You might be asking yourself, is it correct to say discuss about? Well, we have the answers that you need. While saying something like “talk about” might make sense, you might be surprised to learn that “discuss about” isn’t what you think it is.
Should You Use “Discuss” Or “Discuss About”?
You should always use “discuss” and it is incorrect to use “discuss about”. The word “discuss” implies that you talk about something, meaning that if you say “discuss about”, you actually say “talk about about”. The “about” in “discuss about” is thus redundant.
If you need further clarification, just take a look at this meaning in The Cambridge Dictionary. They say that “discuss” means “to talk about a subject with someone and tell each other your ideas or opinions.”
See how they include the words “talk about” in their meaning. There’s no other way to explain the meaning of “discuss,” therefore, you should always assume that “about” is already present when you use it.
Examples Of How To Use The Word “Discuss” In A Sentence
While we can tell you all about the right and wrong ways of writing it, we believe the best thing to do is show it to you in action.
We’ll include various examples below and mark each one as being either correct or incorrect. We encourage you to play along at first by covering up the part of your screen that gives away the answer! You should start to notice that using “about” is never correct.
- Correct:We need to discuss the situation further when you have a minute.
- Incorrect:We should discuss about the things we need to go through.
- Correct:I should discuss this matter with you, but I don’t have time right now.
- Incorrect:You should discuss about these things with me before you make a stupid decision!
- Correct:Did you not want to discuss this with me?
- Incorrect:Why can’t we discuss about these things in private?
- Correct:We should discuss this more later when I have a bit more time.
- Incorrect:I’d like to discuss with you about all the things you marked as incorrect in my essay.
- Correct:I need to discuss the issue because it’s tearing me apart!
- Incorrect:Shall we discuss about your problems at school?
You’ll notice the trend between every one of these examples. Every time we write “about” in the sentence with “discuss,” the sentence is incorrect. If you refer to example 8, you’ll notice that even when we place something between the words like “with you,” it’s still not correct to write “discuss about” in any form.
Again, “discuss” already means “talk about,” so you should remember that the next time you’re using the word. It works perfectly on its own and is already grammatically correct, with no additional language needed.
Can You Say “Discuss Regarding”?
When we use the word “regarding,” we’re often using it in the same way as “about.” In fact, “regarding” means “concerning” or “about,” so the two words are synonymous (though “regarding” is the more formal option).
We can’t say “discuss regarding” for the same reasons that we can’t say “discuss about.” “Discuss regarding” means “talk about regarding,” which still isn’t grammatically correct and should there be avoided.
Although we’re not directly using the word “about” twice when it’s unnecessary, the direct translation of “regarding” holds a very similar meaning. That’s why it’s important to remember that neither of these words is allowed when you’ve already used “discuss.”
It may be tricky for you to wrap your head around at first, and that’s okay. It’s a new language rule that you might not have thought too much about in the past. However, over time, you’ll be made much more familiar with the rules associated with “discuss” and using unnecessary words.
It’s common for extra words to be omitted from sentences if it allows them to still hold their meaning. “About” in this context is one of those extra and unnecessary words that we can remove while keeping the sentence meaning the same. That’s why we keep it out; for the sake of simplicity.
Is It A “Discussion About” Or A “Discussion On” Something?
Now things might get a little confusing because we’re about to tell you that there is one exception where “about” works after a word using “discuss.”
- We should have a discussion about this later.
- We should have a discussion on this topic.
Both of the above sentences are correct for different reasons.
A discussion is a process of talking to someone or a group of people about a certain topic or thing. The idea of them is to exchange ideas or reach an ultimate decision after a solid discussion takes place.
Both “about” and “on” work as prepositions after the word “discussion.”
“Discussion about” typically keeps things broad and open and refers to exchanging ideas rather than looking for a direct solution. “Discussion on” is more specific about a topic and usually has the goal in mind to come to a decision at the end of it.
Other Ways To Say That You Want To Discuss Something
If you’re still struggling to come around to the idea of using “discuss” on its own (especially now we’ve shown you the exception with “discussion”), then you can use an alternative.
Alternatives are a great way to still get your meaning across without worrying about any finicky language rules. So, let’s look at some of the best ways to say that you want to discuss something with someone else.
- Can we have a conversation?
This is a good alternative where we use “conversation” instead of “discuss.” It’s not a commonly said phrase, but it works nonetheless.
- Talk about
The direct meaning of “discuss” also works well as a synonym.
- Put our heads together.
This phrase works well as a replacement when we want to discuss a situation and put ideas together rather than finding a direct solution.
Another good alternative that works by allowing two or more people to weigh up the options of a debate or discussion.