Spanish expressions: “Según…”, “de acuerdo con…”

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In Spanish, we can use the word “según” as a preposition or as an adverb, and, frequently, we translate it to “according to” or “by”. It allows us to say that what it explains is based on something already known. For example, “según las noticias el clima estará despejado hoy.” = (“according to the news, the weather will be clear today.”).

A fact is that the letter /u/ always has an accent. However, it can turn into “depending on” if we use it as a conjunction. On the other hand, we use the expression “de acuerdo con” as an alternative to the word “según”. Today, we will show you several ways to use “según” and “de acuerdo con“.

How to use ‘según’

As we said before, we use the word “según” as a preposition to express things based on something. And, we also use it to specify the information’s source of what we said. We can even express our points of view and opinions. Its English equivalents would be “according to” and “by”.

If you’ll use “según” as an equivalent to “according to”, you have to put a subject pronoun (“yo”, “tú”, “él”, etc) after “según”, instead of a prepositional pronoun. Here are two formulas that will help you to use it rightly:

Según + information’s source + complement.

Según + subject pronoun + complement.

If you talk to a Spanish speaker, you’ll probably hear sentences that have information before “según”. The formula changes a little in this case, but it’s nothing to worry about.

Here are some examples to give you a better idea:

Lloverá hoy según el pronóstico del clima.
Según el pronóstico del clima, lloverá hoy.

According to the weather forecast, it will rain today.

Hizo una rutina nueva de ejercicios según las indicaciones de su entrenador.
Según las indicaciones de su entrenador, hizo una rutina nueva de ejercicios.

He did a new exercise routine according to his coach’s instructions.

Camila eligió el regalo según el precio.
Según el precio, Camila eligió el regalo.

Camila chose the gift according to the price.

Please, don’t forget to put the accent mark in the letter /u/. That’s a significant rule in Spanish grammar. Now, let’s see how to use “según” as an adverb and conjunction in the following section.

How to use ‘según’ as an adverb and as a conjunction

When we use the word “según”, and it alone, it means “depende” (“depending on” in English). In this case, it changes into an adverb. Otherwise, unlike most other prepositions, we can put “según” before a verb and it becomes a conjunction. The meanings would be “such as”, “like” and “depending on”.

Let’s see some examples to help you clear your mind.

Según el clima, puede que vaya a la fiesta.

Depending on the weather, I may go to the party.

Tus tareas serán evaluadas según se vea tu progreso.

Your homework will be graded depending on how your progress looks.

Comeré o no, según mi propio criterio.

I will eat or I won’t, depending on my own judgment.

In the first and the second examples, we used the word “según” as a conjunction. Yet, we can also use the expressions dependiendo de or tal como. In the third one, we use “según” as an adverb, so we don’t put another word after it.

Spanish speakers consider “según” a synonym of “de acuerdo con”. It’s because they both are equivalent in Spanish which we use for the same purposes. Then, we can use one instead of the other.

How to use ‘de acuerdo con’

“De acuerdo con” is another expression that helps us when we need to express things that have a specific source. In English, it also means “according to”. In other cases, we use this expression to say that we agree with something. But in general, we use this expression as a prepositional phrase. Many people get confused when differentiating “de acuerdo con” from “de acuerdo a”. But, since they don’t have the same use, let’s see the difference.

We use “de acuerdo con” when we want to talk about someone, or we will put a pronoun after the expression. For example, “la profesora enfermó, de acuerdo con lo que dijo su esposo.” = (“the teacher got sick, according to what her husband said.”).

On the other side, we use “de acuerdo a” when we want to talk about things. For example, “hice mi trabajo de acuerdo a sus indicaciones.” = (“I did my job according to your instructions.”).

Let’s see more examples.

No fue el trabajo más fácil, y todos están de acuerdo con eso.

It wasn’t the easiest job and everyone agrees with that.

Las fotos están completamente bien de acuerdo con las políticas y condiciones.

The photos are completely fine according to the policies and conditions.

De acuerdo con los estudios realizados, el problema va a solucionarse pronto.

According to the studies carried out, the problem will be solved soon.

Please note that in the first sentence, we use the expression to indicate agreement, while in the others we use it to indicate the source of the information.

In conclusion, we use “según” and “de acuerdo con” when we want to express things based on something. In the case of “según”, we can also use it to talk about our point of view or to give our opinion about what we are talking about. They have several alternatives and ways of use, but the most common uses are as a preposition and as an adverb.

Spanish speakers use “según” as a conjunction not so frequently, but you’ll still hear it sometimes. On a side, you should remember that you can use “de acuerdo con” to indicate that you agree with something that has happened.


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