Top Tips for English Spelling Correction
English spelling can at times, be particularly difficult, even for those who have a strong command of the language. Words tend not to be phonetic and so guessing the spelling of tricky words will usually not get you anywhere. Many of us can identify an extensive amount of words easily just by hearing them or seeing them written down but when asked to spell them we often struggle. Furthermore, the increased usage of text talk and internet abbreviations also allow our brains to take a spelling vacation. With spell checkers built into almost everything it’s very easy to become reliant and even ignorant. If not dealt with these ugly mistakes can rear their heads in the most inconvenient or even embarrassing moments. Once you have written a text in English how can you make sure the spelling is correct?
Follow these top 5 tips to ensure that you pick up on your errors and don’t make them again.
- “Proofread.” Sounds too obvious but it is such an important step. The trick is to not just simply glance it over straight after writing. If you have time take a small break from that specific text, maybe start on something else and write a reminder to return to it after half an hour. Print it off and read it aloud to yourself. By seeing and hearing it in a new dynamic, mistakes that were previously glazed over will become more apparent. You may not have the luxury to follow this process for every text you write, for example, emails that need to be sent quickly. In this case read it over but mix up the order (start reading bottom to top) so that your brain doesn’t jump to conclusions and skim over errors.
- “Get someone else to proofread it.” It is possible to read the same text over and over using many different methods and still not notice that one tiny mistake. There’s no way around it, but another person will notice different things within the exact same text, especially if they are not the author. Newspaper or magazine articles will be passed over many pairs of eyes before they make it to the shelves. Don’t have anyone on hand or don’t want to bother your colleagues every ten minutes? Use eAngel... a professional proofreading service that utilizes real people to check and correct your text quickly and efficiently.
- “Double check your spell check.” Spell checker, while it can be extremely convenient at times, is not the ultimate solution and will not always be right. Blindly clicking on all suggestions that pop up might not be helping you as you assume it is. Some words may have been spelled correctly although used in the wrong context and so missed by your computer. For example, “the college principal” and “the college principle” have completely different connotations, although sound exactly the same.
- “Learn from your corrections.” Mistakes can often be easy to correct without actually paying attention to what has been corrected. Try to learn the right spelling of words that you tend to misspell by writing them down. Stick them around your house if you are struggling to remember, seeing them over and over will help them to become ingrained. Turn off the predictive texting on your phone so that you are forced to engage your brain when writing everyday messages. You will find that over time you have less mistakes to correct when proofreading your more important texts.
- “Be consistent.” Very important! Make sure that your spell check dictionary is set to the correct language, and regional variation. Don’t start writing in UK English and then halfway through use the American version of ‘color’, for example. If you don’t have the eye to spot these differences yourself, make sure that spell check is set to pick up on them for you.