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Improve Your English

Since a time, it can be observed that Germans do not master their language any more. But this is not restricted to Germans. Obviously the growing consumption of audio-visual media, esp. TV, leads to a loss of certainty and routine in the use of written language, and this is, for now, a special problem of our youth.

So this is not a sign of lacking intelligence or education, it is only a lack of exercise.

It always makes me laugh when I see native speakers of English confuse these word:

  • there (here and there) - their (our and their)
  • formally (in form and style) - formerly (in the past)
  • whether (if) - weather (sun and rain)
  • personal (own) - personnel (team, employees)
  • boarder (pupil of a boarding school) - border (frontier)
  • bare (blank and bare) - bear (carry, or: animal)
  • here (here and there) - hear (hear and see)
  • you're (something you are) - your (something belonging to you)

And here some more terms prone to mistake:

  • existance (better: existence)
  • more to come...

Spelling and pronunciation conflicts between the English and American languages can lead to ESL confusion:

  • Fibre (UK) / Fiber (US) - as in optical fibre cable or getting more fibre into your diet
  • Aluminium / Aluminum (US) - the latter being originally a trade name for aluminium products and since having stuck
  • Hmmm, this list could get long...

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