Wilkes University

Spell Check Errors

Spell-check programs catch spelling errors, not errors in usage!

Listed below are words and phrases that occasionally are used improperly after a spell-check program has been run. Spell-check programs are useful for catching typographic errors and misspelled words, but they don't work too well as proofreaders. There's no substitution for careful and close reading.

Pay particular attention to homonyms -- words that have similar pronunciations, but different spellings and meanings.

Common problem-causing homonyms

you're | your
they're | their | there
its | it's
Rhetoric Butler | Rhett Butler
except | accept
prejudice | prejudiced
alot | a lot
that | then
no | know
weak | week
to | too | two
brake | break
who's | whose
lessen | lesson
hear | here
forth | fourth
seam | seem
buy | by
board | bored
affect | effect