There had to be some way to automate this process on a large scale.

There had to be some way to automate this process at a large scale.

Which of these sentences is grammatically correct, and, if both are, preferred or standard in American English?

  • Both of them.....
    – Drew
    Sep 13, 2017 at 23:22
  • I say "on a large scale".
    – Centaurus
    Sep 14, 2017 at 0:16
  • I'd probably use "on" for scale and "at" for level.
    – Nick
    Sep 14, 2017 at 3:16
  • I think 'on' should be used. Sep 14, 2017 at 9:10

3 Answers 3


Both are grammatically correct. However, "on a large scale" (and "on a scale" in general) is a set phrase. There may be variations in local dialects, but to most English speakers, "at a large scale" would sound slightly awkward.

Checking COCAE (https://www.english-corpora.org/coca/), "on a large scale" is used 25x more than "at a large scale".

Google Books ngrams also shows that use of "on a large scale" is much more prevalent:

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Both are technically grammatically correct sentences, but "on a large scale" sounds more correct with respect to the common usage of this phrase.


"On" sounds correct for American English.

But I think rephrasing the sentence would make the most sense-- "There has to be some way to automate and scale up this process."

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