Introduction to Spellings

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This part of the English section is not very frequently tested, and when tested is, more often than not, easy to crack. So it’s time to learn a few basic spelling rules, apply them in the entrance paper, and earn some easy brownie points.

So, here are a few tips which might come of use when you rack your brains to figure out if ‘one receives an award’ or ’recieves an award’.

The best way to memorise spellings of words is to make mnemonics or some connection with everyday life with the spelling. An example of this would be thus:-

1. Stationery and stationary; the former being pencil, pen, eraser, etc., and the latter being still, static, standing. One easy way of remembering this is that stationERy includesERaser. Notice the ER in both the words, and make a connect. StationAry means stAnding, again make the connect.
It is indispensable and not indispensible. Indispensable means something essential and something on cannot do without. Something becomes indispensABLE if you are unABLE to do without it.

2. ‘I’ before ‘E’, except after C.
• Receive, deceive, perceive, etc.(E before I)
• Exceptions to this rule: ancient, efficient, and science.
• Weigh, field, fiend, friend, etc. (I before E)
• Exceptions to this rule: Either, foreign, height, leisure, protein, weird

3. Breaking up a word into parts helps a great deal in spelling it right.
• Iconoclasm can be broken up into ikono-clazm.
• Kleptomaniacal: klepto-mayn-i-a-cal.
• Recapitulate: re-capi-tu-late.

4. Pronouncing the word in the right manner.
English is a funny language and some words are not spelt the way they are pronounced, but this tip could come of use for a few words. One cannot possibly memorise the spelling of the word ‘triskaidekaphobia’ if one does not know how to pronounce it. (by the way, triskaidekaphobia means fear of the number 13)

Exercise

Choose the option, which in your view is the right spelling of the word.

1) a) Vaccilate
b) Vacilate
c) Vacillate
d) Vaccillate

2) a) peccadillo
b) pecadillo
c) piccadillo
d) picadillo

3) a) diaphanuous
b) diaphanous
c) diafanous
d) dyaphanous

4) a) peadophila
b) pidophile
c) paedophile
d) peidophile

5) a) dichotomy
b) diochtomy
c) dictomy
d) diachotomy

Look up the words in the dictionary and it would become a quick vocab exercise too.
Key:- 1) c. 2) a. 3) b. 4) c. 5) a.

Manasa M Dhar,
NALSAR University of Law.

4 COMMENTS

  1. good job manu 😛 😀 [thee toungie smiley is cause I’ve never called u that before :P] [the grinny one is cause u really are doing a good job.thank you :)]

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