capability in terms of their usage. You cannot understand the difference between these two words without paying attention to their usage. The main difference between Ability and Capability is that ability is the skill to do something whereas capability is the extent of ability.
Ability – Meaning and Usage
According to the Oxford Dictionary, ability is the “possession of the means or skill to do something”. At the same time, Merriam-Webster defines it as the “power or skill to do something”. Looking at both these definitions, we can surmise that ability means having the skill to do something. Ability comes from the adjective able. The following sentences will further elucidate the meaning and usage of ability.
He has a child with remarkable musical abilities.
You have lost the ability to manage difficult children.
She has the ability to clean a room in 10 seconds.
Her ability to read minds saved our lives.
She is a woman of exceptional abilities.
His ability to heal people makes him an extraordinary human being.
Capability – Meaning and Usage
Oxford Dictionary defines capability as “the power or ability to do something” whereas Merriam-Webster defines it as the “the ability to do something”. Although these definitions sound confusing and seem to overlap with the meanings of ability, they do tell us something about capability – capability refers to the extent of ability. For example, you may have the ability to read fast, do you have the capability to read a 1000-page book in one day?
Capability can also refer to skills or abilities that have not been utilized yet. Capability is derived from capable.
This job is beyond his capabilities.
This demonstrates the company’s capability to increase the productivity.
Her capability as an administrator was admired by all.
Although identified early, this capability was never utilized.
Difference Between Ability and Capability
Ability is the skill or power to do something.
Capability is the ability to do something.
Ability is the skill to do something.
Capability is the extent of ability.
Ability comes from able.
Capability comes from capable.
“Capability” by NY (CC BY-SA 3.0) via The Blue Diamond Gallery
“Ability” by NY (CC BY-SA 3.0) via The Blue Diamond Gallery