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I want to help some non-English-speaking acquaintances communicate better in English. Are there any web applications I can point them to which can check English for spelling mistakes or grammar mistakes? Preferably one without too many flashing advertisements.

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closed as off-topic by Al E., Eight Days of Malaise, Vidar S. Ramdal, Alex, Jacob Jan Tuinstra Jun 27 at 11:12

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  • "Application/website recommendations are off-topic and out of scope. It is better instead to use a particular web app or website and ask for help in any issues you have with it specifically." – Al E., Eight Days of Malaise, Vidar S. Ramdal, Alex, Jacob Jan Tuinstra
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4 Answers 4

If you will also consider a paid service, I can highly recommend Wordy.

You can get an instant quote automatically, simply by pasting your text online, or uploading a document. The text is then checked for grammar, spelling, punctuation and structure by professional copy-editors.

I have used the service a few times, and I think I never had to wait for more than 30 minutes for the results.

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I think it's a good answer here; I'm not sure what the policy is about paid sites, but I think this could be a very useful answer for someone. –  delete Jul 1 '10 at 1:09
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After the Deadline is a really nice service that has both a Firefox extension and a Chrome extension for quickly checking spelling/grammer/style as you edit in your browser on any site.

It can also be used online at polishmywriting.com.

When you try Terry's example of "there house" it suggests that you may have meant "their house" and will also give you an explanation:

"their, there"

You may have used one word when you meant another. A common cause of these errors are homophones. A homophone is two words that sound alike but have different meanings and spellings. Review the definition of the word you used and the word suggested.

Review definitions:

  • their: something that belongs to them
  • there: not here

This service also isn't cluttered with advertisements like many other services.

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+1. polishmywriting.com works surprisingly well. Especially the style suggestions. –  Peter Mortensen Jul 15 '10 at 20:32
    
Checking the first paragraph of your answer with polishmywriting.com revealed: "grammer"... –  Peter Mortensen Jul 15 '10 at 20:39
    
Checking the whole answer revealed: explaination (should be explanation). –  Peter Mortensen Jul 15 '10 at 20:43
    
That didn't work at all when I tried it. I entered this sentence: "this are very good services. We is going crazies like mad mans." and it said "No writing errors were found.". –  delete Jul 16 '10 at 3:32
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Have you seen http://spellcheckplus.com/

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That one certainly hits the "annoying ads" target. –  delete Jun 30 '10 at 23:30
    
If you are really looking for decent grammer checking then I think spellcheckplus is a pretty poor choice. After playing with it for a while it could not even identify the most egregious grammatical errors. –  Prestaul Jul 1 '10 at 18:29
    
@Prestaul Maybe so - but neither can MS Word. –  MGOwen Aug 16 '10 at 5:00
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I tried spellcheckplus.com and it is a great site! I don't think using "egregious" errors is a good way of testing. A good grammar checker should catch common errors, not necessarily egregious ones (especially if they are unlikely). For example, if you write "House green the big like I" (for "I like the big greeen house"), and then expect a grammar checker to help, that is not realistic. It should catch things like "there house" and "I would have went" though, which is the case with spellcheckplus.com

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@Terry, you are right. I don't know what happened the first time I visited the site, but I tried a lot of input and literally had nothing flagged for grammer. Today it seems to catch everything that I throw at it. The advertising may make you crazy, but the grammer check seems pretty good! –  Prestaul Jul 8 '10 at 14:57
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