What Are The Differences Between Misconception and Misperception?

From a layman’s point of view, the two words misconception and misperception might seem synonymous since their pronunciations are almost indistinguishable; yet, the two words possess completely non-identical meanings. A misconception is a broadly used term that we almost hear every day. However, misperception is not quite ubiquitous.

This article focuses on bringing forth the various parameters that would clarify misperception vs misconception for the readers.

Dive into the article to discover and recognize the dissimilarities between misconception and misperception so you can be more confident about using these words in the future!


What is a Misconception?


To sum it up, misconception arises from an erroneous stream of thought and comprehension of a particular situation or idea.

It is the flaw of forming a concept in the human mind which consequently leads to an incorrect view or opinion. A misconception usually results from a person’s misunderstanding of things around them.

Even though the word misconception seems to be prevailing in English grammar since the beginning of time, that is not the case. The word misconception began its journey with the universe of English grammar in 1614!


What is Misperception?


Unlike misconception, misperception is the fallacious interpretation of a given scenario or ideology.

This fault is incorrectly perceiving something that usually stems from a person’s cultural and traditional values. Their mistaken grasp of how things work in the world leads to their faulty assumptions and insights.

The word misperception came almost after a century. In 1722, the first known use of the word misperception was noted.

However, these facts are only based on information that historians could gather. It could very well be that both these words have been in use for a much longer time than we know!


Misconception vs. Misperception: A Brief Overview

misconception vs. misperception

If you want to delve deeper into what factors set misconception apart from misperception, take a glance at the differences below!

Difference in meaning

To better comprehend the difference between misconception and misperception, let us first look into the meanings of conception and perception.

Conception refers to the notion of understanding a situation or an idea, or a principle, or in fact, absolutely anything in existence by a person!

On the other hand, perception can be defined as a belief or a prefixed opinion inside a person’s mind formed by their own judgments and observations of things around them.

Although these two words are joined by the exact same prefix of -mis, their meanings still persist in being heterogeneous.

Misconception means to form wrong or a misleading concept about something. In contrast, misperception denotes the act of making a wrong observation about something, which, in turn, leads to the formation of a false image about the thing in question.


Difference in Sentence Making

To exemplify the difference between misconception and misperception, we can gander at sentences where these two words come into play.

When we construct a sentence like “People have a common misconception that doctors do not fall sick,” the word misconception here depicts people’s wrong idea regarding doctors’ health.

On the contrary, when we form a sentence such as “Why do people have the misperception that all Asians are intelligent?” the word misperception delivers the meaning of a wrong belief or opinion that people hold about all Asians.

A table of comparisons is outlined below to clarify further the distinguishable characteristics of the misconception and misperception word!


Recommended for You:


Difference Between Misconception and Misperception: The Table

Parameters of comparison Misconception Misperception
Definition A view or opinion that is incorrect because of faulty thinking or understanding Wrong or incorrect understanding or interpretation
Synonyms Misunderstanding, mistake, misinterpretation, fallacy, delusion Misreading, misconstruing, misbelief, misimpression, misknowledge
Antonyms Fact, reality, accuracy, truth, certainty Comprehension, understanding, awareness, realization
Source of origin One’s understanding One’s own beliefs and cultural perceptions
Results from Faulty logic Failure of understanding how the world works
Examples ●      There’s this misconception among children that their parents cannot make mistakes

●      A common misconception about doctors is that their handwriting is illegible

●      A common misperception about China is that every Chinese person looks the same

●      My brother has a misperception that all rock stars have long hair



This article offers a thorough insight on the differences between misconception vs. misperception coupled with examples and guidance on their appropriate usages.

All this information might seem a bit too overwhelming at first glance; however, if you give this article a little time and patience, you will never misuse the misconception and misperception words ever again!