When you've worked for hours on a resumé or a report, the last thing you want to do is send it out with goofs. Word's spelling and grammar tools help you avoid that kind of embarrassment. In this chapter, you'll learn how to use these tools. You'll also get a clear understanding of when and how Word makes automatic changes to your text. Even more important, you'll learn how to set up these tools to work the way you like to work.
If you really want to sound smart, Word can help you with some extra research, giving you access to a comprehensive Web-based reference library, including dictionary, encyclopedia, thesaurus, Web search, and language translation tools (Figure 6-1).
Spelling errors make any document look unprofessional, so ignoring Word's spell checker is just plain silly. And while grammar and style are largely subjective, the grammar-checking tool can help you spot glaring errors (like mixing up "it's" and "its"). When Microsoft first added these tools to Word, some people resented the intrusion, as discussed in the box in Section 6.1. The fact is, you're in control. You can choose whether you want Word to check your work as you type, flagging misspelled words and questionable grammar (Figure 6-2), or whether you prefer to get the words on the page first, and then review the spelling and grammar at the end.
Figure 6-1. Access to Word's Spelling and Grammar checker is on the Review → ...