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Mac OS X 10.6: Checking spelling and grammar

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Checking spelling and grammar

In some Mac OS X applications, you can check the spelling and grammar in a document. You can also have the application check spelling for you automatically as you type, and use advanced spelling and grammar options, such as adding your own words to the spelling dictionary.

To check spelling in a document:

  1. With the document open, choose Edit > “Spelling and Grammar” > Check Document Now. The first error in your document is highlighted.

  2. Either correct the word or leave it as is, and then press Command-semicolon (;) to see the next error.

    To see suggested alternate spellings for a word, and get easy access to other spelling and grammar commands, hold down the Control key as you click an error.

To check grammar along with spelling:

With the document you want to check open, choose Edit > “Spelling and Grammar” > Check Grammar With Spelling, so there’s a checkmark next to it.

To check spelling and grammar as you type:

Open the application you want to use and choose Edit > “Spelling and Grammar” > Check Spelling While Typing.

When you mistype or misspell a word, it’s underlined in red so you can quickly spot errors and correct them. If you make a grammar error, it’s underlined in green.

To use advanced spelling and grammar options:

  1. With a document open, choose Edit > “Spelling and Grammar” > “Show Spelling and Grammar.”

  2. To change the language, choose it from the pop-up menu.

  3. To check grammar along with spelling, select the “Check grammar” checkbox.

  4. If an error is found, do one of the following:

    • If one of the suggested alternatives is correct, select it and click Change.

    • If none of the alternatives is correct, retype the word or words and click Change.

    • If you don’t want to make a correction, click Ignore.

    • If you don’t want the word to be treated as an error, click Learn to add it to your personal dictionary. (In some applications, you can Control-click the word and choose Learn Spelling from the shortcut menu.)

    • To review a definition of a suggested alternative, select it and click Define.

    • If no alternatives are listed, click Guess to see whether any possibilities appear.

    • To continue checking without making any changes, click Find Next.

If you accidentally add a misspelled word to the dictionary, type the misspelling in the Spelling and Grammar window and click Ignore, or Control-click the misspelling and choose Unlearn Spelling from the shortcut menu.

If you don’t see the “Spelling and Grammar” command in the Edit menu, the application doesn’t provide the Mac OS X spell-checking feature. Check the application’s preferences or menus to see if it has its own spelling checker.

It’s a good idea to read through your document yourself, even if you use the spell checker. If you type “fine” instead of “find,” for example, it won’t show up as a misspelled word.

Last Modified: Aug 6, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Aug 6, 2013
  • Article: PH6911
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