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Inter vs. Intra: When to Use Intra vs. Inter (with Useful Examples)


Inter vs. intra! Sometimes it’s not even words that are creating confusion in writing. In many cases, even a prefix is able to cause many problems. Two prefixes that look and sound almost the same but actually have two completely different meanings are a typical situation for the English language. One of the examples is inter- and intra-. When should you use each of them?

Inter vs. Intra

INTER- is a prefix that shows that something exists between or among two or more groups. INTRA-, on the other hand, deals with objects that are found in only one group and shows that something is on the inside or within it. As you can see, these prefixes that sound so similar actually have almost opposite meanings.


  • He’s the president of a large international organization.
  • There are several possible interactive processes to explain these findings.
  • Headache does not occur until an intracranial mass is relatively large.
  • Jeff played intramural basketball in high school.

When Should You Use Intra vs. Inter?

Let’s look at a few examples. If you play basketball at your own university, you play intramural sports because everything happens inside your university only and refers to a single group. However, if you represent your university at other championships and compete with teams from other colleges, you participate in interuniversity tournaments.

America has a road system that goes through all the 50 states and connects them together. Because it exists among many states, this highway system is called interstate. Still, every single state also has a road system that stops as soon as it reaches the border. Such highway systems are called intrastate.

Have you ever wondered why the internet is called like that? The reason behind this name is that the internet allows many groups of people to communicate with one another, no matter where in the world they are. Before the internet, there was the intranet. This was a computer network that only a group of authorized users could access.

If you aren’t sure which prefix to use, there’s a trick that you might find helpful. Inter- refers to something that is open. At the same time, intra– refers to a system that is contained. The word “open” has an “e” in it, just like the prefix it describes, while the word “contained” has the letter “a”.

Inter vs. Intra Examples

  • We are studying how these two chemicals interact.
  • Gray is intermediate between black and white.
  • Most of the elements interlock with one another.
  • The company is an international trader in grain.
  • The patient is sedated with intravenous use of sedative drugs.
  • Other problems related to intranet security are also discussed.
  • The sports program was intramural softball in a little courtyard.
  • The data is also used within states for drawing intrastate political districts.

How to Use Intra vs. Inter Correctly? | Image

Inter vs. IntraPin

Inter vs. Intra: When to Use Inter vs. Intra

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