Is It Mispelled or Misspelled? Common Spelling Mistakes




Last updated February 21, 2014 by


Is It Mispelled or Misspelled? Common Spelling Mistakes

Can you pick out the spelling mistakes in this image?

It doesn’t matter if you are writing an article or a book, spelling errors always look bad. You don’t have to know how to spell every word in the English dictionary, but if you are a true writer, finding (and using) a spell check program is a necessity. It might not be able to tell you when you are using the wrong word, such as accept vs. except, or to, two, and too. But it can catch some of the most common spelling mistakes people make everyday. Read about a few of them below.

For the answers…

Scroll to the end for the answers to the title’s question and the question about the image above. There are also hints of the totally correct spellings within the article.

Incorrect Spelling with The Random E

The Random E comes in the form of misspelled words like “improvment” and “arguement.” Some people wonder if argue has an e, shouldn’t the same apply for argument? No, but it should with improvement.

Other words where The Random E stays put are manageable and noticeable. Changeable also doesn’t change.

I-Before-E Spelling Rule

Say it with me, “I before E, except after C … I before E, except after C!” That’s the rule anytime you find yourself struggling with how to spell words like believe and receive.

It isn’t written in stone, of course, when there are other words like neighbor, their, and weight, but it is a useful spelling trick for many words with the long “eee” vowel sound.

Achieve and conceive are a couple more examples supporting the rule. Niece is another.

The Spelling Challenge of Double Letters
Is It Mispelled or Misspelled? Common Spelling Mistakes
Double letters in words sometimes have a tendency to challenge the spelling-challenged of the world. One of those words is occasion. Some of us stop more than occasionally to ask ourselves if there is one “c” or two.

A few others that seem to inspire double-letter confusion are those like embarrass (two double letters), beginning (one “g” keeps it from begging for two), and millennium, an old 2000-year favorite that took down bigger people than you and me.

Of all double-lettered words, though, the most confusing would have to be commitment. Spelled this way, there is only one “t,” yet committed, committing, and committee use two. It’s similar to written and writing.

Conscious and Conscience Spelling Confusion

If you have a conscience, are you conscious of it?

An easy-to-remember technique to follow when spelling words with the “sci” (ch) sound is: If it’s spelled like the CSI television shows, it’s probably wrong. Switch the “c” and “s” around, and you’re back in business.

Science and scientific also give some sci spelling problems, but with a different pronunciation.

Spelling and Suffix Trouble

One word that a lot of people seem to have trouble with is the ending of definitely. It has been spelled as “definately” so often, it might even look more right to some than the correct spelling.

Words that end with -able have also tripped up the masses. Predictable has been frequently (and wrongly) translated as “predictible.” Acceptable is sometimes (and, again, wrongly) written as “acceptible” and indispensable as “indispensible.”

Other suffix troubles in spelling are words that end in -ence. For instance, many are tempted to spell independence as “independance” or intelligence as “intelligance.”

They say the English language is one of the most difficult languages to learn, and it’s easy to understand why when becoming more familiar with the different ways of spelling some words.

A basic spell check program won’t cover the varied meanings of words like your and you’re, but it’s worth using for most other spelling needs. Reading more can help as well.

(Keep scrolling for answers to the above questions.)

Is It Mispelled or Misspelled? Common Spelling Mistakes

Correct Answers

    All three words are incorrectly spelled in the top image.
    And, drum roll please, mispelled is … misspelled.