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The Australian National University

Spelling and the internet

Part one

For this exercise you will need access to the Internet. In testing the exercise, we used the Google search engine.

Go to: http://www.google.com.au

Type in each of the words exactly as they are spelled below, and for each write down the number of documents the search engine found with this spelling.

Then use your mathematical skills to work out the percentage for each spelling.

millennium

millenium

milennium

milenium

What are the main mistakes made in trying to spell this word?

 

“all right” [It is necessary to use the double quotation marks to search for the two words together.]

alright

What does your dictionary say about the spelling alright?

 

embarrassment

embarassment

embarrasment

What are the main mistakes made in trying to spell this word?

 

mischievous

mischievious

mischevious

mischeivous

How does your dictionary pronounce this word? What is the most common mispronunciation of the word? Which of the above spellings are probably the result of the mispronunciation?

 

privilege

priviledge

privledge

priveledge

privilage

privelige

What are the main causes of the misspelling of this word?

 

definitely

definately

definitly

definatly

definitley

What are the main causes of the misspelling of this word?

 

accommodation

accomadation

acommodation

accommadation

What are the main causes of the misspelling of this word?

Part two

In the first part of this exercise you searched the Web using Google.

This time we will use Google to search Groups.

What is meant by the term ‘Groups’ in this context?

Go to http://www.google.com

Just below the word Google there is a menu with four items:

Web Images Groups Directory

Choose Groups.

Now repeat the exercise of Part 1 with the words below, but this time searching Groups.

Type in each of the words exactly as they are spelled below, and for each write down the number of documents the search engine found with this spelling.

Then use your mathematical skills to work out the percentage for each spelling.

Is there any significant difference between Web pages and Group pages as far as spelling accuracy is concerned?

How would you explain the differences?

millennium

millenium

milennium

milenium

 

“all right” [It is necessary to use the double quotation marks to search for the two words together.]

alright

 

embarrassment

embarassment

embarrasment

 

mischievous

mischievious

mischevious

mischeivous

 

privilege

priviledge

privledge

priveledge

privilage

privelige

 

definitely

definately

definitly

definatly

definitley

 

accommodation

accomadation

acommodation

accommadation

Updated: 19 October 2010/ Responsible Officer:  Centre Director / Page Contact:  Web Publisher