How to Improve Your Spelling As an Adult

Both native speakers and language learners find English spelling tough…

Both native speakers and language learners find English spelling tough to master. Because English is a language that absorbs new words, it has different spellings to pronounce the same sound.

However, improving your English spelling isn’t impossible: you can see a noticeable improvement in your spelling by using some techniques that good spellers use. As with other things, learning to spell correctly is a lot easier when you are a child.

That’s why we emphasize the fact that learning should be as early as possible; it will help you immensely. However, you can still improve your spelling even as an adult.

In this post, we will take a look at some tips and tricks you can use to improve your spelling as an adult.

Why Do You Need Good Spelling Skills?

Photo by Jakob on Unsplash

Misspelled words make your writing look unprofessional like nothing else. You might be thinking to yourself, “in the age of spelling checkers why would we need to know the correct way to spell?”

Yes, spelling checkers have been a blessing for all sorts of people —writers, academics, students, and even teachers. Although technology can tell us when we’ve made errors by checking things, there are limitations to what technology can do.

For example, it can correct your misspelling for another word, which has nothing to do with what you are talking about. Homophones are especially tricky for spelling checkers. Imagine a scenario where you mistakenly wrote “peik” instead of “peek.” What happens if the software corrects it to “peak?” Now, you have ruined the whole meaning of the sentence! Now imagine you made this mistake on your dissertation thesis: it would be thrown out because of a simple error!

How to Improve Your Spelling As an Adult?

There are many things you can do to make your spelling better as an adult. Here are some of them.

1. Dictionaries Are Your Friend!

Despite the fact that memory aids assist in memorizing difficult-to-spell words, good spellers do not rely solely on memory. They depend on a reliable and up-to-date dictionary to practice. Various types of dictionaries exist, both in print and online.

The important thing here is that you should use a dictionary that is compatible with the dialect you want to learn and use. And this brings us to our next point.

2. Choose Your Dialect

As you may know, English spelling changes significantly depending on the country you are in. American English, for example, removed many of the unspoken “u”s from words such as color (colour in British English), favor (favour), rumor (rumour), and so on. 

These differences are not right or wrong. We can’t say color is wrong, and the correct spelling is colour. They are regional differences that have developed over time.

That’s why you have to be consistent in your writing. You can’t write colour in one sentence and behavior in the next. Consistency is key. 

3. Keep on Reading!

One of the things that most people do is memorize spelling rules. Instead of focusing so much on rules, you should focus on practicing. Of course, if we are talking about how to improve your spelling as an adult, reading is the best answer!

Reading is one of the best ways to familiarize yourself with words and their spelling. The more you see something, the more you will be able to identify it the next time you encounter it. 


Here are a few suggestions on how to improve your spelling: Keep a dictionary nearby, change your dialect as you grow, and best of all pursue your hobbies during your free time!

All of these practices will allow you to improve your spelling skills especially as you age.

Frequently asked questions

What do you call someone who can’t spell correctly?

Catography means bad spelling or writing. Cacographers are bad at spelling and writing.

What is the fastest way to learn spelling words for adults?

  • Memorize Sight Words. Sight words are common words that can’t always be heard out.
  • Read More Books
  • Find common prefixes and suffixes.
  • Keep an eye on tricksy words.
  • Use Mnemonics
  • Spelling exceptions should be taken into account.
  • Test Yourself
  • Every day you can improve your spelling skills.

How can I improve my spell?

  • Keep a good dictionary.
  • Make sure to use British or American spellings consistently.
  • In your dictionary, always check “troublesome” suffixes.
  • Feel free to create your own “difficult-to-spell” lists.
  • Learn how to pronounce frequently missed words.

Why can I read well but not spell?

Dyslexia is uncommon, but it is common for individuals with dyslexia to learn to read fairly well, but difficulties with spelling (and handwriting) tend to persist throughout life, requiring some instruction, accommodations, task modifications,.

Does reading improve spelling?

Re-reading books provides an opportunity to help your young reader learn important reading comprehension skills, but it can also lead to an instant improvement in spelling skills (but you don’t have to tell them that!).

How can I test myself for spelling words?

  • Write the first letter of one spelling word on a sheet of lined paper.
  • Say the word and then write the letter as you write it.
  • Next, write the first letter again, then the second letter.
  • As you write the letter, you just say the word.

How do you spell 12?

12 is the spelling of Twelve in English.

What causes spelling difficulties in adults?

Spell problems are usually related to one or more areas of processing that aren’t working as well as it could, should, and can. Your ability to spell words is affected by two main systems. They are visual and auditory systems.

Why is double t written?

I use a double “t” in a written character to close the first syllable (which is an open, stressed sYllable, with only one “t”). Vowels are pronounced differently in (stressed) open syllables than closed sYllable.

How do you deal with a struggling speller?

  • It enables you to maintain your basic spelling rules.
  • Lists of spelled words by word families.
  • Master Sight Words
  • By sound, break down words.
  • Practice Spelling by using manipulatives.

Does poor spelling mean dyslexia?

Spelling difficulties are commonly associated with poor reading, or other problems may be associated with dyslexia that persists over time once a reading deficit has resolved (Kohnen, Nickels, Coltheart, & Brunsdon. (2008).

How can adults improve their spelling for free?

  • Know the rules. Even though they aren’t consistent and there are plenty of exceptions, it’s still worth learning spelling rules in English.
  • Look for patterns
  • Spell out loud
  • Prefixes and suffixes recognize.
  • The origin of words should be studied.
  • Study Dolch Words
  • Keep reading as often as possible.
  • Use mnemonics

Does spelling get worse with age?

According to studies, a decline in spell-ability is related to age.

Why do I keep forgetting how do you spell words?

The brain’s left parietal lobe can sometimes damage the ability to spell words. The skill of orthographic memory is commonly known as. Deep agraphia causes people to struggle not only to remember a word’s spelling, but they might also have difficulties in recalling how to “sound out” it.

How can adults improve spelling mistakes in English?

  • Use mnemonics
  • Here are a few rules.
  • Learn how to spell commonly misspelled words.
  • Find the words you’re having difficulties spelling.
  • Look into the dictionary’s origins of words.
  • Chunk it
  • Sound it out
  • Draw a picture
How to Improve Your Spelling As an Adult

Pam is an expert grammarian with years of experience teaching English, writing and ESL Grammar courses at the university level. She is enamored with all things language and fascinated with how we use words to shape our world.

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