How to Use Spell Check in Excel

Excel is always a great tool to play with numbers more than texts. Thus, a feature like, spell check is often overlooked compared to text editors. But it is one of most important features that Excel offers to its users to correct any error in texts instantly.

This ultimate guide covers up on how to use spell check in Excel by leveraging the options available for you in your workbook.

What is spell check in Excel?

Spell check in Excel determines a mechanism to correct any spelling errors of texts in your workbook. Though it’s not a word processing tool like MS Word, it still provides spell checking functionalities to achieve this purpose.

Thus, you cannot expect your workbook to underline on the misspelled words nor show any advanced options for grammar checking just same as MS Word does. But it’s still worthwhile to try out spell check feature in Excel to make sure any erroneous words are not shown in your workbook.

How to spell check in Excel?

Excel offers you a quicker way to do spell check by following only a few simple steps. Simply there are two ways of performing this and it’s your choice to pick up the most convenient way.

Let’s consider the following example which shows a list of words. This list includes both correctly spelled and misspelled words.

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Now select a cell in anywhere in the workbook.

Note: If you select only a range of cells in your workbook, Excel only runs spell check for those cells only.

Now choose a one method from following two ways:

  1. Press “F7” shortcut key in your keyboard to run spell check.
  2. Navigate to “Review” tab and click on “Spelling”.

Note: Spell check will only be run on the active worksheet that you are currently working on.

When a misspelled word is found, a dialog box will be popped up instantly, requiring a further action from you. So, it’s important to look into each option in the dialog box in detailed.

What’s in Spelling dialog box?

Spelling dialog box offers you a set of options to choose from, depending on the further action that you take once an erroneous word is found in your workbook. Each option has a unique action to correct the misspelled word. So, let’s have detailed insight about each option that is available in this dialog box.

Ignore Once

Whenever the spell check found a word as misspelled, you can keep the word without changing it in your workbook if you want. Because there may be some words which you don’t need the spell check to identify them as misspelled.

In this case, simply click on “Ignore Once” in the dialog box to tell the spell check to skip the word once without indicating it as an erroneous.

However, if you run the spell check again, it will identify the word as misspelled again.

Ignore All

If you have several instances of a particular word which is encountered by the spell check as an error, this option certainly saves your time.

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Click on “Ignore All” to skip all those instances to not to be identified as misspelled. So, all the instances of the word will be kept as they are, in the workbook.

Add to Dictionary

If Excel encountered a word as misspelled but still if it’s the correct word that you want to use in your workbook, this feature helps you to stop Excel flagging it as an error in future.

Simply you can add the word to the dictionary of Excel, and it will stop detecting it as a misspelled word. Make sure to check the spellings of the word again before adding it to the dictionary.

Note: Once you add a word to the dictionary, Excel will not detect the word as an error anymore in any workbook.

Adding a word to Excel dictionary

Let’s assume that “Bistech” is a name of a company. But spell check still finds it as an error. In order to prevent it from flagging the word as misspelled in future, let’s add it to the dictionary.

Once the “Spelling” dialog box is opened for the name “Bistech”, click on “Add to Dictionary” button.

Once you confirmed the addition of the new word to the dictionary, a dialog box will be appeared to indicate that the spell check is completed.


Whenever Excel encounters an error by running spell check, it has a wonderful feature to suggest the correct words to replace the misspelled word with one of them. The suggested list of words can be viewed under “Suggestions” in Spelling dialog box.

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You can simply pick the correct word out of the list if you need and click on “Change” to replace the word with misspelled word in the highlighted cell.

Since ‘randome’ is a misspelled word, it’s advisable to replace it with the correct spelling ‘random,’ which is likely to appear as a suggestion in the list of words. Then click on ‘Change’ to make the correction.