If the only spell checker you use is the default one in Microsoft Word, no wonder your essays don’t get the highest grades. Even Grammarly can’t catch all errors. So it’s time to get on and use some new tools of the trade. Today we get a quick overview of four less famous, yet powerful apps that can make your prose a whole lot tighter and cleaner and your life easier. Check out our shortlist and helpful tips on making the most of each app.
If you want one editor to rule them all, Perfect Tense is the one for you. It’s an ultimate spelling and grammar checker that boasts A-worthy results in under 10 seconds. The AI-powered software is accurate and does not require you to accept dozens of changes. The program corrects all mistakes with one click, saving your time and nerve.
On the downside, Perfect Tense is not free. For a monthly plan, you’re gonna pay $17, while a yearly subscription costs $97. Use a 5-day trial before purchase to make sure this software is what you need. The sign-up process is a bit complicated with a credit card number non-optional.
Perfect Tense might not make your prose perfect, but it will clean up the most common mistakes. Try it if you never know whether to use your or you’re, too or to.
Hemingway Editor 3.0
The name speaks for itself. The app’s developers condensed the essence of good writing into a sleek and functional design. This editor highlights wordy sentences in yellow and the unreadable ones in red. Hemingway locates the words and constructions that make your writing dull, wordy, and sloppy: passive voice, adverbs, and complicated phrases.
The web app is free to use without restrictions. However, if you want to use Hemingway as your primary word processor without Internet access, use the desktop version.
Hemingway Editor 3.0 is available for Windows and Mac OSX for only $19.99. After correcting and formatting the text, you can export it into Microsoft Word or publish on the web. Hemingway is a quick and easy way to streamline your writing. Aim for an overall readability score of 6 or 7 unless you are working on a research paper.
English Syntax Highlighter
Though not technically a text editor, English Syntax Highlighter is a useful tool if you want to analyze your writing and make a conscious effort to tighten it up. The application highlights different parts of speech (nouns, adverbs, particles, etc.) and punctuation marks. It works on simple and tricky sentences (The man we saw saw a saw).
The free web app is easy to use. Paste your text into the field and wait for it to be processed. You can toggle individual parts of speech on and off. If reading a multicolored text is way too much for you, try the underline mode.
Use English Syntax Highlighter to ensure each of your sentences is packed with meaning, not filler words. Toggle off all parts of speech besides nouns, verbs, and adjectives, and you will see the critical words that answer the questions of “who”, “what” and “how”. The more meaningful words you use, the better your writing will be.
Typely is the youngest on our shortlist of web editors. It aims to make prose tight without bogging the users down with an unmanageable number of false alarms. Instead of checking for spelling and grammar mistakes, Typely weeds out redundancies, clichés, inconsistencies, and many more.
For now, Typely is free to use. The only limitation is the maximum number of characters for a submission. It is set at 50,000. The app’s developers are working on PRO features that might be available under premium subscription in the future.
Typely performs 1000+ checks, derived from combined experiences of the world’s best writers and editors. It doesn’t possess the necessary qualities to be your only spell checker, but it is worth including at the final stages of editing and proofreading your school papers.
In our experience, none of the automatic editors get all mistakes, so combining their power is the best way to catch most errors. You can develop your own algorithm using two or three apps that suit your needs most.
There are more student-friendly editors online we haven’t tried yet. So if you want to learn more, let us know in the comments below, and we’ll create another overview. Have you tried any of these useful tools? What’s your favorite text-improvement software? Share your experience with fellow students!