Spelling and Grammar Quick Check

Fastest ways to spell check in Microsoft Word

Proofreading checklist on a card

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Rather than scrolling through a Word document to find the grammar and spelling errors that Word tagged, use the built-in spelling and grammar tools to automatically go to each word or passage that Word identifies as incorrect. There are three ways to use the spelling and grammar checker in Word.

Instructions in this article apply to Word for Office 365, Word 2019, Word 2016, Word 2013, and Word 2010.

Run the Spelling and Grammar Checker Manually

The spelling and grammar checker in Word flags potential errors so that you can quickly review and correct mistakes, if necessary. In addition, the tool checks words and phrases for clarity and offers suggestions or explanations.

  1. Open the Word document you want to check.

  2. Go to the Review tab.

  3. In the Proofing group, select Check Document.

    Check Document button in Word
  4. The Editor pane displays the potential errors that Word found.

    In older versions of Word, a dialog box appears and displays the first error found.

    Editor pane in Word
  5. Select a suggested correction to make the change in the document.

    Grammar and spelling suggestions in Word
  6. Select Ignore to ignore the suggested correction and continue with the spelling and grammar check.

    Ignore Once, Ignore All
  7. If the potential error occurs more than once, select Ignore Once or Ignore All to ignore a single instance or all instances of the flagged text.

Start the Spelling and Grammar Checker With a Shortcut

Press the F7 shortcut key to go to the first mistake in the sentence where the insertion point is currently located. If nothing is tagged in the current sentence, Word goes to the next error.

This shortcut opens the spelling and grammar menu (this menu also appears when you right-click on a questionable entry). Make a selection from the menu before you use the shortcut key again.

If you don't want to make any edits to the text, move the cursor to the next sentence, then press F7 to go to the next error.

Editor pane in Word

Find Errors Quickly With the Spelling and Grammar Button

Another way to move from error to error is to double-click the Spelling and Grammar button on the status bar, it looks like an open book. As with the shortcut key, it takes you through the errors. Unlike the shortcut key, however, you don't have to make a selection or click elsewhere before moving to the next error. Double-click the button again to move to the next error.

Spelling and Grammar button in Word

This method can be unpredictable in terms of the starting point. Position the cursor at the beginning of the document for the best results.

A Caveat About Using the Word Spelling and Grammar Checker

The spelling and grammar checker is a valuable feature and catches many errors. But Word doesn't catch every error and mistake. The checker doesn't tag a correctly spelled word that is used incorrectly, and it may not tag it as an error. For example, their, they're, and there are often used incorrectly and Word may not tag these words when spelled correctly.

Never rely solely on this feature to ensure that the text in your document is spelled correctly and that the grammar is correct. Always proofread your documents in addition to running a spelling and grammar check.