Difference Between Inference and Prediction

When we read, we form judgments, we listen to the judgments that others form or we observe a phenomenon, it is very important to understand the message beyond what one wants or does not believe. In all this there are two elements that need to be taken into consideration: inference and prediction. Difference Between Inference and Prediction

If you don’t know what the difference is between the two concepts, keep reading because we will explain it to you below.

INFERENCE  Difference Between Inference and Prediction

An inference consists of drawing conclusions about something from the observations and evidence that one has of the phenomena. This evidence serves to lead people to a reasonable conclusion that can be explained and supported.

Some examples of inferences can be the following:

  • Ice melts if it is heated.
  • Affirm that there is fire, after seeing smoke.
  • The orange color is obtained when red and yellow are combined.

As you can see, inference consists of following a logical process in which elements previously known to us are joined. This does not provide new knowledge, we work with what we already have.


On the other hand, predictions are usually assumptions that are not necessarily supported by evidence or that are supported by very little. In this sense, it is important to mention that for science prediction plays a relevant role and it is usually based on evidence (but this is an exceptional case).

In a general sense, the subjective aspects of individuals may interfere in the predictions, as well as some false knowledge that certain people might consider as true and valid.

Predictions may or may not be accurate, but in many cases their accuracy is just a product of luck.

Some prediction examples could be the following:

  • You see a book with an unpleasant cover and claim that the content is bad.
  • You are playing heads or tails with a friend and you say it will come heads.
  • You saw that deforestation has increased lately and you affirm that by year X there will not be any trees left on the planet.

Finally, remember that when talking about prediction in the scientific field it is different from what is generally understood by prediction in a general sense.

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