Essentials of Good English

Spelling and Pronunciation

Suppose you and your friend is playing a game. In this game, you have to tell a word with its correct spelling. What should you need to win that game?  A good vocabulary with correct pronunciation and spelling will ensure your success. Also when you need to talk to others or when you want to express yourself you need to pronounce in the correct way.

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In the business world also, you need to communicate with others on daily basis. One must have a good knowledge of spelling and a rice vocabulary. In this section, we are going to learn spelling and pronunciation.


The proper arrangement of letter used to make a meaningful word is a spelling. Proper and good English is essential in our life. One can easily guess the spelling of a word by its pronunciation. But it is not always the case. There are certain exceptions in it. There are some rules in which one can easily learn and remember the spellings.

Importance of Spellings

One must know the correct spelling of the words. Some of the importance of knowing correct spellings is

  • It enables effective communication
  • Spelling helps in reading
  • It helps in understanding the relation between the sound and the words
  • It helps in effective writing
  • Spelling helps in maintaining a good impression

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Errors in Writing Spellings

One must take care of how to spell the word correctly. Some of the common errors related to spelling are

Confusion between ‘ei’ and ‘ie’

  • The word receive has ‘ei’ and the word chief has ‘ie’ letters.
  • It is interesting to note that one uses ‘ie’ after the letter ‘c’. One uses the letters ‘ei’ with the rest.

Repetition of alphabets

  • The words tomorrow, beginning, profession, business etc. have the repetition of alphabets in them.

Extra alphabet in the word

  • An extra alphabet in a word changes the meaning of the word.
  • In the word ‘to’ if we add one extra ‘o’, we get ‘too’.
  • The word ‘to’ means in the direction of whereas the word ‘too’ means also.

Retaining and dropping the letter ‘e’

  • One must always know when to drop or to keep the letter ‘e’ while making a new word from the root.
  • One must drop the letter ‘e’ when the word ‘whole’ changes to wholly. The letter ‘e’ is kept in sincerely.

Words with the same pronunciation but with different spellings

  • Some of the examples are compliment and complement, advise and advice, whole and hole, rain and reign etc.

Use of the letter ‘z’ and ‘s’

  • The use of the letter ‘s’ and the letter ‘z’ is acceptable. When one writes organization as organisation, he is correct.

Different past forms

There are words which have different past forms. It depends upon the place of their usage.

Lie → Lied → Lied

Lie → Lay → Laid

Both of them are correct. It only depends upon the place where they are going to be used.


The way in which a word is spoken is its pronunciation. There are some rules in which the words are pronounced. Improper pronunciation can lead to a bad impression. One should properly pronounce a word for effecting communication and avoiding misunderstanding.



Common Pronunciation Rules

Final s is pronounced as ‘z’ after voiced sounds

For example beds, boys, days, trees, dogs etc.

Final s is pronounced as ‘s’ after voiceless sounds

For example books, cups, students, cats etc.

Final s, es is pronounced as ‘ez’

For example sizes, pages, classes, pages, ages, matches etc.

Silent letters

There are some alphabets in a word which are not pronounced. The letter in the bracket is silent.

Different → Diff(e)rent

Every → Ev(e)ry

Chocolate → Choc(o)late

Restaurant → Rest(au)rant

Omelet → Om(e)let

Business → Bus(i)ness

Temperature → Temp(e)rature

Handkerchief → Han(d)kerchief

Wednesday → We(d)nesday

Bought → Bou(gh)t

Height → Hei(gh)t

Honest → (H)onest

Hour → (H)our

Knot → (k)not

How to Improve Spelling and Pronunciation

One can improve their English by learning proper pronunciation and spellings. The various ways of improving spellings and pronunciation are

  • Built the habit of writing every day
  • Read a book every day
  • Watch English channels, movies and listen to the radio
  • For a new word, one should look it in a dictionary to find the correct pronunciation
  • Keep a notebook for vocabulary
  • Speak in English with your friends
  • Think positively

Solved Examples for You

Problem: Which of the following is correct?

  1. Necessary
  2. Neccessary
  3. Necesary
  4. Necesaary

Solution: 1. Necessary

Problem: Which is correct?

  1. Assistant
  2. Asistant
  3. Assisstant
  4. None of the above

Solution: 1. Assistant.

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