I have this sentence

Finally, we check if there is any context whose parent is the current context; if so, we should reevaluate the context node's children with regard to ? OR according to this new context.

I don't know the usage of "with regard to", sometimes I need sentences which describe a situation which is dependent on another thing or situation. I don't know which phrase should I use.

For example,

Kids should be treated with regard to their age (is it correct?)

This variable should be assigned with regard to the value of Y variable.

We should build the building with regard to the new rule (or with regard to the sun direction)

What are the other usefull phrases for such situations?


At the literal level, to do X with regard to Y, simply means take [due] notice of Y, with the strong implication that this affects how you do X, to at least some extent (you regard, look at, consider Y before deciding how to do X).

On the other hand, doing it according to Y explicitly states that your decision/action is in accordance, agreement, compliance with Y.

Consider a judge about to pass sentence on a child-molester, where the victim's parents have publicly called for the accused to be hanged...

1: Sentence will be passed with regard to the wishes of the victim's parents.
2: Sentence will be passed according to the wishes of the victim's parents.

In some countries it's possible the judge could say either of those, then sentence the accused to death by hanging. But in Britain (where we don't have the death penalty), #2 wouldn't really be a valid statement, since X (the judge) can't abide by the requirements of Y (the parents). If the British judge made the first statement, it would simply mean he took the parents' view into account (and almost certainly passed a more severe sentence that he might otherwise have done).

Turning to OP's three examples...

A: Since obviously there's no "official" rule book setting out exactly how kids should be treated at each different age, we can only interpret according to loosely (i.e. - the same as with regard to).

B: I think assigning a value to a variable X with regard to Y is slightly unusual phrasing, because I usually think of program code as following exact rules, not making judgements. If Y is the only thing affecting the assigned value, I'd say according to Y, but if other factors may also be involved I might say taking Y into account.

C: With building regulations, you normally comply exactly, so you act according to the rules. If you only do the work with regard to the rules, that might imply you're prepared to cut a few corners.

  • Then I conclude that I should use according to. – Ahmad Jul 7 '15 at 16:03
  • It was nice, if you describe any other usage of "in regard to ", I think it may means "for", for example "with regard to this assignment, I did nothing" is it right? – Ahmad Jul 7 '15 at 16:09
  • 1
    @Ahmad: If you say With regard to Y, [statement X] that normally just means Y has some particular relevance to the statement. So in your example you don't mean you actually didn't do anything at all - you just didn't do this assignment (or anything directly relating to it). – FumbleFingers Jul 7 '15 at 17:31

In your examples you can use both phrases.

With (or in or having) regard to means concerning, considering or relating to.

Although the principal meaning of according to is as claimed by, in the opinion of, on the authority of, or as stated by, the phrase can also be used as in relation to or depending on.

However you should pay attention when using according to:

Be Careful!

Don't say 'according to me' or 'according to us'.

Be Careful!

Don't use according to and opinion together.

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