There is no doubt that English is a very difficult language to spell and a lot of people do admit to being a bad speller.

If this is you, there are some jobs which are best avoided. Proofreading is one of them.

If your spelling is sound, you could consider embarking on a proofreading course

One of the things you would have to do as a proofreader is to correct spelling mistakes. This is one of the key editorial skills that we teach on our proofreading course

Due to the nature of the English language, it is hardly surprising to know that there is a ‘dictionary’ of the most commonly misspelt words.

There are basically two common types of spelling mistake. The obvious one is to actually misspell a word.  The other is to confuse two similarly spelt words. There is therefore another list of the most commonly confused pairs of words.

We do not actually need to go beyond the first letter of the alphabet to find examples.

Some of the most commonly misspelt words in the English language are: accommodation, across, appearance and argument.

Similarly, commonly confused pairs are: accept and except, adverse and averse, advice and advise, affect and effect.

You might like to consider whether you have trouble spelling a particular word or confuse two similarly spelt words.

Like me, you may sometimes write a word which does not look right. However, you are unable to ascertain the correct spelling and need to look it up.

Even good proof readers occasionally make errors like the above. Just in case, they have at their disposal a good dictionary as well as a thesaurus. There are also websites aimed at proof readers, where the correct version of a word can be found.

See our proofreading course