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Patch's Poll: Is It OK To Rely On Spell Check?

A journalism school drops its basic spelling test, saying Spell Check can handle that job. Is it OK to allow technology to replace basic knowledge? Take our poll and add your thoughts in the comments.

The University of North Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communication’s "spelling and grammar test, a requirement for all students in the school, will no longer include a spelling portion as administrators attempt to adapt to the changing industry," The Daily Tarheel is reporting.

The paper reported that "The decision to change the test came after a committee of faculty and staff concluded that the presence of computer tools such as spell check made the spelling portion unnecessary," quoting Chris Roush, senior associate dean in the school.

In the spirit of full disclosure, the author of this article is appalled by this decision. I think knowing how to spell is as important as knowing how to tie your shoes, chewing with your mouth closed, and washing your hands after using the bathroom. It's that basic, and no amount of technoligy should stand in for that.

But what do I know? Take our poll and add your thoughts in the comments!

Martha J. April 05, 2012 at 12:14 PM
I agree with all of the above posters. As someone who worked in law offices since high school, it gags me to see the number of people who cannot spell or are too lazy to take the time to proofread. Then again, if some of the writers are graduating from high school with such a lack of spelling, I fault the teachers who promote them from grade to grade.
Lisa Beth April 05, 2012 at 12:46 PM
As a writer, I love spell/grammar check, I have customized it to my needs and I use it every day. Like a calculator, it's a wonderful tool but it should never replace a working knowledge of the English language anymore than a calculator should replace basic math skills. My children were introduced to 'inventive spelling' in grade school and they were never introduced to 'how to spell correctly'. They would bring home tests, school work, home work, essays, and more with things misspelled all over the pages and not once did a teacher correct them! I was shocked. As they got older and entered high school I would inquire about their lack of being able to spell and how could they go from grade to grade this way. I was repeatedly told by teacher after NLPS teacher "That's what spell check is for." To this very day my 26 and 20 year-old daughters still ask me; "Mom, how do you spell ______?" Drives me batty.
Betty Lebert April 05, 2012 at 04:28 PM
Yes, this says it all! I'm appalled at the lack of correct spelling today - and they don't care!
Jean Chappell April 05, 2012 at 08:32 PM
Sum buddy can be accepted for somebody. Spell check doesn't seem to understand the context of a sentence.
Tom Gez April 12, 2012 at 08:47 AM
Hi All, I think that it is important to know how to spell. It is a basic human function. How would you know which is the right spelling when shown by a spell check, if you don't know how to spell? Especially, in the field of journalism, I believe that they made a mistake. It is necessary to know how to spell for journalists. I want to suggest on this note that spell checks do have a place, but not instead of spelling education. I personally use a great spell checker, Spell Check Anywhere. It adds spell checking to all of Windows programs, and is very powerful.

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