If you’re still coming to terms with using English in an academic context, you might want to look into using a spelling, grammar or writing tool. The good news is, there are several free options that will not only spot common errors, but will also help you learn how to avoid these mistakes in the future, making you a better writer in the process.
If you’re looking for a free grammar checker, spelling aid or writing tool, here are seven worth trying.
Reverso isn’t just a grammar checker – it’s also a powerful piece of translation software. Reverso lets you construct sentences in your chosen language, which can be helpful if you’re struggling to put something into English. That means, if you’re not too confident with your ability to write in English, Reverso has all the tools in one place to help you construct a compelling piece of writing.
Named after classic writer Ernest Hemingway, Hemingway is a browser-based writing tool that assists in making your writing clear and concise.
The tool looks at things like style, grammar, and use of the passive voice and ‘filler’ words that add nothing to the overall content of the essay. Hemingway will also suggest words that will give your writing more impact.
To use Hemingway, you simply need to copy and paste your text into the site and make changes to your writing as you see fit.
Slick Write is a web-based grammar tool that highlights spelling errors and common grammatical mistakes, while also suggesting ways in which your writing could be improved.
As the name suggests, Slick Write aims to make your writing as ‘slick’ as possible – that is, enjoyable, easy to follow, and impactful in its content. If you’re worried that your writing is too difficult to read, paste it into Slick Write and make your essay slick!
Scribens is a powerful tool that is able to catch over 10 times more grammatical errors and spelling mistakes than Microsoft Word’s inbuilt free grammar checker.
Scribens also has a dictionary and thesaurus function that offers definitions and alternatives to certain words, allowing you to avoid word repetition in your writing.
Grammarix is another web-based grammar and spell checker that instantly spots errors in your sentence structure or prose. It’s also able to detect plagiarism, which is an incredibly useful function for students. The tool will point out which areas of your work need to be reworded and paraphrased in order to avoid academic penalty.
Virtual Writing Tutor
Virtual Writing Tutor is built for academic essays. Its primary purpose is to point out errors in academic work, which will improve your academic writing style, not only your general writing ability.
This checker will also help you paraphrase your own work, allowing you to avoid plagiarism and writing penalties in the process.
A list of free grammar checkers wouldn’t be complete without Grammarly. Grammarly has a free web app that allows you to paste your work and check for errors, but it also has a free browser plugin. This plugin helps capture common grammar and spelling errors in Google Docs and even when composing an email or tweet. Grammarly has an app, too, as well as a built-in keyboard for Android and iOS.