Britons rely on spellcheckers to spell common words

Hands using computer.jpg

If you've ever had to rely on an automatic spellchecker to tell you how to spell a word, you're not alone. A recent survey found that more than one in five Britons would panic if they didn't have access to spellchecking tools, while two in five claim they rely on autocorrect technology to spell check their work and highlight any mistakes.

Research published in The Independent identified fifty common English words which respondents had difficulty spelling, including 'fluorescent' (number 2 in the list below), 'necessary' (6) and 'occurrence' (16). The research was commissioned by television channel Nick Jr. UK to mark the launch of its new literacy-focused show, Wallykazam!

Whether you're writing about business (43), government (50) or your local restaurant (18), it's perhaps no surprise that you'll occasionally (5) have difficulty (39) working out the correct spelling of these common words; more than half of the 2,000 adults surveyed struggled to spell at least some of them.

In addition, almost a quarter of respondents admitted to having been embarrassed by a spelling mistake made in the workplace, while nearly half of those surveyed said that they judged other people for poor spelling.

Which common English words do people find hard to spell?

The survey identified fifty English words that respondents found hard to spell:

  • Embarrassment
  • Fluorescent
  • Accommodate
  • Psychiatrist
  • Occasionally
  • Necessary
  • Questionnaire
  • Mischievous
  • Rhythm
  • Minuscule
  • Conscience
  • Xylophone
  • Pronunciation
  • Graffiti
  • Millennium
  • Occurrence
  • Exhilarate
  • Restaurant
  • Accessory
  • Guarantee
  • License
  • Separate
  • Believe
  • Colleague
  • Definite
  • Humorous
  • Weird
  • Symphony
  • Illicit
  • Species
  • Appearance
  • Possession
  • Vacuum
  • Changeable
  • Queue
  • Acquire
  • Receipt
  • Receive
  • Difficulty
  • Foreign
  • Discipline
  • Equipment
  • Business
  • Relevant
  • Beautiful
  • Technology
  • Neighbour
  • Friend
  • Religious
  • Government

Are there any other words that you find hard to spell? Have you judged colleagues who have made spelling mistakes at work? Let us know in the comments below.

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