Chapter 12: Spelling

Grammar > Spelling

Using a word processor is a smart way to pick up errors related to spelling. Unfortunately, they don't pick up all of them. For instance, they won't pick up on homonyms. Homonyms are words which sound alike or are spelled alike, but have different meanings, such as I'll / aisle / isle, cent / scent / sent, there / their / they're, and holey / holy / wholly. The following sentence contains three spelling mistakes:

Their stealing the joule that is embedded in the religious idle.

But wait! It becomes even more difficult for Canadians because they generally follow British spelling rules, but will occasionally borrow from American spelling. For example, between the British "aeroplane" and the American "airplane," Canadians choose "airplane." Then again, when it comes to the British "metre" and the American "meter," Canadians choose "metre." Students in Canadian classrooms should be aware that many instructors will insist on Canadian spelling. Use a Canadian dictionary to avoid problems.

In This Chapter

Although spelling correctly is largely a matter of practice and the common-sense use of reference materials, there are four standard spelling rules. Although each has exceptions, if you study these rules carefully, you will be able to avoid most common errors, even without a spell-checker. Use the menu icon, above, to select a sub-sub chapter to explore this topic further.

After you've read the sub chapters associated with this page, try out a spelling quiz.


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