Spell it right! Posted by on Jun 26, 2014 in English Language, English Vocabulary

I know that I would be lost without spell check on my computer and I bet most of you feel the same. After all it is really important to always spell check your work, but even when you (and I) do proofread and spell check our work, mistakes still slip through.  We are all humans right? No one is perfect.  But knowing which words are most likely to be misspelled in English is a really good way to try and catch any potential spelling mistakes you may make over and over again.

These are the 15 most misspelled words in English according to Take a good look and try to remember the correct spelling of these words for the future.


Image from

Now that you know the 15 most misspelled words in English, why not learn a few more commonly misspelled words.  Below I have a list of some other very commonly misspelled words in English (one from almost each letter of the alphabet). Taking a good look at this list and getting to know the correct spelling of these words is a good idea.

acceptable – Often words with the suffix pronounced -able are misspelled -ible, be careful of this.
believe – To spell this word right, try to remember that ‘i’ usually comes before ‘e’ except after ‘c’ or when it is pronounced like “a” as “neighbor” and “weigh.”
calendar – Getting the vowels ‘e’ and ‘a’ in their right places in this word is hard for almost everyone.
daiquiri – If you are going to drink this drink, you have to learn how to spell it!
definite(ly) – This word is tricky because it always has a silent ‘e’ even when the ‘ly’ is added.
embarrass(ment) – Yes, there is a double ‘r’ and a double ‘s’ in this word!
foreign – Here is one of a number of words that doesn’t follow the i-before-e rule discussed with the word ‘believe’ above.
grateful – I know it is crazy, but the word ‘great’ is not in ‘grateful’.
harass – There are double letters in this word, ‘ss,’ but there is no double ‘r,’ which often confuses people.
intelligence – To spell this word right you have to remember it ends in -ence and not -ance.
jewelry – Although jewelry is made by a jeweler, there is no ‘e’ between the ‘l’ and ‘r’ in this word.
kernel – Spelling this word correct is only difficult because it is spelled so differently than the word ‘colonel,’ which is pronounced exactly the same.
library – Often people forget to pronounce the first ‘r’ in this word and then they also forget to put it in when writing the word.
misspell – Isn’t it ironic how often the word misspell is misspelled? Remember that this word is really mis + spell and you won’t have a problem writing it.
neighbor – This word is hard to spell by sounding it out, so memorizing the spelling is really your best bet. But remember that in British English the spelling for this word is neighbour.
occasionally – This is another word with multiple double letters that you will have to remember to put in order to spell correctly.
playwright – It may not make sense that this word is not spelled ‘playwrite,’ but it just is, and there is no changing that.
questionnaire – To spell this word right you will have to double the ‘n’ and add a silent ‘e’.
referred – I always misspell this word! It just has too many letters ‘r’ in my opinion.
sergeant – Try to remember that there is an ‘e’ in both syllables of this word and you will always spell it right.
twelfth – Often people forget to put the ‘f’ in this word, but without it, the word is out of order.
vacuum – Here is another word with double letters to try and remember!
weather – Whether you like it or not, you have to spell ‘weather’ this way when you are talking about what is going on outside and up in the sky.

Tags: ,
Keep learning English with us!

Build vocabulary, practice pronunciation, and more with Transparent Language Online. Available anytime, anywhere, on any device.

Try it Free Find it at your Library
Share this:
Pin it

About the Author: Gabriele

Hi there! I am one of Transparent Language's ESL bloggers. I am a 32-year-old native English speaker who was born and raised in the United States. I am living in Washington, DC now, but I have lived all over the US and also spent many years living and working abroad. I started teaching English as a second language in 2005 after completing a Master's in Applied Linguists and a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults' (CELTA). Since that time I have taught ESL in the United States at the community college and university level. I have also gone on to pursue my doctorate in psychology and now I also teach courses in psychology. I like to stay connected to ESL learners around the world through Transparent Languages ESL Blog. Please ask questions and leave comments on the blog and I will be sure to answer them.