What Do a 感染 (gǎn rǎn) and 传染 (chuán rǎn) Have in Common? Only This Chinese Quiz Will Tell

With the outbreak of coronavirus, people following the news have probably seen the following words pop up over and over, but may be unsure what the difference is: “感染 (gǎnrǎn)” and “传染 (chuánrǎn)”. Today I’ll tell you how to use them.

感染 (gǎn rǎn):


(1) Pathological reactions caused by pathogenic microorganisms and parasites invading the body,growing, multiplying, and causing damage to the body.


轻度感染 (qīng dù gǎnrǎn): mild infection.

(2) Pathogens invade another body through a certain route from the source of infection.


tā gǎnrǎnle àizī bìngdú.
He is infected with HIV.

(3) Arouse the same thoughts and feelings of others through language or other forms.


tā de xiào shēng gǎn rǎn le quán bān tóng xué.
She infected the whole class with her laughter.

传染 (chuán rǎn):

infection/infect/be contagious.

(1) Caused by the spread of the disease


传染病 (chuánrǎn bìng) :infectious disease

(2) Refers to the intrusion of pathogens from diseased organisms to other organisms, usually infectious means that the pathogens of infectious diseases can be transmitted from one person to another through a certain route .


tā bǎ liúgǎn chuánrǎn gěile tóngxué.
He transmitted the flu to his classmates.

(3)Arouse the same thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of others through words or actions.


tā de kǒng jù yě chuán rǎn gěi le wǒ .
I was infected by her fear.

Differences and connections

(1) Both can be used to express resonance through language, words, behaviors, etc.
(2) Both are invaded by pathogens. “感染(gǎn rǎn)” focuses on being directly invaded by pathogens, and “传染 (chuán rǎn)” focuses on pathogens invading from one individual to another.

Common sentence structure:

n.+传染(chuán rǎn)+给了(gěile)+n.
n.+感染 (gǎn rǎn)+了(le)+n.

HSK 3 quiz

Please select the correct words and fill in the blanks
A. 感染 (gǎn rǎn)

B. 传染 (chuán rǎn)

1. tā nà jiāndìng de xìnxīn  ______ le wǒmen.
他那坚定的信心 ______ 了我们。

2. tā bǎ xīnguān bìngdú  ______ gěile tā de jiārén.
她把新冠病毒 ______ 给了她的家人。

3. xīnguān bìngdú ______ le hěnduō rén.
新冠病毒 ______ 了很多人。

Challenge Yourself to Identify More Similar Chinese Words:

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HSK 1 quiz

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