This tutorial shows how to use the spelling and grammar check in Microsoft Word 2016. The steps are similar for Word 2013 and Word 2010.
If you use Word for Microsoft 365, Word 2021, or Word 2019, the spelling and grammar check is now called the Editor. Visit “How to Use the Editor in Microsoft Word” for a complete tour of the new interface.
This tutorial is available as a YouTube video showing all the steps in real time.
Watch more than 150 other writing-related software tutorials on my YouTube channel.
Before we run the spelling and grammar check, we’ll look at how to include or exclude grammar from the check.
How to Include or Exclude Grammar
1. Select the File tab.
2. Select Options in the Backstage view.
3. Select Proofing in the Word Options dialog box.
4. Select or deselect Check grammar with spelling.
5. Select the OK button to save your selection and close the Word Options dialog box.
How to Run the Spelling and Grammar Check
1. Select the Review tab.
2. Select Spelling & Grammar.
3. Choose the appropriate option for each spelling and grammar error detected.
Choose an option from the suggestions list to change that instance of the spelling error.
Or, open the drop-down menu for a suggestion and select Change All to change every instance of the spelling error to that suggestion.
You can also choose (a) Add to Dictionary to add the word with its current spelling to your custom dictionary, (b) Ignore Once to ignore that instance of the spelling error, or (c) Ignore All to ignore every instance of the spelling error.
Occasionally, Word will be unable to provide any suggestions; however, when that lapse occurs, the software will still offer the opportunity to add the word to your custom dictionary, ignore the word once, or ignore every instance of the word.
Choose an option from the suggestions list to change that instance of the grammar error.
Or, select (a) Ignore Once to ignore that instance of the grammar error, (b) Don’t check for this issue to stop checking for that type of grammar error, or (c) Options for “Clarity and Conciseness” to open the Grammar Settings dialog box where you can customize the grammar check.
If you want to learn about the grammar error and see examples, open the drop-down menu above the text box.
Pro Tip: The spelling and grammar check will automatically pause itself if you edit the text during the check. Select the Resume button when you are ready to restart the check.
If you have chosen to include readability statistics in your proofing options, the Readability Statistics dialog box will appear after you complete the spelling and grammar check.
For more information about using the readability statistics in Word, visit “How to Add Passive Voice to Microsoft Word’s Grammar Check and Readability Statistics” for Word 2013 and “How to Use the Passive Voice Tool in Microsoft Word 2016.”
Updated March 03, 2022