The world of measurement systems can be confusing, with multiple systems in use around the globe.
But have you ever stopped to consider the differences between metric and standard systems? There are quite a few differences between them.
Though both are used for measuring physical quantities, the metric system is based on units of 10, while the standard system is based on units of 12.
This means that the metric system is far simpler and easier to use, making it the preferred choice for scientists and mathematicians worldwide.
Keep reading to find out how these two systems differ.
The metric system is an internationally accepted decimal system of measurement designed to measure physical quantities with units based around the number 10.
Other measurements are related to meters and other base units, such as kilograms for mass and liters for volume. This system is preferred by scientists, mathematicians, and other professionals due to its simplicity and ease of use.
Pros of Metric System
- The metric system is based on multiples of 10, making it easy to convert between units.
- It’s one of the most widely used systems of measurement in the world, making it easier for countries to communicate and collaborate with one another.
Cons of Metric System
- The metric system is a relatively recent development, meaning many people are unfamiliar with it and may find it difficult to learn and understand.
- It’s more difficult to convert units of measure than in the standard system.
What is the Standard System of Measurement?
The standard system of measurement used in the United States is commonly known as the US Standard System. You may be curious as to why this system is favored over the metric system in America.
Despite its preference, you can find many tools with metric units that are made in the U.S., not just imported ones.
Initially, an imperial system of measurement was adopted by many countries, but in the 1970s, Canada transitioned to the metric system. The Americans also started using a metric system for technical calculations. Surprisingly, NASA has also adopted the metric system due to its policy.
Pros of Standard System
- The standard system of measurement is easy to understand and use since it uses familiar terms such as inches and feet.
- It’s more common in the United States, making it easier for people who are used to this type of measurement.
- Converting between units is simpler than in the metric system.
Cons of Standard System
- It’s not used everywhere in the world, making it difficult for countries to communicate and collaborate with one another.
Metric and Standard Systems–What’s the Difference?
The metric system and the standard system are two different ways of measuring things.
The metric system is used mostly in countries that have adopted it as a legal measurement system, such as most of Europe and parts of Asia. It uses units like meters, liters, and grams to measure length, volume, and weight, respectively.
On the other hand, the standard system is more commonly used in countries such as the United States, and Burma. It uses units like feet, gallons, and ounces to measure length, volume, and weight, respectively.
Though both systems are used to measure the same things, they do so differently.
The metric system follows a decimal-based system, where each unit is ten times as much or 1/10th as much as the one before or after it. For example, a liter is ten times bigger than a deciliter and 100 times bigger than a centiliter, while 1 meter is 10 centimeters and 100 millimeters.
On the other hand, the standard system follows a mostly fractional-based system, with units like quarts and cups being used.
Which Countries Do Not Use Metric Systems?
There are a handful of countries around the world that don’t officially use the metric system as their primary form of measurement.
These nations include Burma, Liberia, and the United States of America.
While many other countries have adopted the metric system as their official standard, these three countries still rely on different forms of measurement for everyday activities such as cooking, construction, and shopping.
Metric Units vs. Standard Units
Metric units refer to the measurement system that is based on multiples of ten, while standard units are the traditional British and American systems.
This table provides a comparison between metric units and standard units.
|Metric Unit||Standard Unit|
Why Is the USA Not Fully Utilizing the Metric System?
The United States is one of the few countries in the world that has not fully adopted the metric system as its primary system of measurement.
Although the metric system was officially sanctioned by Congress in 1975, most Americans were still more comfortable with their traditional units like feet, yards, and acres.
Even though federal regulations often require metric measurements, most businesses and industries in the US still use the customary system of measurement.
This is because switching over to a new system would be costly and time-consuming for many companies. Converting machines and equipment and training staff on how to use the metric system could potentially cost millions of dollars.
Another challenge to implementing the metric system is that the United States is home to numerous ethnic groups and communities, many of which have their own traditional systems of measurement.
For example, people of Mexican descent often use the Spanish “vara” unit to measure length. This is why it may be difficult for Americans to fully adopt the metric system.
- The metric system and the standard system are two different ways of measuring things.
- The metric system is used mainly in Europe, Asia, and parts of Africa, while the standard system is more commonly used in countries such as the United States, and a few other countries.
- Although both systems measure the same things, they do it with different formulas.
- There are still a handful of countries in the world, such as Burma, Liberia, and the United States of America, that do not officially use the metric system. The reasons for this are mainly due to cost and cultural differences.