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OS X Mavericks: Check spelling and grammar in documents

Check spelling and grammar in documents

In many OS X apps, you can check spelling, grammar, or both in your documents. Even when you use a spell checker, it’s a good idea to read through your documents yourself.

If an app’s Edit menu doesn’t include a spelling or grammar command, check its preferences or menus to see if it has its own spell checker.

To set an option to correct spelling automatically in all apps that support it, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Keyboard, then click Text.

Check spelling and grammar

Correct spelling as you type:
Choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Correct Spelling Automatically (a checkmark shows it’s on). Misspelled words are automatically corrected (unless they begin with a capital letter or appear alone on a line).
Check spelling in an entire document:
Choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Check Document Now. The first error is highlighted. To show the next error, press Command-semicolon (;). To see suggested spellings for a word, Control-click it.
Check spelling of a word:
Select the word, then choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Show Spelling and Grammar.
Check spelling as you type:
Choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Check Spelling While Typing. Misspelled words are underlined in red.
Accept or ignore suggested words:
To accept a suggestion (shown when automatic correction is on), press the Space bar or click the one you want, then continue typing. To ignore a suggestion, just continue typing.
Check grammar and spelling:
Choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Check Grammar With Spelling (a checkmark shows it’s on). Misspelled words are underlined in red and grammar errors in green.
Add a word to your personal dictionary:
Control-click the word, then choose Learn Spelling. The word won’t be flagged as misspelled in any document.
Remove a word from your personal dictionary:
Control-click the word, then choose Unlearn Spelling.

Use advanced options

Choose Edit > Spelling and Grammar > Show Spelling and Grammar, then do any of the following:

Use a different language to check the document:
Choose a language, or choose Open Text Preferences to see more options.
Check grammar with spelling:
Make sure “Check grammar” is selected.
Correct an error:
Retype the word, then click Change. Or double-click a suggestion in the list.
Leave a word unchanged:
Click Ignore. The word is ignored if it occurs again in the document, but is highlighted if it appears in other documents. (In some apps, you can Control-click the word in the document, then choose Ignore Spelling.)
Add a word to your personal dictionary:
Click Learn. The word won’t be flagged as misspelled in any document.
See a suggestion’s dictionary entry:
Click Define.
See alternatives:
If no suggestions are listed, click Guess to show any possible alternatives.
Last Modified: May 8, 2014
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  • Last Modified: May 8, 2014
  • Article: PH13919
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