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Have you ever noticed the teacher's wiggly red line under some of your words when you are typing in Word?


This is the spellchecker at work. What it means is that have typed a word that is not in the dictionary and therefore could be a spelling mistake.

Here are some quick tips on how to use this feature. Did you know if you RIGHT click over a word with a red wiggly line under it you will be presented with a quick shortlist of suggested corrections.

Take the example below. I RIGHT clicked over the word center and a list of suggested corrections were presented to me. So if I wish to correct it with centre all I have to do is hover over that word with the mouse and click on it and hey presto - the word center is corrected to centre

center spellcheck

What if the word that is underlined is actually correctly spelt?

If the word is correctly spelt but is not in the Dictionary why not 'teach' Word to accept this spelling from now on by right clicking on the word and selecting Add to Dictionary.

Here's an example...

add to dictionary


This means that from now on the word Wiebke will not be marked as a spelling mistake in any of the Microsoft Office programmes.

So where is the dictionary stored?

The list of words you add to the standard dictionary are listed in a Custom Dictionary file called CUSTOM.DIC and RoamingCustom.dic

Can I edit the words I have told the Spellchecker to accept?

Yes. In Word Click on File and then Options. Then click the Proofing link on the left. Now click the button that says Custom Dictionaries and click on CUSTOM.DIC then the Edit Word List button. Here you will see a list of the words that Word has been taught to accept. To remove a word in the list, highlight it and click the delete button. To add a word, type it in the top and click the Add button.  (Clicking on RoamingCustom.dic - edits the Word List for the roaming dictionary which syncs across other workstations you might use)

Tip: Did you know you start up the Spellchecker in most Microsoft programmes by pressing the F7 key? f7

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