He knows a thing or two about being a doctor: study, study, study!

Is this "being" the same as "becoming?"

And why?


No, being is not "the same" as becoming. For example,...

"He was born with no arms or legs, so he knows a thing or two about being disabled."

It would obviously be nonsense to replace being with becoming there, since he's always been like that.

In OP's case, a small change that would impart the sense of becoming using the verb to be might be...

"He knows a thing or two about getting to be a doctor;Study study study!!"

  • 1
    As a medical professional, it doesn't strike me as unreasonable to contend that the best way to be a doctor is to be learning all the time. It's perhaps an extremist view on the value of what we in the biz call "continuing education", but, hey, maybe the author meant it exactly as written. May 17 '14 at 22:23

No they are not the same.

Be and being refer to the state or condition that is relatively unchanged in a basic sense.

In the example:

He knows a thing or two about being a doctor: study, study, study!

This is describing a condition while you are a doctor. It may be over some time, but still all along a doctor.

When you say:

I want to be a doctor.

You are talking about the desire to be a doctor, even though its uncertain and in the future.

Other examples:

I will be at the store at 3:00.
I am being difficult.

On the other hand, become is the transition from one state to another. So when you say:

I am going to the university to become a doctor.

you are describing the process of going from "not being a doctor" to "being a doctor".

Another example:

The caterpillar will become a butterfly.